Page 148 - ShowSight - August 2019
P. 148

                European Dog Show: 2019 Wels Austria
BY KARL DONVIL continued
    We have been spoiled lately by lots of space and walkways around the rings, like was the case in Poland and Germany. Here is was more the normal, usual space to walk and sit. A pity that like in Helsinki there were no walkways indicated. Especially when space is not abundant this is very use- ful and safe in case of an emergency. The trade stands were all over but mostly against the walls. Stand holders still talk about Brussels with its shopping road straight in the middle of the halls so that exhibitors and visitors had to walk through in order to go to the rings. But in general Wels was fairly good, but not a topper. The expo area was boarding the city park where it was nice walking in the shade of the trees. The Traun river, boarding the outside of the halls, was another option for refreshment, but unfor- tunately, it was also outside the fences of the expo area. Indeed, distances were very short and those we stayed in motorhomes or caravans, were not isolated like on many showgrounds, far from shopping areas, etc. Here, within 500m, you were in the middle of the old town and market square for a cool drink, a dinner in the open or a delicious ice cream.
The Rotaxhall, where the main ring was situated, was opposite the two new halls with a service road in between, and thus, no long distances to walk. In fact, all the halls were within easy reach of each other, very convenient. The main ring itself was
covered with grey carpet with, in the mid- dle, a lighter grey stroke, supposed to let the selected dogs run and to prevent that the judges to choose as they liked to let the dogs run, what can cause a chaotic impression? This was much better, and except for one judge, all did as prescribed. It can be as sim- ple as that. The long side, on the left, when facing the podium, was reserved for the VIP’s and judges. The right side was for the Press and the public. The short side facing the podium had several rows with chairs but they were hardly used as were the places on the first floor on top of the VIP area. In fact, I did not have the impression that the show attracted many visitors at least not when in relation to the number of spectators in the main ring. Logical if you keep the extreme temperatures in mind. You had to have a good reason to spend the day in a warm hall while there are plenty of other recreational options to go for, another unwelcome con- sequence of the heat stroke. However, the national and regional newspapers covered the show very well and usually, that makes a big difference but seemed not to have had enough impact, unfortunately. On the other hand, I had crossed the streets of the city several times but it was only on Mon- day when I discovered by accident a public- ity poster announcing the show. It was not at all an eye catcher, and you had to come very close to read it before you knew what
it was about! If there is a small circus com- ing in my town, you find posters on every corner and you must be blind to not have seen one. But for a big international event, much more exceptional as any circus, you had to find an announcement by accident. A missed chance!
The podium was nice with LED infor- mation on the bottom and Live view on a big video wall on top. The entrance to the ring was also built as a video wall, show- ing the national flag of the judge when he/ she was presented. Contrary to Poland there were efficient security people and a ring steward, but the press was not so happy that all the dogs were lined up in front of them, blocking the view of all the remain- ing dogs to come, but that is a common problem on a lot of shows. In my opinion, the whole scene missed a bit of color and atmosphere. Grey is the best color for pho- tographers. Indeed the color of the light in the main ring was good but not always even when the dogs were entering the ring, and it was all too bright with little or no contrast, creating an overall dull impres- sion. With some light effects one can create a lot of depth and playful contrast, as long as for the photo opportunities the light is bright, even and neutral as the photogra- phers like. That was a problem on the first day when a moving spotlight was casting colors on the winners. However, there was a very good understanding between the Press and the Committee and that was very much appreciated. On simple request, it was changed for the following days.
There was very little entertainment in the main ring, only an act of a clown with five dogs, Leonid Beljakov with his Com- edy Dog Show. Not bad at all, but every day the same act was for most people and VIP’s a little too much of it, especially as it was the only entertainment of the evening pro- gram. But in fact, if that is all that could be remarked, then it is very little and that means that most of it was very good. And since sponsors cut in their budget there was probably little left to spend when it comes to entertainment in the main ring.
More next month!
 146 • ShowSight Magazine, auguSt 2019

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