The Roanoke Valley Horse show kicked off Monday in Salem, Va., and will continue this week at the Salem Civic Center. Featuring hunter, jumpers, some Western classes and gaited classes, the show is a highlight of the summer in Virginia since 1972 and is rated AA — the highest level of competition in the USEF.
Tickets are required after 6 p.m. and cost $16 a night for an adult. A superpass for 3 nights can also be purchased for $17.50. However, the afternoons are free and still feature great competition, although the outdoor arenas feature limited seating. The indoor arena, however, is air conditioned and a great place to escape the June heat for the afternoon. If you can only attend one night, make it Saturday for the $50,000 Grand Prix of Roanoke, and watch out for Aaron Vale who is always one of the top riders in the event.
The show kicked off Monday night with Western pleasure, Barrel Racing and Racking classes, plus a reining demonstration that occurs on several nights. This night is typically light on participants with only a few in each class, yet the crowd is still enthusiastic. The barrel racing captures the speed-lovers’ hearts. However the arena appears to be very slick and it hinders the runners quite a bit and many of the horses struggle for their footing during their runs.
Tuesday night will feature the Welcome Jumper Stake plus more barrel racing and some Saddlebred classes. Arabians will also be featured. For those who want to make a day of it, below is the schedule for the rest of the day, which again is free to attend.
Also, for more, read this story about a RVHS veteran who has made horses his life and TV coverage of the show’s kickoff.
Tuesday 7:30 am – Coliseum