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Leisurefest builds on reality with practical towing and 4WD test ride experience for show-goers

September 24, 2009
Leisurefest builds on reality with practical towing and 4WD test ride experience for show-goers

Sandown racecourse has the latest in boats, RVs, camping, fishing, 4x4 and accessories on showfrom all of the leading brands as the 2nd annual Melbourne Leisurefest Sandown Racecourse runs from 1-4 October.

Returning this year is the popular Off Road 4x4 Test Track as well as test towing on the Sandown circuit so visitors can experience new vehicle test drives, safe towing demonstrations and tips for best practice off roading.

Some of Australias top towing and off-roading experts will deliver a unique test ride experience to patrons at Melbourne Leisurefest.

Visitors will be able to take both on-road and off-road test rides with the latest tow vehicles, caravans, trailers and even boats, on the Friday, Saturday and Sunday of the show.

Four Wheel Drive Victoria and Tow-Ed will supply the expert off-road and on-road drivers for the hugely popular test runs.

They expect their passengers to again be surprised at the capabilities of modern four-wheel-drives, whether on or off the beaten track.

Off-road test rides will take place on Sandowns purpose-built off-road training course, complete with steep inclines and declines, water crossings and all sorts of challenging road surfaces, often with an off-road caravans and camper-trailers in tow.

Equally impressive will be the rigs on the main Sandown road course, with caravans, trailers, fifth-wheelers and boats being towed behind a wide selection of tow vehicles of all styles and sizes.

One of the great benefits of the test runs is the opportunity to ask an expert about what sort of off-roader or tow vehicle might suit best, and of course the same sort of questions about caravans, pop-tops, trailers, fifth-wheelers and boats.

Teamed with an all-new visitor entrance designed to ensure you dont miss a thing, this years Melbourne Leisurefest promises to be a great day out for the whole family.

Last years prices are retained for this years value, and kids under 15 are free. Adult entry $12 and free parking.

Fifth wheeler handling on show at  Leisurefest
Fifth wheeler handling on show at Leisurefest

Barbecue fans have a great new option in the OZ Pig barbecue, a versatile portable cooker which weighs just 17 kg and is ideal for travel anywhere.

OZ pig can be used as an outdoor heater as well as a barbecue and cooking on the OZ Pig is a breeze with your camp oven - just remove the top plate and cook with a wok or boil the billy by placing it straight onto the flames.

The heat can also be adjusted with the hot plate, making it versatile to cook and heat a range of meals. Best of all, OZ Pig is easy to travel with, with four screw-in legs for stability making it easy to put together when you set up camp.

Park Lane Tourist Park in Traralgon is ideal for a family holiday. Rated 4.5 stars, it offers accommodation to meet any budget.

For Melbourne Cup weekend, Park Lane will stage Jazz in the Park featuring live jazz music, face painting, bush poets, hot breakfast and Cup sweeps.

Park Lane Tourist Park has five free prize draws daily on its Leisurefest stand, where patrons can win 25% discount vouchers for Jazz in the Park; family weekend accommodation for two nights; one free nights cabin accommodation; 15% Park Lane discount vouchers; two-year Top Tourist membership; vouchers for children stay free or 10% discount; one free night in a powered site; and two free nights in an ensuite power site.

Visit stand 26 for free entry in the prizes drawas well as great accommodation and tourism offers.

Oh please dad  I just love bacon
Oh please dad I just love bacon

Dream-Pot is on show at Leisurefest. The thermal cookerdelivers easy-cook nutritious food when it is wanted, where it is wanted Nothing does more for happy, healthy touring and camping than good nutritious food when it is wanted, where it is wanted.

A GoSee extended evaluation on the road and at home of thermal cooking and Dream-Pot shows it delivers on time every time. It saves big time on fuel, gas or electricity and does not demand that someone watches the pot.

Completely portable the Dream-Pot keeps cooking indoors or out once the recipe start-up has been followed. So please read the instructions.

We use the 6 litre Dream-Pot which comes with a 2 litre inner pot. This allows cooking variety with recipes which run from soup to cake and most things in between.

On the road the Dream-Pot cooks along under a safety cargo net which restrains it upright in the truck as GoSee travels. It is a good easy to carry friend at the end of a touring day and it cleans up quickly.
Cakes, bread, scones are Dream-Pot options and fruit tea cake, spiced apple muffins and sugarless fruit loaf suit a diabetic meal plan. Dream-Pot is also a rice cooker, Bain Marie, cooler and yoghurt maker.

GoSee also finds that the Dream-Pot is a convenient and power-saving method of cooking for working people when they want a meal ready when they get home.

The Australian Volunteer Coast Guard Association will again train and test would-be boaties at Melbourne Leisurefest.

Three of the Coast Guards top trainers will deliver three sessions during Leisurefest, which opens on Thursday 1 October at Sandown Racecourse.

Geelong Flotilla Commander Peter Barrow, Deputy Squadron Commodore Barry Cordwell and Safety Beach Flotilla Commander Cliff Lees will run sessions at 11 am on the Thursday, Friday and Sunday.

Each session comprises three hours of presentations and discussion followed by the test and marking.

Successful participants will receive a DVD of the handbook and a certificate of completion which they can present at any Vic Roads to buy their Recreational Boat Operator License.

Kitchen and dining area Standard ensuite cabin  Park Lane Traralgon
Kitchen and dining area Standard ensuite cabin Park Lane Traralgon

The cost for the training and test is $70 for the boat operator session and test, or $90 for the boat operator plus PWC endorsement, and all proceeds go to the Coast Guard to do its vital voluntary work in helping keep the waterways safe.

An all-new, third generation wheelchair accessible caravan from Accessavan will make its debut at Melbourne Leisurefest at Sandown Racecourse.

Accessavans Anthony Wake says unlike previous designs based on existing caravans, this one is fully custom built to his design by DesignerVans at Wangaratta.

Anthony has been in a wheelchair since a car accident in 1991 left him a T4 paraplegic, and Accessavan was born from his love of camping and caravanning.

Aust Coast Guard will train and test would-be  boaties
Aust Coast Guard will train and test would-be boaties

Although the Accessavan range nominally offers three lengths and two floorplans, Anthony said there was no real limit to the options.

A caravan which fits an entire boat and trailer in the back will be one of the stars of Melbourne Leisurefest.

Boatavan is the invention of Melbourne engineer and fishing enthusiast Theo Haass, designed as a self-contained home base for the keen fisherman.

Theo designed Boatavan to meet his own particular needs.

I go fishing up in the far north, and I wanted to take both a caravan and a boat with me, he said.

You dont want a little tinnie in croc-infested waters, so I needed to combine a decent-sized boat with a decent-sized caravan without it being too big or heavy.

A motorhome wasnt an option, because Im only away for maybe a month or so per year and wanted a regular vehicle to use at home, so the answer is a caravan towed by a normal four-wheel-drive.


Boatavan can carry a complete 4.3 metre boat and trailer on board, and still offer comfortable living and sleeping quarters much like any other caravan of its size, he said.

Visitors to Melbourne Leisurefest have a chance to win a Quintrex 420 Dory as well as other great prizes by attending the Show and following the yellow brick road passport competition.

The Quintrex 420 Dory, courtesy of Streaker Boats, is valued at $14,500 and includes a Yamaha four stroke 30hp engine and a Telwater trailer.

Second prize is a Jardine Tent that sleeps nine, valued at $649.98, and courtesy of Anaconda. With a weight of just 19.8 kilograms and wheels on the carry bag for convenience, the Jardine Tent also comes with a 10x10 heavy duty PVC floor and silver coated fly seam.

Third prize is a Dune Out Back Swag valued at $324.98, also courtesy of Anaconda. Eight kilograms in weight and with a PVC floor, this swag is 210cm long and comes with three fibreglass coated poles that will withstand any outdoor environment.

Boatavan copes with land and water
Boatavan copes with land and water

To win one of these great prizes get an entry form at the gate, follow the yellow brick road around the Show and stamp the passport at each nominated stand. Then fill out personal details and put it in the entry box for a chance to win one of three great prizes.

Leisurefest includes -

Latest release caravans, motorhomes, camper trailers, 4 wheel drives, off road vehicles, campervans, tent trailers, boats, fishing, and other recreational and touring vehicles.

A range of touring accessories from leading suppliers.

Tents, camping accessories, annexes, equipment and clothing for outdoor enthusiasts.

Trailers, towing equipment, parts, aids and accessories for all touring and boating needs.

Serious 4x4 parts and accessories.

RV and off road telecommunications products, alternative power, off road equipment and services form leading industry suppliers.

Drive tourism destination information, products and services.

Fishing gear and boating equipment.

Activities include -

Interactive 4x4 circuit demonstrations.

Interactive Test Track experience.

Free kids rides on Saturday and Sunday.

Food, drink and rest areas at the venue.


Sandown Racecourse, Princes Highway, Springvale

Melway Ref 80 C10.


1-4 October 2009.

10am to 5pm daily.


Adults $12

Pensioner Government Senior Card holders $10

Children under 15 are free when accompanied by an adult.

Getting there

Car parking is free, disabled access throughout the venue.

Door prizes

Every visitor to Leisurefest can enter the Passport Competition to win one of three prizes.

Online ticket sales for Melbourne Leisurefest have gone live for easy pre-paid access to Australias biggest RV, camping, boat and 4x4 show., click on Buy Tickets, then present the print-out at the gate.

Editors Note: Also See -

2009 Jayco Discovery at  GoSee ensuite site Park Lane
2009 Jayco Discovery at GoSee ensuite site Park Lane
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