East Dorset, Vermont — The Vermont Summer Festival is celebrating 20 years of bringing top hunter/jumper competition to the Manchester, Vermont, region. The six-week equestrian competition will return to Harold Beebe Farm in East Dorset, just north of Manchester, from July 2 through August 11, 2013.
Offering more than $750,000 in prize money, the Vermont Summer Festival is the richest sporting event based on purse in the state of Vermont. The competition routinely attracts Olympic athletes, and the picturesque setting amid the Green Mountain range of southern Vermont truly makes the event unique. Exhibitors can expect to be warmly welcomed at any of the area’s numerous local businesses, which include a large range of lodging options, restaurants, outdoor activities and plenty of shopping.
“As we prepare to celebrate our 20th year of the Vermont Summer Festival, the thing that strikes us the most is how many exhibitors have been showing at our event for all or most of those years,” said Ruth Lacey, Marketing Director for the Vermont Summer Festival. “While we pride ourselves on offering a well-run operation with a broad selection of classes and divisions in a friendly atmosphere, we must also acknowledge how much our exhibitors enjoy the beautiful surroundings of southern Vermont. It is the combination of all of these factors that bring equestrians back to the Vermont Summer Festival and the Manchester area year after year.”
Show organizers John and Dotty Ammerman make sure all the exhibitors have a chance to relax and enjoy the local community through their wildly popular exhibitor parties, which are hosted each Wednesday at some of the area’s top destinations. In past years, exhibitor parties have been held at the Bromley Mountain Adventure Park, Riley Rink, the historic Dorset Inn, Chantecleer Restaurant, and the Equinox Resort & Spa.
Another key to the Vermont Summer Festival’s success has been its ability to listen to feedback and make changes to better suit the needs of its competitors. As a result, the Vermont Summer Festival will introduce ‘Equitation Tuesdays’ in 2013, showcasing the future stars of the sport on one special day. Featured classes include the THIS Children’s Medal, USEF Medal, ASPCA Horsemanship, and the USEF Show Jumping Talent Search.
Thoroughbreds will also spend time in the spotlight with the addition of TAKE2 Thoroughbred Hunter and Jumper Divisions during weeks two, three and four. The Vermont Summer Festival will host a $1,500 Hunter Division and a $1,000 Jumper Division as part of the TAKE2 program, which features Thoroughbred-only divisions at select shows across the United States. The program is designed to promote second careers for retired Thoroughbred racehorses.
The first five Saturdays of the Vermont Summer Festival will feature a $30,000 Grand Prix. The $50,000 Vermont Summer Celebration Grand Prix will be held during the sixth and final week on Saturday, August 10. The weekly $10,000 Open Welcome Stake, Presented by Manchester Designer Outlets, will be held each Thursday. The hugely popular $5,000 3’3” Hunter Derby will also be held each Thursday for the first five weeks, with week six featuring the $15,000 Hunter Derby.
The Vermont Summer Festival is a proud member event of the Show Jumping Hall Of Fame, the Marshall & Sterling League, and the North American League (NAL). Please e-mail us or visit our website for more information about the Vermont Summer Festival.