SOUTH JORDAN — The 12th Annual Wild Horse and Burro Festival, hosted by the Bureau of Land Management is Friday and Saturday at the Salt Lake County Equestrian Park, 10800 S. 2200 West in South Jordan. The event features two days of adoption, competition, and performances.

The festival's activities are free to the public and begin Friday at 2 p.m.

The federal agency will have approximately 20 halter and saddle-started wild horses and burros. They can be viewed starting Friday at noon in the outdoor arena with an adoption being held on Friday at 6:30 p.m. All animals will be adopted using silent bidding procedures. Any animals that are not adopted will be available on a first-come, first-served basis later Friday and through the day on Saturday. A qualified adopter can adopt their first horse for $125 and a second horse for $25 through the Adopt-a-Buddy system.

Saturday's event begins with a grand entry by Aces Wild, a local group of riders riding mustangs that perform at parades and rodeos statewide. All of the horses used by Aces Wild were adopted through the BLM Wild Horse and Burro Adoption Program.

"The festival will give the public an opportunity to see how wild horses, once gentled, can excel in riding and show as well as serving as excellent companions," said Utah Wild Horse and Burro Lead Gus Warr.

All individuals must be pre-approved before bidding on a horse. Applications may be filled out at the adoption and approved on-site.

To adopt a wild horse and burro, you must be at least 18, never convicted of animal abuse or cruelty and have the proper facilities and transportation. Animals are taken home on the day they are adopted. More information on requirements is available at www.blm.gov/ut/st/en/prog/wild_horse_and_burro.html

For more information on the 12th Annual Festival, call 877-224-3956 or 801-539-4057. Wild horses can also be viewed and adopted at the Salt Lake Wild Horse and Burro Center, 8605 W. 12600 South, Herriman, between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. on Saturday.