Bring on the clowns! And the horses too!
Every Friday Counter-Canter Culture features the important US and International Horse Shows currently under way.
The Angelstone International
As summer turns to fall, the finals horse shows start coming at you so fast that it is sometimes difficult to decide what to watch first. But have no fear! Counter-Canter Culture and The Horse Circus are here to help you direct your attention. This weekend I’d like to introduce you to a very exciting season closer on now in Canada.
The Angelstone International hasn’t been around for long. In fact this is just its second year. But the tournaments at Angelstone have already become a favorite with many of the best in the business, including Captain Canada himself, Ian Millar, Eric Lamaze, Kent Farrington, and Leslie Howard. It’s not hard for us counter-culture equestrians to see the appeal.
The Angelstone facility was opened four years ago with a specific mission in mind – modernize the audiences experience at horse shows for both equestrians and non-equestrians alike. Since then they have lept ahead of their competitors in their spectator offerings.
At every event, there is free picnic style seating on the grassy embankments that circle the arena. Or spectators looking for a bit fancier experience can always op for the innovative “Date Night” area where small groups can reserve couch seating overlooking the main arena.
Those who choose to make the short trek from Toronto to Angelstone in Erin are in for a treat. It starts with a world-class facility modeled after Kentucky Horse Park. And when it gets dark, then the real show happens with expert lighting provided by Dwight Crane, the film industry’s leader in high-intensity lighting systems, credited with many of Hollywood’s biggest blockbusters, including Iron Man, Transformers and X-Men. Basically, Angelstone gives their horses the superhero treatment they deserve!
The parties not over when the horses head back to the stables either. On so-called “Super Saturdays” this equestrian celebration is capped off with the Cloud9 experience at Angelstone’s very own nightclub overlooking the show jumping arena. We’re talking live music, drinks, dancing, and maybe even a bit too much fun. The media has described the evening as a ‘Gatsby-esque’ jaunt in the countryside. In my imagination, it’s a Baz Luhrmann-style party all the time!
Amid all this revelry, there is also some seriously impress show jumping. Angelstone’s president Keean White, and vice-president Ryan Clermont both come from a show jumping background – hence the establishments motto “By Riders, For Riders,” and they have made it there mission to bring in the best. The highlight of this weekend will be the $100,000 Grand Prix, which is a FEI World Cup qualifying class.
American show jumping stars Georgina Bloomberg, Leslie Howard, Quentin Judge, Charlie Jayne, Todd Minikus, Kristen Coe, Hannah Sellek are all confirmed to compete, many hot on the heels of last weekends fun at the LA Masters. And Ian Millar will also be on hand for team Canada. With a lineup like that that action is sure to be out of this world!
So heads up Counter-Canter Culture equestrians! It’s time to put Angelstone on your radar!