More than Just a Budweiser Horse: A View from the National Clydesdale Sale

More than Just a Budweiser Horse: A View from the National Clydesdale Sale

In a way, people who work with Clydesdale horses tend to be old souls, at least in part — people who appreciate and embrace history and the past. They recognize the value of a horse-drawn wagon, horse work in the fields and forests, horseback riding, and the beauty and majesty of a Clydesdale in a world of electric cars, tractors, four-wheelers, and computer screens.

Every April, Clydesdale breeders from across the United States and Canada (and more — this year, I heard a couple of Kiwis) celebrate the beloved bays and roans at the National Clydesdale Sale.

This year, the sale was held at the Michiana Event Center in Shipshewana, Indiana, not far from the Michigan border. There’s something about this area of the state that draws me in and invites me to explore the landscape and get to know the people. During the sale, I did both, exploring the landscape of these horses I had grown up around and known forever, and yet was just starting to understand, and meeting people whose names I had heard all my life.

Dad and I made the five-hour trip north on a Wednesday night in the last week of April, arriving at the hotel after midnight. It was worth it the next day. We began by walking through the barn, discovering a tea and coffee station that one of the exhibitors had set up. So we fueled up before a 10 a.m. workshop on preparing for exhibition.

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Continue reading “More than Just a Budweiser Horse: A View from the National Clydesdale Sale”

Livestock Judging and Baby Clydesdale Pictures

Along with my Spring Fest adventure, my April highlight was a first place win in the area livestock judging contest. I’ve always wanted to be a part of a winning livestock judging team, and now I can say I was the coach for one.

We were unable to stay for the awards ceremony, so never officially heard our name called, but heard the story later. When a team that normally won was announced as second place, the room fell silent. And when our chapter’s name was called, they said you could hear a pin drop as the question was asked, “Who? Who is this who won?”

So our team will be competing in the state livestock judging contest on May 21 up at the Purdue University Animal Science Research and Education Center. The top ten teams there travel to national shows.

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On March 30, our first Clydesdale foal was born. Continue reading “Livestock Judging and Baby Clydesdale Pictures”