Horse sale means big business - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Horse sale means big business

by John Wilmer

WAVERLY (KWWL) -- The poor economy has spared few business, but some have found ways to thrive. On Tuesday the semi-annual horse sale began in Waverly.   

It's one of the biggest auctions in the country. The Waverly sale barn hosts this major horse sale twice a year. People from all over the United States and even world come to this small town to take part.

"The weather hasn't really cooperated real well, but fantastic crowds and prices are real good so we're really happy," David Beyer, co-owner of the Waverly Sale Barn said.         

Tracy Hanson raises horses in Minnesota. He has been coming to Waverly for years to buy and sell horses. The first two draft horses Hanson sold went for $5300 a piece, which tells him the economy isn't that bad.

"It's kind of a self sustaining business. It's not a government subsidized business. There is no government entity of any kind involved in it so it helps the draft horses," Hanson said.

The two main forces that were taking a toll on his business a few months back have subsided.

"The travel cost and the feed costs have gone down in the last while. The diesel fuel and everything is half the price it was a year ago and I think that's what is helping the auction here this spring is that it's not as costly for people to travel," Hanson said.

Organizers of the sale expect a bright future for their business.     

"There are always going to be coming back. I look forward to the prices especially in the draft horse industry to be good for several years," Beyer said.

The Waverly horse sale continues Saturday. Ponies, saddle horses, and miniature horses will be on the auction block starting at noon.

Online Reporter: John Wilmer

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