Meadow Birthday Event 2018

Weekend of festivities at historic birthplace of champion!

Doswell, VA – The 45th anniversary celebration of Secretariat’s 1973 Triple Crown kicks off at the Meadow, the historic birthplace of the champion, March 23-25 in Doswell, Virginia.

Big Red’s legion of devoted fans are invited to join in this special gathering during the ninth annual Secretariat Birthday Celebration to commemorate the birthday of “America’s Super Horse,” who was foaled on the famed property March 30, 1970.

Kate Chenery Tweedy, daughter of Secretariat’s owner Penny Chenery, will be a featured presenter at the festivities, where she will share personal family photos and her own insight and experiences during Secretariat’s Triple Crown campaign. Joining her will be co-author Leeanne Meadows Ladin of the award-winning books Secretariat’s Meadow – The Land, The Family, The Legend and Riva Ridge – Penny’s First Champion.

New to the Celebration this year is the “Triple Crown Tribute” with guest speaker and acclaimed sports journalist Steve Haskin, who is certain to delight the audience with his personal photos and stories about “Big Red” and his stablemate Riva Ridge. He will be joined by Steve Jordan, assistant to Secretariat’s trainer Lucien Laurin, who will provide his unique perspective into that unforgettable era.

This year we especially mark the passing of two esteemed members of the Secretariat team: Penny Chenery, “The Mistress of the Meadow,” who died Sept. 16, 2017, at age 95, and Charlie Davis, Secretariat’s exercise rider, who died Feb. 7, 2018 at age 78. Fans will be treated to moving video remembrances to both by filmmaker John Tweedy, Penny’s son, with remarks to follow.

The Secretariat Birthday Celebration has become an honored tradition for Big Red fans who travel from across the country to enjoy the many festivities held in the Meadow’s historic and pastoral setting. During the weekend, attendees can enjoy a full slate of activities that will include:

  • Reunion with former Meadow Stable grooms and the display of original training saddles worn by Secretariat and Riva Ridge
  • Silent Auction of rare photography and memorabilia to benefit the Historic Barn Restoration Fund
  • Visits with Groundshaker, the great-great granddaughter of Secretariat and the last race horse bred and raced by Penny Chenery
  • Meadow Farm VIP Tram Tours and tours of the Meadow Hall mansion showcasing the Chenery Collection of rare Meadow Stable memorabilia
  • An extensive selection of official Secretariat merchandise for purchase in the Exhibit Hall

The Secretariat Birthday Celebration is a collaborative effort with the Virginia Horse Festival at The Meadow Event Park. The Meadow is listed on the state and national historic registers and also hosts the narrated Secretariat Birthplace Tours which are available by reservation year round. The Virginia Horse Festival celebrates horses and riding disciplines of all types offering three days of exhibitions and demonstrations; a parade of breeds; special events; and 60,000 square feet of indoor shopping featuring equine-related items for all horse lovers. For ticket info and the complete schedule, please visit

The Meadow Event Park is located off I-95 at Exit 98 (Doswell), 1.5 miles east of King’s Dominion theme park.

Click here for directions and nearby lodging information

Stay tuned for more information…


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