The Edmond Sun

November 14, 2012

Horse shows find warm welcome in Oklahoma


Special to The Sun

OKLA. CITY — The American Quarter Horse Association World Championship Show is happening now at State Fair Park in Oklahoma City. This 15-day event attracts participants from 49 states and nine countries.

Every year Oklahoma plays host to more than 40 major horse shows, competitions and rodeos like the AQHA World Show. In addition to creating jobs, these events account for more than $400 million of annual spending in ag-related tourism events. Gov. Mary Fallin and Secretary of Agriculture Jim Reese recently sat down with horse industry officials to thank them for their continued patronage to Oklahoma.

“Oklahoma offers the horse industry commitment, community, top rate facilities a central location and hospitality,” Reese said.

Oklahoma is consistently selected as the site for major horse events; oftentimes beating out other states with competing offers. State Fair Park and the Tulsa Fairgrounds in Tulsa have invested $160 million in infrastructure, buildings and arenas to continue to draw shows to the state.

In addition to Oklahoma City and Tulsa, major national shows and rodeos operate throughout Oklahoma’s rural communities including Shawnee’s International Finals Youth Rodeo, Chickasha’s National Paso Fino Show and National Roping Contests at Guthrie’s Lazy E Arena.

As part of the meeting, Fallin posed for photographs with AQHA Amateur All Around High Point Horse “Hours Yours and Mine.” The horse is exhibited by Kaleena Weakly of Shelbyville, Ill.

The AQHA World Show concludes Saturday. For more information including a schedule of events, visit www.aqha.com/worldshow.