Expect crazy things to happen in Meeker, Colo., when wary range ewes challenge top border collie/handler teams at the Meeker Classic Sheepdog Trials, September 5-9, 2012.
Competitors from across North America, Brazil and S. Africa, with an eye on $25,000 in purse and cash prizes, use highly refined skills to try to maneuver the feisty yearlings over a rugged half mile course replicating conditions found on a working ranch. The young ladies, unused to people and dogs, pick from a bagful of sometimes breathtaking tricks trying to outwit that predator, the border collie. If judge Andrew Dickman from Oxton, Scotland, says, “Thank you very much,” you will know that the ewes have won that round, disqualifying the team.
Both those new to the sport and aficionados will appreciate the commentary of announcer Ray Crabtree, sheep rancher, boot maker, teacher, DJ, and border collie handler from Kuna, Idaho.
Zippity Do Dogs (agility) Dogs and Westside Woofers (flyball) dogs provide more excitement as club members at all skills levels perform continuously Friday through Sunday. There will be cooking lamb and border collie seminars again, along with a seminar on the unique Kilt Fiber to Fabric Workshop presented by Sheep Camp Wool Mill and Willson & McKee, a Celtic music duo. The duo will also sing and play traditional Celtic music on ancient instruments at a free concert on the courthouse lawn on Saturday evening.
And, of course, there will be all those intriguing things Classic spectators have come to expect - pancake breakfasts, BBQs, unique craft fair, art contest and auction, sheepherders wagons, petting farm, demonstrations, bagpiper and more.
Avoid lines and parking hassles; take the free shuttle or horse carriage from downtown Meeker Friday-Sunday. No pets, please. Off site boarding is available. For additional information visit www.meekersheepdog.com or call (970) 878-0111.