On July 23rd and 24th, Moose Jaw will host the fifth annual Four Lakes Cowhorse Show at the exhibition grounds.
Over the past few years, the show has grown into one of Saskatchewan's largest cowhorse shows, also drawing competitors from Alberta and Manitoba.
Recently, the hit show Yellowstone has heightened public interest in the sport of reined cowhorse.
Its roots can be traced to ranchers and vaqueros of California, who trained their horses to be their ultimate ranching partners. Their goal was to find a horse able to be handled lightly with the reins while demonstrating enough speed and grit to work with the most challenging cattle. Today, the sport comprises three events, reining, cutting, and cow work down the fence.
Show organizer Jaime Obleman shared that "The sport of cowhorse is athletically challenging for both horse and rider. I feel it's one of the most challenging sports in the horse world. There is a good mix of precision, speed, and adrenaline which makes it so rewarding when you are successful at it."
According to Obleman, spectators can expect an exciting show as well. The well-organized event features an engaging announcer who keeps spectators informed and entertained. The event contains many high-caliber horses, and the fence work portion is especially exciting, according to Obleman.
Upon speaking to long-time Four Lakes Cowhorse Show competitor Katie Kannenberg, she mentioned, "I have been around different disciplines and can attest that there is no atmosphere quite like a Cowhorse show."
Kannenberg shared that she feels there is a class for everyone, and the support system among members is fantastic. Riders of all levels are welcome, whether they are entering their first show riding a horse they ranch on, or they have been competing for years.
"The Four Lakes Cowhorse Show is a great representation of the horsemanship, comradery, and excitement that is Reined Cowhorse in Saskatchewan," explained Kannenberg.
New members are encouraged to join and try out the equine equine event with the Saskatchewan Cowhorse Association. The organization aims to make the transition into cowhorse events as easy and welcoming as possible for newcomers to the sport.
In an effort to ease some of the stress of getting started in the sport, the association has recently assembled learning materials for the "New and Nervous" section of the website.
Those interested in learning more about the sport and the Four Lakes Cowhorse show can visit www.reinedcowhorse.net/ or find them on Facebook.