Horse professionals invite both experienced and hopeful equestrians to first-ever horse expo - East Idaho News

Horse professionals invite both experienced and hopeful equestrians to first-ever horse expo

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RIGBY — A horse expo is coming to Rigby to promote the well-being of horses and their riders and introduce new enthusiasts to the equestrian lifestyle.

The Teton Horse Experience, scheduled for March 8-10, is the first of what organizers hope will become a tradition that boosts the local equestrian scene. The theme of the expo is “Honoring the horse-human connection.”

Darci and Bob Parry and Katie and James Barnes, all of Idaho Falls, came together to create the event as a way to promote the equestrian lifestyle in eastern Idaho.

“We decided a horse and rider expo has been needed in this area for quite a long time, so we created it,” Darci Parry tells

The Teton Horse Experience will have opportunities and resources for local horse enthusiasts. Speakers and demonstrations will cover topics like equine business, how to take better pictures, licensing, equestrian burnout, anxiety, money management and time management, among other things. Activities will include pony and wagon rides for the kids on Sunday.

Local vendors will be on hand with information about boarding, riding facilities and riding lessons for those just starting. The expo will also provide networking opportunities for the full spectrum of folks interested in horses or learning about the lifestyle.

Horse Expo
The Teton Horse Experience is a passion project for Darci Parry. She’s hoping the event will bring horse enthusiasts across the spectrum of experience together for networking and connection. | Courtesy photo

Organizers say the expo is for everyone, no matter how involved or knowledgeable a person is when it comes to horses and the equestrian lifestyle — it’s meant for beginners and experts alike.

“I think if we were to sum up the purpose, it’s to bring everyone together,” says James Barnes. “We’ve got a lot of energy and effort going into this to get as many like-minded people together as possible.”

The Barnses are particularly excited about the Mustang Recovery Challenge, an idea they’ve worked on for years and will finally unveil at the expo. It combines two things close to their hearts: Horses and addiction recovery.

Katie and James work professionally with people who are working through addiction recovery. Through their involvement with horses, they’ve become highly aware of an overpopulation of Mustangs in Idaho and other western states.

Throughout the western United States, there are over 80,000 wild horses and burros being cared for on public lands, according to the Bureau of Land Management. The Mustang Recovery Challenge aims to help those in addiction recovery while decreasing the population of wild horses in need of care.

Three teams have been selected to adopt and train Mustangs in preparation for a competition in July.

Horse Expo
Shantel Falter will teach expo attendees about MagnaWafe therapy, which is a drug-free, non-invasive solution for pain relief. | Courtesy photo

“The Mustang Recovery Challenge is an inspiring initiative that brings together people in recovery from addiction with the untamed spirit of Mustangs. This unique program, designed for those currently in a recovery addiction program or within the last two years, offers a transformative experience through the power of horsemanship,” according to the Teton Horse Experience website

The Teton Horse Experience will be held at the Wind River Arena, 70 North 4600 East in Rigby. Tickets can be purchased at The full lineup of events can be viewed here. Attendees should not bring their horses to the expo. The Parrys and the Barnses hope the event will be bursting with positivity and connection for the local equestrian community.

“The goal is bringing people together, person to person,” Darci Parry says. “You can build connections with people and just network like crazy. Find your team. Find your tribe.”