In case you missed it, as part of Breyer's 70th birthday celebrations, we're taking a stroll through Breyer history all year round on our social media channels! July's theme was (of couse) BreyerFest! Held annually each July, BreyerFest is any horse fan's dream come true.
Be sure to follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter- we've just wrapped up August's double theme of the 2000s and Breyer at the Olympics, and September has another two-fer in store: the 2010s and the Breyer Collector Club! These themes go hand-in-hand, since the current iteration of the Breyer Collector Club arrived in 2012.
Since 1990, BreyerFest has been the premiere event for model horse fans and horse lovers from around the globe. Our very first BreyerFest Celebration Horse (then referred to as the "BreyerFest Dinner Model") was Dr. Peaches, a talented Thoroughbred with a knack for Eventing. His most notable accomplishment was a record three wins at the Kentucky Three-Day Event (which has since been tied by Winsome Adante). Unlike BreyerFest today, however, Dr. Peaches was not actually present at the event!
A signed Dr. Peaches model from the Breyer archives.
Dr. Peaches is pictured below at his official retirement in 1990, ridden by his longtime Eventing partner Bruce Davidson. By pure coincidence, Bruce's son, Buck, has been the longtime Eventing partner of BreyerFest 2020's Celebration Horse, Ballynoe Castle RM. This was purely a coincidence, but the connection is a fun one indeed!
Among each year's BreyerFest Special Run offerings, our "surprise model" is always a hot commodity. You won't know what's inside until you open your model up! But did you know that the surprise model is actually a fairly recent phenomenon?
The very first set of surprise models was offered at BreyerFest 2009 - it was our own special way of throwing a "surprise party" for our fans as part of BreyerFest's 20th birthday celebration. Created on Chris Hess' Quarter Horse Gelding mold, a vast majority of these models were bay appaloosa, dunalino, or chestnut pinto, but 30 lucky buyers opened their models to find the ultimate surprise: a glossy decorator model! 10 pieces each of Charcoal, Silver Filigree, and glossy Smoke were randomly hidden within the run. We brought the surprise model back in 2011 due to popular demand, and it's been a staple of BreyerFest ever since!
Complete set of the BreyerFest 2009 Surprise Models, including the glossy Charcoal, Silver Filigree, and Smoke micro-runs.
Each year, BreyerFest has a theme that helps shape our entertainment offerings, models, guest horses and more. For example, BreyerFest 2020 was our Celtic Fling. But did you know that for the first 12 BreyerFests, the theme was simply "BreyerFest?"
BreyerFest 2002 was the first BreyerFest with an official theme - "Spirit of the West," celebrating America's horses. With special run models inspired by the West like Choc the buffalo and a contest to design the "ultimate Western hat," it was so much fun to explore a theme within BreyerFest that we've been doing it ever since!
A selection of models from Spirit of the West: St. Louis Blues (raffle model), Choc the Buffalo (Special Run), Ahote (Special Run), and RSV Inolvidable (Celebration Horse).
Part of the BreyerFest 2002 recap, as featured in Just About Horses magazine.
The BreyerFest Live Auction is a tradition that has been part of the event since its inception in 1990. Each year, Breyer offers a selection of unique test and one-of-a-kind Breyer models to the highest bidder! BreyerFest's 10th anniversary auction in 1999 featured a smorgasbord of delectable offerings, including this glossy Gold Charm Zippo Pine Bar that sold for $1,850.
Oooh la la!
Owned by Avi Cohen of Kilimanjaro Ranch, Alborozo was our Celebration Horse for BreyerFest 2008's "Global Gallop." What makes Alborozo especially well-known, though, is his model - we broke the mold!
Brigitte Eberl of Germany sculpted our 1:9 scale likeness of Alborozo with expert precision. Once all of our Alborozo models were created for BreyerFest, the model's steel injection mold was cut into over 20 different pieces. This was the first (and currently only) time in history that a Breyer mold was purposely broken.
In the attached article from the Sept/Oct 2008 issue of Just About Horses, we were sure to grab a few photos of the broken mold before the metal went for recycling wherever possible! BreyerFest 2008 attendees came home with a unique and highly collectible model in tow - Alborozo is a treasure indeed!
Avi Cohen aboard Alborozo at BreyerFest 2008
Feature on the making and breaking of the Alborozo mold in Just About Horses magazine