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ACTHA riders ask, "What rain?"

Published: 8/16/2011
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By Maddy Butcher Gray

It was hot and humid and my son and I were moving some temporary fencing through tall grass. We’d pulled out the fiberglass posts and were dragging the acre-sized package of posts and electric tape through the field. He was getting exasperated, “why does everything to do with horses have to be so hard?” he yelled.
The question stopped me in my tracks.
I thought of all the chores and efforts associated with horse ownership: hauling haying, mucking, fencing, more mucking, etc. It never dawned on me that these were hard or onerous. They’re just part of the joy of having horses.
Have I deluded myself all this time?
Will I wake up tomorrow and say, ‘wow, this horse stuff is a pain in the ass?”
Not likely.
It was with the same horse love that dozens gathered for the ACTHA trail competition, hosted by Sonia Theobalds at the Back of the Moon Farm, in Hope, Maine.
As we gathered before the start, the skies threatened rain. As we headed out, the skies opened up. Six miles of trail and obstacles. More than two hours of solid rain. And nary a frown among us.
“The weather could not have been worse and the horses and riders could not have been more easy going and understanding,” said Theobalds. “By the end of the day everyone was totally soaked. At times, the rain came down in buckets.  The horses and riders were drenched. The score papers were getting wet. The pens wouldn't work. The judges and safety riders were dripping with water.”
I had the privilege of being a safety officer and rode from obstacle to obstacle, checking on the groups of riders. They mostly laughed at the weather and joked about just who was getting wettest.
Over $1,500 was raised for the Maine Breast Cancer Coalition.

Open Division:
1. Julie Kenney riding River
2. Sally Canney riding Drummer Tango
3. Molly Stark riding Two Moores Star

Pleasure Division:
1. Kerrin Erhard riding Black Luster Soldier
2. Mary Batt riding Jasmine
3. Janet Major riding Strider
4. Noelle Fairfield riding Rumor
5. Heather Major riding Rikki
6. Megan Porter riding Tristan

Junior Division:
1. Nellie Hetherington riding General Kenney
2. Blake Erhard riding Ella
3. Brook Smith riding Lady's Duke (Duke)
4. Samantha Carter riding Lucy
5. Tessa Dow riding Barney
6. Meghan Schweighauser riding Pippin

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8/17/2011 Tina Mae
AWESOME JOB to the Affiliate..Volunteers...and the Riders....
8/19/2011 Julie Kenney
We had tons of fun!! In the company of great friends and horses, what more could you want? :)

"Nothing on four legs is quicker than a horse heading back to the barn" - Pamela C. Biddle/Joel E. Fishman