Nup to the Cup: 5 things you can do on Cup day instead of supporting horse racing

by Hazaar the Bazaar
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Australia is growing a conscience when it comes to horse racing, but traditionalists are holding tight. Change is here – but we need to push it over the edge. Here’s how you can help this cause cross the line.

November is host to a slimy time of the year in Australia: Melbourne Cup Day. The event is fiercely celebrated by white-collar workers, TV hotshots and drunk university students, but it seems like support is on the way out. The Cup’s organisers are torn between old and new, and the bookies are stressed and relying on bets from other sports.

It’s never been more important to put your money where your mouth is, so here are five things you can do instead of supporting horseracing on the big day.


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1. Join a Nup to the Cup celebration

If you ask me, there’s no better way to ram the middle finger at horseracing than to party for the animals.

Nup to Cup is a series of public events held across the nation aimed to raise awareness and raise money for our furry friends.

There’s a bunch of events in Melbourne (of course), Sydney, Brisbane, Adelaide and even a few on the Sunny Coast. For all my pals in rural Oz, I feeeel you! Why not host your own?

You can find the full list of events here.


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2. Take a peek inside your cupboard and re-wear, repair and re-home

We’ve all peeped the newspapers after Cup day and cringed, scoffed and oogled over the fashion choices, but this is problematic too. Cup wear is more often than not unsustainably produced fashion by high-end brands. The kind of garments that most people don’t re-wear.

Minimalism is in, Zara is out and it’s time to wear your morals on your sleeve. So say screw it to fast fashion and one-wear outfits this year!


3. Make the best of a bad tradition and encourage your workplace to donate sweep money to a cause

Morals may be sweeping through the nation, but the annual sweep is still lingering in the workplace. It might be a doozy, but see if you can convince the organisers of your work sweep to donate a percentage to an animal cause.

There are a few lovely animal sanctuaries that take on ex-racing horses (like Where Pigs Fly and Little Oak Sanctuary), so see if George from Accounting is up for it.


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4. Use your voice!

While mainstream media is holding tight to Cup day content, your fellow citizens are starting to wake up. Now is the time to make noise. The power is in our hands, and the tradition is hanging by a thread. Share horserace statistics to your Facebook feed, have a heartfelt conversation with Nanna over a cuppa and let people know why you’re boycotting the Cup.

It can be a blurry time for people – it’s hard to come to terms with the morality of something when it’s entwined with your lifestyle. When using your voice, only use kindness, refrain from judgement and don’t expect someone to change instantly.


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5. Itching to bet? Place it on Sco-mo and the next leadership spill

Honestly, we don’t need any extra-curricular entertainment in Australia. Our government is more than enough.

Instead of rooting for Angel Sunflower to win her race, crack a beer, sit down with your mates and talk #auspol. When’s it gonna happen? Will we know before? Is it over? Are we stuck with Sco-mo forever? But be careful, the odds are NEVER in your favour.


Well, there you have it. Five alternative ways to celebrate the Melbourne Cup without support animal abuse. So how are you celebrating?

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