USPRE Becomes the First Breed Sponsor of the Global Dressage Festival Equestrian Facilities
It was an historic day for the Wellington equestrian community in Florida last week as bulldozers began construction on the grounds of the new Global Dressage Festival (GDF) at the historical polo stadium located on the corner of South Shore Boulevard and Pierson Road following the groundbreaking ceremonies. The construction on the dressage arenas and surrounding facilities will continue to be very active throughout the summer, and the team at Equestrian Sport Productions (ESP) is certain that the dressage element of the multi-phase project will be completed before the year’s end. “We are going to embark on something that I think can create a great platform for dressage in the world, in this country, in this county, and in this community. We’re going to try to put forth that effort with great enthusiasm and I believe you will see a transition here that will be vast and complete as you saw in the hunter-jumper world,” explained Bellissimo CEO of ESP and Managing Partner of Wellington Equestrian Partners (WEP).
Approximately 100 spectators and supporters were in attendance to enjoy the groundbreaking ceremonies, which were kicked off by a welcoming speech by Mark Bellissimo, CEO of Equestrian Sport Productions (ESP) and Managing Partner of Wellington Equestrian Partners (WEP). Bellissimo was joined by Robert Dover and Kimberly Van Kampen Boyer, of whom he referred to as the “inspiration for this effort.” Shortly thereafter, Bellissimo and Wellington Mayor Darell Bowen took the first digs out of the soil into what will soon become one of the new sate-of-the-art dressage arenas at the new facility. six-time dressage Olympian, Robert Dover expressed his excitement for this new endeavor, “This is a dream come true for the sport of dressage. We are now standing on what I believe will be a venue that cannot only rival, but better Aachen in Germany, which is the finest dressage show in the world. I believe that we will end up having a series that will be able to gain the finest series of shows for dressage in the world.”
The Global Dressage Festival has already received a tremendous amount of support from the dressage community, and received hundreds of thousands of dollars in sponsorship efforts within only two weeks of the announcement of the series. Bellissimo commented on this outpouring of support noting, “We thank this group of founding sponsors, who will act as an executive committee to frame this opportunity within this environment. What’ going to make this thing really powerful is the sense of community and the ability for a lot these sponsors.” The Founding Sponsor Group includes: the United States PRE Association (USPRE), Kimberly Van Kampen Boyer and Hampton Green Farm, Karin Reid Offield of Offield Farms in support of Lingh (www.lingh.nl); Wellington Equestrian Realty; Chesapeake Petroleum; Magnolia Farm; Diamante Farms; Two Swans Farm LLC; Chesapeake Dressage Institute; The Page Family of Stillpoint Farm; and The Humane Association of Palm Beach Gardens. The construction of the dressage facilities is the next step in a multi-phase project that will eventually include a luxury condominium/hotel and a beautiful retail area that will be surrounded by vibrant gardens and fountains. A major component of this retail area is a demonstration area that will support a wide range of exhibitions that are intended to promote horsemanship and equestrian sports.