celebrates Holstein cattle with Black & White Days
By David Bowman
April 29, 2009 - RICHMOND | Richmond City is putting
on its Black & White Days event at the Richmond Park
on May 12 through May 18.
"Black & White Days is an annual event that allows
the city to get together as a community and have some
fun," Jeff Young, councilman, said. The events that
are going on is the Holstein cow show, the horse pull,
movies provided by the PTA & Richmond Youth Council,
a local band will play at the park as well as there
will be a breakfast hosted by the city council on May
The Western Nation Spring Cattle Judging Contest comes
from a long time tradition in Richmond. In 1912 some
farmers decided they wanted to show off their cattle
and it went so well that they did it the next year.
In 1914, Bangs Disease, which caused late term abortions
and fertility difficulties in cows, became a problem,
and out of concern for the health of the cows, the farmers
decided not to show their cows that year Craig Harris
"Richmond City has the longest running cattle show
in the western United States," Harris said. "It has
been going for a straight 94 years."
Richmond's cattle show has gained popularity over
the years and is now one of the largest cattle shows
in the U.S. Farmers bring their cattle from all over
the country to have them shown.
There are restrictions to the show. The cows must
be of Holstein breed and there are classes for each
age of cattle. There are eight brackets for heifers.
These brackets represent a three-month period in the
heifer's age. For example, if a heifer was a year and
two months old it would be shown with the other heifers
that are within a year and year and three months old.
For the older cattle there are eight classes that that
require specific ages of the cattle. Much like for the
heifers it is done the same way but instead of being
three month gaps it is done in gaps of years.
"This year is looking to be a good one and we're planning
something big for our 100 year anniversary show in 2015,"
Harris said. The cattle show has sponsors from all over
the country and is a non-profit event and all the proceeds
go to the exhibitors. The show will be held at 10 a.m.
on May 13.
The next big event at Black & White Days is the horse
pull. The horse pull is a contest of a horse's strength.
The contest requires two horses to work as a team to
pull a large amount of weight over 20 feet in distance.
Shane Spackman said, "This show hasn't been going
for as long as the cow show but it is just as popular."
Spackman said the stands and the area surrounding the
event are packed with people every year.
Much like the cattle contest there are classes that
the horses must be placed in before they can participate.
These classes are done by weight. The light weight class
is anything under 3,200 lbs. The middle weight is between
3,201 and 3,500 lbs. The heavy weight class is 3,501
lbs. and up. There is a 40 lb. weight allowance for
the shoes on the horses.
Before the contest can start each participant draws
numbers to see who goes first. The one that goes first
picks the starting weight. The sleigh or boat that the
horses pull weighs 2,000 lbs. Each round the weight
is increased until there is a winner.
"The trick is to get it moving. If the horses are
not secured equally it could really throw them off and
they might not even get the boat moving." Spackman said.
The horse pull will be on Saturday, May 16.
The events that are open for everyone will be movies
presented by the PTA and Richmond Youth Council and
the city council will be hosting the "Chuck Wagon Breakfast"
Saturday at 7 a.m. There will be a local band playing
on Friday evening. The movie "Bedtime Stories,"
will be a free showing on Friday, May 15 at 8:30 p.m.
On Saturday, May 16 "Twilight" will be shown
at 12 p.m. and "Bolt" at 2 p.m. "Bolt"
will be shown again on Monday, May 18 "Bolt"
at 6:30 p.m. Each of the movies with cost $2 a person.
Throughout Saturday there will be various events from
the "Cow-A-Bunga" race, the open horse show, and a dairy
foods contest. There is will be family activities from
10 a.m. to 2 p.m. that will be at minimal cost if not
nothing. The Relic Hall will also be open from 10 a.m.
to 4 p.m. The Relic Hall is currently exhibiting the
"Daughters of Utah Pioneers" exhibit. The Black & White
Days is open to everyone and all are invited to celebrate
the festivities at the Richmond City Park.