Arabian Nationals front and center as Championship Weekend arrives
This weekend, Brandon, MB excitedly looks forward to the Championship rounds of the Canadian National Arabian & Half-Arabian Championship Horse Show. 2019 is the Championship’s 8th year in Brandon – coming from Regina in 2011, with the show scheduled to return each August, to the Wheat City, until 2022 – under their current contract.
“The City [of Brandon] treats us like we’re important,” says Allan Ehlrick, 25 year veteran Vice Chairman for the Canadian National Show Commission. “The Mayor works hard to make sure we are well looked after. The facility is clean and the staff are friendly & organized, and they make improvements every year.”
Undoubtedly, the Championship is important. The Canadian National Championship regularly brings 800 of the world’s finest Arabian & Half-Arabian horses to the City, completely filling the 540,000 square foot Keystone Centre – with horse stalls even overflowing in to the Centre’s east parking lot. Accompanying the 800+ horses, approximately 2,400 exhibiters, participants, and organizers from across North America fill the City’s hotels and businesses for nearly three full weeks.
“This is a World Class event, literally, and the team they have in place running the event has a great working relationship with the Keystone team,” says Jeff Schumacher, general manager of the Keystone Centre. “They are organized and make a real impact in the City. We’re glad to be working with them on a multi-year basis and look forward to future events together.”
The Championship is, without question, one of the largest events hosted in the Keystone Centre and contributes a significant economic spin-off for the City of Brandon and surrounding area.
Despite its massive scale, the Championship remains one of the most accessible events held at the Keystone Centre. There is no admission fee, and spectators are encouraged to visit the tradeshow booths, multiple show arenas – including Westoba Place and the Westoba Agricultural Centre of Excellence – and can even take guided T.A.I.L. Tours, to learn more about the life of an Arabian horse.
This weekend are the championship rounds, meaning there is plenty at stake for the show’s international participants.
“The entrants are very talented, and are here to win,” says Ehrlick, who is – in addition to being the 25 year Vice Chairman – the winningest amateur in the history of the Arabian Horse Association (AHA). “They have to qualify to get to this competition. It’s about more than buying a horse and showing up. The winners from this weekend get to call themselves the 2019 Canadian National Champions, and that means something. It means something here in Canada, it means something in the U.S.”
Along with world class Championship Arabian & Half-Arabian horses, spectators can expect to see vibrant outfits, multiple disciplines, and unparalleled horsemanship.
The Championship concludes August 17th, and returns to Brandon in August of 2020 for its 9th year. For more information visit: www.arabianhorses.org