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Riverboat Parlay


Photos by Gary Cox

After having to cancel its 2020 show because of the coronavirus pandemic, the Alabama Arabian Horse Association hosted its annual Riverboat Parlay at the Tunica Arena in Tunica, Miss. on March 24-29, 2021.

The show offered a full array of classes for Open, Amateur, and Junior riders including Sport Horse in hand and under saddle, Ranch Riding, Dressage, Western Dressage, Trail, Reining, and Hunter over fences. The show was a Four Region Qualifier for regions 9, 12, 13, & 14 plus a Region 11 Hunter over fences Qualifier. The association also hosted a separate Open Breed Western Dressage WDAA-approved double point show.

“The show was four shows in one, running consecutively,” explained show manager Tom Chasteen. It was a double-qualifier for Regions 9 & 14, a double-qualifier for Regions 12 & 13, a double-qualifier for Region 11 & 12 in Hunter over fences, and – new this year – a Regional 11 Championship in Hunter over fences. There were also the beginnings of reining classes this year, which are sure to increase in coming years.

The show had good turnout, over 145 entries, and good weather for most of the six-day show. “Saturday night was the only scary moment we had,” said Chasteen. Storms and some tornadoes thundered through the mid-south region Saturday evening, but, fortunately, Tunica was spared the worst of the storms. “We suspended classes that were running and folks’ cell phones kept going off with tornado warnings, but nothing struck the barns,” Chasteen said. “And the weather was very nice on Sunday and Monday following the night’s rough storms.”

There were fun activities at the show, too, including a stick horse race and a hula hoop contest. Thursday night’s hospitality was a “BBQ & Brew” dinner and Friday night the show offered its traditional Margarita party with Mexican style food.

All in all, Chasteen said the exhibitors enjoyed the show and plan to come back next year.

Official photographer for the show was Hannah Draughan. See her photos at:

Find out more about the Riverboat Parlay at:

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