The American Gold Cup "is one of the most prestigious and iconic equestrian sporting events in the world of International Show Jumping," according to the event website. But you don't have to be a rider or an avid fan to enjoy the five-day event.

The competition returns to historic Old Salem Farm from Sept. 11-15, and we have some tips for making the most of your time there:

1) Visit a variety of competitions. The biggest events are the $35,000 Hermès Sellier Cup and the $71,200 Fidelity Investments Classic CSI4 on the Grand Prix Field, both on Saturday, and the $210,000 Longines FEI Jumping World Cup–New York CSI4-W on Sunday. But there are several other events in multiple locations throughout all five days, so wander around to see a variety of equestrian show jumping. See the full schedule here.

2) Hit the family activities. They have everything from pony rides to face painting and crafts to live entertainment, including The School of Rock.

3) Go shopping. Boutique Row has riding apparel and supplies, as well as antiques, jewelry, home decor and more. Last year, we spied some real life Cinderella shoes there!

4) Meet the athletes. A select few competitors will be available for autographs on Sunday on the Grand Prix Field after the awards ceremony.

5) Treat yo'self to a VIP table at the Taylor Harris Club. "High-top tables of four or six and tables of eight are available for reservation, and there is no better way to experience the excitement of elite show jumping action," according to the event website. "Table holders enjoy full-service, delicious gourmet cuisine and their choice of beverages, all with the best view of the Grand Prix Field."