The Melbourne Cup came to Wagga as locals joined in the celebrations with the race that stopped the nation.
Wagga residents of all ages brought colour, enthusiasm and smiles as people from all over the region came together.
Alan Grentell was a stand-out enthusiastic fan as he cheered during the major Cup race.
“I love it because it’s a tradition and it’s an Australian way of life for this time of year, but the main thing is that it brings people together over a common cause for a few minutes of a day,” he said.
Doug Charlton and Terry Rooke from Wagga backed the Melbourne Cup runner-up Marmelo and were happy with their result, despite not winning first place.
“We don’t punt very often, but we decided it was the one to back after looking at the course, the length of it, and whether the horse had run that distance before,” Mr Charlton said.
Despite not everyone being lucky, Bob Warhurst said he was quite confident because he had “picked every horse” in the race.
“Every year my wife and I celebrate because it’s the biggest race in Australia and I travel down to Melbourne quite a bit,” he said.
“Next year we’re going on a cruise ship and we’ll be at Flemington and while I punt a little bit, all my tips are losers, so I take everyone else’s tips.”
Geoff Smith and Renee Stewart took fashion in their stride as they brought the Mexican festival Day of the Dead as inspiration for their race day attire.
“It’s just something different and it’s based on Day of the Dead, a Mexican festival to honour the dead and it’s different, bright and colourful,” Ms Stewart said.
“We come to the Rules Club every year and we’ve being coming for about eight years and I usually go home on par.”
Also joining in the spirit of Cup Day was Finnish woman Tanja Autio, who recently moved to Wagga joining her partner who is in the army.
The Rules Club was one of many Wagga establishments that hosted race day celebrations.
Resident Ron Francis joined the annual festivities at the club alongside his wife and daughter.
“If it’s a race that stops the nation, everyone should get the day off,” Mr Francis said.