LONDON, OH, January 23, 2024 – Depending on where you live, January weather may not be prime riding weather – but it can be prime planning weather! It’s time to get excited about going riding again. While you’re stuck inside and thawing out from your morning barn chore regimen, start working on your riding applications for Equine Affaire in Ohio. Application materials are now available online for Equine Affaire’s ever-popular Ride with a Pro clinic program as well as the Versatile Horse & Rider Competition. Bring your horses and get the best seat in the house – literally – by riding in a clinic or competition at North America’s premier equine exposition and equestrian gathering, happening April 11-14, 2024, at the Ohio Expo Center in Columbus, OH. This year’s event promises to be extra special, as it will mark the thirtieth anniversary of Equine Affaire in Ohio. Don’t miss your chance to participate in an extraordinary event as we celebrate both our history and our future on horseback.
This year’s schedule features multiple unique opportunities to participate in clinics, seminars, and demonstrations presented by clinicians hailing from a wide range of backgrounds and disciplines, including dressage, driving, English pleasure, eventing, hunter/jumpers, mountain trail, Western dressage, and others. Equestrians from all corners of the industry will enjoy the opportunity to learn something new in a clinic, whether it’s an eventing clinic by seven-time Olympian Phillip Dutton, a dressage intensive by two-time US team medalist Lauren Sammis, or a colt-starting demo by modern-day cowboy Mike Major. Riding, training, or participation slots are available with the following presenters:
Operation Horses & Heroes…Interactive activities for veterans
Kristine May…Barrel racing
Daniel Stewart…Biomechanics and sports psychology
Brendan & Melanie Wise…Classical horsemanship and bridleless riding
Mike Major…Colt starting
Duane Esser…English Pleasure
Ken McNabb…General training and horsemanship
Pat Parelli…General training and horsemanship
Chelsea Canedy…General training and horsemanship
Steve Lantvit…General training and horsemanship
Mark Bolender…Mountain trail
Tanner Keith…Ranch sorting
Solange…Stable riding system
Lynn Newton…Western dressage
Equine Affaire is also proud to announce the debut of a brand-new educational feature this year in Ohio: Cowtown in Cooper, sponsored by Western Life Today! Embark on a two-day tour of cattle-oriented Western events, which will also feature opportunities for applicants to ride in clinics and learn firsthand about roping, boxing, ranch sorting, reining, cutting, and more from Steve Lantvit, Tanner Keith, Ken McNabb, Dave Treharne, and others. Wear your cowboy hats and cowboy boots and take part in an authentic Western experience. Cowtown in Cooper will take place on Friday, April 12 and Saturday, April 13 in Cooper Arena.
Application materials and clinic summaries are available online at https://equineaffaire.com/events/ohio/ohio-participate/ohio-ride-in-clinics/ohio-ride-with-a-pro-2/. The deadline to apply is February 15, 2024. Clinic fees are $105 and include clinic participation, event admission, 24 hours of stabling for your horse, and a T-shirt. Clinicians will make their selections based on applications and videos from applicants, so make sure to read up on all the details on our website so you can put your best foot forward for this year’s Ride with a Pro.
Or if you’re looking for something to bring out your competitive side, applications are also open for the Versatile Horse & Rider Competition. This beloved mainstay will take place on Friday, April 12, during Equine Affaire. Competitors must navigate a challenging obstacle course under the watchful eye of an expert judge and the pressure of a ticking clock. Riders don’t know what the course will consist of until they check in on site, but past obstacles have included jumping, backing through patterns, pole bending, roll backs, gymkhana games, and other creative exploits. With a field capped at 25 pre-selected horse and rider teams, don’t miss your opportunity to vie for $5,500 in cash and other prizes, as well as the honor of being named the 2024 Versatile Horse & Rider Champion! Application materials are available online at https://equineaffaire.com/events/ohio/ohio-participate/ohio-compete/ohio-versatile-horse-rider-competition/. The deadline to apply is February 15, 2024.
If you’re interested in participating in Equine Affaire in a non-riding capacity, we’ve got an exciting opportunity or two available for you! Consider competing in the Great Equestrian Fitness Challenge, sponsored by Boot Barn! This fun new venture is arriving just in time to help commemorate the 30th anniversary of Equine Affaire in Ohio. The GEFC will feature three events: a barn chores marathon, a bouncy pony race, and a horse nugget relay. You can sign up for the event of your choice on site – no horses needed and no entry fee required, besides general admission! Prizes will be awarded to the top ten participants in each event, as applicable. Whether you decide to compete or just want to watch, you’re guaranteed to have a fabulous time at the GEFC! Flex your barn rat muscles, bring your work boots and gloves, and get ready to compete.
Attendees are also invited to apply to work as volunteers at this year’s event. Volunteers who work a certain number of hours can earn free admission, free four-day passes, and fun souvenirs, all while getting a backstage pass to one of the industry’s most well-run and expansive horse expos! Apply by February 26, 2024, by filling out our application form, available online: https://equineaffaire.com/events/ohio/ohio-participate/ohio-help/ohio-volunteer/.
Tickets for Equine Affaire and Fantasia, the musical celebration of the horse, are available for purchase online any time (https://equineaffaire.com/events/ohio/ohio-attend/ohio-general-information/tickets/) or by calling our office at 740-845-0085, M-F, 9 am to 5 pm EST. General admission tickets are $16 in advance for adults or $10 for children, ages 7-10. Four-day passes are $52. Children (ages 6 & under) get in for free! Tickets to Fantasia, sponsored by Equine Medical & Surgical Associates, are also available online or by phone. Tickets for Fantasia range from $16 to $25. Show dates are Thursday, April 11; Friday, April 12; and Saturday, April 13; at 7:30 pm ET in the Coliseum at the Ohio Expo Center. Club, organization, and association discounts are available for Thursday night’s Fantasia only – to receive this discount, call our office at (740) 845-0085.
Equine Affaire gratefully acknowledges the sponsors that help make this event possible: Equine Medical & Surgical Associates, Rod’s, GGT Footing, US Equestrian, Western Life Today, and Boot Barn. For more information about Equine Affaire, please visit equineaffaire.com or follow us on Facebook and Instagram. We’ll see you at Equine Affaire!