The North West Equestrian Expo, known to most people as simply the Coona Expo, began as part of a field day for students at Coonabarabran High School In 1991 under the tutelage of agriculture teacher the late Terry McGoldrick on the school oval.
The equestrian component proved so popular, it was held across the road at the Showground the following year with the school fielding its own equestrian team.
The Expo now attracts up to 600 riders and more than 700 horses annually to the town on the Newell Highway adjacent to the Warrumbungle National Park.
Riders represent their schools and travel from interstate, Catholic and independent schools from NSW and southern Queensland.
Coonabarabran comes alive for the five days of equestrian competition in late May/early June. Local businesses strongly support the event. Riders, their horses and horses and school support teams all stay locally.
Expo aims to cater for riders of all abilities within each equestrian event. It’s not unusual to find a one star eventer trying their hand at polocrosse.