The Roanoke region has a variety of equestrian organizations for local horse owners. From the competitive to the just-for-fun, some cater to specific disciplines, while others are multi-discipline and for all types of horse lovers. Check out the following groups (organized in alphabetical order) to find the one that’s right for you!
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Back Country Horsemen of America, Eastern Divide Chapter. The Back Country Horsemen of American is a national group dedicated to preserving the rights and land use of horses in the backcountry and is a non-profit organization. The Eastern Divide group covers Craig, Montgomery, Bland and Giles counties.
Bedford County Hunt Club. The Bedford County Hunt was organized in 1940, but the roots of foxhunting in the Lynchburg area go back to 1887 when the club was organized under the name of Oak Ridge Hunt Club. The Bedford County Hunt hunting territory is primarily in the north area of Bedford County but extends to Sweet Briar College in Amherst County as well. In addition to hunting, BCH sponsors two horse shows annually, a hunt ball, several hunter paces and other activities for hunt members and friends. The Bedford County Hunt season begins on September 1st and lasts through late March. September and October are cubbing and informal. Formal season begins the first of November. Meets are held every Wednesday and Saturday. Membership in the Hunt is by invitation.
Blue Ridge Eventing Association. Founded in 1989, BREA is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting the sport of eventing and good horsemanship in the southwestern Virginia area. The association offers several competitions, educational activities, and other similar functions throughout the year.
Blue Ridge Horse Force. The mission of the Blue Ridge Horse Force is to promote grassroots showmanship and sportsmanship by uniting local open horse shows. To increase opportunities for those in Southwest Virginia to show their horses, the organization sanctions about 25 shows per year. Members work toward year-end awards using a point system.
Botetourt County Horseman’s Association. This group meets monthly and usually has an educational speaker present to the group. This multi-discipline group also holds an annual fundraiser horse show among other equestrian events throughout the year.
Franklin County Equestrian Club. This club promotes equestrian activities for all equestrian owners and enthusiasts’ together for educational and competitive opportunities. FCEC holds various horse shows, competitive trail rides, trail rides, educational and community events.
Green Hill Park Equestrian Center. The Green Hill Park Equestrian Center is a public facility owned by Roanoke County and operated by a private board of directors exclusively for the equine enthusiast. The facility is open year round for members with three show rings and a cross country course offering opportunities for all disciplines. The park is available for rent for horse shows and related events. Horse shows occur on most weekends throughout the spring, summer and fall.
Mountain Riders Horse Club. A trail riding association representing all disciplines and breeds, from English and Western to trotting and racking. All rider levels are welcome. They hold an official club ride every month and two yearly camping trips, one in the spring and one in the late summer, early fall. They are not a structured group, but more of a social, friendly group. However, they do have by-laws and officers.
New River Valley Horse Association. This group holds an annual trail ride that benefits St. Judge and also an annual horse show at the New River Valley Fairgrounds in Dublin, Virginia. The organization, established in 2003, was formerly known as The Southwest Virginia Racking and Pleasure Horse Association and more recently The Southwest Virginia Horsemen’s Association.
Pine Spur Hunt Club. This group owns a club house and horse show venue just off of Route 24 east of Vinton. They host an all breed horse show in July that has been held annually since 1953. The organization offers fellowship, recreation, social activities and an opportunity to enjoy and share the privileges and beauty of the great outdoors.
Roanoke Valley Horsemen’s Association. This nonprofit group has been bringing equestrians together for over 40 years. Most well-known for the annual Roanoke Valley Horse Show held in Salem for many years, the group gave up that huge show in the past couple of years. However, they still hold a community horse show each year.
Southwest Virginia Dressage Association. SWVADA was organized in 1978 when a group of dressage enthusiasts came together to form a new chapter of the Virginia Dressage Association (VADA), a Group Member Organization of the United States Dressage Federation. As a 501(c)3 non-profit educational organization, SWVADA offers clinics, shows, demonstrations, and seminars that are open to the public.
Southwest Virginia Hunter Jumper Association. SWVHJA is a member of the U.S. Equestrian Federation (USEF) and the United States Hunter Jumper Association (USHJA). SWVHJA offers numerous year-end awards to our members who show in recognized horse show divisions. Equitation Medal Finals for Pony, Hunt Seat and Adult Medals are also held at the Year End horse show.