Well, when Harrison said we were going ” Dancing Under the Stars”, I didn’t know it included the horses….
On September 5th, the Therapeutic Riding Organization of Tryon, better known as TROT, hosted their annual fundraiser at FENCE-Foothills Equestrian and Nature Center. Seven different horse exhibitions; therapeutic riders, miniatures to harness, a trick rider, barrel racer, western & dressage duet, American Saddlebreds and a Revolutionary War Reenactment Group, entertained the $100 plate supporters. Each group’s presentation was narrated and choreographed to music. We were asked to exhibit the American Saddlebred.
Tryon NC is horse country, but not very familiar with Saddlebreds. We were excited about being able to represent our breed in this format. We took CALLAWAY’S PAISANO, a 3 gaited black gelding, owned by Joan Sonnabend, of Mooresboro, NC and TOBIE MCGUIRE-a 5 Gaited chestnut gelding owned by Anna D. Kirk from Wake Forest, NC. Callaway’s Paisano was presented by Harrison Shiflet first. It was an elegant silhouette against the sunset, as they showed the power and grace of the Walk-Trot horse. Then Tobie McGuire and Grant Shiflet demonstrated 5 gaits with precision and speed.
As we waited our turn, our Saddlebreds stood beautifully and watched the array of activities whirling around them…(Its not everyday you see groups of horses charging each other with riders yelling and sabers clashing in the air, then again…is that a group lesson?) The announcer begins, the music starts and we are in the arena. The horses were great as Harrison and Grant sent them through their paces as the announcer encouraged the crowd to show their appreciation. The ring work consisted of Straight lines, Diagonal lines and circles, the different gaits and transitions, all to music… then we stopped, stripped the horses and stood them up for approval to each side of ring. We left, trotting them out in hand to a very appreciative and vocal crowd. Just like the shows, we are out, the next “class” is in the ring and we walk back to the barn.
Then people started coming by….”Nice job, I’m impressed “,…. “Thank you for coming, its been years since I have seen a saddlebred”,… ” It’s so nice to be able to show our enthusiasm”…..”They are so beautiful and well mannered”…..”I had forgotten how much fun these horses are”… “I showed Saddlebreds”…wonderful comments from Dressage to Therapy riders, and many thank you notes came in the mail.
Did this event take time and effort….Yes. Was it worth it……YOU BET!
Do more, be part of the word and talk about the Saddlebred. Beauty, courage, greatness…no wonder they call it the American Saddlebred.
Congratulations to Yes By Golly the winner of this year’s UPHA 3 yr old Park Pleasure Class at the NC State Championship Horse show and The UPHA Class at The Roanoke Valley Horse Show, is first colt bred, raised and trained at our farm by our stallion, The Sultan’s Secret.