StettlerLocal.com August 25, 2021 @ 11am
The Donalda Ag Society hosted their annual Light Horse Show this weekend. The 2-day event was open to ages, and breeds of all ranges. Event volunteer and participant Andrea Muhlbach, says the open show means participants can enter with ponies, donkeys, and horses of all breeds and sizes. Muhlbach said despite it being an indoor event, it was able to take place last year since participants were cued up outdoors, and were able to keep within AHS guidelines.
“If you’re riding a horse, you’re most likely six feet away from the next person anyway.” -Andrea Muhlbach on Social Distancing last year.
The event takes place at the Donalda Agriplex and sees participants from all around.
Event Judge Celine Gobet came down from Onoway to reside over the weekend’s events. Gobet has been in the horse industry for 24 years. Originally from France, she has worked in Switzerland, America, Quebec and, Alberta. She noted this was her first time judging an ‘open show’. When asked about how the rather relaxed event compared to the more formal events she normally resides over, Gobet stated that the people entered this weekend, take it just fairly seriously.
“It’s a fun show but they still take it seriously.” Celine Gobet
Many of the events were indoors while the show jumping was set up outside.
Muhlbach explained that the show jumping is a wildcard event. This means that instead of having people enter into the event and perform in a set order, the event is ‘open’ for contestants to participate in when they are able to. This way if contestants (many of whom are entered into multiple events) are slated for the more scheduled events, they can participate in show jumping when they are not required to be in the arena.
Events on Saturday were:
Mares Any Breed (14.1HH & Under. 14.2HH & Under)
Geldings/Stallions Any Breed (14.1HH & Under 14.2HH & Under)
Showmanship (Peewee, Junior, Intermediate, Senior, & Prime Time)
Costume Class (Youth & Senior)
Walk Trot(Youth & Senior)
Hunter Over Fences (Peewee, Junior, Intermediate, Senior & Prime time)
English Pleasure (Junior Horse, Peewee Rider, Junior Rider, Intermediate Rider, Senior Rider, Prime Time, & Open Horse)
English Equitation (Pewee, Junior, Intermediate, Senior & Prime Time)
In addition to different age-classed events, there were also two events that were open to all participants. These events were more for fun and less competitive in nature. The Command Class involved participants riding around the arena at a casual pace. The announcer calls for them to begin trotting, or loping, and whichever competitors didn’t have their animals at the desired stride within a certain amount of steps, were considered ‘out’. Sit a Buck Class involves riders moving about the arena with a piece of paper under their thigh. If the paper comes free, the rider is eliminated.
Carson Ellis, Reporter