Pinto World Championship Means Economic Boom - - ABC13

Pinto World Championship Means Economic Boom

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The heat may have been the number one complaint from visitors, but there was no shortage of enthusiasm at the Tulsa Fairgrounds Monday with the Pinto World Championship kicking off.

Hundreds made their way to Tulsa with horses in tow. Eileen O'Bradovich is in town from Minnesota, but it is far from her first time.

"Well, I was down here when this was oil wells and -- in the 60's," O'Bradovich said.

Her love for the competition - and the horses - is what keeps her coming back, year after year. "It's the competition. We like the level of competition that we get at the World Show. And we always like to get our young horses out here as junior horses, just to see what they can do."

In its 26th year in Tulsa, the Pinto World Championship has made a home for itself in the city.

"We are very blessed to have such a great city to host our event in," said Matt Stockman with the Pinto Horse Association of America.

With Pintos and their owners coming from all over the world, it means a lot of money spent over the course of the competition. "This show brings in around 10,000 people, in and out the doors over the 2 weeks, which estimates into a $35 million economic impact on the city of Tulsa," Stockman said.

And, as a horse enthusiast for most of her life, O'Bradovich is happy to now pass that passion down to her granddaughter. "She couldn't sleep last night," O'Bradovich said. "Because I was so excited," her granddaughter, Rowan added, laughing.

The crowds and the horses will be in Tulsa for 13 days as the show will last until June 22.

Admission to the competitions is free.

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