Clued-up cast of dollar saver free seminar presenters at Leisurefest

September 21, 2014
Clued-up cast of dollar saver free seminar presenters at Leisurefest is among a clued-up cast of dollar saver free seminar presenters at the 7th annual Melbourne Leisurefest from October 2 to 5.

Online Editor Garth Morrison talks about how to Go Make Some Memories in the outdoors with free online tour planning.

The free seminars are a first at Melbourne Leisurefest.

The seminars run at 10.30am, 11.30am, 12.30pm, 1.30pm and 3pm each day.

The speakers are also available at the Melbourne Leisurefest Sandown Racecourse venue throughout the four-day event.

Garths GoSeeAustralia Talking Pictures Show looks at road touring adventures, free camping costs and what makes the best caravan park. Garth has answers on Recreational Vehicles, 4WD and how to chose a tow tug. He discusses towing, Weight Distribution Hitches and camping in caravans, campers, motorhomes and tents.

Garth is Editor of and its Kiwi sister website

Both websites are free to users. Newbies are supported by Old Heads and there is no such thing as a stupid question.

In the world of broadband and the Web Garth explores the huge amount of touring and camping information available free through the and websites.

Free benefits include Plan a Trip with GoSeeAustralia free online.

Plan a Trip satellite mapping is a free GPS which does not tell fibs.

GoSeeAustralia now lists 2700 Australian caravan parks and campsites all available free with a few clicks.

The Internet savvy Editor over 10 years of Australias caravanning, touring website tackles questions like:

What Recreational Vehicle really suits you?

What tow vehicle makes the best tug?

What does it take to get good broadband coverage on the road?

Is a Weight Distribution Hitch (WDH) essential to safe towing?

What is the price of responsible camping? and combine to help up to 9000 individual visitors every day.

There is plenty of free on site parking at Melbourne Leisurefest and Sandown Park Railway Station is right at the front door.

Garth Morrison GSA and GSNZ Editor.
Garth Morrison GSA and GSNZ Editor.

At 10.30am on Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday Darren Maggs, MGLSAT Sat Phones and survival tips opens the seminar batting with a fascinating insight into getting the best from what is really difficult equipment to use well.

Darren is a former Army Special Forces Communications specialist, ASIO cleared and a former Victorian Police officer, Darren shares some of his vast experience in operating in remote locations.

He has proven valuable safety, survival and communications tips (Sat phones, HF Radio etc) along with a few interesting stories to ensure safety on the next big adventure.

Unlike mobile phones a satellite phone will not find you. Darren introduces audiences to the reality that the user has to find the satellite.

He also gets into costs of brands and their ability, or otherwise, to cope in the field.

Some satellite units are not certified waterproof, nor are they particularly designed to cope with hard use. Others are high cost. He offers brand options which get across these issues.

Darren Maggs.
Darren Maggs.

At 11.30 am on Friday and Sunday Sid Whiting, Caravanning Made Easy, offers tips, tricks, traps and advice about how to get out there and do it.

Sid is second to none on the subject of long distance caravanning.

In the last few years, Sid and Sandie Whiting have covered over 150,000km towing their caravan around Australia.

When they first started out, they made a few mistakes and even now they still learning.

Sids Caravanning Made Easy seminar touches on many aspects of caravanning and motorhoming, from how to choose the right rig (they got it horribly wrong first time around).

Sid looks at setting it up with the best mix of tools and equipment. He talks about the things that can go wrong, how things work, whats it like out there?

On the subject of long distance touring Sids experiences are big dollars savers.

If you are in the market for a rig, have you even decided whether to go for a caravan or a motorhome? Or a fifth wheeler? Sid goes through the pros and cons of each type of unit.

Questions from the floor are encouraged. Each seminar is different, with something for everyone from new chums to old hands. Whether its fishing, cooking, hitching, photography, security, electric brakes, or ants in the caravan.

Sid Whiting and Boss Cocky.
Sid Whiting and Boss Cocky.

At 12.30pm on Thursday, Friday and Sunday TJM looks at how to set up your 4wd to be better on and off road, towing and touring. On Saturday his seminar is at 11.30am.

This seminar hosted by Jason Lock, National Development Manager from TJM will give an overview of how this can be achieved.

Jason has been in the business of tailoring vehicles and integrating the trailer for the last 20 years.

He travels regularly around the country with his young family camping vehicle based, with a camper trailer and also with 5th Wheelers and caravans.

TJM have been at the forefront of 4wd Equipment since 1973 in Australia and specialise in Equipping vehicles for On and Off Road. Work or Play, this also includes integrating the vehicle with the trailer.

There are many products out there that enhance the experience of this great country and this seminar offers an overview of these and how to set up a great touring and towing rig.

Jason Lock - TJM.
Jason Lock - TJM.

At 1.30pm on Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday Murcotts presents for those new to RVs or caravanning and for those seasoned in towing who want up to date guidelines on safe and legal towing.

Murcotts Driving Excellence conducts daily one hour seminars which cover all the basics. The sessions will focus on the legal towing requirements for all States, safe hitching, weight management, loading, braking, tyres, defensive driving, reversing and parking.

Participants will have the chance to win a daily prize of a Defensive Driving Course (value $295) by correctly identifying the safety issues from an inspection of a standard RV rig.

All participants will receive a comprehensive Towing Handbook.

At 3pm on Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday 4WD Victoria fire up on 4WD.

Experienced 4WD adventurers from the Victorian 4WD Clubs will lead sessions. Representatives will discuss how to plan and prepare a 4WD. How to pack it and safety issues.

Murcotts driving excellence.
Murcotts driving excellence.

They will outline what to look out for in certain areas of travel, road conditions, tyre pressures, recovery gear required.

Convoy procedures will also be discussed as well as courtesy and good manners when on the UHF radio etc.

They will provide relevant tips to ensure safe and enjoyable travelling.

The Caravan Trade Industries Association of Victoria (CTIAV) and the Victorian Automobile Chamber of Commerce (VACC) have teamed up to provide a showcase of the latest RV, camping, touring, off road products.

For those visitors who love fishing or would like to learn more, the Yamaha Supertank will be at the show everyday. Shows will run at 45-minute intervals and will educate visitors on the use of fishing lures and how these impact fishing.

The spectacular fifteen metre long and three metre high perspex fish tank will allow visitors to see fish in their natural habitat. Brett Thomson and Michael Cooke will showcase different lures currently available on the market and how fish react to these, Chief Executive Officer of CIA Victoria, Rob Lucas said.

If you prefer a more hands on experience, then the towing track is for you! This year AL-KO will be showcasing their Electronic Stability Control System. This system is a world first in safety technology recently released to the Australian caravan market.

Murcotts driving school will also be running caravan towing demonstrations on the track, and visitors will be able to ride in the passenger seat to get a feel of how different caravans tow.

Rob Lucas commented, The towing track is a great new feature at the 2014 show, AL-KO and Murcotts driving school will be running demonstrations throughout the duration of the event. Also at the show we have a free shuttle buggy service to help get you around the show with ease.


Latest releases in caravans, motorhomes, camper trailers, campervans, tent trailers, 4 wheel drives, off road vehicles and many other recreational and touring vehicles.

A huge 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 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.


Caravan towing track.


Family entertainment.

Food, drink and rest areas at the venue.


Sandown Racecourse, Princes Highway, Springvale. Melway Ref 80 C10.


Thursday, October 2nd to Sunday October 5th 2014

Open: 10am - 5pm Thursday to Saturday

10am - 4pm Sunday

Ticket Prices

Buy Tickets Online:

Tickets are available online at the following discounted prices:

Adult: $13:00

Pensioner, Concession and Seniors card holders: $8.00 (ID must be presented).

Children under 15: Free (when accompanied by an Adult)

At the Gate:

Tickets will be available at the event, at the following prices:


Single entry - $15.

Two Day Pass - $20.

Pensioner, Concession and Seniors card holders:

Single entry - $10 (ID must be presented).

Two Day Pass - $15.

Children aged 17 and under: Free (when accompanied by an Adult).

Getting there:

Car parking is free, and there is plenty of disabled access throughout the venue.

By train, take the Pakenham/Cranbourne line.

Passport competition and door prizes:

There will be many opportunities to win at Melbourne Leisurefest;

Collect your passport at the gate and find all the checkpoints at the venue for an opportunity to enter the major prize draw.

Acknowledgement This Information Article is provided through the support of generous sponsor Caravan Industry Association of Victoria (CIA Vic.). This support covers story research costs. It is because of sponsors like CIA Vic. that an extensive library of free Information Articles is available to help users Go Make Some Memories.

FWDV logo
FWDV logo

GSA on the road Caravan office workstation.
GSA on the road Caravan office workstation.
GSA charity fundraiser Chloe.
GSA charity fundraiser Chloe.
GSA Ranger and travelling office.
GSA Ranger and travelling office.
Jeep GSA1 on tow test.
Jeep GSA1 on tow test.
GSA Tailgate Tent campsite.
GSA Tailgate Tent campsite.
Kickback camping GSA style.
Kickback camping GSA style.