Budweiser Clydesdales Handler Rudy Helmuth
Rudy Helmuth is one of seven people traveling with the Budweiser Clydesdales that are being stabled at the Civic Center awaiting their appearance in Saturday’s Dairy Festival Parade. Helmuth, an Iowa native, has been a handler for the large draft horses for about two years now. This hitch of ten horses is based in St. Louis, Missouri. Other hitches are based in New Hampshire and Colorado. Helmuth says the Clydesdales are massive but gentle and they have been trained to be around lots of people at venues such as parade sites or racetracks. Helmuth feeds, grooms and bathes the Clydesdales. He says it takes him about five-hours to get them ready for the public. Each Clydesdale hitch has a Dalmatian dog named Clyde that goes along for rides. Clydesdales come from the Clyde River area of Scotland originally and they were used in fields as draft horses before tractors. These are five to ten years old, weighing about 2,000 pounds and are 18 to 19 hands high. The public is welcome to come see them at the Civic Center.
By Don Julian, KSST News and Sports Editor