A Cowboy’s Faith: Crowds insignificant for entertainment

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“Just like the state fair 50 years ago.”

That was the overflowing parking lot at the weekend horse exposition.

A coworker had complained about having to park a long ways from the pavilion for an earlier event, but parking was considerably tighter this time.

Worse thing half-century ago was the hours finding the parked car. This time although half-mile away was easy to locate.

Horse events, be it rodeos, shows, carnival pony rides, especially sales, even one horse at a farm sale, attract crowds.

Also forever reminded of the state fair midway, aisles between the hundreds of horse expo booths packed like sardines, appropriate cliché. Attempting to go by every exhibit literally took hours, even though never stopping to buy anything.

Saw nothing wanted, yet price tags apparent moving at snail pace glared exorbitant. Everything fits that category, as still reflect nickel coffee priced $4 at concession.

Certainly, concessionaires did drum up business, the dozen scattered throughout half-dozen program sections. All long waiting lines and nearly everyone attending had drinks or snack in hand.

Vendor business boomed, too. Without exception, all booths with something for sale had apparent inquisitors. Clerks were always ringing cash registers.

Manning the radio display three shifts, tallying others’ sales was easy. More than half of those leaving the exhibitor hall carried bags or otherwise obvious purchases. Obviously, like one said, “Just couldn’t do without it.”

Auditing a half-dozen clinicians for stories, most apparent how much there is to know about horses. Like life, been closely tied to equine industry since quite young, still really have little knowledge about the very smart animals and using to ultimate potential.

Equally, there truly are intelligent horse people who do know a lot more than “get on and go.” Interest to learn was apparent in expo attenders.

“When’s Shorty going to be here?” every few minutes somebody queried.

World renowned Rusty Walker of the acclaimed Walker-Daniels Morning Show had Shorty the Wonder Horse (a black Miniature gelding) on display set schedule each day. With his own free coloring book, Shorty was likely biggest attraction of the multi-million dollar affair.

Reminds of Mark 6:36: “Crowds gather to buy what they want.” Yet, Proverbs 23:23: “They seek wisdom, education, insight.” Still, Psalm 111:9: “A lifetime of study brings endless enjoyment. His generosity never gives out.”


030615-franksmug2Frank J. Buchman is a lifelong rancher from Alta Vista, a lifetime newspaper writer, syndicated national ag writer and a radio marketing consultant. He writes a weekly column to share A Cowboy’s Faith.


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