Washington International Signs Three-Year Deal with Verizon Center


horse walking outside Verizon Center in Washington, DCWashington, D.C., March 15, 2011–The Washington International Horse Show (WIHS), the leading indoor championship horse show in the country, is pleased to announce a three-year deal with Verizon Center to extend its run at the Washington, D.C., venue through 2013. Verizon Center has been home to WIHS since 2000. The 53rd annual Washington International Horse Show will take place October 25-30.


 “We are thrilled to remain at Verizon Center and continue this great Washington tradition. Verizon Center has been home to WIHS for 12 years, and while there are complexities in producing an urban horse show with shipping horses in and out of the city and closing city streets to create stables, it also makes us one of the most exciting horse shows in the country,” said Anthony F. Hitchcock, chief operating officer of WIHS.


 “The Washington International Horse show has been a prominent, annual event for the arena,” said David Touhey, senior vice president and general manager of Verizon Center. “We’re excited to be able to extend our relationship for another three years and continue to provide the community with another fun and entertaining family show that features world-class equestrian competition.”


Verizon Center is located in the popular Penn Quarter neighborhood of Washington, D.C., close to museums and restaurants and within walking distance of the National Mall. Averaging 220 events per year, the arena is home to three professional sports teams and one college team including the Washington Wizards, Washington Capitals, Washington Mystics and the Georgetown Hoyas. The arena also hosts a variety of concerts, family shows and world-class sporting events.

Mclain ward and sapphire at Washington international horse show at verizon center in washington, dc
Two-time Olympic gold medalist McLain Ward of Brewster, NY, aboard the phenomenal Sapphire, won the $100,000 President’s Cup Grand Prix at the 2010 Washington International Horse Show. Photo © Diana DeRosa

“We have unique standing in the equestrian world, being one of the last great urban indoor horse shows in the nation. It is our goal to continue to ensure Washington is a ‘must-attend’ event for the equestrian world and the Washington, D.C. community,” said Juliet W. Reid, president of WIHS.


WIHS highlights include the WIHS Equitation Championship Finals for the top junior riders in the country, Kids’ Day with free pony riders and activities for children, Barn Night, the Puissance high jump, and the $100,000 President’s Cup Grand Prix, where top horses and riders, including Olympic medalists, compete for the President of the United States Perpetual Cup, donated to the show in 1961 by First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy.



About the Washington International Horse Show (WIHS) 
An equestrian tradition since 1958, the Washington International Horse Show brings top horses and riders from the U.S. and abroad, including Olympic champions, to the nation’s capital to compete for more than $400,000 in prize money and championship titles. About 500 horses participate in show jumping, hunter and equitation events during the six-day show. Special exhibitions, boutique shopping and educational and community events round out this family-friendly show. Since its debut, the Washington International has been a popular Washington, D.C., fixture visited by presidents, first ladies, celebrities, business and military leaders, as well as countless horse enthusiasts of all ages. Washington International Horse Show Association, Ltd., a 501(c)(3) nonprofit charitable organization, is headquartered in Washington, D.C.  


About Verizon Center  

Verizon Center is a 20,000-seat multi-purpose sports and entertainment venue, owned and operated by Monumental Sports & Entertainment, in the Penn Quarter neighborhood of Chinatown in downtown Washington, D.C. www.verizoncenter.com

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WIHS is an official USEF Heritage Competition, and holds the highest rating,  CSI5*-W, awarded by the Fédération Equestre Internationale, as well as a US Equestrian 6* Jumpers and  Premier Hunters. It is recognized by the US Hunter Jumper Association, Maryland Horse Show Association, and Virginia Horse Show Association. WIHS is a 501(c)(3) non-profit charitable organization.