Skip to content

Celebration Clarifies Disqualification Procedure



The Celebration has received many calls regarding show management’s responsibility to disqualify horses that have passed inspection by the SHOW Designated Qualified Persons but found not in compliance by the USDA Veterinary Medical Officers. This decision in 2016 by show management is no different than the decision made last year and all preceding years.

The USDA, prior to the start of the horse show, did change their policy with regards to disqualification procedures.  In the past, show management delegated the responsibility to inform the participant of the disqualification to the HIO and USDA.  This year the USDA would not accept that delegation of responsibility and informed show management they would have to assign someone in inspection to inform the participant of their decision each time.

After receiving that letter from the USDA, the Celebration released a statement informing all participants of their decision again this year to disqualify all participants that the USDA VMOs, as a result of their inspection results, had “reason to believe the horse is sore”.  The same is true if the SHOW DQP finds the horse non-compliant.  This decision is consistent with our responsibility under the HPA.

Under the HPA, show management is responsible and the only party to disqualify a horse.  This is not a Celebration rule and is the same at all horse shows, not just the Celebration.  The process for how that is communicated to the participant is different at this year’s Celebration and we understand it has caused confusion.  Whether the USDA requires each show after the Celebration to communicate its decision on a case by case basis is unknown.  However, it will be show management’s responsibility under the HPA at every show moving forward just as it has been since the inception of the HPA.

The Celebration appreciates the concerns that have been expressed and apologizes for the confusion and inconvenience these changes may have caused.  

More Stories

  • Walking In The Smokies stall deadline approaching

    The Walking In The Smokies Horse Show, scheduled for April 8-10, 2021, in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee is preparing for their first annual show and would like to send a reminder to anyone needing stalls that the deadline is March 15. Please contact Lexi Stinnett at 828-550-8520 to reserve stalls on the show grounds. Read More
  • Trainers' Show announces judges

    The Walking Horse Trainers’ Association National Trainers’ Show will be held at Calsonic Arena in Shelbyville, Tenn. March 18-20, 2021. Judges for the three-day event will be Wayne Dean, Newton Parks and Johnny Puckett. Read More
  • USDA prepares for 2021 show season

    The USDA recently conducted their virtual HIO training course for the 2021 show season. The USDA and industry recently received the final report from the National Academies of Sciences (NAS) and some of the recommendations in that report are communicated in the new processes the USDA will implement in 2021... Read More
  • WHOA hosts virtual awards ceremony

    On Saturday. February 20th, the Walking Horse Owners’ Association (WHOA) held their National High Point awards for 2020 on their WHOA Facebook page with winners who chose to be zooming in to accept their awards... Read More
  • WHOA to host virtual awards ceremony on February 20

    The Walking Horse Owners’ Association (WHOA) will recognize their award winners from the 2020 show season during a virtual awards ceremony on Saturday, February 20, 2021. The show will be broadcast live on WHOA’s Facebook page beginning at 6 pm central time. Read More
  • FAST Spring Showcase announces judging panel

    The FAST Spring Showcase is pleased to announce that John Fikes, Newton Parks and Sam Sorrell will judge this years’ two-day event. The show will be held at Calsonic Arena in Shelbyville, Tenn. April 16-17, 2021... Read More
  • Obituary – Kimberly Woods

    Kimberly Lynn Woods, age 47 departed this life on Sunday, February 14, 2021 at the University of Kentucky Medical Center in Lexington, Kentucky... Read More
  • WHAA annual barn party rescheduled due to inclement weather

    There will be a lot of great items to auction as well as breeding fees to some of the top stallions in the industry and training fees for many of the top trainers. Everyone is encouraged to bring your young horses to preview for the upcoming show season. Read More
  • Birth Announcement – William Jackson Bauer

    Dr. & Mrs. Will  Bauer of Gainesville, Georgia welcomed their first child, William Jackson Bauer, on December 4, 2020. Jack weighed 7 pounds, 2 ounces at birth... Read More
  • Equine Obituary – Master's Razzle and Jazz

    The Walking Horse Community and the Alan Riddley Family lost Master’s Razzle And Jazz, the reigning 2020 World Grand Champion, on Friday, February 5, 2021, due to complications of colic. Master’s Razzle And Jazz, affectionately known as “Lurch”, will forever be remembered by his gentle ways, powerful gait and his eye-catching presence. Read More