Calgary, AB – The Calgary Stampede Heavy Horse Show returns for its 130th year July 7 – 11. See the fabulous Belgian, Clydesdale, Percheron and Shire horses — the gentle giants of the equine world — presented in all their majesty at the Scotiabank Saddledome and the Agrium Western Event Centre.
With roots that go back to the first fair presented by the Calgary and District Agriculture Society in 1886, this will be the 130th year the draft horses have been part of the annual exhibition, making it the longest running agricultural competition on the park. “Over the past 130 years Stampede Park has seen a lot of changes but one thing remains constant, the Heavy Horse show remains a premier agricultural event at the Calgary Stampede” says Jess Debnam, Chair of the Heavy Horse Show Committee “It’s an honor to be a part of an event with such historical significance.”
11 drivers will be competing this year including many 3rd and 4th generation draft horse exhibitors. We have three hitches returning to the Heavy Horse Show that have previously won the World Champion Six Horse Hitch.
The Express Clydesdales from Yukon Oklahoma who won in 2009 and 2013. The Express Clydesdales will be at the Calgary Stampede for all 10 days, on display for the public to come and meet their gentle giants.They will also be in the parade and competing in the Heavy Horse Show.
The Country Lane Belgians from Sunderland, ON are returning to the Stampede after missing a couple of years. They won in 2008 and 2012.
The Mark Messenger Memorial Hitch is returning as the 2015 champions. With Brian Coleman at the lines it will be hard to not lean towards a repeat for 2016 as Brian has shown no less than 6 champion hitches in this event. Winning in 2002, 2004, 2010, 2011, 2014, 2015.
Competitor Don and Evelyn Strandquist of Lakeview Percherons from Stettler, AB will be competing in their 42 year at the Heavy Horse Show. They amongst many other generations of long term exhibitors will be at the Heavy Horse Show.
The 2016 show will have approximately 200 heavy horses representing the Belgian, Clydesdale, Percheron and Shire breeds. For the 21st consecutive year the Saddledome performances will be accompanied by members of the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra, which is unique to North America. Members of the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra play selected performances while the horses perform. The horses move to the music, it is the musicians’ favourite gig and the audience loves it!