For the past ten years, students in Colorado State University’s Equine Sciences program have spent the year learning what it takes to prepare, manage, and execute a horse sale. This year is no different with the 11th Annual Legends of Ranching Performance Horse scheduled for April 23 at the B.W. Pickett Equine Center on CSU’s Foothills Campus.
Hands-on, experiential learning
“This sale is an outstanding example of the kinds of hands-on, experiential learning taking place in our Equine Sciences program,” said David J. Denniston, associate professor of equine sciences and director of the Legends of Ranching program. “A sale is about so much more that displaying a product and collecting money. Our students learn how to communicate with buyers, consignors, and the general public as well as all other aspects of the sale including hiring staff, creating contracts, completing paperwork, fitting horses for sale.”
Free and open to the public
The sale, which has no admission cost and is open to the public, usually draws more than 400 people and offers an opportunity for students to network with industry professionals and gain experience that they would not find in the classroom. In fact, over the years, several students have received internships through contacts made at the sale.
Each year, students also participate in the Wagonhound Land and Livestock Student Competition, where students can showcase their horses and compete for $10,000 in student scholarships. The student competition will take place on April 16.
Futurity and Maturity Horse Show on April 22
For the first time, the Legends of Ranching program will also feature a Futurity and Maturity Horse Show on April 22. This show is also open to the public and will showcase horses sold through the program in the last ten years. Another $10,000 in prize money will be available as well as other prizes including a saddle, bridle, bits, and ribbons.
More than 60 horses are cataloged for the April 23 sale, and the quality continues to steadily increase with each year. The Legends of Ranching sale has three “legend” sponsors – Cinch, Wagonhound, and Purina – that have contributed over $10,000 to the event.