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Proposals, The Hawks And Getting Up On Stage With Adam Brand At Deni Ute Muster

6 October 2015 | 5:00 pm | Uppy Chatterjee

"We're greeted by a dude pulling a condom filled with Bundy out of his shorts, a number of Confederate flags and two guys skitching a ride..."

Revellers are up until probably 3 or 4am taking part in stupidly loud displays of testosterone-fuelled dominance by revving their Utes, motorbikes and chainsaws, setting off fireworks and generally being crazy. 

People seem to emerge from their tents around 10:30am and head around to watch the Moto X jumpers, woodchopping and glammed out Utes in the Coates Show And Shine area. It really is amazing how much money people pour into the most ostentatious, ridiculously themed Utes imaginable. 

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We venture out once more - this time before dusk - into the makeshift shanty that is the Ute Paddock to see what whacky things punters have lugged into the site this year. We're greeted by a dude pulling a condom filled with Bundy out of his shorts, a number of Confederate flags and two guys skitching a ride on the back of a rubbish truck on an esky lid. Not what we expected, but okay.

At 12pm everyone gathers at the main stage for the official World Record Blue Singlet Count, and planned perfectly, a couple are brought up on stage by Morgan Evans. Both clad in blue singlets, she gets down on one knee and proposes to her man with a ring and he says yes! It's all very sweet and the orange and gold balloons people have been handed out are released... But then everyone scatters, rendering the count of blue singlet wearers kind of anticlimactic, over in fifteen short minutes. 

When the AFL Grand Final kicks off around 2pm, heaps of families have already camped out with folding chairs at the main stage. There's plenty of Hawthorn fans as you'd expect, erupting in roars every time they score (i.e. a lot). 

The Sunny Cowgirls are an acoustic guitar-bass duo and their upbeat country tunes offers the perfect soundtrack to the gorgeous sunset we're experiencing. Their banter with the crowd is cute (they ask who in the crowd are dads/are aware they are dads and who thinks they are six pack short of a carton). Their drummer, guitarist and mandolin player help the girls create a really full sound and you can tell punters who maybe haven't heard of the girls before are enjoying their set too. 

Adam Eckersley Band play a solid set of groove-heavy country rock, Eckersley ripping into some crazy solos that the sparse but dedicated crowd lap up. Tonight has brought on an older sorta crowd, but the band's stage presence is strong. Eckersley brings his wife Brooke onstage, of The McClymonts, and they sing Give Her The World together, which he wrote for her when she was pregnant with their child. Pause for swoons. 

Even in the IGA food court, it feels more family oriented tonight. On a quick walk around you'll see families eating fish and chips on pallet tables, cops having a chat to punters seated on the same table and even letting their sniffer dog have a couple of neck scratches. Personally, I'm upset I don't get to offer the pup some cuddles myself because all I've ever wanted is to tell a police dog what a good dog they are.  Who's a good boy? Who's a good boy! You are! 

The McClymonts pull a huge crowd over on Stage A playing their soulful blend of country, their three voices creating a lush trifecta of harmonies. They dish up an amazing cover of The Lumineers' Ho Hey which the crowd are all too happy to sing along to. The girls also drop in a rendition of Meghan Trainor's All About That Bass which sounds infinitely better played this way.

Adam Brand is charismatic, commanding and possesses a great stage presence - and I'm not just saying that because the guy pulled me up on stage for the first time in my life to Periscope Good Friends from next to him. Aside from the fact that my time in the limelight is equally horrifying, exhilarating and amazing, Brand is effortlessly skilled and along with him, the band are having a blast. They play an encore with a fast-paced homage to Chisel with Khe Sanh and Hell Of A Ride

Our closing act Lee Kernaghan takes the stage to huge applause and an intro of one of his songs from Spirit Of The Anzac. Kernaghan is as stirring to the main stage crowd as I've been told and he plays songs like Boy From The Bush, Outback Club and a touching Waltzing Matilda near the end. He's got The Wolfe Brothers lads playing for him tonight and their performance is as tight as their own set yesterday. As the last notes ring out, families file out to their campsites to celebrate their last night of Deni Ute Muster as they should.