Special to the Reporter

The U.S. Bureau of Land Management Wild Horse & Burro Adoption Program will hold its first-ever "Mustang Affair" in Burleson from June 3 to 5.

The event, which was held several years ago in Glen Rose, will take place this time at the All Star Equestrian Arena, 6601 FM 2738).

The centerpiece of the event will be a wild horse and burro adoption. Over 50 animals will be available to the public. These are adult and yearling horses and burros that once roamed free on public lands in the West.

It's all part of BLM's mission to protect and preserve wild horses and burros as iconic symbols of America's western heritage. Admission is free.

Other activities planned during the three-day event include equine training demonstrations, horse care workshops and dog adoptions hosted by the Humane Society of North Texas. Many local vendors will be on hand. There will be door prizes for attendees, and horse adopters will be entered into a drawing to win a free saddle.

Gates open Friday, June 3, at 8 a.m. for the public to preview the animals. Adoption begins with a competitive bid at 10 a.m. First-come, first-served adoptions follow until 6 p.m., then again Saturday, June 4, from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Sunday, June 5, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Application approval is required and can be done on site. To qualify to adopt, one must be at least 18 years old with no record of animal abuse. Adopters must have a minimum of 400 square feet of corral space per animal, with free access to food, water and shelter. A six-foot corral fence is required for adult horses, five feet for yearlings, and four-and-a-half feet for burros.

All animals must be loaded in covered stock-type trailers with swing gates and sturdy walls and floors. BLM staff will be on hand to assist with the short application process, answer any questions and load horses.

The standard adoption fee is $125, as set by law. Bidding will start at that amount.

The BLM pays a one-time $500 care-and-feeding allowance to adopters of horses that are at least four years old. The allowance is paid in full after one year when adopters receive official ownership title for their horse(s). All standard adoption conditions and fees apply. A limited number of eligible horses will be available at this event. Younger horses, burros and trained animals are not eligible for this incentive.

Wild horses and burros — iconic symbols of America’s western heritage — are renowned for their strength, endurance, agility and intelligence, characteristics bred into them in the wild that make them ideal for work or recreation. Since 1973, the BLM has placed more than 220,000 of these “living legends” in approved homes across the country.

The BLM manages more land than any other Federal agency — over 245 million acres. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western states. The BLM's multiple-use mission is to sustain the health and productivity of the public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. The BLM accomplishes this by managing such activities as outdoor recreation, livestock grazing, mineral development, and energy production, and by conserving natural, historical, cultural, and other resources, including wild horses and burros.

Broad St. (becoming County Rd. 528) 6 miles to FM 2738. Turn left 0.4 mile to All Star Equestrian Arena on right (look for signs).

The BLM is pleased to partner with the following organizations to make this event a success:

Humane Society of North Texas (www.hsnt.org)

Susan G. Komen for the Cure - Greater Fort Worth, and Ride for the Cure (www.komengreaterfortworth.org)

All Star Equestrian Foundation (www.allstarfoundation.org)

Mustang Heritage Foundation (www.mustangheritagefoundation.org)

For more information, call toll-free 866-4-MUSTANGS (866-468-7826) or visit www.blm.gov/nm.