Bloem Show marks a milestone this year: It is being presented for the 135th time.This year the diverse event, one of South Africa’s largest consumer shows, will open on Thursday (26/04) in Bloemfontein and end on 5 May. Bloem Show was the brainchild of farmers and their associates who founded it in 1883 to promote farming as one of the main drivers of the economy in the central region and in the rest of the country. Rapid growth over the years has resulted in it becoming diverse, attracting other traders and thereby growing as an economic catalyst in South Africa’s central region. Elmarie Prinsloo, Bloem Show’s chief executive officer, has encouraged the private and public sectors to continue their partnerships and innovations during the show to revive the region’s economy. “Bloem Show has proven over the last 135 years to be one of the major events in Bloemfontein, as one of the main economic contributors to the region,” said Prinsloo. “The economic injection to Mangaung and the Free State is more than R35 million per annual show. Good economic spin-offs are through spending at local businesses, accommodation, fuel and food companies, considering that more than 60% of visitors and agri participants are from outside Bloemfontein.” Prinsloo said about 400 quality exhibitors, more than 20 top artists and 25 agri championships, of which 7 are national and 1 a world show, would be on display at this year’s show. The theme for this year is “Monsters and Mascots”.