Mane Event: excellent facilities and unmatched hospitality
The Mid-America Mane Event Show’s excellent facilities at the Illinois State Fairgrounds are widely recognized as the country’s best show facilities. Horsemen especially like them in the fall because all stabling is in enclosed barns convenient to the Coliseum. They also like having the choice of three warm-up rings – two indoors and a huge covered arena that includes a 50-ft. round pen – all next to the in-gate and available 24/7. Everyone likes showing in the Coliseum’s banked oval arena with its excellent footing.
The 9th annual Mane Event will be held Oct. 20-23 in Springfield, Ill., and judged by Maria Gilman, Tim Lockard and Jim Robertson.
“New exhibitors always are surprised by how horse-friendly these facilities are,” said Joy Meierhans, Mane Event show manager. “The three warm-up rings and the Coliseum show ring are a plus any time of year, but the enclosed barns are a huge plus in October. The facilities are ideal for showing young horses, and we have excellent class options for amateurs.”
Exhibitors also rave about Mane Event’s Saturday night exhibitor party, considered by many to be the best on the show circuit with multiple catered gourmet food stations and no long waiting lines. “Our Lobster Bisque is famous and not to be missed,” Meierhans said.
This year, the Hackney Pony division has been expanded to include Junior $250-Added UPHA Classics in all four sections, and there are Junior/Limit classes for cob- and long-tail ponies. No pony classes are scheduled on Saturday afternoon to accommodate the Mid-West Hackney Fall Sale held on the grounds.
Mane Event hosts two national equitation finals – the National Horse Show “Good Hands” Finals and the Pleasure Olympics Finals – and makes a big deal of welcoming the finals riders and their families with special decorations, goody-filled swag bags, a brunch honoring riders and impressive awards ceremonies on Friday and Saturday night sessions.
New last year were the TBA (To Be Announced) classes that have become popular in the upper Midwest but may be new to some Mane Event exhibitors. Four TBA classes are scheduled in the prize list to accommodate classes requested by exhibitors. A class may be requested by sponsoring it ($125) and guaranteeing at least three entries, but it must be in a division or section already offered by the show. Exhibitors are notified by email of TBA classes that have been picked up and they are reminded that no post entry fees apply to them.
The Mane Event prize list was mailed in August. It also can be downloaded from www.MidAmericaHorseShow.org or a printed copy can be requested from Show Manager Joy Meierhans: 630/557-2575 or JM@TheMeierhans.com