High stepping horses along with their riders will bring some holiday cheer to the Kentucky Horse Park. The Alltech Arena is the site this weekend for ‘The Spirit of the Horse: A Holiday Equine Extravaganza.’ Some 18 high level dressage-performance horses ridden by championship riders participate in the 55 minute production.
The snow queen in the show is United States Dressage Federation bronze, silver, and gold medalist Yvonne Barteau. She says it’s live theater with a narrated story. Barteau says a standout horse in dressage competition may not feel always feel at home on the glitzy stage.
“So, a horse that does competition work has to have a certain temperament and ability to relax in that sort of electric atmosphere, otherwise they get tense. In our normal competition, it’s quiet, nobody can talk, everything is not cheering or clapping. This is a whole different idea,” said Barteau.
The Horse Park is vying to host a second World Equestrian Games event in 2018. Barteau says if she had a hundred votes, she’d give them all to the Horse Park.
“Because you know this is the mecca of anything horse and even people from Europe who came last time for the World Equestrian games just loved it and they thought it was fabulous here and when you come here, it’s just so right of everywhere you go in the country and there are some really pretty show facilities, but nothing can touch the Horse Park,” added Barteau.
‘The Spirit of the Horse’ performance runs both Friday and Saturday nights at seven in the Alltech Arena. In addition to the two shows, barn tours are available during the afternoons.