Inaugural Summer Lineup of Shows at Wellington’s Global Dressage Grounds

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Global Dressage Festival grounds with the Van Kampen covered arena. © Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com
Global Dressage Festival grounds with the Van Kampen covered arena. © Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

WELLINGTON, Florida, May 1, 2014–The inaugural lineup of summer competitions to be held in the Van Kampen covered arena at the Global Dressage Festival show grounds was confirmed Thursday, and includes an end of summer event the weekend before the U.S. Dressage Federation’s regional championships.

The dates of the summer shows, licensed by the U.S. Equestrian Federation and organized by Equestrian Sport Productions that also stages the Global Dressage Festival and the Winter Equestrian Festival from January through March are:

1. Saturday, July 26;
2. Sunday, July 27;
3. Saturday, Sept. 20;
4. Sunday, Sept. 21, and
5. Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 11 and 12.

The July and September shows are separately licensed for each day of the weekend so combinaions can seek to attain scores to qualify for the championships that cover the region of Alabama, Florida, Georgia, South Carolina and Tennessee.

The end of summer show Oct. 11-12 is designed to give competitors the chance to familiarize themselves with the same show grounds that will host the USDF regional championships the following weekend on the 57-acre (23 Ha.) venue.

The first summer competitions became possible this year when the Village of Wellington government ended its opposition to use of the multimillion dollar show grounds year round. ESP was previousy provided a temporary license to use the grounds for only six months a year, from Nov. 1 through April 30.

The Van Kampen Arena measures 210 ft. by 360 ft. (64m x 110m), large enough for four full size (20m x 60m) dressage rings, and one of the largest buildings of its type.

The arena was built with a gift from the family trust that manages the estate of the late Robert Van Kampen, who founded an investment banking firm in 1975 that became Van Kampen Funds. He also amassed one of the largest private collections of rare and antique Bibles.

Non profit organizations can apply to use the arena under an arrangement the Van Kampen family implemented to provide a total of 30 days a year free of charge.