The Watch Lake Green Lake Gymkhana will gallop into full gear on July 9 and Aug. 13, returning for the first time in two years.
Organizer Dimps Horn said the events, to be held at the Watch Lake Green Lake Gymkhana grounds west of Little Horse Lodge on North Green Lake Road, will feature timed barrel, half stake and keyhole races for various age groups. The July gymkhana will also have a ribbon race and musical tires, while the August gymkhana will have a boot race and baton relay.
Registration will start at 10 a.m. with the events at 12 p.m. The entry fee for a single event is $3 and $15 for all six. Sponsored by the Watch Lake Green Lake Community Association, the event is “a day for the whole family,” Horn said.
“There are lots of locals and anybody’s free to enter,” Horn said, adding participants just have to follow the rules of the gymkhana. “It’s an open day. Anybody from near and far, whoever wants to come.”
Horn said the event has been running close to 65 years “so it’s historic.”
“It’s been happening since I was a kid. I was just a little one when they started. I was one of the juniors, I’ve been doing it that long,” said Horn, who runs the Watch Lake Lodge. “There are lots of good riders, good horses. And it’s fun to watch the kids as they grow up and the first thing you know, they’re competing against you and beating you.”
Admission for people aged six and under is free, while it’s $2 for the general public. Horn said it is going to be an affordable, fun day, and she is expecting a good turnout.
There will likely be prize money for sponsorships, aggregate trophies in all divisions, and ribbons from first to fourth place. There will be winners for aggregates overall in all divisions for the best participants who attend both gymkhana events.
Horn encouraged everyone to come to enjoy the show, as well as the hamburgers, hot dogs and refreshments. The event will go on even if it’s raining.
“I’m an optimistic person, so I’m sure it’ll be fine,” Horn said. “Bring your hats and blankets and enjoy the day. You don’t have to bring anything else but yourself because everything is provided there. There’s shade with the trees and there’s food and drink. What else do you need?”