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4th Annual Day of the African Equestrian (DOTAE) Gala



4th Day of the African Equestrian (DOTAE) gala will honor equestrians of African ancestry active in national and international level pursuits on Saturday, October 19th. The gala will take place at Harambee Farm located in the Green Creek Township of Polk County, North Carolina, USA.

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Event Details

Date: 10/30/2021

Start time: 20:00

End time: 23:59

Venue: Harambee Farm

Address: 339 Lyles Pond Road, Rutherfordton, NC, 28139


The 4th Annual Day of the African Equestrian (DOTAE) gala will be held on Saturday, October 30th at Harambee Farm located in the Green Creek Township of Polk County, North Carolina, USA.

The event was first presented in 2018 as a tribute to Africa based athletes competing in the FEI World Equestrian Games and to pioneering African-American horsemen (active pre-1975).

The 2019 DOTAE gala was staged as an adjunct to a CSI 5* (International Jumping Competition) at the nearby Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC). The Tryon tournament included qualifying competitions for the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo (Japan).

Due to the global Covid-19 pandemic, the DOTAE gala was not held in 2020. The 3rd Annual Day of the African Equestrian was, nonetheless, celebrated within a highly successful online presentation, held on Saturday, November 14, 2020.


In 2019, an educational seminar honoring the memory of the internationally renowned saddle horse trainer Tom Bass (1859 – 1934), was presented at the Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC) in Mill Spring, North Carolina (USA) as part of the Day of the African Equestrian observances.

A legendary American Saddlebred trainer, Mr. Bass was born enslaved in Columbia, Missouri. He played a prominent role both in the establishment of the American Royal Horse Show in Kansas City and in the promotion of Mexico, Missouri as the Saddle Horse Capital of the World. Highlights of his extraordinary career include championships at two worlds fairs and more than 2,000 blue ribbons. The Tom Bass bit, developed to give the rider control without causing pain to the horse, is still in use today.

Observing Covid-19 protocols, the 2020 seminar was presented virtually – as an on-line webinar. The program included four panels: a) Domestic, b) Youth, c) Media and d) International.

Representatives of the United States Equestrian Federation (USEF), the International Museum of the Horse (IMH) and the Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI) actively participated in the discussions.

The 2021 Tom Bass Seminar will be presented on Saturday, October 30 in a hybrid format – with both live and virtual participants. Time and location: tba.

The Tom Bass Seminar enjoys the active patronage of the Tryon International Equestrian Center and of Nation Media (whose properties include Horse Nation, Eventing Nation, Jumper Nation, Sport Horse Nation, etc.).

Admission to the Tom Bass Seminar on Diversity in Equestrian Sports is FREE to the public.

[Transcripts of the 2019 and 2020 Tom Bass Seminars are available at]

Hosted by The AFRICAN CONNECTIONS Research and Education Fund, Inc. (ACREF), a 501(c)(3) not-for profit organization, in association with SportsQuest International, LLC, the 2021 DOTAE gala will honor equestrians of African ancestry active in national and international level pursuits since 1975.

Prominent riders, trainers, huntsmen, entrepreneurs and handlers include (but are certainly not limited to): Marvin Brangman (Bermuda); Philesha Chandler (USA); Donna Marie Cheek (USA); Rogerio Clementino (Brazil); the late Sultan Darr (né Kevin Edwards – Bermuda and Brazil); Jefferson Tot Goodwin, MFH (USA); Thoroughbred Owner/Trainer Gaston Grant (USA); Tammy Greaves (United Kingdom); Bruce Griffin (USA); Lydia Heywood (Jamaica); Julian Hyde (Jamaica); Paige Johnson (USA); Bassem Hassan Mohammed (Qatar); Sandra Murphy (UK); Nayel Nassar (Egypt); Abdelkebir Ouaddar (Morocco); Deonte Sewell (USA); Shayna Simon (USA); Mavis Spencer (USA) and Shepherd Zira (South Africa).

Raison d’être: Celebrating contributions to equestrian knowledge, history, sport and tradition made by residents of African nations – as well as by persons of African heritage living in Europe, Asia, the Americas and throughout the world.

Theme: Building Global Bridges Through the Vehicle of Equestrian Sport…


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