Tuesday, September 03, 2013

REVIEW: Soldier Hollow Classic Sheep Dog Competition

This year we spent Labor Day in Midway at the Soldier Hollow Classic Sheep Dog Competition. We have been hearing how much fun it is, so we decided to make it a priority and check it out for ourselves. View a short video at the end of this post.

The Soldier Hollow Classic is a sheep dog competition where competitors can bring their dogs to compete in various events.

I was amazed at all of the different activities and events that were going on! I expected to just watch the sheep dogs round up and sort the sheep, but it was so much more than that! There were Splash Dogs, vendors, bird shows, kids activities (such as hula hooping, coloring contests and pony rides), bagpipe performances, cooking demonstrations, various vendors, a wide variety of food vendors, and much more!

My favorite things about the Soldier Hollow Classic:

Splash Dogs:
Our favorite event was the Splash Dogs! We could not tear our 7 year-old and 9 year-old away from it! They loved seeing the dogs run out and jump into the water.

I got to try a Navajo Taco for the first time, and loved it! I was impressed with the variety of food vendors. There was even a kid-friendly food vendor with chicken strip kid meals.

Bathroom availability:
When attending these kinds of festivals with my children, the availability of bathrooms is always a concern. Nothing is more inconvenient than sitting at an event, then having to walk clear to the other side just to stand in a long bathroom line. At the Soldier Hollow Classic, they had a good number of bathrooms available, and they were spread throughout the festival. There wasn’t just one bathroom area, and I really appreciated that!

When walking around the festival, you could still hear the announcer for the main sheep dog event. It was great to be able to walk around and not feel like you are missing out on the main event.

Parking shuttle:
Because there are lots of people attending this event, you will probably have a ways to walk from your vehicle to the front gates. Every so many feet, they had a sign that said “Wait here for shuttle”. This is great because then the elderly and young children don’t have to worry about the walk if their legs get tired.

Posted schedule:
I liked that they had each event day’s schedule posted on their website, so that we could go on and look to see what time we wanted to arrive, and where we wanted to be at certain times.

A few tips when attending the Soldier Hollow Classic:

  • Bring a camp chair or blanket
    Because this is such a popular event, the bleachers fill up fast. We enjoyed sitting on the grass anyway, and were glad that my mother-in-law, who is familiar with the event, gave us a heads up to bring our chairs and blankets to sit on.
  • Wear good walking shoes
    There are so many things to see and do; you won’t just be sitting the entire day. You will want to get up, walk around, and experience all there is to see!
  • Wear sunscreen and a hat
    The sun was so hot yesterday, and even though there were vendors giving out free sunscreen and water, it’s always a good idea to lather up before arriving. Because this event is outside, make sure you are prepared for whatever the weather forecast is predicting for that day.
  • Parking fee
    The parking was $5, and they only accepted cash. Make sure you have plenty of cash on hand for various items such as this. They do have an ATM machine on hand, but that’s inside the gates after you enter.
  • Tickets
    Tickets can be purchased ahead of time online to avoid waiting in line when you arrive, although I did notice that the ticket line went fast and had a lot of employees working.
  • Check the schedule
    Because they have each day’s schedule posted online, it’s a great idea to see what’s going on each day, and what might interest your family/children the most.  
  • Leave your dog at home!
    If your dog is not competing in any of the events, please leave him/her at home! There were a few announcements of reports of dogs left in vehicles during the event. This is absolutely dangerous for your pet, and is against the law! Pets are happiest left at home where they can stay cool!

I was provided with complimentary tickets to attend this event to write my review. I was not compensated for my attendance or review, nor was I required or persuaded to write any specific type of review. The opinions and views expressed in this review are all my own.

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