Tulsa will be the new host for the National Reining Breeders Classic horse show, after it spent more than 20 years in Texas.
The horse show is moving here for several reasons-- including more competition space at Expo Square.
The show started in Guthrie, Oklahoma, in 1998, but was only there for three years before going to Texas.
Now it will be back in Oklahoma and the Tulsa Regional Tourism organization is "thrilled" to welcome the event here.
For 22 years, the National Reining Breeders Classic has been in Katy, Texas, which is near Houston.
"It's a lovely place. In the last couple years it has become apparent that the show was beginning to outgrow the facility,” NRBC Secretary and Treasurer Cheryl Cody said.
Starting next spring, the show will be at Tulsa's Expo Square, with plans for it to stay here through 2027.
It has been here once before, in August 2020.
Cody said the pandemic forced the competition to reschedule in 2020, pushed back from April to August.
Cody said the Houston-area heat and humidity would have been too dangerous for the horses, soo they turned to Tulsa.
When NRBC was looking for a new home, it decided to make the move a bit more permanent.
"We've kind of had a dress rehearsal at Tulsa for the NRBC so it was really a logical choice to go back there,” Cody said. “It's a wonderful facility.”
More than 900 riders and their horses will compete in mid-April.
The Ford Truck Arena will be the main competing space but there is room to spread out to three other buildings, which Cody said is one reason the show is coming to Tulsa.
"Tulsa has a lot to offer, we felt, in that there are great restaurants very close by. It's a short drive to get right over there to Cherry Street in that area, then to get downtown,” Cody said. "I think the other great thing is the hospitality of the Tulsa people. We've found that as horse people, we've always been welcomed there and made to feel appreciated for what we bring the economic impact of what we bring to the city."
Tulsans may be more familiar with the Arabian and Half-Arabian championship horse show.
That show is scheduled for October, and the contract ends after this year's event. Expo Square said it is in "ongoing discussions" with that show about the future.