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Friday, December 14 , 2018, 7:10 am | Fair 50º


Trail Blazer Festival to Debut at Santa Barbara Showgrounds

The public is invited to attend the first Trail Blazer Festival celebrating all things equestrian Nov. 14-16 at Earl Warren Showgrounds, Highway 101 at Los Positas Road in Santa Barbara.

The festival front gates will open at 8:30 a.m. all three days and close at 7:30 p.m.

“We have an amazing schedule of clinics with the most innovative leaders in the equestrian world focusing on important trail-rider topics, plus a trade show with more than 100 vendors as well as Best of the Breeds Competition,” said Susan Gibson, festival founder and publisher of Trail Blazer Magazine. “All the speakers, displays, demonstrations, shows, vendors and sponsors — it’s all about equestrian trail riding for three great days in Santa Barbara.”

Gibson created the festival to celebrate the 30th anniversary of her equine publication, Trail Blazer Magazine, headquartered in Arizona.

“I looked at venues all around the U.S.A. and choose Earl Warren Showgrounds because I believe its facilities are first-rate,” Gibson said. “Santa Barbara is one of the most beautiful cities in America, and the area has a vibrant equestrian heritage. We have attendees coming from all around the nation and even New Zealand.”

Internationally renowned horse clinicians Linda Tellington-Jones and John Lyons headline a list of the best and most innovative clinicians in the horse world who will cover a wide range of trail riding topics, from training to saddle fit to on-the-trail emergency medicine for horse and rider.

Joining them on the speaker schedule will be Peggy Cummings; Jochen Schleese; Susan Harris; Peggy Brown; Monique Craig; Susan Garlinghouse, DVM; Sue De Laurentis and Allen Pogue; Ella Bittel, holistic veterinarian; Dan Weltner and Kristi Redd; Peggy Hogan; Carnie Lewis and Adrian Lopez and more. Speakers will present their clinics on all three days at the same times in the same arenas. Click here for a complete list of speakers, bios and topics.

The festival will showcase the best breeds of horses for trail riding with the Battle of the Breeds, which will be held that Friday and Saturday from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Fourteen breed registries have thrown their bridles into the ring to compete in a mega-trail class competition in the main arena. Friday night will be the adult class, and Saturday night will be the 12-and-younger junior class.

The festival will also have a wide range of demonstrations and displays related to trail riding. There will be a drawing held for $8,000 worth of vacations and services for the trail rider. An all-horse product trade show will be open from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. in Warren Hall with more than 100 vendors.

Tickets are available online before Nov. 10 for $20 per day. A discounted three-day pass for $45 is available in advance. Admittance at the gate is $25 per day per person; children younger than 12 are always free. The Earl Warren Showgrounds will collect a $3 daily parking fee upon entrance. Tickets to the Battle of the Breeds Competition only will be available at the gate for $5 per person nightly.

Click here for more information about the festival.

Laura Kath is a publicist.


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