In more sad news, The Great Australian Vanilla Slice Triumph Merbein 2021 has been cancelled for the second year running.
The highly-anticipated return of the famous competition was set to take place on August 14, but owing to ongoing uncertainty surrounding the COVID-19 situation and ongoing lockdowns in Victoria and New South Wales forced event organisers to call it off once again.
After some days watching and waiting for clearer directions from the Victorian Government, organisers announced their decision via a post on the event’s Facebook page, saying it was disappointing, but ultimately community safety is a priority.
“It is with great disappointment that we announce the cancelation of The Great Australian Vanilla Slice Triumph Merbein for 2021,” it read.
“We thank you for all the support we have received however we need to keep our community safe. Looking forward to an amazing 2022 Triumph.”
The story goes that The Great Vanilla Slice Triumph began in Ouyen in 1998 after then-Victorian premier Geoff Kennett claimed the vanilla slice from the town’s Mallee Bakery was the best he’d ever tasted. Locals challenged Kennett to give them an event to boost the local economy and put the tiny Mildura town on the map. They suggested the Formula 1 Grand Prix, and he countered with the Vanilla Slice competition.
Kennett personally supported the Triumph, acting as a guest judge until 2005. In 2011, Ouyen awarded the rights to host the competition to Merbein, another Sunraysia town.
Over the years the competition has attracted entries from around Victoria and even interstate.