February 2015 Issue - page 8

Page 8
February 2015
PENNSYLVANIA EQUESTRIAN
Virginia Horse
Festival Debuts
March 27-29
The new Virginia Horse Festi-
val will be held March 27-29 at The
Meadow Event Park in Caroline
County, VA. The festival will
include an Extreme Mustang Make-
over competition and the statewide
4-H EquiSmartz competition.
The Virginia Horse Festival
grew out of the former Virginia
Equine Extravaganza. “We are
taking established events and
pulling them together as part of
one big festival,” said Julie Wil-
liamson, a member of the Virginia
Horse Festival planning commit-
tee. “People can attend everything
in the same weekend.”
The festival will kick off with
the Mustang Makeover, a wild
horse training event sponsored by
the Mustang Heritage Foundation.
Youth and adult trainers, including
Nate Eicher of Reinholds, PA, were
assigned wild mustangs in Novem-
ber, 2014 and have been training
them for competition. At the horse
festival, the trainers will compete in
classes such as handling and con-
ditioning, leading, riding obstacles
and freestyle. The Mustang Make-
over finals will be held Saturday
night and culminate with an auction
of the trained Mustangs.
The EquiSmartz competition
tests 4-H students’ knowledge of
horses and ponies. District competi-
tions are held throughout the year.
Throughout the weekend, a
variety of clinics and classes will be
offered. Additionally, The Mead-
ow’s annual Secretariat birthday
celebration is scheduled for March
28. The 1973 Triple Crown cham-
pion was born on the property on
March 30, 1970. Planned highlights
include meet-and-greets with spe-
cial guests, local Secretariat descen-
dants, tram tours of the property,
Secretariat merchandise and an
open house for the Museum of the
Virginia Horse in Meadow Hall.
The Central Virginia Agility
Club will provide dog agility
demonstrations as well. All
semi-nars, clinics, demonstra-
tions and nightly entertainment
are included with paid admis-
sion. For more information visit
virginiahorsefestival.com.
Equine Affaire
Fees are $70 for a single
clinic to $350 for the multi-ses-
sion “Foundation First” clinics
and include clinic participation,
stabling, and admission to Equine
Affaire. Clinicians will select the
participants for their sessions from
written applications and videos
submitted by applicants. While
some are seeking riders and horses
with specific skills or problems to
demonstrate and resolve during
their clinics, others are seeking
riders interested in improving
their general horsemanship and
relationship with their horses.
Application deadline is Feb-
ruary 16. Equine Affaire also fea-
tures more than 200 clinics, 450
retailers, Breed and Youth Pavil-
ions, Fantasia, and a consignment
store. Complete information is at
equineaffaire.com.
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