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Equine Events

Kershaw County has a long association with horses.  The third oldest continuously active polo field in the United States is in Camden.  It can be found at the end of Polo Lane in the middle of town, near the sites of the large hotels that once served as winter residents for northerners seeking to escape the cold winters back home.

During the winter season, as many as 1500 thoroughbreds will call one of several training facilities home.  Throughbreds account for about 50% of the horse population in Kershaw County.  In addition to thoroughbreds, the list of other horse breeds in the community at any time will include the following:  Saddlebred, Pinto, Quarter Horse Mix, Appaloosa, Warmblood, Draft, Standardbred, American Paint Horse, Pony, Arabian, Miniature, Gaited, Tennessee Walking Horse, Halflinger, Morgan and Mule/Donkey.

Camden, SC is home to the second oldest polo field in the nation.  Built in 1898, the polo field is an intrinsic part of the history of Camden as well as South Carolina.  For fifty years, polo was played here and drew visitors from around the world. The beginnings of the equine industry in Kershaw County can be traced to the development of Camden as a winter resort with polo as the chief attraction.  The second half of the 20th century saw a steady decline in the play of polo here, but that trend was reversed in 2001 when the Fine Arts Center of Kershaw County and the Camden Polo Club teamed up to revive this grand, family-oriented tradition.

The Camden Polo Field, located in the midst of history Camden, is held in perpetual trust by the Palmetto Trust for Historic Preservation and has been declared a National Landmark.  Efforts to save this field from development have been heralded across the state and in polo circles around the country.

The Camden Cup combines a tradition of outdoor fun with a historic sporting event during the first weekend of May.  Sunday will be packed as two regional teams vie for the Camden Cup trophy while spectators enjoy the "sport of kings" during a day of elegant tailgating, divot stomping and the chance to mingle with other polo patrons from throughout the region.

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