Spring Open Horse Show to benefit FENCE on April 29

Published 3:58 pm Tuesday, April 4, 2017

The 2017 Open Horse Show Committee is pleased to announce that its milestone tenth Open Horse Show benefiting Foothills Equestrian Nature Center (FENCE) will be held on Saturday, April 29, with a rain date of Sunday, April 30.

What makes the Open show unique and fun for spectators is that it offers classes in a variety of disciplines, including Hunter Over Fences, English, Western, Gaited, Trail and – new this year – a Ranch Horse division.

Ranch Horse classes are intended to reflect the versatility, attitude and movement that Ranch Horses display in their work outside an arena. There will be four Ranch Horse classes: two on the rail with a group of competitors being judged together, and two pattern classes where exhibitors work individually.

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Ranch Horses will be judged through various gaits and ranch-type maneuvers, such as side-passing into a fence, turning 360 degrees, and trotting over logs. And unlike Western Pleasure classes, Ranch Horse classes require simple Western saddles and rider’s attire without “bling.”

Thanks to the growth of the FENCE Open Show since it was introduced in 2012, the April show is being expanded to three rings: one for seven Hunter Over Fences classes, one for two Trail classes, and the main arena for 40 other classes.

Judges for the April show will be Jan Ballows from Weaverville, N.C., for Hunter Over Fences; Sherwin Lindsey from Landrum for Trail Classes; and Jackie Turnbull from Peachland, N.C., for all classes in the main arena.

Adding to the fun and keeping everything moving will be Announcer Anita Williamson – aka “the Voice of the Open Horse Shows” – back for her ninth time.

On site this year will be a food concession, used tack vendor, and several non-profit community equine welfare organizations, which will provide information about their missions.

Entries, Volunteers & Sponsors

The FENCE Open Show is now accepting entries via pre-registration. There is a fee for the event and pre-registration before April 21 offers a discount. Competitors can download entry forms from the FENCE website (fence.org). Competitors can also complete their entries on show day and may enter a single class or as many as they wish. Cumulative high-point awards will be given in seven divisions: Over Fences, English Youth, English Adult, Western Youth, Western Adult, Gaited Horse, and Ranch Horse.

Making the show possible and supporting the work of FENCE will be an army of volunteers led by Open Horse Show Committee members Carol Ten Broek, Judy Schlager, Jo Cahill, Maria Kane, Paula Stathakis, Sally Rock, Tracie Hanson and Sandra Hyder. More than 35 volunteers have already signed up to work the Open Show at ringside or in the show office, and more volunteers are welcome.

The Open Show also depends on commercial and private sponsors for its classes, at levels from $25 to $1,000. All sponsorships are tax deductible and will be acknowledged in the show program and during show announcements.

To learn more about volunteering at the Open Show or becoming a sponsor, visit Facebook.com/openhorseshowsintheupstate or call FENCE at 828-859-9021.

Article submitted by the 2017 Open Horse Show Committee