Celebrating their 50th anniversary, the Harlan County Shriners (HCS) will host their annual horse show and fair July 31, Aug. 1 and Aug. 2 at the Shriners Fairgrounds in Putney.
“This year is a very special year marking 50 years of having been blessed to help numerous children from Harlan County and the surrounding counties,” said HCS Club President William D. Howard. “Founders of the Harlan County Shriners Club are to be commended for their dedication and the legacy they left for us to follow for these past 50 years.”
Howard said during the past 50 years, the club has helped children and their families, free of charge, providing transportation to those who need medical care.
“This event and the club being able to provide help to children and families at no cost are made possible through the generous donations from paper sales, roadblocks and plaque sales,” said Howard. “Your donations are used to support 22 hospitals throughout the Shriners International, located in Tampa, Fla., and our temple in Lexington.”
Howard said the fair portion of the three-day event is organized by agents at the Harlan County 4-H Extension Service.
“We appreciate all the time they devote to the children and adults of this area,” said Howard.
The fair will begin on July 31. Exhibits must be at the fairgrounds by 7 p.m. that date to be officially entered. The exhibits will be presented for all three days and on the last day of the event, all exhibits must be picked up by 11 p.m. Aug. 2.
For more information on class entries, you may call Raymond Cox at 606-273-0835.
“The opening ceremonies for the horse show will begin Aug. 1 at 7:30 p.m.,” said Howard. “The children with their stick horses will open the show with the other events following. The stick horse race is open to all kids up to age 12. This has been a tradition each year for the horse show and everyone seems to really enjoy it, especially the kids. The horse show will continue the following night beginning at 7:30 p.m. Ribbons and trophies will be awarded in several categories. So, come out, support the Shriners and enjoy the fair and two days of horse and pony competitions.”
Howard added the fairground now has a big playground with lots of things for the kids to use.
“We’ll have our train for everyone to ride,” said Howard. “The kids can ride horses with someone there to help them. It’s a great time for the community and a time to gather and have a ton of fun. No man has ever stood so tall as when he stooped to help a child.”
Nola Sizemore may be reached at 606-573-4510 or on Twitter @Nola_hde