JACKSON, MS (WLBT) - The first big event of the Dixie National Rodeo and Livestock show got underway this weekend at the Kirk Fordice Equine Center.
The Appaloosa Horse Show was the featured competition, leading off more than three weeks of activities.
"This is Deevious. I rode him yesterday in English. That's my other horse Pluto. I rode him today in Western," said 17-year-old Maggie Barlow of Birmingham pointing to the two horses that participated in the horse show Saturday and Sunday.
The high school junior was a high points winner taking home 12 ribbons at the Dixie National Appaloosa Show this weekend.
"I've been riding since I was eight or nine and I just like it, because they're always friendly. They're fun and it's a really good sport, and I feel like it helps me a lot in life make me organized, responsible," said Barlow.
Appaloosa horse owners from seven states participated in the event.
Among them is Steve Minvielle of Morgan City, Louisiana who brought 11-year-old Ima Frosty Lena Jr. to the competition.
"He goes by AKA Bosco," said Minvielle as he led the black and white appaloosa from his stall after their first Mississippi competition.
Event officials said the appaloosa has an extensive American history.
"The Appaloosa horse was bred by the Nez Perce Indians out in Idaho and Washington. They had them when Louis and Clark got there in like 1812 or1813. So they are the oldest breed of the North American horses," said Mississippi Appaloosa Horse Association President Kevin Blakeney.
The organization also inducted two outstanding members into the Horseman's Hall of Fame.
Robert G. Blaine Jr. who is deceased and Dr. William "Bill" Thompson, a renown orthopedic surgery from Pocahontas.
"They have over 40 years history with the club back from the middle 60's," added Blakeney.
There are about 65 families in the Mississippi club, from the Tennessee border to the gulf coast.
The Dixie National Rodeo and Livestock show runs through February 20th.
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