Horse Country: Equinal Elegance at Verizon Center

by Editorial

If you thought riding boots were just a cute fall trend, wait until you see what the pros can do with them.
By Kate Faherty

Washington International Horse Show's 2010 winner of the Gambler’s Choice Costume Class. Photo courtesy of Diana De Rosa.

The Washington International Horse Show, known for bringing elegance to equestrianism, is coming to the Verizon Center October 25-30. Ushering in top riders from the United States and abroad, this elite competition features about 500 horses, events for spectators, and over $400,000 in prize money and championship titles. When not watching the animals jump, trot and gallop, spectators will be entertained by exhibitors, community events, shopping and family-friendly activities.

In need of a new saddle blanket? Over 50 vendors will be on hand to cater to your equestrian shopping needs. For less horse-minded guests, one of the event’s most popular attractions is the infamous Jack Russell Terrier Race, which can be seen on Thursday, Friday and Saturday evenings.

If you attend on Thursday evening, be prepared for a true hoe down, the $20,000 Gamblers Choice Costume Class and Barn Night. On Barn Night, groups of local horse enthusiasts have the chance to enter contests and win prizes. Thursday’s evening events include activities such as the Wild and Furious Terrier Races, tee-shirt toss and the memorable Gambler’s Choice Costume Class with top show jumpers. After the events, participants are invited to enter onto the ring and feel what it’s like to be a pro.

Saturday is the show’s  Kids’ Day, which is packed full of family-friendly, entertaining activities and events. Beginning at 10 a.m. and continuing until 2 p.m., kids will be thrilled and entertained under the outdoor tent, located right outside the Verizon Center. On Kids’ Day, kids can go for a pony ride, learn about horse grooming, enter drawings for prizes and take a picture with Major, the Washington International Horse Show mascot.

Since 1958, the Washington International Horse Show has been a capital fixture and has always been popular among D.C.’s elite, from Bruce Springsteen to President John F. Kennedy. The show’s schedule is packed, so plan your visit here and get your dress boots ready!

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