Canadian equestrian show that started in 1887 rides into Sooke this weekend


WATCH: The RCMP Musical Ride is a Canadian tradition that’s been dazzling audiences since the late 1800’s. Ceilidh Millar reports. 

Const. Tyson Wirch is gearing up for a special performance that is steeped in Canadian history.

“It’s always been a dream of mine to be part of the RCMP Musical Ride,” Wirch said.

The Musical Ride is performed by a full RCMP troop of 32 riders and their horses. The performance consists of intricate figures and drills choreographed to music.

The tradition began in 1887 in Regina and has since grown into a nation-wide tour.

“It’s something that is such a storied part of our history and who we are as a country,” Wirch explained.

The musical ride will be performing two shows at Fred Milne Park in Sooke this weekend on Saturday at 2:00 p.m. and another at 6:00 p.m. on Sunday.

“People are excited to have a world-class event like this in the community,” said Stephen Wright of the Lions Club of Sooke, who is sponsoring two performances in Sooke this weekend.

The Musical Ride performs in up to 50 communities across Canada between the months of May and October and help raise thousands of dollars for local charities and non-profit organizations.

They performed in Victoria and Colwood in August of 2017 as part of a special Canada 150 tour.

Last year’s event in Central Saanich raised more than $100,000 for children’s charities.

“A lot of big events go up and down the Island but none stop in Sooke, so we wanted to do something special for Sooke,” Wright said. 

The horses are being boarded at various locations as they perform as part of the Vancouver Island leg of their tour.

All of their material,s including the ceremonial gear, is packed into personalized tack boxes which weigh up to 150 lbs.

The troop will head to Parksville on August 21 and 22, Courtenay from Aug. 24 to 26 as part of the Comox Valley Exhibition, and Duncan on Aug. 28.

See this year’s tour schedule by visiting the website. 

Ceilidh MillarCeilidh Millar

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