A Horse of Another Color 

My Little Pony lovers hoof it to the Cook Convention Center.

The Memphis Cook Convention Center is awash in pastels.

This weekend's "mane" event is the 2007 Collectors Convention for My Little Pony — MLP for those in the know — where buyers and sellers from across the nation and beyond scope out toy ponies with flirty eyelashes over almond-shaped eyes and stars and hearts accenting their derrieres.

Renee Michel, a collector since age 7, came from California with her grandpa, Dennis McKenzie. "She's turning 12 tomorrow, so this is her birthday present," he says.

Like most of the attendees, Michel proudly wears an MLP T-shirt. "They're just really cute," she says of the ponies.

Her grandfather smiles and adds, "I'm a collector of watches, so I can understand."

At another booth, a young girl points to a pony and grins. Her older brother is more vocal. "Do you have any really cheap boy ponies?" he asks the attendant.

click to enlarge My Little Pony fans gather at the Memphis Cook Convention Center
  • My Little Pony fans gather at the Memphis Cook Convention Center

And, of course, she does. In fact, collectors can find every imaginable pony and pony accessory at the convention, along with castles, clothing, "baby" pony bottles, rattles, and tiny pony panties.

Many collectors are hoping to get their hands on the 2007 convention pony: a Delta blues pony. Other MLP enthusiasts scan the booths for ponies customized by artists, including alien and Pokémon ponies.

Coordinator Jen Oakes can relate to the MLP obsession — her own collection is nearing 1,000 ponies.

"Most collectors had them as kids, so they're very nostalgic," she says. "They're very comforting, very sweet and endearing. Some kids collect them, too. It's quite a diverse crowd."

At first glance, I wouldn't expect Tres Donley — a man from Cincinnati with tattoos and a long, red ponytail — to be interested in MLP. "It's a childhood joy," he says while searching through a bucket of discounted ponies. "I love anything that involves childhood."

Mississippian Jenna Thrash plucks a pony from the same bucket. Then, to my horror, she twists the head back and forth. Just when I expect the head to pop off, she yanks on the bright-orange tail, and it "grows" several inches.

Thrash laughs and explains, "It's a 'Brush 'n Grow' pony. I figure there are worse things I could be spending my money on."

Now the proud, new owner of a glittery-eyed pony and another with berries on its bottom, I couldn't have said it better myself.

Keep the Flyer Free!

Always independent, always free (never a paywall),
the Memphis Flyer is your source for the best in local news and information.

Now we want to expand and enhance our work.
That's why we're asking you to join us as a Frequent Flyer member.

You'll get membership perks (find out more about those here) and help us continue to deliver the independent journalism you've come to expect.


Speaking of...


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

    • Makers’ Space

      New Crosstown Arts facility is like a gym for artists.
    • ‘Really Confusing’

      Save IRV works to defeat council-backed referenda.


News Blog

BREAKING: Fairgrounds TDZ Wins State Approval

Film/TV/Etc. Blog

Music Video Monday: Fingertrick

From My Seat

Gameday Gratitude

We Saw You

Indie Film Fest, Grilled Cheese Fest, Adapt-A-Door and more!

Tiger Blue

Tigers 109, Yale 102 (2 OT)

Tiger Blue

Tigers 28, SMU 18

Beyond the Arc

Grizzlies Defeat Kings 112-104

Hungry Memphis

Zopita's on the Square to open Nov. 19


More by Rachel Stinson

Readers also liked…

© 1996-2018

Contemporary Media
460 Tennessee Street, 2nd Floor | Memphis, TN 38103
Visit our other sites: Memphis Magazine | Memphis Parent | Inside Memphis Business
Powered by Foundation