Alocal fictional farmer continues to put Penola on the map, with more than 1500 people attending an official family fun day opening of the new George the Farmer store.
Fans from Horsham, Portland, Kaniva, Robe, Naracoorte and all parts of the Limestone Coast, along with a family from Perth, flocked to the new Penola store to attend the opening.
Event spokeswoman Simone Kain said she was overwhelmed with the support shown.
“The feedback that we have continued to receive has been outstanding,” she said.
Mrs Kain said the idea for George the Farmer started in 2012 when she could not find any fun and educational farm books for her eldest son George, when he was aged two.
George the Farmer was launched a couple of years later as an interactive book app on iTunes and the first book was published in 2015.
“The brand has grown organically with many different offerings thanks to the feedback we have received over the years from our little and big fans,” she said.
Along with the picture storybooks, there is also clothing, twenty original farm songs, a national touring performance, including multiple trips to NSW, Victoria, the ACT and WA.
“We have paddock to pate videos on YouTube and the ABC and free curriculum aligned educators guides for teachers to use in the classroom. To date we have helped educate more than 100,000 children about where their food and fibre comes from and the importance of the agricultural sector,” Mrs Kain said.
“We would not be where we are today without the support of our littlest fans.
“George the Farmer has, and aways be a big team effort.
“My business partner Ben Hood , who helped bring ‘George’ to life visually, and played an important role in where we are today.”
Mr Hood stepped away earlier this year to pursue a new passion in politics.
Mrs Kain said there were many people to thank for bringing George to life at events across Australia.
“At George the Farmer, our vision is a world where all kids connect to the earth, food and farm and today has been a true celebration of that,” she said.
The opening was officially carried out by Wattle Range Mayor Des Noll.