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Vashon Sheepdog Classic 2015 trials

The Vashon Sheepdog Classic (VSDC) will host its nationally sanctioned sheepdog trial for the 6th consecutive year at Misty Isle Farms September 10-13. The VSDC  has become the most well attended sheepdog trial on the West Coast. Known for its bucolic location and tough competition, spectators come to see some of the best handler and dog teams from Canada, Washington, Oregon, Idaho, and California compete on one of the most challenging fields around. This year’s judge, Luca Fini, comes from Italy. Luca has represented Italy in the International Sheepdog Society World Competition and has competed in trials across Europe and the UK.

Once again, 250 Sheep will come to Vashon from the Willamette Valley to ensure a consistent set of sheep for over 150 teams signed up to compete over the four days of the trial.  Not only are the sheep athletic, young and healthy,  it will be the first time they have been worked in small groups by a dog, and therefore will be very challenging for our competitors to handle.  It is a fascinating spectacle to watch these talented  dogs direct them through the obstacles in a precise and calm manner.

Day one will begin with two classes: Nursery and Pro- Novice. Nursery dogs are under three years of age and well on their way to gaining the experience for the Open competition. Pro-Novice teams can be either beginning handlers and dogs or experts starting out their younger dogs. The Open competition starts Friday and runs through Sunday. The runs begin at 8 am and go until all dogs have completed their runs usually between 5-6 pm.  An announcer and catalog with diagrams will help explain all the action.

The field at Misty Isle Farms will be set up with a bigger and better than ever Fiber Arts Village that will be open Friday through Saturday with many hands on activities  and demonstrations. The kids tent will include needle felting classes and fiber hobbyists and artists are encouraged to bring their own spinning wheels and knitting throughout the event.

This year’s event will also include a variety of other food, drink and craft vendors. Admission to the trial is $8 per person each day or you can purchase an all event pass for $20. Kids under 6 are free. Tickets can be purchased at the event or on line at Spectators are welcome to bring their own picnic supplies or enjoy the great food and beverages available throughout the event.  A shuttle will run between the north end ferry dock and the trial field through out the weekend for our island visitors.

The VSDC is well known as a top level national competition but it is also a fundraising event that over the years has contributed more than $80,000 to more than 20 Vashon programs and organizations, including its primary beneficiary Partners in Education (PIE).

For a schedule of events visit the VSDC web page at