Quarter Horse Congress May Not Renew Contract with Ohio

November 4th, 2013 11:24 AM | 12 Comments
By  Kathy Lynn Gray, The Columbus Dispatch
Congress has been at the Ohio Fair Grounds since the very beginning. Photo ©PleasureHorse.com

Congress has been at the Ohio Fair Grounds since the very beginning. Photo ©PleasureHorse.com

The world’s largest single-breed horse show is again making noise about ditching the Ohio Expo Center and moving to another state.

Officials of the All American Quarter Horse Congress told the Ohio Expositions Commission recently that the show has outgrown the 360-acre fairgrounds and participants are complaining. The congress’s 10-year contract with the commission runs through 2015, and no negotiations have started about its renewal.

“People say to us all the time, ‘You’ve got the greatest horse show; why aren’t you in the greatest facility?’  ” said Dr. Scott Myers, executive director of the Ohio Quarter Horse Association, which puts on the congress. The association offices are in Richwood in Union County.

The show has been held at the fairgrounds since it began as a three-day event in 1967. It has grown to 24 days in October, and studies show it pours $180 million into the local economy each year.

Brian Ross, the chief executive officer of Experience Columbus, said he will work with public and private leaders “to find out what needs to be done to have the congress stay here.” The congress is the largest-attended event in Columbus, and “we definitely don’t want them going anywhere,” he said.

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12 Responses to “Quarter Horse Congress May Not Renew Contract with Ohio”

  1. I think it would be great! Better stalling and a central location would be great and even draw more people!

  2. I read this morning, the reason behind moving was due to horses having to stalled in tents. If this is true, its absolutely ridiculous. One of the largest horse shows in the nation for hunter/jumpers and world class Olympians is held in northern Michigan and they are all stalled in tents. Horse Shows By The Bay. Thousands of horses, during the month of July and not always favorable weather conditions.
    Maybe trainers and the amount of stall space they use, should be reconsidered. Changing the location will KILL the congress. Its a special place and has been for years and hopefully for years to come.

  3. It is definitely time to move! The facilities at Oklahoma City are MUCH BETTER and central for participants. It is ridiculous to put such valuable animals in tents! Oklahoma City has already shown a deep commitment to supporting major equine events. Ohio will cobble along little concessions year after year, that is all.

  4. Would be really upset if moves to OK or Texas. Would not be able to attend anymore. We live in upper lower Michigan and would not travel that far. I would be very sad. Its tradition and also without the organ player.

  5. I am truly disappointed to hear this. Living in Pennsylvania and on a tight budget keeps my showing to a minimum and have dreamed of competing at the Congress to have it move would be devastating to me. AQHA hosts many shows on the West Coast and few in the East please stay where you are so those of us that can’t afford to travel long distances can enjoy our little bit of AQHA

  6. I hope it remains in Ohio and the expo Center continues to make improvements and upgrades to the grounds.
    It’s the biggest show! Most successful show!
    I was always brought up with the saying
    “If it’s not broke don’t fix it”

  7. Love the facilities at the Ohio State Expo Center. It needs to stay in Ohio. No matter where it would go someone would complain about the stalls, temperature, or even the traffic. If the show is moved, the OQHA needs to keep hosting a show in October maybe named THE REAL QUARTER HORSE Congress. We have great staff like Dr. Myers and the other OQHA directors and they know how to run a great show. You can take the congress out of Ohio…. but you can’t take the quality of show that is produced by OQHA out of OHIO.

  8. […] Quarter Horse Congress May Not Renew Contract with Ohio … The world's largest single-breed horse show is again making noise about ditching the Ohio Expo Center and moving to another state. […]

  9. I do not show at the Congress in Ohio, but my husband and I attended as spectators for the first time and were truly amazed and overwhelmed. We live in Canada and are so looking forward to attending next year but to see the reining classes. If the facilities is moved further we will not be able to attend as the distance would be too far. We hope it stays put!!

  10. Moving the Congress would be a disaster,it is the only big show doing more than holding it’s own, just ask the retailers how they would feel about making that move

  11. Moving the congress for no reason would be the dumbest move the AQHA could make.. Moving it to oklahoma makes it just like all of the other AQHA shows in the west. The midwest deserves to keep this special event

  12. Does everyone realize the amount of people and horses that truly come and go at the aaqhc. If you only see the fairgrounds during the time of the congress I urge you to go there when it is empty to see how big that place really is. I have been to every facility in the nation that puts on a large horse show or futurity and there is no way that any of them can handle it any better. Yes they could make some improvements, and I bet they will . That place has come a long long way in the past ten years I can remember when the only place to ride was on an outdoor dirt track and the overhang. This horse show belongs in Columbus Ohio. Thx

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