ROCKLAND, Maine — The world-famous Budweiser Clydesdales are scheduled to make several appearances in Rockland, including at the Maine Lobster Festival parade.
The horses are scheduled to arrive at the midcoast on Monday, July 27, and be housed at the Union Fairgrounds.
The eight-horse hitch, to promote Anheuser-Busch, will be harnessed and hitched to the company’s traditional red beer wagon at the Rockland Elks Club, 201 Rankin St., from 1 to 3 p.m. Wednesday, July 29, for public viewing.
The Clydesdales will be on Main Street in Rockland to make beer deliveries to customers from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, July 30.
On Saturday, Aug. 1, the team of horses will participate in the Maine Lobster Festival Parade, which starts at 10 a.m., beginning at Oceanside High School East and proceeding down North Main Street, south on Main Street and ending near Harbor Park, where the festival is held.
The Clydesdales’ appearance in Rockland is one of hundreds made annually by the traveling hitches.
Canadians of Scottish descent brought the first Clydesdales to America in the mid-1800s, according to a news release from the company. Today, the giant draft horses primarily are used for breeding and show.
Horses chosen for the Budweiser Clydesdale hitch must be at least 3 years old; stand approximately 18 hands, or 6-feet tall, at the shoulder; weigh an average of 2,000 pounds; and must be bay in color, have four white legs and a blaze of white on the face and black mane and tail. A gentle temperament is very important, as hitch horses meet millions of people each year.
A single Clydesdale hitch horse can consume as much as 20 to 25 quarts of feed and 40 to 50 pounds of hay in a day.
Each hitch travels with a Dalmatian.
The Budweiser Clydesdales can be viewed at the Anheuser-Busch breweries in St. Louis, Missouri; Merrimack, New Hampshire; and Ft. Collins, Colorado. They also may be viewed at Grant’s Farm in St. Louis and at Warm Springs Ranch, the 300-plus acre Clydesdale breeding farm located near Boonville, Missouri.