People who plan on riding horses in the Faulkner County Fair Parade should start preparing this week, the Fair Parade Committee said on Tuesday.
The parade will be 5 p.m. Sept. 16 in downtown Conway.
Committee member Toby Hart said riders should start now getting Coggins testing for their horses. Negative Coggins is required to be in the parade. She said testing is done at the livestock auction in Blackwell at Interstate 40 Exit 101 every Saturday from 10 a.m. to noon. The cost is $30.
On the day of the parade, horse trailers may be parked at Laurel Park (entering from the Robinson Street side), and riders should arrive by 4:30 at the park to be judged. Everyone must register and ride with a back number. No hand-led horses will be allowed. Everyone must be mounted.
Horseback judging criteria will be based on western attire, including hat, boots, long sleeve shirt and belt. Optional accessories are a western tie, vest or chaps. Judges will also take into account that the horse and tack are neat and clean. As a bonus, riders may decorate their horses and themselves in the parade theme — “Something to Smile About.”
The committee also discussed the length of trailers that may be used for floats in the parade. Committee Chairman Rick Sublett said 28 feet is the maximum length for trailers that may be used. Anything longer would not be able to make the turns, he said.
Committee member Fletcher Smith raised a concern about notifying neighbors on Caldwell Street in advance of the parade. Another committee member suggested putting up yard signs in the area to raise awareness about the parade. Sublett agreed with the idea.
He said, “We make every effort to ensure their driveways aren’t blocked. If a person lives on that street we’ll make every effort to work with them.”
The streets on the parade route will be closed at 4:30 p.m. on the day of the event.
The Faulkner County Fair and Parade have a Facebook page, as well as a website at faulknercountyfair.net.
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