News Releases

Posted on: March 21, 2014

14-014 Draft horses and mules demonstrate old-style farming techniques at Olmstead Place State Park

The Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission, together with the Washington State Draft Horse and Mule Association, invite the public to a unique interpretive history event at Olmstead Place State Park.

The weekend of demonstrations and fun is scheduled for 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, March 29 and Sunday, March 30, at Olmstead Place State Park, 921 N. Ferguson Road, Ellensburg. Olmstead Place State Park is the site of a historic farm homesteaded in 1875.

The event will include an old-fashioned plowing match involving the huge draft horses that were a farming mainstay for generations before the tractor came into being. Teamsters will be on hand to talk with visitors and show their horses and mules in traditional harness and horse-drawn farming equipment. The traditional horses expected to be part of the event include Belgians, Clydesdales and Percherons, as well as mules and other draft horses. Also on display will be a variety of hitches, various styles of plows and harrows and discs once used to plow the large field in the park when it was a working homestead farm.

Parking access for the special event has been paid for by the Draft Horse and Mule Association, so visitors do not need to display the Discover Pass on the Saturday or Sunday of the event, but the Discover Pass is available for purchase for those who wish to buy.

The heritage site was donated to State Parks in 1968 and serves as a good example of pioneer agriculture in the state. Many schools in the area visit the site for education. Olmstead Place has many buildings, including a homestead cabin and residence, barns, granary, wagon shed, chicken house and old school house.
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The Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission manages a diverse system of more than 100 state parks and recreation programs, including long-distance trails, boating safety and winter recreation. For more information, visit www.parks.wa.gov.

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