Famous Clydesdales to clomp through Aspen | AspenTimes.com

Famous Clydesdales to clomp through Aspen

Janet Urquhart
Aspen Times Staff Writer

When you say “Bud” on X Games weekend, think the Budweiser Clydesdales.

The famous team of horses will pull the Budweiser beer wagon through Aspen on Jan. 24-25. Details about the route and a locale where the eight-horse hitch will stop to pose for photos each day are still being worked out, but the visit is a sure thing.

Orrison Distributing of Glenwood Springs, a Budweiser distributor, has arranged to bring the team to town. Orrison was hoping the visit would coincide with the Wintersköl parade on Jan. 17, but the team will be elsewhere that weekend on its swing through Colorado, said Rick Orrison, company president.

The Budweiser Clydesdales were in the Wintersköl parade two years ago, Orrison said, but longtime locals remember best the parade in the ’80s when President Jimmy Carter, who happened to be in town, was on the wagon, so to speak.

The team’s visit will coincide with a busy Aspen weekend. ESPN’s Winter X Games will be in full swing, and Gay Ski Week will be getting under way.

Anheuser-Busch, the St. Louis-based brewer of Budweiser beer, actually keeps three teams of horses stationed around the country, Orrison said. The team on the Colorado tour is headquartered in California.

The Budweiser Clydesdale tradition dates back to 1933, when August Busch Jr. asked his father, August Sr., to step outside his office to see a new car. August Jr. surprised his father by presenting him with the first Clydesdale hitch ” a gift to celebrate the repeal of Prohibition. Since then, the Clydesdales have become a popular symbol of Anheuser-Busch, appearing at hundreds of parades and festivals all over the United States each year.

The magnificent horses reportedly weigh between 1,900 and 2,200 pounds apiece.

Hint: Don’t let one of them step on your foot.