Originally named Macguire’s Punt by some bloke with a dirty mind and poor spelling skills, Shepparton began life as a sheep station, before transforming into a rail hub, before finally ending up in its current incarnation as a smouldering post-apocalyptic crater. Its current name ‘Shepparton’ is a portmanteau of the city’s two favourite things – ‘sheep’ and ‘methamphetamine’. Shepparton’s tourism slogan is ‘Many Great Things’ which is at best a charitable exaggeration and at worst blatant false advertising. What Shepparton lacks in culture, entertainment, nightlife and drinkable water it makes up for in drugs, bogans, teenage pregnancy and the ubiquitous scent of cow shit.
Common hobbies in Shepparton include jamming fruit into tins, doing lappies up Wyndham Street in your souped-up debtmobile and having your welfare payments quarantined by Centrelink. Maude Street Mall is a popular spot for drug deals and knife fights, while the ironically-named Olympic Avenue wins the gold medal for ‘getting stabbed with a broken VB stubby’.
Shepparton displays a collection of life-size fibreglass cows in public spaces, as a tribute to the life-size actual cows that used to roam the town before an enterprising Sheppartard swapped them all for a clapped-out Commodore. The Shepparton Art Museum houses the world’s most significant collection of Australian ceramic, which is also the world’s most boring thing to collect. The main event in Shepparton is the Spring Car Nationals, a giant magnet for wild packs of criminals and fume-huffing hoons and a particularly great time not to visit.
Shittarton: Many Great Things Are Not Here.
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