The 39th annual Hampton Classic Horse Show in Bridgehampton, a week of equestrian, social, and commercial activities, will gallop to a start on Sunday.
From top equestrian competition from such top riders as Candice King, Richie Moloney, Kevin Babington, Richard Spooner, Beat Mandli, Ramiro Quintana, Georgina Bloomberg, Callan Solem, and Todd Minikus, culminating in the Grand Prix on Aug. 31, to family entertainment and after-parties, the week promises something for everyone. Both professional and amateur riders will show in six rings on the 60-acre show grounds.
Admission is $10 per person or $20 per carload daily. Senior citizens get in free Tuesday through Thursday, and children get in free on Saturday, which is Kids Day.
The Boutique Garden and Stable Row will host 80 vendors, including Hermès, Missoni Home, Sam Edelman, Beval Saddlery, SunBarth, and Wellington & Company Equestrian Antiques.
Hungry or thirsty? Have no fear, several dining options will be available. Among the options, Hampton Coffee Company will be on hand with its mobile truck. David’s World Famous will serve up gourmet grilled cheese between Hunter Rings 2 and 3. Crabman Crabcakes will serve up crab cakes and shrimp at the entrance to the Kids Area. And Harry’s Fresh Squeezed Juices will be ready with lemonade and limeade in the main food court in the Boutique Garden.
"There is always an activity or event for anyone attending the Hampton Classic, and this year is no different," said Shanette Barth Cohen, the executive director of the Hampton Classic. "In addition to our world-class equestrian competition, we have a great selection of dining, shopping, and family activities available. This is sure to be the best Classic yet!"
The Long Island Livestock Company will be in the Kids Area on Opening Day with llamas, alpaca, sheep, goats, and Pansy and Piggety pigs. They all will be back Tuesday through Saturday. Also on Opening Day, Citarella will provide cookies for kids to decorate, and there will be other crafts and music.
Though the competition takes a break on Monday, there’s still reason to head to the show grounds. The annual A.S.P.C.A. Adoption Day will be held from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., featuring dog, cat, and horse rescue groups, like the Gimme Shelter Animal Shelter Foundation, with animals available for adoption. Jill Rappaport, NBC's award-winning animal advocate and a best-selling writer, and A.S.P.C.A.'s equine welfare ambassador, Georgina Bloomberg, will be on hand. There will be a live, interactive program with adoptable horses and horse rescue groups in the Anne Aspinall Ring from noon to 2 p.m.
Also on Monday, the Long Island Horse Show Series for Riders with Disabilities will compete. This competition, nine years running now, is the last in the organization's annual eight-show series.
On Tuesday and Wednesday, admission will be waived for those who bring three or more items to donate to the Sag Harbor Food Pantry.
In the Kids Area on Wednesday, the Bridgehampton Child Care and Recreational Center will host activities. The Art Farm will have crafts, as well as bunnies and chickens. The Wildlife Rescue Center of the Hamptons will show some birds of prey on Thursday, when kids can also build their own wearable fabric wings. The rescue center will be back on Friday, along with Erik’s Reptile Edventures on the Kids Stage. The Children’s Hospital of Stony Brook University will provide entertainment as well, with multiple activities.
But, Saturday is the real day for kids — Optimum Kids Day that is. Bellini Family Circus and Friends will perform, and there will be face painting, crafts led by the Children’s Museum of the East End, magic by the Amazing Zola, and free pony rides for children under 12.
Meanwhile, there will be daily competitive riding in the open jumper division, highlighted by the $50,000 Douglas Elliman Grand Prix Qualifier presented by Longines on Friday and the $40,000 Longines Cup on Saturday. The week's wrap-up takes place at Sunday's $250,000 Grand Prix and FEI World Cup Qualifier, presented by Land Rover, a qualifying competition for the 2015 Longines FEI World Cup Final in Las Vegas next April. Reserved grandstand seats are $25 per person or $35 per person for preferred center sections grandstand seating during Grand Prix Sunday, all of which are available online.