The new international headquarters of the American Paint Horse Association opened its doors on February 28. The office is located in Mule Alley, part of Texas’ historic Fort Worth Stockyards.
Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price rode into Mule Alley aboard Doctor Frost, a palomino tobiano Paint stallion owned by Lazy Susan Ranch of Flint, Texas. She was joined by Texas Agricultural Commissioner Sid Miller, and APHA member and multiple world champion, and together they welcomed APHA friends, supporters, community leaders and other visitors as they celebrated the new headquarters of the world’s second-largest equine breed association.
“Fort Worth is the heartbeat of agriculture in Texas, so I can’t think of a better place for APHA to be,” Sid said.
APHA was the first business to open on Mule Alley in the Fort Worth Stockyards, with staff serving customers on January 6. The official grand opening celebration took place February 28 in conjunction with the association’s annual Convention, February 28–March 1.
The new APHA office space is located in one of the Stockyards’ renovated mule barns—the structures were originally built in 1912 and housed the area’s horses and mules for decades. The barns were renovated by Majestic Realty and the Hickman Group, part of a 70-acre revitalization of the Stockyards area. In addition to housing APHA, Mule Alley will feature numerous restaurants, retail and corporate office space.
The interior of the APHA office brings APHA’s vision to life, a versatile combination of Western heritage blended with modern technology. The space features APHA’s retail store, PH Barn Door, a rustic-inspired multimedia “grain bin” theater, office and meeting space, as well as the Rebecca Baker Paint Horse Legacy Loft, home to APHA’s Hall of Fame and other luminaries. Authentic elements from the original structures were preserved in the design of the space, including the metal fire doors in the loft space, unique concrete-and-metal columns, original brick and more. Staff also planted an APHA-themed time capsule during construction, ensuring future generations can unlock precious memories about APHA and the Paint Horse breed.
“We’re using your space as a showcase,” said Craig Cavileer, executive vice president of Majestic Realty Co. “Your building is the new benchmark for what people should be doing in the historic horse and mule barns to honor Western heritage.”
The gorgeous and iconic larger-than-life APHA bronzes, designed by artist Maritta Black, occupy a place of prominence at the center of Mule Alley, galloping down the road toward the rodeo coliseum. In another APHA tie-in, the landscape surrounding the bronze herd was designed by landscape architect and APHA member Adam Kober of Lifescapes International.
APHA invites everyone to visit the new headquarters, whether to take a tour, take care of APHA business or simply relax in a space to call their own. Opportunities to leave a more permanent mark on the building space are also available, and you can learn more at apha.com/foundation/capital-campaign/give-a-gift-form/.
“We’re celebrating the Paint Horse in ways we’ve never been able to do before,” APHA Executive Director Billy Smith said. “This building is here for you.”