Mule Jam 2023 had something to offer everyone attending. The jumping balloon was never still with child after child getting in and out for two days. Add the barrel train and homemade ice cream to the mix to produce a perfect kids day.
Those wanting to see equipment run and ask questions about the operation of it had plenty to ponder over as teams worked thrasher, manure spreader, plows, hay equipment and a wide variety of wagons. Many visitors took rides in the covered wagons during the quick rain showers.
The most enjoyed session was the ground driving competition. This years bragging rights went to Issac Zook of Kentucky with runner up Jonathan Odle of Mayfield KY.
Zack Odom spoke on logging and gave some demonstrations on handling logs. Many absorbed his safety tips and tricks. Zack's stories kept the interest of young and old.
Greg Tabor found himself encircled with listeners as he shared what he looks for in a show draft mule. The Tabors have been admired in the draft mule industry for decades. The tips Greg shared were from over 60 years of experience combined with his father's (L.C. Tabor) knowledge.
Mule Jam 2023 introduced several people in the community to new experiences. Draft owners enjoyed reuniting and spending the weekend together.
What does the sale results mean? Of course, everyone has an opinion; this is mind.... The smaller, lower costs mules sold. The extremely large, high quality mule teams did not sale. Why is simple, buyers were not willing to pay what was needed to cover the teams.
A few of the reasons overheard for buyers not stepping up, 1) families do not want to feed these bigger mules through the winter as they are getting close to end of crop season, 2) traders are holding too many 'high dollar' teams already in preparing for colt buying season, 3) prices have escalated for approximately the last three years in the draft mule industry ... is this the year the prices begin to roll back?
One of the main goals set when Mule Jam was established was to 'promote the draft mule industry'. This goal was met at Mule Jam 2023.