Town’s ridiculously Aussie welcome for royals
THE bush town of Dubbo is so afroth with royal fever ahead of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex's flying visit today it has produced its own royal beer.
Called "Dubbo Royale" and bottled in a red, white and blue can, it is a British-style lager combined with "fruity" US West Coast hops "for the Meghan component".
"We call it marriage in a can," Old Bank Hotel licensee Col Mackintosh told news.com.au from his front bar bedecked in royal bunting, a cardboard cut-out of the royal couple and boxes of the brew.
Pubs across town will be serving cans of Royale as locals take a day off to celebrate the fact Dubbo will host the Duke and Duchess of Sussex for almost five hours on Wednesday.
The Hunter Valley brewed beer will also be available on tap alongside a specially brewed Sydney royal beer, Young Henry's "Get Royally Frothed", at $6.50 a schooner.
The small rural city on the NSW Western Plains is buzzing with excitement about the visit, with interest ratcheting up another notch after Monday's royal baby announcement.
Shop windows decked out with royal displays line the main streets, including a baby shop with a "royal nursery".
Larrissa Kek, proprietor of royalbubsandtots.com.au, which was named that six years ago, said she put up the royal nursery display last week, and added a "coming in 2019" sign this morning.
Over at Ruby Maine homewares and fashion, Samantha Portelli has an English tea party setting in her window cmplete with a stuffed hedgehog and pretend corgi.
She described the royal baby announcement as "the best news ever ... on top of the fact one of their first stops will be in Dubbo".
Customer Emma Maas told news.com.au that even her sons, aged 11 and nine, were "pumped".
"They can't wait to catch a glimpse of them," she said.
"Meghan is so stunning and my daughters can't believe they're getting to see a real princess."
Dubbo Mayor Ben Shields said the forthcoming visit was "huge" for Dubbo.
"It was big anyway because Harry and Meghan are one of the most popular royal couples," he said.
"And then we heard on Monday night about the little Sussex. That's just the icing on the cake."
The Duke and Duchess's visit will be Dubbo's sixth royal visit, starting in 1920 with the Prince of Wales (later Edward VIII), visits by the Queen in 1954 and 1992, and Prince Edward in 2006.
Harry and Meghan will meet members of the Royal Flying Doctor Service, see sheep and cattle on a farming property and mingle with up to 10,000 locals in Dubbo's main park.
"People are coming to Dubbo from all over Australia because they know this is the best pace to see Harry and Meghan," Mr Shields said.