Horses and the Stories They Tell | Black Hills Travel Blog

Horses and the Stories They Tell

  • Horses and the Stories They Tell
Tuesday, August 21, 2018
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South Dakota has a lot of horse history. They were valuable animals to the native Indians and they helped the pioneers settle this land. Cowboys used them to manage huge herds of cattle long ago during the “open range” years. You may not know it, but “Rodeo” is actually a sanctioned sport in this region—and you certainly can’t have a rodeo without horses.

From October 20-22, Rapid City will host an event that will tell the story of many different horse breeds as well as the culture behind them. The Black Hills Horse Expo is coming to town.

This is a must-attend event for any horse owner or lover. During the three-day event, you can catch up on the latest equine training, shop the region's premier vendors, and connect with your horse friends.​ The James Kjerstad Event Center on the Central States Fairgrounds in Rapid City is where the event will be held. Camping is available on the fairgrounds and you can even bring your horse!

The Expo is designed to showcase horses (including stallions), from many diverse breeds. You’ll learn about horse breeds you’ve never heard of, what their main purpose was, and how they are being utilized today. From a Chincoteague Ponies to a Paso-Fino, and Friesian’s to a Shagya–Arabian, these aren’t your everyday American Quarter Horses—but you’ll most likely see those too.

And it’s not just about the horse breeds. They have a costume class, a liberty class (where the horses move freely to music in the arena), clinics, and shopping. (LOTS of shopping!) As if that isn’t enough, there’s entertainment too. Friday Night Thunder will feature everything from Roman riding to trick horses to elaborate costumes. After these riveting performances will be the first segment of the engaging Colt Starting Challenge, USA. Watch as six trainers use a variety of techniques to break and train their own un-broke horse. The fun comes as you try to guess who will be the first to saddle, mount, and ride their horse! It’s a true competition with the winner earning the right to continue on to the National Colt Starting Challenge USA Championship in Las Vegas later this year.

The event is all about horses and you will want to be front and center, start to finish! The mission is to bring the whole equine experience to the Black Hills. It’s guaranteed to be a fun, diverse, and magical experience.


The hope is that when you come to the Expo, you will be in awe of the beauty and power of horses, as well as the talented trainers and exhibitors that handle them. If you’re like me, you’ll leave feeling like you have been rejuvenated, uplifted, and exhilarated, and your equine appreciation will have been expanded just a little more, too. Trot on over to the website for all the details:

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