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Mule And Donkey Show Boasts Family Fun




Making it to the Winners’ Circle is the goal of all exhibitors at The Great Celebration Mule & Donkey Show in Shelbyville, TN.  The three-day event, one of the largest of its kind in the entire country, is scheduled for this weekend at the historic Celebration Grounds.  (TWHNC/Avalon Photo)

SHELBYVILLE, Tenn. - The 17th annual Great Celebration Mule and Donkey Show is on its way, and everyone in the community and the mule and donkey industry are poised for a great time with good friends, good food, and their favorite animals.

The 2008 event will take place July 10-12 at the Historic Celebration Grounds in Shelbyville, Tenn.

Every year the show brings competitors from all over the country to Shelbyville to show their mules and donkeys. While the show consistently boasts quality entries, the competitive nature of the event is a friendly one.

“Most folks who own mules and donkeys do not come into the show with an ego. They come for friendly competition, a relaxed atmosphere, and if they win that’s super and if they don’t that’s okay too,” said Ben Tennison of Western Mule Magazine.

Started on a whim to fill a void in the event schedule, The Great Celebration Mule and Donkey Show has grown to become the second largest event of its kind in the entire country.

The show is not only an anticipated event among competitors, it is also a great opportunity for spectators and newcomers to learn about donkeys and mules, the infertile hybrid of a male donkey and a female horse.

“Mules and Donkeys have long been misunderstood, and I think some folks show them because they like to ‘champion the underdog’ and prove people wrong in the long-held beliefs about these equines,” said Kathy Herrin, announcer for the show”

Friendly competition is just one attraction of the show.  The Great Celebration Mule and Donkey Show is also known as a time for fun, family-oriented activities. Costume classes and obstacle races will be held for both children and adults. An exhibitor’s cookout, a watermelon feast, a barbecue dinner, and a mule sale are all anticipated events enjoyed by the community.  This year, a Mini Parade has been added to the slate of events on Wednesday evening.

“The Great Celebration Mule & Donkey Show not only showcases top-quality animals and exhibitors, but it also fosters the atmosphere of family-oriented fun – all important in our industry!” said Herrin.

Many people in the mule and donkey industry enjoy their experiences not only because of their love for the breed but also because of the wonderful friends they make along the way.

“I think a lot of folks stay with mules and donkeys instead of moving off into showing other breeds because of the people. Mule and donkey people are – by and large – friendly, sincere, pretty humble, hard-working, real folks, usually generous to a fault and with an enormous capacity to accept critters (two or four-legged) that don’t always fit in,” said Herrin.

Tickets for the Great Celebration Mule and Donkey Show are, per day: adults - $6; children ages 7-12 - $3; and children six and under are free. Three-day passes are available for $15. For more information contact The Celebration office at (931) 684-5915 or visit their website at www.twhnc.com.


 

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