Area youth to compete in the Wild Horse Youth Challenge at Kansas State Fair

NORMAN, Okla. – The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) will co-host the Wild Horse Youth Challenge along with the Kansas State Fair and the Wild Horse Youth Challenge Board and volunteers, Sept. 18-19. The event will feature 25 youth, ages 10-17, who began gentling and training a yearling wild horse in May. The youth will compete in three in-hand events, a showmanship class, a trail class around obstacles and a freestyle class at the fair. 

After the show, on Sunday, Sept. 19, the trained yearlings will be available to qualified adopters by competitive bid. Any amount above $125 will be retained by the youth trainer. If the youth trainer wants to keep his or her horse, the horse will not be available for adoption. Eleven youth have decided to offer their trained yearling horses for adoption.  

“We enjoy partnering with the Kansas State Fair and the Wild Horse Youth Challenge Board and volunteers to produce this event,” said Pat Williams, BLM Wild Horse & Burro Program Manager. “The youth are developing their horsemanship skills while helping us place wild horses into private care.” 

The animals offered at the event are yearling horses that once roamed free on public lands in the West. The BLM periodically removes excess animals from the range in order to maintain healthy herds and to protect other rangeland resources. The adoption and sale program is essential for achieving these important management goals. Since 1973, the BLM has placed more than 240,000 of these animals in approved homes across the country. 

BLM staff will approve applications onsite. To qualify to adopt, one must be at least 18 years old, with no record of animal abuse. Qualified homes must have a minimum of 400 square feet of corral space per animal, with access to food, water and shelter. A six-foot corral fence is required for adult horses; five feet for yearlings; and four-and-a-half feet for burros. All animals must be loaded in covered, stock-type trailers with swing gates and sturdy walls and floors. BLM staff will be on hand to assist with the short application process. 

The Kansas State Fair is located at 2000 N. Poplar St, Hutchinson, KS 67502. For more information, call 866-468-7826 or visit

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 western states, including Alaska, on behalf of the American people. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. Our mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations.

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Bureau of Land Management


Oklahoma Field Office


Crystal Cowan