Western Carolina Hunter Pace holds year end awards, gathering

Published 2:59 pm Monday, July 31, 2017

What a great day for the Western Carolina Hunter Pace year end gathering. And, what a season it was!

Though anticipating hotter weather, the headcount was low, but everyone had a great time at the gathering at Camp Croft State Park July 9. Harry’s BBQ served up a great meal of BBQ pulled pork and chicken with all the sides one would desire. Rhonda Lewis was our emcee and did a wonderful job for award time. Thanks go to Bobby Turner for planning a great trail and to both he and Valerie Quinn for making sure the trail was clear and marking it prior to the ride.  Croft is a wonderful State Park to go ride. There are real restrooms for us humans and wash racks for the horses. The day’s proceeds went to two wonderful organizations: Foothills Humane Society and HALTER. 

We truly thank Jan Smith for her tireless work as the series coordinator. It’s not an easy task to work numbers like she does and keep up with trail dates and rain dates. There are huge behind the scenes activities that most don’t know about. Lou Smith, Jan’s husband, is our series photographer.  We are very much appreciate having our memories in pictures to look back upon. 

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And speaking of our series coordinator, The Farm House, a generous WCH Pace Series sponsor for the past few years, surprised Jan with a beautifully wrapped picture frame from their gift shop!  What a perfect gift!  (…and a little birdie told me she’s got a photo of Lou and Magic that will soon be in that frame to grace her desk)

There were 33 attendees at the year end gathering including the volunteers. They are: Baiba Bourbeau, Missy Bright, a WCH Pace volunteer, Karen Brockway, Pamela  Burrows, Debbie Croft, Jill Davis, Michelle Drum, Lynn Fitch, Andrew Gentry, Christina Goen, Jamie Robertson, a HALTER volunteer, Marcia Headrick, Diane Hicks, Nikki Hynes, Debbie Knebel, Beatrice Lamb, Rhonda Lewis, a FHS volunteer, Lin Martin, Nancy Mason, Emily Mitchell, Rich Neel, DeAnna Norton, Valerie Quinn, Leslie Scott, Jan Smith, a WCHPace volunteer, Jennifer Smith, Janine and Tom Stenson, Rebecca Tolson, Bobby Turner, Susan Wallhora, FHS volunteer, and Mary-Ladd Yatts-Yonkman, who volunteers with HALTER.

Aside from the placement awards, there were several other categories to excite the attendees!

The Superior Seniors are the horses and not the riders. They are:

Kathy Bethka’s Sterling who is a 20+ yo OTTB, Nicola Deines’ Tohbi, a 25 yo OTTB, Valaria DeVine’s Shadow, a 20 yo Kentucky Mountain Horse, Lynn Fitch’s Killian, a 20 yo TB, Betsy Greenwood’s Einstein, a 31 yo Dutch Warmblood, Cindy Hansuh’s Addy, a 24 yo Standardbred, Nancy Hasselbring’s JV, a 25 yo Anglo/Arab, Claire Kennedy’s Luke, a 20 yo TB, Debbie Knebel’s Patches, a 24 yo Paint, Connie Moore’s Dublin, a 23 yo OTTB, Stacie Wadsworth’s Mazie’s Destiny, a 21 yo Clyde/TB, and Sherry Wyatt’s Rusty, a 28 yo TWH. The owners received special stall tags and a bag of treats for their great mounts.

The 100% Support & Appreciation Award recipients were Nikki Hynes and Booby Turner who each received a special commemorative plaque with an 8 by 10 photo taken during the series for attendance and support at all of the Hunter Paces this past series!

Support & Appreciation Award plaques were given to those riders who attended almost all of the past series events.  Debbie Croft, Lynn Fitch, Marcia Headrick, Emily Mitchell, DeAnna Norton, Angela and Caleigh Reichardt each received a commemorative plaque with a 5 by 7 photo of them taken during the Series in appreciation of their support.

The raffle winners won some real goodies! DeAnna Norton won the Foothills Humane Society’s basket of goodies which was actually a specially made up grooming kit with all sorts of great items. Jennifer Smith won the beautiful burgundy saddle pad, Janine Stenson won the shaped gray saddle pad, both donated by a Foothills Humane volunteer, and Andrea Gentry, Diane Hicks, Rhonda Lewis, and Debbie Knebel each won photo enlargements to be chosen some time over the upcoming series.

And, finally, the awards for placements were handed out. The awards for the Field Hunter Division area as follows:

Angela Reichardt won the Grand Champion trophy and ribbon, while Caleigh Reichardt received the Reserve Champion trophy and ribbon. Marcia Headrick played leap frog to nab the first place blue ribbon. Second place honors were awarded to Rachel Turner. Third place was awarded to Debbie Croft, fourth place was awarded to Emily Mitchell. Christina Goen received the fifth place pink.

There was a three way tie for sixth place. Congratulations to Melissa Champion, Richard Neel, and Rebecca Tolson. Seventh place went to Amanda Aiello. Nicola Deines received the eighth place ribbon. There was another tie in the awards. Ninth place honors were awarded to Diane Hicks and Brittany Whitmire. Rounding out the placements for the year was Amy Christensen, winner of the tenth place ribbon.

The awards for the Trail Rider Division are as follows:

Bobby Turner received the Champion trophy and ribbon for the 2016-2017 season! Leaping ahead to claim the Reserve Champion trophy was Nikki Hynes. Right behind in first place was Missy Bright. DeAnna Norton took the second place honors for the series.  Third place was awarded to Lynn Fitch. Fourth place honors went to Jan Smith. Debbie Knebel nabbed the fifth place ribbon. Sixth place was a four way tie! Congratulations to Doug and Nicole Cobb, Karen Merrill, and Teresa Snyder. Seventh place was awarded to Jennifer Wilson. Eighth place went to Lin Martin. Michelle Drum was awarded the ninth place ribbon. Rounding out the award placements for this season was Susan Haslam and Jennifer A Smith, who received tenth place honors.

The WCHPace 2017-2018 season will quickly be upon us.  The first ride of the 2017-2018 season will be the SE Children’s Home Benefit scheduled for Saturday, September 9, 2017 at Scotsgrove Farm in Inman.  We hope you plan to join us next series to enjoy the beautiful trails and incomparable companionship!

Check the Western Carolina Hunter Pace website at www.wchpace.org.  The new schedule will be posted soon and you will be able to see the upcoming events with dates and hosting organizations, and later the flyers will be posted with locations, entry forms, directions to the events and all the additional info you’ll need. You can also view photos, old and new and order them online.

See you on the trails…

– reported by Missy Bright