Hillsboro horse show 2021

Jordyn Overschmidt, 5, of Pevely rides a pony.

Half of Saturday’s Hillsboro Horse Show and Festival was canceled because of muddy conditions at the Jefferson County Fairgrounds.

The festival went on as scheduled, but the horse show was called off because of rain the day before, which left the arena soaked, organizers said.

Despite the soggy ground and cancellation of the horse show, between 1,000 and 1,200 people showed up for the festival, said Kelly Fortel, one of the organizers.

“We had a pretty good attendance,” she said. “I’m happy with how things went with the festival.”

Fortel said believes the crowd would have been even larger had the horse show gone on.

“It could have affected the crowds,” she said.

On the other hand, Saturday’s weather was ideal for the festival, Fortel said.

“For the festival, the weather was beautiful,” she said. “It may have been a little cool, but beautiful.”

Neither the horse show nor festival was held in 2020 because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The horse show dates back to 1946, and the festival was added in 2019.

Fortel said this year’s horse show will not be rescheduled.

“We’ll have to wait until next year for the horse show,” she said.

Fortel said those who attended this year’s festival enjoyed all the activities, including a pumpkin patch, pumpkin painting, chicken dinner sales, a silent auction, pony rides, food and merchandise vendors and other activities.

“The kids had a blast in the corn bed,” she said. “It’s a large metal pool filled with real corn. The kids played in the corn.”

Fortel said one of the other highlights was the live music, including Steve Hardesty, the Hillsboro Intermediate Treble Singers, Hillsboro Rockin’ Hawks and Russ Wellington-Cody Goggin.

“I’d say the music was pretty popular,” she said.

Plans are in the works for the 2022 Hillsboro Horse Show and Festival.

“It will be in October again, but we do not have an exact date yet,” Fortel said.

The Hillsboro Community Civic Club and the Greater Hillsboro Chamber of Commerce teamed to sponsor the event.