About


The Hilux New Zealand Rural Games is New Zealand’s premier celebration of rural sports.

A great family weekend of traditional sports, live entertainment and heaps of opportunities to have a go.

The Square, Palmerston North from 10-11 March.

Entry is FREE!

The 2018 schedule is currently being created.

The 2018 site map is currently being created.

The Games are managed by the non-profit NZ Rural Games Trust established in 2014. The trust’s board features respected New Zealand professionals including former All Blacks captain and World Cup winning coach, Sir Brian Lochore and other representatives from the rural and commercial sector.

Here’s where to find us:

To find out more about Palmerston North and how to get to the Games click here.

‘Sports that built the nation’

At the heart of the Games are a series of traditional sports attracting top competitors from throughout New Zealand and Australia. You can expect to see several national and world champions battling for the prestigious Hilux New Zealand Rural Games titles.

Together with Sport New Zealand and rural sports associations around NZ we’ve developed exciting new formats for sheep shearing, speed fencing, speed tree climbing and other traditional sports. We’ll also be hosting the ANZAXE Wood Chopping Championship, NZ Harness Racing Gearing Up Championship and the NZ Rural Highland Games ‘Heavies’ Trans-Tasman Competition that has been so popular at the first two events.

Kids ‘n Country features a host of fun events over both days to keep under-12s active and entertained. And there are some great spot prizes.

sheep shearing new zealand rural games

Live entertainment

As well as the competitive element, the Games will feature a fun-packed festival programme including live music and entertainment, delicious local food and heaps of fun Powerco ‘Have a Go’ events like olive stone spitting, wine barrel racing, gumboot throwing and – of course – cowpat tossing!

Don’t miss the Property Brokers ‘Running of the Wools’ – hundreds of sheep herding through the centre of Feilding on Friday 10 March. With plenty of fun events alongside.

The Hilux New Zealand Rural Games is a fantastic family event, so see you in Palmerston North and Feilding in March!

The Hilux New Zealand Rural Games are sponsored by Toyota, Fonterra, Husqvarna, Property Brokers and Norwood with major support from the New Zealand Racing Board and Simpson Grierson plus Palmerston North City Council and Manawatu District Council.