|North American Gypsy and Drum Horse Championships Offer Inclusive Events and Arts Show for the Entire Family at the Expo
Wednesday, October 17, 2012
A Gypsy Affaire and the North American Gypsy and Drum Horse Championships are attracting international attention as breed enthusiasts gather at the Expo in Central Point, OR from Friday October 19 through Monday October 22 to shine the spotlight on these relatively rare horses.
The North American Gypsy Affaire will likely be the largest North American gathering of Gypsy and Cob horses, with horses traveling from throughout the western United States and Canada to attend the event. The event will honor the breed’s foundational stallions, designated as “Living Legends”, on Friday night. Also on Friday night, attendees will have the opportunity to bid on a young Gypsy Cob horse at a live auction starting at 7 pm.
According to Marisa Morin, an Ashland resident who came up with the idea for the show, A Gypsy Affaire is reminiscent of the ancient Gypsy tradition of caravans gathering to buy and sell wares and show horses. “We’ve drawn on ancient traditions for inspiration and transformed them into a contemporary fair event and horse show,” says Morin.
This weekend’s event features a live and silent auction, National Champion Gypsy and Drum Horses, carriage rides, a war horse demonstration on Saturday at lunch, and a wide variety of vendors, including metal artists, animal portrait artists, fire pit vendors, fun activities for kids like face painting, and delicious fair food.
The Gypsy Cob horse is descended from a variety of European breeds and takes its name from the bands of British Gypsy’s that bred horses capable of pulling wagons long distances while subsisting on whatever forage they found as they travelled. Drum horses take their name from their prestigious role in royal processions in the United Kingdom. Mounted drummers guide these horses with reins attached to their feet in order to free their hands for playing ceremonial drums.
Gypsy and Drum horses are bred for their calm disposition, sure footedness, agility, and beauty. These powerful and compact horses have silky manes and tails with extremely long “feathers” – or long hair that flows down their lower legs and over their hooves. Although old in lineage, both breeds have only recently been recognized as official breeds in the United States.
“This is a great opportunity for the public to meet and interact with these incredible animals,” says Morin. The show opens on Friday at noon and goes through Monday, culminating in the North American National Championships on Sunday and Monday. Riders and horses will compete in all types of equestrian events, showing off the versatile skills of these two breeds.
The weekend festivities and championship are sponsored by the Gypsy Cob and Drum Horse Association and are free to the entire community. Additional information is available at http://www.gypsyaffaire.com/.