SHELBYVILLE, Tenn. – The 70th Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration is sure to be one of the most exciting ever, with 4,222 pre-entries being made for the 11-day show.

This year’s total is an increase of 25 over the 2007 total of 4,197.  The record mark for pre-entries is 4,914; set in 2003. 

“I’m very excited with this number of entries,” said Celebration CEO Dr. Doyle Meadows. “The credit for the continued success of our entries goes to all of the owners, trainers, and exhibitors from across the country that work every day to put terrific horses in the ring.  It’s these people that have helped make The Celebration® exactly what it is, the World’s Greatest Horse Show.  We are delighted and humbled by the number of entries.  It is an accurate reflection of what has been seen all season long.”

The number of classes that were split into divisions is down slightly from one year ago. There will be 22 split classes this year, as opposed to 24 last year.  Twenty of the splits will be into A-B divisions, while two classes had to be split into three divisions.  Those classes are Two Year Old Walking Stallions and Owner-Amateur Riders on Three Year Old Walking Mares and Geldings.

“We always want to grow our numbers,” said Meadows. “However, these numbers are exciting to me when you take into account the issues our industry has faced in the past several years and that our pre-entries have been on a decline for the past five years.”

Meadows and Entry Office Manager Mary Lynn Dickens noted nice increases in the divisions where there had to be three-way splits as well as the show pleasure division.

While no completely new classes were added for 2008, the schedule was streamlined and some classes were tweaked for maximum participation by exhibitors.

“We get a great deal of input from our exhibitors about the class schedule,” reported Dickens.  “We take these suggestions very seriously and try to come with a schedule that accommodates the most exhibitors.”

The Celebration is the longest continually running event in the state of Tennessee and the 2008 edition kicks off with morning classes on Wednesday, August, 20th and the initial night performance in the outdoor Celebration Arena will be on Thursday night, August 21st.

Ticket purchases can be made by calling 931-684-5915.  More Celebration information can be found at

The Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration takes place each year during the 11-days and nights prior to Labor Day.  It is the premier event for the Tennessee Walking Horse, during which the breed’s World Grand Champion Tennessee Walking Horse® and some 33 other World Grand Champions® are crowned.  It is a festival event, encompassing exciting classes in competition where more than $750,000 in prizes and awards are given.  Other activities include a barn decorating contest, a trade fair and a dog show.  The 70th Annual Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration is scheduled August 20-30.  For more information, visit