Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

Editorials

July 20, 2012

Horse show

A tradition of family fun in Bluefield

— — Area families looking for something to do today should consider the 44th Annual Bluefield Shrine Horse Show. The popular show sponsored by the Bluefield Shrine Club and Ramey Toyota is now well underway at Lotito Park.

The show continues through Saturday. It is good, entertaining fun for the entire family to enjoy. And it’s also a big draw to the two Bluefields, attracting visitors from both near and far to city park. But most importantly, the show benefits a very worthy cause.

All proceeds from the show go to help local children through the Shriners Children Hospital Fund, according to Jim Bailey, one of the event organizers.

Since its inception, the Shriners Children Hospital Fund has helped 6,600 local children at hospitals in Kentucky and Ohio. These are kids from Mercer, McDowell and Tazewell counties who have benefited from the horse show during the past 44 years.

Bailey said the show is a fundraiser for the children’s transportation and hospital care. “This hospital fund helps children lead a productive life and do things they might not otherwise be able to,” he said.

The show draws in horse enthusiasts from a wide range of places, including Ohio, Virginia, Kentucky and North Carolina. Those visitors, in return, bring new tourism dollars into the two Bluefields over the course of the three-day show by spending money at local hotels, motels, restaurants, convenience stations, department stores and malls.

“It’s a boost, particularly, that the motels and restaurants look forward to every summer,” Marc Meachum, president and chief executive officer of the Greater Bluefield Chamber of Commerce, said. “The horse show has been coming since before I was involved at the chamber and is a great opportunity to showcase our area to people from out of the area. A lot of these folks come from a great distance and spend a good amount of money because this is an expensive sport.”

There is plenty to enjoy at today’s show, including beautiful horses, skilled riders and near-perfect summer weather conditions. If you haven’t been to the Bluefield Shrine Horse Show in a few years, or if you have never attended the event, please consider doing so today and Saturday.

The horse show has always been one of the region’s best-known events. It’s great family fun for a very worthwhile cause.

We encourage all local residents to head out to city park today and Saturday to enjoy the event and support the Bluefield Shrine Club and the Shriners Children Hospital Fund.

And, to the many riders visiting the region — we welcome you, and hope to see you back in the two Bluefields soon.

 

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