As well as hosting a World Cup Series show jumping qualifier, the 200-acre Halton Place equestrian facility, just west of Georgetown, will be a hub of activity for sports enthusiasts of many varieties over the next couple of weeks. Ever been to a hunter/jumper show before and had a beach volleyball tournament break out? Halton Place, which has hosted national level equestrian shows for the past 15 years, has made significant upgrades to the facility over the past year and is preparing to host its biggest-ever competition, surrounded by a festival-type atmosphere called the Spirit of Competition, the Adrenaline Festival. "Our goal for the event is to bring adrenaline-type sports like beach volleyball, BMX racing and sports car racing together with the equestrian events and create a venue that has a something interesting for a wide variety of people," said Megan Krueger, Halton Place's events manager. "The plan is to continue to grow this every year and we've already received great response." The festival aspect will include vendor and interactive booths from the BMX, skateboarding, mountain biking and camping industries, along with classic and new sports cars on site. A BMX bike racing track will be ready for use in June 2007. The Canadian Country Classic begins Wednesday, Aug. 23 and the highlight of the opening week promises to be the $20,000 Grand Prix on Sunday, Aug. 27. The show resumes Wednesday, Aug. 30, culminating with the $75,000 FEI World Cup Series qualifier on Sunday, Sept. 3 beginning at 2 p.m. It's the first time that Halton Place has hosted an event of this international stature, with riders vying for spots in the 2007 World Cup finals. Some of Canada's veteran riders, such as Ian Millar, Jill Henslewood, Mario Deslauriers and Eric Lamaze, won't be at the Classic as they're in Germany for the 2006 World Equestrian Games, but Krueger said that the $150,000 total purse prize for the fortnight will draw an elite-level field with up-and coming stars including Amy Millar for the feature events. Approximately 500 horses will compete in one of the dozens of classes for both youth and adult riders, amateur and professional. Three main rings will be used for the hunter and jumpers, which include Rising Star, the Canadian Jumper Development Series, Jump Canada Grand Prix Series and the $4,500 Marquest Mini Prix. Admission to the weekday events is free. Cost is $5 per spectator or $10 for a family pass on the weekends. Halton Place is located on the 15th Sideroad between Trafalgar Rd. and Hwy. 25. Organizers of the beach volleyball tournament are also accepting team registrations. For more information, visit the website www.haltonplace.com, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 905-873-2316.
Halton Place is expecting thousands of spectators to come through its gates over the next two weeks for the Canadian Country Classic, featuring expanded equestrian events and spectator activities. The show starts Wednesday, Aug 23 and continues until Sunday, Sept. 3.