Yes, they do have koi shows!! Many newcomers to the hobby are surprised to find out that koi shows happen all over the country. There are small local koi clubs putting on small local shows and huge clubs with thousands of members hosting large regional shows. But regardless of the size, koi shows are a great experience for both the new comer to the hobby and the expert alike. Its a chance to see some high end koi, learn a lot about the koi hobby and meet other koi hobbyists.
Koi shows are a lot like dog shows, or any other animal show for that matter. Entrants bring their best koi to the show. A separate tank is reserved and set up waiting for the koi. When the show begins a group of judges will walk around to each tank and rate the koi on body conformation, colors, pattern and various other traits. For more information on how koi are judged, please read this article. After the judging is complete awards are given for the best koi in different sizes.
But koi shows do far more for the hobby then just a bunch of plastic trophies and ribbons. Koi shows are the driving force behind the value of all koi. The judging standards are very specific guidelines for koi. These guidelines are used by breeders when they are developing their koi. The closer a koi fits into these standards, the higher the price. Dealers place a price on the koi based on how well it will do in a koi show. The higher the likelihood of a koi doing well in a show, the more expensive it can get. But its deeper then this. Koi shows also provide the competition and recognition needed for the hobby to grow. It is what drives koi breeders to continue to develop better and better koi. Without koi shows the hobby would never be were it is today.
So get out there people! Join your local koi club and support the koi shows! They are the reason we have such beautiful koi today and the reason we will have even more beautiful koi tomorrow. Koi shows are a lot of fun, there are almost always vendors booths, lectures, workshops and more. And if you are attending a koi show in CA, odds are Simi Koi and Ventura Koi Farm will be there so stop on by and say hello!