The Royal and Equine Guelph Educational Exhibit Draw Record Crowds
Toronto, ON – Record crowds swarmed the EquiMania! exhibit at the 2008 edition of the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair. Presented by Equine Guelph, organisers estimate that over 60,000 people visited its interactive youth equine exhibit featuring the launch of a new safety initiative, ‘Play Safe. It’s HorseSense!’
A partnership between the Farm Safety Association (Country Kids Safety Network), Kubota Canada, Ontario Equestrian Federation, System Fencing and Equine Guelph, the initiative taught youth how to stay safe around horses and tractors. Each day, kids competed in a safety trivia contest, tested their knowledge of tractor safety at the Kubota Safety School, searched for safety issues in the Hazard Hunt in the Horse’s House and wore horse hats sporting the newly branded safety message.
“We had over 17,000 walking billboards of our safety message with kids wearing the horse hats,” says Dean Anderson, executive director of the Farm Safety Association. “It is exciting to see that a critical safety message can be delivered in a fun and interactive way.” Between 1990 and 2005, 63% of animal-related injuries among youth in Ontario occurred in incidents involving horses. For children aged sixteen and under, machine runovers were the predominant cause of fatal injuries at 46%.
In addition to horse farm safety, kids and parents learned more about horses: how to braid a tail, the potential careers available in the horse industry, how to bandage a horse’s leg, identifying horse bones, equine nutrition, the different breeds and information on parasites.
For the young and the young at heart, every visitor to EquiMania! came away from the education exhibit learning at least one new thing about horses.
“EquiMania! is my child’s favourite exhibit,” comments a parent visiting EquiMania!
“This year was absolutely amazing – our best ever!” exclaims Gayle Ecker, senior manager of Equine Guelph. “The exhibit was swarming with horse enthusiasts hungry to learn more about horses.”
Sponsors of the 2009 EquiMania! travelling education centre include: Farm Safety Association, Grand River Agricultural Society, Kubota Canada, Pfizer, Shur-Gain, System Fencing, Standardbred Canada.
EquiMania!’s next stop is the Can-Am All Breeds Equine Emporium in London, Ontario from March 20-22,2009.
Equine Guelph is the horse owners’ and care givers’ Centre at the University of Guelph. It is a unique partnership dedicated to the health and well-being of horses, supported and overseen by equine industry groups. Equine Guelph is the epicentre for academia, industry and government – for the good of the equine industry as a whole.