(TALLAHASSEE, Fla.- March 1, 2020) — The Red Hills International Horse Trials gallops into its 22nd year March 6-8 at the Elinor Klapp-Phipps Park in Tallahassee, Fla. During the three-day competition, each horse and rider must complete three tests: dressage, cross-country and show jumping from Friday through Sunday.
The Trials challenge riders over a three-day period and offer a high-level equestrian competition experience to thousands of spectators. Riders from around the globe, including from Australia, Norway, Canada and other countries are attending as they prepare for the Olympic Games this summer in Tokyo, Japan.
“This is a community event,” says Jane Barron, co-organizer of Red Hills Horse Trials. “You don’t need to know anything about horses to come out and have fun. We have nearly 20,000 visitors who come from all over the globe as well as locals. We are so grateful for the more than 600 volunteers who help make this world-class competition happen.”
In addition to the competition, spectators can enjoy shopping, a food court, exhibits, and many local and regional vendors of jewelry and art – all beneath the beautiful overhang of southern live oaks. There is a kids’ play area with bounce houses, hay bales and a sand pit.
New this year is a beer garden featuring local Tallahassee craft beers and award winning Farmer’s Daughter Vineyard wines. The Beer Garden will be open Friday through Sunday from 11 am to 3 pm.
The Friday Dressage is hosted in a wide-open field where onlookers can observe by sitting on bleachers or standing.
Saturday’s Cross-Country brings out tailgaters, sponsors and families looking for an exciting weekend outdoors. Spectators are encouraged to bring a picnic, blankets and folding chairs and set up by a favorite jump, or near the two water obstacles on course.
Gold Medal Olympic rider David O’Connor and world-famous course designer Michael Etherington-Smith partnered to create the different levels of the event’s cross-country challenge.
It’s a “great spectator course,” O’Connor said of the Saturday event where, on the sidelines, non-riders can get close to the jumps and the horses. O’Connor explained that he and Etherington-Smith map out the run each year with the audience in mind to make it spectator friendly.
Sunday wraps up the weekend with the final Stadium Jumping round hosted in the sunny center of the venue.
“It’s one of the more special places,” O’Connor said of the equestrian weekend in Tallahassee.
Dogs are welcomed but must be leashed.
What: 22nd annual Red Hills Horse Trials three-day equestrian competition
When: March 6-8, 2020
Where: Elinor Klapp-Phipps Park, 1775 Miller Landing Rd., Tallahassee, FL, 32312
Cost: $40 for a three-day pass; $15 for a single-day pass; kids 12 and younger free
Parking: Spectator parking is available at the park’s first entrance on Miller Landing Road. The event will provide a complimentary shuttle service. There is a special shuttle for those individuals with dogs. Handicap parking is available. If a person with a disability requires a reasonable accommodation, please contact Volunteer Chair for Handicapped Services Kristy Carter at [email protected].