MORE than 3000 participants will make their way to the Manning Entertainment for the 2015 Taree and District Eisteddfod starting next Monday, April 13.
"There has been a numbers increase in nearly all sections," eisteddfod secretary Mrs Margaret Rogers OAM said.
President of the eisteddfod, Tim Stack OAM said the area would receive great economic benefit over the eisteddfod period, due to the mass of visitors expected to enjoy Taree and surrounds.
Competitors will be visiting from as far south as Sydney, as far north as Lismore and Coffs Harbour, and as far west as Orange.
"It is a great way to showcase how beautiful the Manning Valley is," Mr Stack said.
"These people will go away as ambassadors for this region."
The economic value of the eisteddfod is further proven by Greater Taree City Council's $14,000 investment into this year's event.
The eisteddfod also provides great opportunities for local competitors and teachers, continued Mr Stack.
"It brings a great depth of competition where participants can see where they sit at an out-of-area regional event."
Mr Stack also believes it is an incredible skill for children to learn how to perform on stage.
"It takes a lot of courage to get up there.
"It's about building confidence, that could help them anywhere in their future.
"After all, these competitors may become our teachers of tomorrow."
To encourage development of students' skills and confidence, there are a number of special awards available to all sections including the Smile Scholarships.
Adjudicators will choose participants based on their passion, dedication and degree of expertise in their field.
"We hope these scholarships will trigger something for entrants to pursue," Mr Stack said.
A 2014 Smile Scholarship winner, Lucas Sullivan of Taree is currently completing the Les Griffith Tap Dancing Association Syllabus (LGTDA) in teaching, whilst studying a double degree in engineering and commerce at Sydney. Lucas was also nominated for Greater Taree City Council's Young Citizen of the Year for 2014.
For those looking to attend the eisteddfod, Bass'n Blues Music Megastore on Albert Street, have programs on sale for $12.
Organisers would like attendees of the vocal championships held on April 17 at 6.30pm to dress up for this special occasion. Nibbles will be provided in the foyer, between the judging on this night.
Major sponsors of this year's eisteddfod are Stacks Finance and the Greater Taree City Council with major section sponsors being Taree Literary Institute and Library, Mayo Private Hospital, Mid Coast Water, NAB, McDonalds Family Restaurants.