ATHERTON, CA — June 1, 2016 — Inspired by the 2016 Summer Olympics the 46th Menlo Charity Horse Show invites attendees on a fantastic journey to the vivacious Rio de Janeiro. The charm of the Menlo Circus Club and the sensational energy and color of Brazil are blended to bring the “Road to Rio” alive in show rings August 9th-14th from 8:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. daily at 190 Park Lane in Atherton, California.
The prestigious Menlo Charity Horse Show has come a long way since its inception. Originating in 1970 as a one-day unranked show featuring approximately forty riders; it would be difficult to imagine those humble roots today. One area that has remained steadfast is the organization and dedication, mainly by volunteers, to produce an unforgettable experience year-on-year. In fact, some of the handful of women who launched this show are still active participants today as it continues to grow in popularity while still remaining true to its Peninsula roots.
Founder Betsy Glikbarg reflects, “…even in those initial days, when we doubted if we would be able to break even financially, we were able to (thanks to the generosity of the community) raise funds for the non-profit agencies that benefited from our early efforts.”
The Menlo Charity Horse Show has evolved into a United States Equestrian Federation (USEF) “AA” rated event with a steering committee of over one hundred volunteers and participants. For six days, Menlo becomes the competition grounds for five hundred of the most accomplished and notable names on the U.S. equestrian show circuit, while simultaneously raising over 6 million dollars for Vista Center for the Blind & Visually Impaired.
“Our horse show is one of the finest…” adds Glikbarg, “It is unique in that its origin and legacy is one of philanthropy, encompassing both the elements of showmanship and giving back to the community.”
Menlo features all-day action Tuesday through Sunday with exceptional hunter and jumper competition in three separate arenas on the historic facility. The gorgeous clubhouse is open to the public and features an outdoor patio and front-row seating to the jumper ring on the polo field. Vendor row neighboring the clubhouse includes forty vendors selling clothing, jewelry, art, home and garden, and stable goods not found anywhere else. Food and beverages from local Menlo Park favorites are available on site as well.
On Tuesday and Wednesday young future equestrian stars go head-to-head in pony classes and close the excitement with “Pony Palooza” offering special treats and entertainment for the whole family. On Tuesday evening tradition continues with the exhibitors spaghetti dinner with live music. And Wednesday night brings the Larry Mayfield Horse and Hound class.
The weekend’s must-see events include Saturday evening’s $40,000 Grand Prix sponsored by Bentley San Francisco and Bentley Los Gatos and Thursday evening’s $20,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby presented by Dr. Daryl K Hoffman of Atherton.
On Friday riding breeches are traded for the evening following the $10,000 Ryman Speed Jumping Class the Gala dinner underwritten by Stephen Silver. The “Road to Rio” will be brought to life with ornate décor and lavish garments. Mr. Silver’s support, donations and gifts, as a longtime friend and Grand Prix Level sponsor, are highly valued and appreciated, making the Gala a highlight of Menlo’s social calendar.
The Gala evening will include a live auction where the coveted item is a painting by 2016 official artist Rick Timmons. “Cloud Jumper” is valued at $6,400 and is just one of the unique works in his collection that has been featured in numerous national publications.
Tickets for the Gala dinner are $250.00 each and available online at www.menlocharityhorseshow.org. Raffle tickets are also available the week of the show.
The Menlo Charity Horse Show was recognized as a Top Ten Horse Show of 2015 by the National Show Hunter Hall of Fame and provides exceptional family entertainment as it closes out summer on the Peninsula with the excitement, beauty, and grace of the equestrian world in a stunning environment. There is ample parking with complimentary shuttle service to and from the venue. Tax-deductible tickets, available at the Elena Avenue entry gate, are $10.00 per day, or $35 for a 6-day pass. Children under 12 and adults over 65 are admitted free.
The Menlo Charity Horse Show, a 501(C)(3) organization recognized as a USEF Heritage Competition, supports the Vista Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired by producing a premiere equestrian event while educating the community on the issues of the visually impaired.