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Celebration To Hold National Championship

Celebration To Host NMDA National Championship And Inaugural NASMA National Championship

SHELBYVILLE, Tenn. –   What has become one of the leading mule and donkey shows in that industry just gained a little more prestige!  Celebration CEO Dr. Doyle Meadows announced that the Great Celebration Mule and Donkey Show has been selected to host the National Miniature Donkey Association (NMDA) National Championship Show again in 2009 and to also play host to the inaugural North American Saddle Mule Association (NASMA) National Championship Show next summer.

That news, coupled with the event’s hosting of the American Gaited Mule Association’s (AGMA) World Championship, creates the recipe for one of the largest shows in the eighteen-year history of the event.  “We are honored and excited to have been selected as host for three of the industry’s national championships,” stated Celebration Entry Office Manager Mary Lynn Dickens.  “This speaks volumes as to the high quality show that people have become accustomed to attending at our facility.  This is a real feather in our cap.”

The Celebration’s relationship first began with the NMDA when it hosted their national championships in 2001 and 2002.  The premier event for the miniatures of the breed returned to Shelbyville in 2006.  “In 2003, the NMDA decided to offer one national show at a centralized location.  A bid process would take place to offer each interested location an opportunity to challenge for the show.  The NMDA felt it necessary to move the show each year in order to make it fair to all exhibitors,” stated Dickens.

NASMA and The Celebration’s relationship goes back even farther.  On July 14, 1994, The Great Celebration Mule Show (as it was referred to then) was the site of the Charter Meeting of the Board of Directors of the newly formed North American Saddle Mule Association.  In making the announcement, NASMA National Championship Show Committee Chairman, Tom Cochran, stated, “I would like to personally thank the show management for their confidence in NASMA and for allowing us to utilize their fantastic facility for this inaugural event.  We at NASMA look forward to The Celebration®’s continued support and to many successful future National Championship Shows.”

“Hosting these national shows means a tremendous amount of publicity for The Celebration and a significant increase in the number of animals on the grounds,” stated Meadows.  “We offer a centralized location for exhibitors to the east and west of Tennessee.  Shelbyville is a perfect place for them to compete for national titles.”

The 18th Annual Great Celebration Mule and Donkey Show is slated for July 9 – 11, 2009.  For additional information including class schedules, ticket information and much more, visit The Celebration’s web-site at

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