The horse Show is here
Well, after months of planning, the annual Kilmacanogue Horse Show is here and will take place this Saturday (22nd), A charity fundraiser that’s lots of fun for everyone.
The Kilmacanogue Horse Show is a wonderful day of activities for people of all ages. Besides the horses there are lots of things to see and do – bring your dog and friends to walk for miles without realising it. Find out all about Wicklow’s prize sheep, guess-the-weight-of-the-lamb, compete at decorating gingerbread cookies, try face painting and pony rides, and enter a treasure hunt are just some of activities to keep children very busy and guarantee a sleep-in for parents next day. Adults and children are welcome to enter the art and photography competitions in the art tent. Does your dog have the ‘waggiest tail’ or could s/ he be the overall winner and become the dog everyone would ‘most like to take home’? So give your dog happy memories from taking part in the definitely more ‘Scruffs’ than ‘Crufts’ Dog Show.
Happening just two weeks before the RDS Dublin Horse Show, Kilmacanogue show is a great practice opportunity for top riders showing Ireland’s best horses. For spectators of all ages it’s simply a not-to-be-missed opportunity to get close enough to see, feel and smell the showy range of horses Ireland is world famous for. At the other end of the ability scale the Kilmacanogue Horse Show has a large range of children’s classes. From ‘lead rein’ and ‘obedient pony’ for three year-olds, the ‘style and appearance’ and ‘pairs’ classes for teenagers, to the ‘introductory working hunter’ and carriage driving for nervous adults – the relationship between horse and rider is a joy to watch. This is all topped off by the Fancy Dress horse and rider competition which is split this year into two age categories (up to eight and age nine and over).
What’s new in show this year? To accommodate the young and old of all riding ability at this year’s show course builder Gerry Traynor will test Working Hunters and Performance Hunters over natural rustic fences in two Rings. Gerry is passionate about horse sport in Ireland and, as a rider and horse-breeder; his focus is all about enticing horse and rider to ‘flow over the fences’. In one ring Gerry will set up an inviting introductory Working Hunter competition, which at 10 a.m. starts off with 60cm maximum fence height. Later competitions in this ring will involve fences at 70cm and, later still, at 80cm.
In the second Ring Gerry will set up an 80cm Performance Hunter course to test the ability and style of two of Ireland’s favourite horse breeds – the Connemara and the Irish Draught. This will be followed by competitions for all horse and pony breeds at the highest standard where fences will be 90cm and 1m.
‘Walk the course and ride each fence going from centre-to-centre’ is Gerry’s top tip. He will be there all day to give riders, parents, partners and friends encouragement and feedback.
Run entirely by volunteers, with generous support from sponsors and local community the show hopes to top the €8,000 raised last year for charities.
kilmacanoguehorseshow.com for schedule and directions to showground – online entries welcome (pre-entry essential for dressage)