Love the Longears? Mule Days Are Coming!

Mule Day is a week-long celebration held each year in  Columbia, Tenn. This year's event will be Monday March 30 until Sunday April 5. According to the Mule Days official Web site, this event started in 1840 as "Breeder's Day," a meeting for mule breeders. Organizers say it now attracts more than 200,000 people and takes place over four days. In addition to mules, traditional Appalachian food, music, dancing, and crafts are featured.

"Mule Day" has been a popular Columbia tradition for nearly 170 years. The heavy involvement of Maury County, Tennessee, in the mule industry has caused the event to grow over time into "one of the largest livestock markets in the world."

Of course the draw for many is the mule sale on Tuesday March 31, but there also are many other events, including a mule and donkey seminar on the evening of Thursday April 2.

"If you visit during Mule Day celebrations, you might see a square dance, a mule-driving contest, a horse show, a crafts festival, or attend a flea market," noted the Web site.

Other events include "working mule," "best of breed," and lumberjack competitions. Since 1934 the festival has been highlighted by a "Mule Day Parade," this year held Saturday April 4. The contest for the Mule Day Queen is also held on Saturday. The competition is open to contestants age 15 to 21. The winner is selected based on an essay and other criteria.

The annual mule pull contest requires a pair of mules to pull a sled loaded with cinder blocks 10 feet. Each pair is given three tries to make it the full 10 feet. The team that pulls the most weight wins. There's also classes for Western riding, mule driving, gaited mules, draft mules, mini-mules, and a riding mule show.

For a full schedule of events see an online catalogue at

About the Author

Kimberly S. Brown

Kimberly S. Brown was the Publisher/Editor of The Horse: Your Guide To Equine Health Care from June 2008 to March 2010, and she served in various positions at Blood-Horse Publications since 1980.

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