For the first time in four years, I won’t be traveling to watch the Winter Equestrian Festival this year. I’m a little sad about it.
It was always a good time visiting one of my closest friends. Even above that, there’s nothing in the world like WEF. When they describe it as horsey disneyland… they aren’t joking! I often hear that people found my blog through the WEF posts, and a small, silly part of me thinks I may be letting some down by not going.
Despite my feelings, things change. By not going to WEF this year, I’m hoping to open up some new opportunities! Though I’m not 100% sure where my vacation days and travel budget may go this year, I’m hoping it includes a few horse show experiences for observation and photography purposes.
To start, I am realistically planning to visit the new Tryon Equestrian Resort in North Carolina. This is owned by the same family who really re-invigorated the WEF show grounds in the past few years, and will be most likely offering big money classes to get the new circuit off the ground. Through knowing some people showing/working there and my Aunt & Uncle living 10 minutes away, going for a long weekend in Tryon should be super doable this year.
After that, it gets a bit more murky. The equestrian world is a big place… what should I go see?
Quarter Horse Congress (or maybe Worlds) has been a lifelong dream. Even though I primarily exist as a hunter princess these days, my first loves are Quarter Horses. Plus side – I can visit miss Tracy and go see the biggest QH show on the planet. Minus side – October is one of my busiest months of the year with horse shows, anniversary and my husband’s birthday… so the scheduling is always tight.
On the eventing side, there’s Rolex. Truthfully I’ve always been meh on this, but every year I read posts from so many bloggers and get a twinge of jealousy. The photographer in me would love to photograph some cross country, and I don’t think that’d be an experience that’s easy to duplicate. However, I don’t really know anyone in that area of the country so would have to cough up for hotel and then hope there was someone going I could hang out with some. Any bloggers planning a Rolex trip? Any locals have advice on where to go and stay?
Those are probably the three big shows on my list this year. Who knows what other opportunities will present themselves, but I want to keep my mind open and my camera ready even if I can’t go to WEF.
If you were making a horse show travel list, where would you pick? I’m ready to see some new things! Maybe I should go out on a limb and try the Scottsdale Arabian Show or something 😉