Twelve-year-old Jordan Moore has spent the past few days learning tips for riding a horse while making new friends.

“I love it,” said Moore.

Moore, of Chatsworth, and her family are camping at the Murray County Saddle Club this week for the 51st annual Appalachian Wagon Train.

On Sunday, Moore took a break from riding to participate in games and relay races for families during the annual family day. About 30 children raced stick horses, tossed eggs and ran in the potato head race.

“It’s fun and the environment’s great,” said Brittney McConkey of Chatsworth, whose family has participated in Wagon Train events for years. She said she brings her children, Laine, 4, and Ladd, 8, to the family day every year.

“My kids like it a lot,” McConkey said. “My kids have really enjoyed today. It’s very laid back and everyone wins.”

Horse shows continue nightly through Saturday at the saddle club. Most events begin at 7 p.m. Admission buttons are $10 and are good through the rest of the week. The saddle club is at the foot of Fort Mountain on Ga. Highway 52.

Club members continue to try to maintain a family atmosphere at the event. Private security will be on the grounds as well as deputies from the Murray County Sheriff’s Office.

There is a karaoke contest each night at 7 at the dance hall. A winner will be chosen to compete in a finale for a chance to win $300.

The Calcutta Barrel race is Wednesday night. Warmups begin at 3 p.m. The race starts at 7 p.m.

Miss Appalachian Wagon Train will be crowned Thursday night during the horse show.

The parade, one of the highlights of the week’s activities, will be Friday at 6 p.m. in downtown Chatsworth. A “parade of wagons” will follow under the arena at the saddle club. Awards are given for best matched team to wagon, most original wagon and team, best mules to wagon, best horses to wagon, best single rig, best fancy turnout and most pioneer wagon and family.

For show details and more information visit

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