FEI World Cup™ Finals 2023 Commemorating Native American Culture with Marketing Theme
Local organizers partner with Bluebird Cultural Initiative for educational program
The Omaha Equestrian Foundation announced today that the FEI World Cup™ Finals Omaha 2023 will pay homage to the horse’s regional tradition and cultural impact by infusing tributes to Native American heritage into the event’s integrated theme and program.
Omaha Equestrian Foundation is partnering with Bluebird Cultural Initiative, a nonprofit dedicated to enriching community understanding of Native American history. The theme will be featured heavily in the entertainment and education programs at next year’s FEI World Cup™ Finals, taking place April 4-8, 2023, at the CHI Health Center in Omaha, Nebraska.
The FEI World Cup™ Finals 2023 theme will bring attention to the horse’s essential role in Native American livelihood across the Great Plains region in 1723, 300 years ago. Horses transformed tribes’ hunting tactics, inspired artistry, strengthened transportation routes and expanded their health and wealth. Plains tribes with roots in Nebraska include the Omaha, Northern Ponca and Santee.
“Where we’re standing here in Omaha was the site of a societal transformation 300 years ago — horses changed our way of life on the Plains,” said Steve Tamayo, a traditional Sicangu Lakota artist who founded the Bluebird Cultural Initiative. “As we celebrate the horse’s majesty and grace at the renowned FEI World Cup Finals, we’re excited to use the international platform to share authentic stories about the horse’s lineage in this region and its cherished place within our people’s history.”
Tamayo consulted on the design of the FEI World Cup™ Finals 2023 first promotional poster, which presents a thematic template for the event by depicting two triumphant horses from two different eras and alluding to their ancestral linkage. The marketing campaign was created by Turnpost Creative Group in Omaha under the guidance of Stuart Lundgren, principal and creative director.
The horse on the left side of the poster is donned with dressage braids, an English bridle and a purple and white competition ribbon. The horse on the right has a white circle painted around its left eye to commend its keen vision — and it has stripes painted across its nose and feathers attached to its mane, features representing valor and courage in battle.
The poster also includes symbolic cultural references within its multi-colored background stripes — horse hoof imprints and four-direction sun emblems are positioned between rhythmic waves and the legendary thunderbird.
“Just as we honor horses today for their achievements in a world-class competition event such as the Final of the FEI World Cup, our indigenous relatives of the Plains decorated and adorned their horses and told a dozen different stories with regalia and symbols,” Tamayo said. “The markings explained all of the deeds and achievements carried out by the horse, a valued and respected member of the tribe.”
In addition to the competition schedule, the FEI World Cup™ Finals 2023 will include shows, exhibits and demonstrations, VIP amenities and on-site shopping. Links to Native American culture, designated and designed under the counsel of Bluebird Cultural Initiative, will be incorporated within each auxiliary entertainment element.
“We are thrilled to again serve as the host site for this prestigious event, and we are honored to collaborate with Bluebird Cultural Initiative as we progress through the planning stages,” said Omaha Equestrian Foundation CEO Julie Boilesen. “The world will be watching in 2023, and we recognize the opportunity to enrich the event experience by showcasing horses’ regional history and impact on Native American culture.”
Next year marks the second time that Omaha will serve as the host for the FEI World Cup™ Finals. More than 52,000 spectators, representing 38 countries and all 50 U.S. states, were in attendance for the four-day event at the CHI Health Center in 2017.
The FEI World Cup™ Finals 2023 stands to build off the 2017 success as the Vaulting Final makes its North America debut. Vaulting, a visually exciting equestrian discipline that intertwines the acrobatics of gymnastics with showmanship, joins Jumping and Dressage as the three events at FEI World Cup™ Final.
“The FEI is eagerly anticipating the FEI World Cup Finals’ return to Omaha in 2023. Horses are part of the cultural heritage of regions around the world, and we’re honored to recognize their legacy and influence on the Great Plains Native American tribes,” said FEI President Ingmar De Vos. “The Finals in 2017 were a resounding success, and we’re certain Omaha will yet again provide a memorable experience for competitors and spectators at the Finals next year.”
New features are in development for the 2023 event and will be announced as they become available at www.OmahaEquestrian.org.
About the Bluebird Cultural Initiative
Our Mission is to provide meaningful programming to the community that enriches their understanding of the history and cultural traditions of Native American peoples of the Great Plains. We strive to revitalize the past through the arts and culture in order to energize the future for our youth. Bluebird Cultural Initiative is the nonprofit venture of Steve Tamayo. After more than 30 years of study and practice as an artist and educator, Tamayo began consulting educational institutions and other organizations on the history, culture and traditions of the Plains Indians.
About the Omaha Equestrian Foundation
The Omaha Equestrian Foundation is a 501©3 not-for-profit organization that strives to bring equestrian sport into the mainstream by changing the way it is presented. We are committed to establishing Omaha as a hub of the sport horse industry, attracting and developing championship competitions as both educational and economic development opportunities for the community. For more information, visit www.OmahaEquestrian.org.