Leanne Hixon and Leeanne Puglisi-Gangemi are excited for Ballandean Estate Wines and Stanthorpe Rotary’s Autumn Race Day event.
Leanne Hixon and Leeanne Puglisi-Gangemi are excited for Ballandean Estate Wines and Stanthorpe Rotary’s Autumn Race Day event.

NO MORE: New event to replace Opera in the Vineyard

OPERA in the Vineyard is no more with Ballandean Estate Wines and Stanthorpe Rotary opting to do away with the famed event.

Instead, the pairing plan to bring a new offering to the Granite Belt.

On Sunday, May 3, Autumn Race Day at Ballandean Estate Wines will go ahead.

“After 27 very successful years, we’ve decided to move on,” Leeanne Puglisi-Gangemi from Ballandean Estate Wines said.

“The Rotary club has decided to try something new so we came up with this idea.

“The last two year’s probably, we’ve been discussing whether we were going to keep going with the event or not.

“We decided it’s time for a change. It was time.”

With attendance down in recent year’s, Ms Puglisi-Gangemi said it would have been “a risk” to continue.

Autumn Race Day attendees can look forward to a three-course lunch under marquee, raffles, fashions on the field, live music, lucky door prizes, alternative races and Granite Belt wines.

While no actual horse races will take part, a big screen will show races from elsewhere.

People will be able to bet on the races with “funny money”, with money raised on the day going towards Rotary charity causes.

“We’re working with a company in Sydney that run these race days. The betting that takes place on the day … it’s not like normal betting,” Ms Puglisi-Gangemi said.

“It’s like a big raffle but run like a normal race.

“It’s going to be just like a normal race day but races will be run slightly different to what you’re used to.

“We expect that this new event will establish itself a firm place in the hearts of locals and visitors alike.

“What’s not to love about fine wine, a three-course lunch from The Barrelroom and the chance to win on the races?”

Over the life of Opera in the Vineyard, the event raised more than $1 million for charity.

The event will run from midday to 5.30pm.

Ticket prices are $130 for lunch, a seat and wine on arrival.

Early bookings are recommended, with the event capped at 300 tickets.

Visit https://www.trybooking.com/BHHDT to book.