This post originally appeared in The Barrel Patch, and was submitted by Barb Poulsen.
Do cold and snowy winter days inspire thoughts of a warm, sunny place where you can ride without bundling up in 50 pounds of winter clothing and shoeing your horse with ice nails? Then welcome to Arizona, where summer spends the winter and winter is the prime time season for barrel racing. Here\’s links to some of our favorite facilities.
BUCKEYE EQUESTRIAN CENTER: Located in Buckeye, Arizona just minutes from I-10, the Center advertises itself as “The Premier Equestrian Facility in the Valley of the Sun”. Their facilities consist of two covered arenas along with seven outdoor arenas and boasts the largest covered arena in Arizona with seating for up to 4,000 spectators, an onsite feed and tack store along with a fully equipped vet clinic for both large and small animals. The boarding facility includes 160 – 16’X16’ stalls in two mare motels and 40 – 16’X16’ Castle Brook stalls in two fly controlled barns. Wireless internet covers the entire facility along with over 100 RV hook-ups and for the “snowbirds” coming in for the winter months, special packages are offered to visitors staying two or more months.
HORSESHOE PARK & EQUESTRIAN CENTRE: Opened on January 1, 2009 this is a new facility located in Queen Creek, Arizona. Situated on 38 acres, the facility has four arenas, the largest, 150’ by 300’, is covered and houses 388 box seats and 1,200 bleacher seats. The footing, designed by Kiser Arena Specialists, is a multi-purpose mixture that is suitable for all disciplines. With an 18’ x 50’ concession/multi-purpose room, clean and modern 100-stall barn, space for 200 temporary stalls, wash racks, plenty of room for RV parking, special event receptacles and vendor hook-ups, this state-of-the-art facility can comfortably handle the largest barrel racing competitions.
DUNN’S ARENA: Located in Litchfield Park, Dunn’s Arena bills itself as “west sides premier family owned facility that prides itself on our fun family environment”. The large 150’ by 400’covered arena is their showcase and compliments the two open arenas. All natural soil footings combined with over 80 years of dirt and grading experience make their arenas among the best in the state. An onsite restaurant, restrooms, showers, a barn with 15 huge stalls and 37 roomy outside covered stalls enable this facility to accommodate overnighters as well as host large events.
Along with the usual weekly barrel races held at this Litchfield Park facility, there is always something exciting going on during the winter months.
Listed are just a few of the arenas and races in warm and sunny Arizona to “whet your barrel racing appetite”.
In between races, you can keep busy by visiting some of the world famous attractions in Arizona.