DEVON, Pa--Both gross income and ticket sales were up despite a number of days of bad weather at the Devon Horse Show and Country Fair, which ran May 24 to June 3 this year.
There was a significant increase in the number of open jumper riders who are Olympic Games veterans, many of them also Olympic medalists, and that resulted in a number of thrilling finishes in the jumper classes.
But it was once again McLain Ward who won the $250,000 Sapphire Grand Prix of Devon, this time on a very exciting new ride for Ward, the gray mare Clinta.
Devon offered record prize money in 2017 that exceeded $850,000.
AGAIN, DESPITE a number of days of bad weather, crowd still thronged to Devon, with the attendance at approximately 125,000.
The Eventing competition Sunday evening, held for the second time at Devon, again was a very exciting competition with Chris Talley just edging out last year's winner, Sara Kozumolik Murphy, by three-tenths of a second.
That competition, Arena Eventing, and the FEI Jumper classes, continued to be the most popular with the always knowledgeable and enthusiastic spectators.
The vendors in the boutiques at the Country Fair were obviously well pleased, as all of the vendor spaces have already been booked for 2019.
Wild Blue Catering was hired as the exclusive caterer for the Devon Club. Clydesdale's Corner and the VIP Committee Stand, and that proved to be a great choice, as guests raved about the food and commented on the excellent service.
Wild Blue also provided catering to the boxholders.
Because of its great success, Devon is now finalizing a multi-year contract with Wild Blue, so Devon spectators in the Devon Club, the VIP Committee Stand and Clydesdale's Corner can now look forward to a number of years of unparalleled service.
Devon has invested over $1.7 million in the grounds in the last two years, and a couple of the improvements were 100 more renovated stalls and the new, multi-purpose building.
Sponsorships were doubled in 2017, and Devon now boasts 70 sponsors.
New sponsors included Fusion Academy and Patriot Dealerships.
With all the improvements that Devon has made, top competitors in all divisons are drawn to the show, and that just increases the excitement for the spectators, so look for an even better show in 2019.