Celebration championship entries to be stabled on show grounds
The 80th Annual Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration will have all of its championship class entries stabled on the show grounds for 48 hours prior to their championship performance. The requirement of horses to be stabled on the grounds prior to the championship classes was first recommended by the Veterinarian Advisory Council in 2014.
“In 2014 there was a lot of discussion regarding this decision but after the show that year we got a tremendous amount of positive feedback from exhibitors, vendors and fans. It allowed fans to see more horses, exhibitors to be closer to one another and overall a much more festive atmosphere on our show grounds,” said Celebration CEO Mike Iman.
The decision to have the horses on the show grounds 48 hours prior to their championship class will also move the entry deadline for championship classes to 48 hours prior instead of 24 hours prior in years that horses are not stabled on the grounds. Exceptions will be made for those horses that have qualifying classes that aren’t 48 hours prior to their championship class. These entries will be required to be on the grounds 24 hours prior to their championship class.
“We realize this move may cause an inconvenience to trainers who have barns locally however the positives of this move far outweigh any inconvenience to trainers or The Celebration which must increase staffing to make sure horses are properly checked in. The Celebration will also provide additional security as part of the requirement,” said Inman.
The Celebration already maintains 24/7 security on the show grounds during the 11 days of the horse show. Most industry multi-day shows have the horses stabled on the grounds, especially those outside of the Shelbyville area. In addition to positive feedback from exhibitors and recommendation from the VAC, The Celebration also considered the positive impact to the vendors on the show grounds, many of which donate their proceeds to charities, an important aspect of The Celebration.