There’s nothing better than getting together with “your crowd,” those wonderful people that share a passion for the things you’re passionate about. So if you’re a horse person in the slightest, get on out to the Brazos County Expo Complex in the East Pavillion on Saturday August 17 from 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Equestrian enthusiasts from far and wide are invited to the annual Horseman’s Market Day hosted by The Brazos Valley Driving and Riding Club. “It is a casual event of friendly people enjoying themselves talking to new and old friends about horses, events, tack and training throughout the next year,” says Brazos Valley Driving and Riding Club President Mike Dodd.
Year after year, the market is a time for getting together with old friends and meeting new ones, buying and selling gear and raising money for the club. Dodd says, “For anyone involved locally with horses in the past, this will be a social occasion. In observing the past years of the market, we’ve learned that many people attend to renew old friendships. It’s like a reunion.”
There will be as many as 300 booths full of items related to horses, mules and donkeys, oh my! You’ll find a range of items for sale from riding and animal care items to jewelry, leather goods, and horse related home decor, so you can stock up to your heart’s content! Dodd says, “This event may be the largest in Texas of its kind. There may be 1500 people looking to say hi to old friends, find a source for tack, feed, or services among the crowd or the 300 booths.”
The Brazos Valley Driving and Riding Club was started over 40 years ago by a group of friends that loved driving horses and socializing together. Over time, the group found that they had tools in their barn that were being unused, so they decided to have a swap day to share and sell their unused items.
“What once started as a little swap meet,” Dodd says, “grew into one of the largest tack sales in Texas and a huge social event, where horse people can see old friends and meet new ones. It is a family event on the third Saturday of August every year.”
Many of the club’s founding members have since retired from riding and driving, but the community relationship is still going strong. Dodd says, “We host two events a year for them to gather and visit. One is in June and the other is a Christmas party. But, most of them also attend the Horseman’s Market Day and marvel at what their creation has become.”
This is a great opportunity to get to know other riders and learn about opportunities to get involved in the horse community, and the funds raised during the Market go back into fostering connections between people and horses. Dodd says, “There are other horse clubs in our area, and most of them will have a booth displaying what they do, such as foster horses or adoptions.”
Don’t need anything for yourself? “There’s something there for everyone,” Dodd says, “even if it’s only a bracelet for a special friend who is magically attracted to horses.”
If you find yourself needing a snack during your day of visiting with the vendors and fellow horsemen, pick up a burger, hot dog and a cold drink at the concession vendor. If you’re in the market to purchase a new horse, Dodd says, “No live animals are allowed, but pictures of horses for sale can be posted on a bulletin board. In the parking lot there will be several trailers for sale.”
There is no charge to attend the event and parking is free, but make sure you bring your cash as most vendors prefer it. The pavillion is unairconditioned, but large fans make it quite comfortable. Also, the floor is packed clay. For more information about the Market or the Club, please visit http://bit.ly/2YQnF8H.