Categorized | Charity, Family, Living, People

The Special Days and Tradition of the Devon Horse Show

By AML Publisher
Photos courtesy of Brenda Carpenter Photography

The very popular Devon Hat Parade, with Horse Show enthusiast and celebrity Caron Kressley as emcee, is on Wednesday, June 2, from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m.  Registration begins at 12:30.

The very popular Devon Hat Parade, with Horse Show enthusiast and celebrity Caron Kressley as emcee, is on Wednesday, June 2, from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m. Registration begins at 12:30.

Two top notch exhibitions will add even greater variety to the Devon Horse Show, which already has a huge variety of horses competing, from hunters and jumpers to four-in-hand carriages, Saddlebreds, roadsters and Friesans among others. There will be a reining exhibition by Stacy Westfall on May 28-30, and the beloved Budweiser Clydesdales will perform in exhibition the last four evenings, Wednesday through Saturday, June 2nd through June 5th.

The Devon Horse Show and Country Fair has donated almost $14 million to Bryn Mawr Hospital over the nine decades of their association. It takes the efforts of over 2,000 volunteers, many of whom work year-round and all of whom work hours at the show, to keep the Country Fair ticking along. The Horse Show also has its volunteers, first and foremost Leonard A. King, chairman, and Wade McDevitt, president. But, it also has two professional horse show managers, David Distler and Peter Doubleday, as well as professional judges for its myriad divisions and a very competent office staff, including Amy Davis and Meg Wiederseim, who works year-round, and Kathy Gillmer who works from January through June.

There are 30 sky box holders and 436 box holders, some of whom share a box, and boxes are so prized that they are often handed down, generation to generation. An average of about 100,000 paying spectators attend the show annually, swelling the crowds of owners, riders, trainers and grooms that care for the approximately 1,500 horses that compete at Devon.

DHS opens with Junior weekend, including three days of equitation, hunters, jumpers, ponies and pony breeding classes on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

DHS opens with Junior weekend, including three days of equitation, hunters, jumpers, ponies and pony breeding classes on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

A number of champions from previous years will be at Devon again this year, including Laura Chapot, who has ridden the Open Jumper Champions and has been Leading Open Jumper Rider for three of the past five years; Scott Stewart, who has had a strangle hold on Leading Hunter Rider for the past six years; Philip Richter, last year’s Amateur Owner Jumper Champion; Reed Kessler, Leading Junior Jumper Rider; and Jessica Springsteen, last year’s Junior Hunter Champion who will show in Junior Jumpers this year.

Preceded by their familiar music, the Clydesdale eight-horse hitch will enter the Dixon Oval for the final four evenings of the horse show, accompanied by their Dalmation dog mascot. The driver will demonstrate how a Budweiser delivery wagon would maneuver in congested streets of old, and back the conveyance up to a loading dock. The docking procedure is followed by the hitch pivoting 180 degrees to pull away from the dock and continuing with its demonstration. The Budweiser Clydesdales will be stabled at the Devon show grounds, and spectators are welcome to visit these gentle giants.

This is the 77th Anniversary of the Budweiser Clydesdales, which were formally introduced to August A. Busch, Sr., and Anheuser-Busch on April 7, 1933 by August A. Busch, Jr., to celebrate the repeal of Prohibition. The first Clydesdales were brought to the United States by Canadians of Scottish descent that used the draft horses on their farms. To qualify for one of the five traveling hitches, a Budweiser Clydesdale must be a gelding at least 3-years-old, standing 18-hands, or six-feet, weighing between 1,800 and 2,300 pounds and be bay in color with four white stockings, a white blaze and a black mane and tail. Each harness and collar weighs 130 pounds, and an entire set is valued at over $54,000.

A blue ribbon at Devon…

A blue ribbon at Devon…

Additional Special Events Calendar Devon Horse Show 2010

Family Day, Thursday, May 27th

This is the first of two Family Days for Devon, sponsored by Hartstrings. Children 12 and under will be admitted free and there will be free children’s raffle with drawings throughout the day.

Children’s Day, Saturday, May 29th

A variety of activities are planned in the Pavilion from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m.

Devon Doggie Parade, Monday, May 31st

Children's Day is Saturday, May 29th, with a variety of activities in the Pavilion from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m.

Children's Day is Saturday, May 29th, with a variety of activities in the Pavilion from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m.

The Devon Doggie Parade will be on Monday, May 31 from 2:30 to 4 p.m. It is sponsored by Braxton’s and Wagsworth Manor, and there will be three categories; Look-a-Like, Devon Style, and Doggie Fashionista. A pre-registration event is at Braxton’s on May 22 from 12 to 3 p.m., with pre-registration continuing through May 26.

Family Day and Back Barn Tour, Tuesday, June 1st

The second Family Day is Tuesday, June 1st, featuring reduced prices on certain items.
The Back Barn Tour will be led on Tuesday, June 1, from 3:00 to 6:00 p.m. Join in for a very fun “behind-the-scenes” look at Devon!

Devon Hat Parade with Carson Kressley, Wednesday, June 2nd

The very popular Devon Hat Parade, with Devon enthusiast and television personality Carson Kressley as emcee, is on Wednesday, June 2nd, from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m. Registration begins at 12:30.

FUN FACTS ABOUT DEVON!
DEVON HORSE SHOW AND COUNTRY FAIR 2010

1896: First Devon Horse Show, a one-day show with 30 classes and prize money of $10, $5 and a ribbon

1919: First Country Fair, Devon Horse Show and Country Fair was incorporated, Bryn Mawr Hospital became the beneficiary

1923: Main grandstand built

2009: Paid attendance – 95,134

2009: $320,000 donated to Bryn Mawr Hospital

1919 – 2009: Over $13.8 million donated to Bryn Mawr Hospital

2009 prize money: $400,990

2009: 2,500 horses entered, only those qualifying will show

COUNTRY FAIR FOOD, 2009: 47,557 tea sandwiches, 1,600 pounds of fudge, 11,640 hamburgers sold, 21,600 pounds of potatoes for fries, 9,600 hotdogs

The Devon Horse Show and Country Fair, May 27th to June 6th on Route 30 in Devon, PA benefits the Bryn Mawr Hospital. For additional information, kindly visit their website: www.devonhorseshow.org. For more information on these events, please call 610-525-2533. For ticket information, call 610-688-2554. The ticket office is open Monday, Wednesday and Friday 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and Saturdays 10 a.m. to noon. Devon is also selling tickets through TicketLeap, but ticket packages and seats for the Grand Prix Thursday evening will not be sold over the internet in 2010.

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1 Comments For This Post

  1. brenda carpenter Says:

    Devon is only 4 days away — I can almost smell the cotton and candy and “eau de horsey!” As one of Devon’s official photographers, my camera and I will be covering all of the days of Devon. Please check my blog for daily updates, as well as my on-going slide show posted on my site in the “Client Viewing” area ~ Devon Horse Show ’10. And, if you’re going to Devon (and who’s not?!!), please stop by my booth #40 in the vendor shopping area to see fab displays of my portrait and event work!

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