Devon, Pa - The 114th Annual Devon Horse Show and Country Fair will boast brand new, state of the art footing in the Dixon Oval when it opens its 11 day run on May 27. The ticket office opens April 12 at 10 a.m., and for years a large group has assembled at Devon’s gates early in the morning, eager to snag the best tickets for their favorite days and the exciting jumper classes that are held every evening. So Devon fans better call the ticket office early.
For ticket information beginning April 12, 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. For additional information visit www.devonhorseshow.org.
The new footing in the Dixon Oval, a major undertaking, will be installed by Equestrian Services International, which has provided the footing for the 2008 Olympics in Hong Kong and the footing currently in use at the Winter Equestrian Festival. This new, all-weather surface will meet the needs of all the various breeds and disciplines that compete at Devon, ranging from hunters, jumpers and equitation to Saddlebred, hackneys, harness ponies, roadsters, Friesians and four-in-hand driving competitions.
Devon has added an additional day on Sunday, June 6, for the $25,000 International Hunter Derby beginning with round one at 10 a.m. From the starting field, the top 12 horses will compete again in round two over a handy hunter type course. Devon has also increased the prize money in two Saddlebred classes. The Amateur Three-Gaited Stake on Saturday evening, June 5, and the Open Three-Gaited Stake on Friday evening, June 4 now boast $5,000 in prize money.
The Show has re-installed the Saddlebred Hunter Country Pleasure Section, with two classes offered on Friday and Saturday afternoons. Devon has undertaken a Capital Campaign to raise funds to pay for the new footing as well as improvements destined for next year. Another major improvement to be undertaken next year is a beautiful new Hospitality Complex which will host nightly receptions.
For a donation of $200,000, the donor will get naming rights to the second ring, now known as the Gold Ring. Also for $200,000, the donor gets naming rights to the new Hospitality Complex. Current goals include renovation of interior barns, stadium lighting in the Dixon Oval and Gold Ring, a retaining wall in front of the East Grandstand, complete restoration of the Fair Pavilion, rebuilding the Committee Stand and restoration of the grandstand.
Devon opens Thursday, May 27 with a full day of equitation in the Dixon Oval and pony breeding in the Gold Ring, and children 12 and under will be admitted free on opening day courtesy of Hartstrings.
Junior hunters and jumpers and ponies compete Friday and Saturday, with the Junior Jumper Classic deciding the championship Saturday evening, followed by the traditional Horse Hunt Teams, Parent and Child and Family Class.
The Carriage Pleasure Drive opens a week of adult competition, arriving at the Dixon Oval at 2 p.m Sunday, followed by pony jumpers Sunday evening.
Adult Jumpers are on the Monday evening schedule, with Open Jumpers beginning with a time First Jump-Off class at 7 p.m. Tuesday evening. Wednesday evening features a speed class, the Hit & Hurry at 7 p.m. First- and Second-Year Green, Green Conformation, Regular Conformation and Regular Hunters compete Monday through Wednesday, with Adult Jumpers on Memorial Day and Young Jumper sections Tuesday and Wednesday. Side saddle is featured Wednesday afternoon, and Saddlebreds, harness ponies, fine harness, Friesians, roadsters and coaching begin Wednesday.
Breeding classes take over Thursday, followed by “Devon at Sunset” at 4:30, featuring the piece de resistance of the Devon Horse Show, the $100,000 Grand Prix at 8 p.m.
Amateur-owner hunters and jumpers compete Friday and Saturday, with the Gambler’s Choice Friday evening at 7:30 p.m., and the Open Jumper Stakes deciding the championship and the Leading Rider title as the last classes Saturday evening.
The beloved Budweiser Clydesdales will perform in exhibition the last four evenings, Wednesday through Saturday, June 2-5, and there will be a reining exhibition by Stacy Westfall on May 28-30.