PDA

View Full Version : QH Congress: How to go-- Update-- I'm coming! 21st-24th..P. 3



mvp
Sep. 12, 2012, 11:50 PM
This is on my bucket list. I want to put it on my momma's bucket list, and that means that if I attempt to bring her to this epic event, I had better know how to see and do the best of it.

How do you get the most joy out of Congress?

bugsynskeeter
Sep. 13, 2012, 09:50 AM
If you are going as a spectator, the freestyle reining is really your best bet. Very crowd friendly, as opposed to many of the other signature events that are more exhibitor friendly.

http://oqha.com/aaqhc/special-events/cinch-freestyle-reining

I Winglish AQHA
Sep. 13, 2012, 09:52 AM
It really depends on what you want to see and do.

The first week of the congress is the reining and cow horse events. Most vendors are present but not all of them. There are not any impressive vendor sales unless what they're selling pertains to only the cow horse events.

The second week is when the Western Pleasure, Hunter Under Saddle, Fence, Eq, Horsemanship, Showmanship classess start. All of the vendors are present during this time - some are offering sales specials. The puppy pavillion is in full force and some of the specialty classes are held and the Congress Super Sale horse auction is held

The final week is when the Masters classes take place and many of the finals and futurities. The vendors all have sales and most of the puppies are already sold ;).

Its a blast - plan to stay at least 4 days. And becareful about which hotels you stay at both for safety and bedbugs!

LJStarkey
Sep. 13, 2012, 12:13 PM
Check out the online schedule before you go. Many people miss it, but Congress has a full complement of lectures on nutrition and horse development as well as live demonstrations.

This year, it's killing me that I'm going to miss Dr. Ann Rashmir-Raven's lecture on managing infectious and allergic skin diseases.

I WILL be catching Chubby Turner's cutting demonstration and checking out the Ride a Reiner program that the NRHA is putting on.

I think those are the hidden gems of the show, but I also enjoy the candy tent and eating my way through all the fair food vendors:)

Go Fish
Sep. 13, 2012, 01:28 PM
How do you get the most joy out of Congress?

Take lots of money...:lol:

Plumcreek
Sep. 13, 2012, 09:04 PM
Buy the expensive parking pass and park on top of the Gilligan Barn, the furthest enterance to the West on the North side. Totally worth the cost. Plan to camp by the big warm up ring and just watch - you will see the good and the bad, but some amazing horses. For what you asked in your other thread, plan to watch the western riding or the trail. You will see some very broke and nice horses in the senior divisions of those.
Plan to watch classes on the weekend and shop during the weekdays if you can, as it can get very crowded in the buildings. Take lots of snacks in a pack and only buy meal food on the grounds, as all food is very expensive. There is some really good non-typical horse show food there.

Plan to take clothing in layers and closely watch weather reports. If you do not have a hotel by now, better check into that before making plans.

JollyBadger
Sep. 13, 2012, 09:53 PM
Personally, I avoid the puppy tent at all costs. It's just a marketplace for local "small scale" puppy mills to sell their wares to all of the rich cowgirls who want an "accessory" to carry around during the show.

October 12-13, the PBR is also in town (downtown Columbus), so if you're looking for something else to do in the area on those days it's a good bet. It's the last regular competition before Finals, and a really good time.

As for Congress, bring lots of money and a shopping list for things you know you need. Otherwise you may just end up browsing and browsing. . .

jn4jenny
Sep. 13, 2012, 11:15 PM
Lots of great advice given already. Ditto the "go to the reining" advice, and be prepared to buy those tickets early because they usually sell out. Budget for the obnoxious parking rates, which are usually in the neighborhood of $25 per vehicle or $70 for the whole event.

Don't obsess about getting a hotel super close by. The state fairgrounds isn't in a great district, and many of the closest hotels are a little iffy. There are dozens of good hotel districts in Columbus, but only a few choice gems near the convention center.

If you decide to take a day (or a few hours) off from Congres, don't leave this town without trying nationally ranked Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams (www.jenis.com). Other attractions to consider:

Columbus Zoo - It was one of Jack Hanna's pet projects, and it shows in the awesome visitor experience. In late October, they have Boo at the Zoo events for Halloween that are fun.

COSI - a fabulous science museum for kids, if you're into that kind of thing.

Whetstone Park of Roses - the largest municipal rose garden in the US at approximately 13 acres. There are still roses in early October, but by late October they're usually gone.

CowgirlDressage
Sep. 14, 2012, 08:51 AM
Do take along spending money, even if you go the first week to catch Freestyle Reining. There are some vendors set up for sure, and there is all that food. Have your flu shots; they call it Congress Crud...there are so many people, so of course there are a lot of viruses out there.

Don't book your hotel without checking with the National Bedbug Registry, there are reports every single year about people getting them in the greater Columbus area. When booking your hotel, look at those a bit outside the immediate I-70 corridor, there have been some shootings & rapes, etc. during Congress the past couple of years.

If you are at all interested in seeing the Freestyle Reining, I highly suggest ordering your tickets ASAP. We've had ours a few weeks now & they do tend to sell out very quickly. Do bring layers of clothing as others stated, you just never know when it's going to change conditions.

Have fun! If you go after the end of the 1st week, they will be at the point that all the vendors are up & running, the barns will have the displays & such for the big farms, and you can usually bag as much candy as a good Trick-or-Treat night from all their offerings which is fun.

Plumcreek
Sep. 14, 2012, 01:01 PM
Lots of great advice given already..... Budget for the obnoxious parking rates, which are usually in the neighborhood of $25 per vehicle or $70 for the whole event.
.

Sounds $$$ but the parking pass includes admission to the whole show for everyone in the car, except the few ticketed events like the Freestyle and Masters Pleasure.


If you are worried about Bedbugs, put your clothes in the dryer on high when you return home and it will kill them.

Re all the 'take money' advice....because of that , Congress is Christmas for theives and pick pockets. Watch your purse.

mvp
Sep. 14, 2012, 01:55 PM
Thank you very much for the advice--- all of it.

My mom is a good sport, but if we go, I'll just "manage" the vermin and safety issues quietly.

I'd like my mom to count as "the money" that I'd bring, but she's too smart for that. And yes, I want to go shopping.

Are the rings really open for schooling 24/7? Do you ever see some exceptional trainers doing their thing late at night there? I always like to see how the pros do what they do in addition to the smoothed out performance.

Plumcreek
Sep. 14, 2012, 06:49 PM
One late night as I was walking to my car, I passed by the Beef Barn's little indoor arena space and found many of the leading trail horse trainers out schooling with Tim Kimura setting obstacles for them, and all having a good time.

I pulled up a bucket and sat and watched for an hour or more.

Yes the show pens are open for schooling and busy all night.

Ware Whip!
Sep. 14, 2012, 07:00 PM
The truck and trailer show is one of the best you will ever see. I do mean the one's driven there .

Keep your money in your front pockets, small bills on one side, large on the other, so you are not pulling out a huge wad :).

Day tripping this year for shopping, more than seeing. But the Hamption by the airport is nice, it is clean, and has a good breakfast.

Enjoy!

Chuckles
Sep. 15, 2012, 05:03 PM
I would suggest at least 3 days;one to gawk, one to shop, and one to just sit and watch the horses. I think the parking pass that gets you onto the show grounds is 75$ and the daily pass is $25 (no in and out privileges).
You must have something from the Sweet Shop. The cinnamon roles are fabulous, but they also make a yummy Italian sub! If you are interested in cocktails, it is quite easy to find a place that serves them in either the Celeste Center (one of the show rings) or Congress Hall (the big shopping venue).
Walk through the Gilligan Building to see the amazing stall decorations. Unfortunately (or fortunately for the people of Dixon), you won't be able to see Rita Crundwell's spread, but I am sure something will take its place.
Yes, they do school 24/7 as that is the only way to get into the show rings. The work schedule for Celeste usually goes something like this : from 1 hr after the show until 3 am- western horses; from 3-6 am english horses (or what have you). So if you train or ride both, you are up all night.

It is a great show. The weather can be capricious in Ohio- but there are usually several glorious fall days, some Indian summer days, and occasionally some snow!

Do go,it is a great experience.
:D

LJStarkey
Sep. 17, 2012, 08:13 PM
And don't forget to report back and tell us what you did!

snydere02
Sep. 22, 2012, 10:25 AM
I second going to see freestyle reining and making it a three day event. I usually go to watch a couple classes and clinics but I wait until the last week to shop. You can find your best deals on the last day. I only bring $100 cash and buy everything else with a credit card. If you need more cash there are ATM machines all over the grounds.

WillowsWelsh
Sep. 22, 2012, 10:56 AM
I've gone to Congress as a spectator for about 20 years now. I live only an hour away. A few things that may not have been mentioned:

Wear the most comfortable shoes you own, even if they are ugly.

Put your purchases in the trunk and not out where it can be seen through the car/truck window. This includes your GPS.

Even if you are on a limited budget, you must rent a golf cart for a day, multiple days are better. Drive that golf cart out through all the remote parking areas and campgrounds and have fun looking at all the great rigs and RVs, and all the license plates from all over the world. Take the cart out to the more remote stabling areas and chat with the great people out there. Take the cart to all the practice rings, including the lounging rings tucked away in various locations. Don't waste money renting a cart on Super Sale day. It's wall to wall people that day. That is the best day to sit and watch the sale, and sit and watch the classes in the arenas, as it's impossible to shop and move around that day. If you rent a cart, go to the vendor to get one before 9am when the line gets really long.

The best sales start around noon on the very last day. Shops are crowded, but some good sales. If you need barn items, like buckets, heated buckets, gates, latches, round pens, I recommend the Cashman's shop. They do not mark anything up just because it's Congress, and offer sell items at a lower price than in their retail store. I buy all the equipment I need over the course of the year from Cashman's during Congress.

Be sure to find stallion alley too. Unfortunately it's getting smaller and smaller every year. But there is no better opportunity to get right up close to some truly breath-taking stallions in amazing show condition.

Have fun. You can't possibly see everything in a few days, but Congress will be there for many years to come. I guarantee you'll want to go again.

bugsynskeeter
Sep. 22, 2012, 11:25 AM
FYI - Stallion Alley was removed last year. There are some farms that have booths, but no designated place like that anymore.

mvp
Sep. 22, 2012, 12:39 PM
Thank you all for the advice.

Holy cow, you need a golf cart to get around? How many acres of ground does this show cover?

It sounds like the best newbie-spectator events and the best shopping days are separated by many days at this show. It takes more than one day to see this show?

If you were my travel agent (remembering that my gentle momma is in tow):

How many days at Congress are needed?

You'd rent the golf cart on Day 1 so as to get the lay of the land?

Would you put the Competition Watching Day first, and the "see the shops... see the rigs that you you can't buy" later?

Perhaps, too, you need a native tour guide to take you on the Night Tour of the behind-the-scenes schooling.

No need for warning about the puppy tend. My mom is way to smart for that. If they had a cat tent, however, things would be different.

JollyBadger
Sep. 22, 2012, 12:54 PM
No need for warning about the puppy tend. My mom is way to smart for that. If they had a cat tent, however, things would be different.

They had cats in there one year.:winkgrin:

Some lady was selling these "rare Russian" cats for $$$. Can't recall the actual price, but somewhere in the area of $1000 or more.:eek:

For a cat.:confused:

I don't know if they were naturally very laid back, or if she sedated them, but whenever she picked one up it just looked really limp and "floppy." My friends and I still refer to them as the Russian Boneless Cats.

If there are events you know you want to see, check the schedules and mark those in advance. Unless it's a really popular event, like freestyle reining, you probably won't have too much trouble finding a place to sit and watch.

When you're not watching the horses, you can spend the rest of the day sightseeing/shopping/browsing, wandering the barn aisles, and watching the warm-up ring.

Some of the trailers are really worth a walk-through and most of the salesmen are friendly without being too bothersome about trying to sell (unless you actually express interest in buying).

Plumcreek
Sep. 22, 2012, 02:20 PM
Holy cow, you need a golf cart to get around? How many acres of ground does this show cover?
More than you want to walk in one day for the whole grounds, but the shopping and arenas are central and very walkable.

It sounds like the best newbie-spectator events and the best shopping days are separated by many days at this show. It takes more than one day to see this show?
Snork! It takes 3 days minimum to see everything. There are usually 'Congress Special" bargains at many vendors , just not the fire sales that occur on the last day.
I always go early for classes I like, and the booths are not sold out of the best stuff then.

If you were my travel agent (remembering that my gentle momma is in tow):

How many days at Congress are needed? Three (or four if you want to seriously watch long classes as well A large class can take hours with cuts, semi finals, and finals). We spent two weeks there spectating once - that was too much.

You'd rent the golf cart on Day 1 so as to get the lay of the land?
I like the golf cart idea day one to drive the whole grounds and get the lay of the land, barns, and schooling arenas, knowing that some central areas are prohibited to golf carts and scooters due to traffic jams. Day one is usually gawking day for first timers.

Would you put the Competition Watching Day first, and the "see the shops... see the rigs that you you can't buy" later? Depends on class schedules and day of the week. Shopping in the indoor mall areas on weekends can be a crush of people - do that on a weekday if possible. A good idea to not get too tired is scheduling half of each day to walk barns or shop, and half to sit and watch classes or schooling.

Perhaps, too, you need a native tour guide to take you on the Night Tour of the behind-the-scenes schooling.
Native guide would be useful - maybe a COTHer will be there to help you out the first day. Overnight schooling is usually in the 3 indoor show arenas, so not hard to find. (Also check in the Beef Barn for trail schooling, as I mentioned).

Remember to go through the Gilligan Barn to see the "in your face" stall set ups. My absolute favorite of all time was not expensive; Stanley Scott had retro used car dealership triangular flagging strands hung all over his stalls and a bit sign out front that said "Honest Stanley's Used Pleasure Horses".

No need for warning about the puppy tend. My mom is way to smart for that. If they had a cat tent, however, things would be different.

Good luck and have fun!

If you do not already have the entry book, here it is. Grounds map to print out is pg 20 - 21. (Barns have names not numbers, so confusing)
http://www.oqha.com/aaqhc/information

Sparky
Sep. 23, 2012, 10:56 PM
We will be in the Ag-Hort building from the 12 through the 16th. If you're there on those dates, come find Dreamfield Stables and I'll give you a tour based on about 19 years of experience :)

mvp
Sep. 24, 2012, 01:14 AM
We will be in the Ag-Hort building from the 12 through the 16th. If you're there on those dates, come find Dreamfield Stables and I'll give you a tour based on about 19 years of experience :)

Well, don't that just top all the kind advice given here?

My mom tends to look the gift horse in the mouth (knowing how much that gift costs....). But the offer of a tour? I'll do my best to shame her into the coming.

Many thanks, Sparky.

Sparky
Sep. 24, 2012, 09:54 AM
You're very welcome. (And one of our clients owns the Sweet Shop--'nuff said!!) Hope to meet you soon :)
Just remember, we can't get in our stalls until Friday the 12th, but that first weekend of Congress is usually pretty mellow.

WildBlue
Sep. 24, 2012, 11:02 AM
One thing that hasn't been mentioned: If you're planning to sit much and watch and don't come equipped with your own padding, the seats and bleachers get pretty uncomfortable after a while. I've seen people bring little foam pads or a folded blanket, which seems like a good idea.

I'll be a dissenting opinion on the golf cart. The venue isn't *that* big and there are already too many of the darn things in the way when you're trying to walk around. I mean, I can see it if your RV is parked waaaaay out and you're running back and forth getting horses ready, but the grounds are congested with just the competitors in carts.

mvp
Sep. 24, 2012, 07:14 PM
My mom and I "got back." So we can sit on hard bleachers just fine. Actually, she gave me hers. Not cool. Is that how you'd repay a daughter who, decades after conception, would take you to QH Congress?

The golf cart would make her feel like a beloved VIP. She'd never consent, but if I just rented it and put her in it, I know she'd enjoy it.

Sometimes parents just don't know what is good for them and must be manhandled a bit.

mvp
Sep. 28, 2012, 11:18 PM
Mommy is chickening out. That's what she does; it's her job in our family.

Friends don't want to go either

"No WP crap for me, thanks"

to

"Love to... can't afford to go and watch horses that I can't afford and buy stuff that I can't afford."

I'll keep trolling for some people who realize that they need there is a Grand Tour of North American horse shows and that one has not finished one's education without that.

But if nothing pans out, maybe I'll have to do this leg of the grand tour by my damn self.

EquineLegalSolutions
Sep. 29, 2012, 12:05 AM
Not to hijack the thread, but I'd love to have some raw video footage of the warm-up pen before the hunter-under-saddle classes. Can anyone oblige me? I want to show my eventing friends why I left the breed show world...

AQHA4me
Sep. 29, 2012, 12:48 PM
Gee Rachael:
How do you think all your AQHA clients would feel if they read this post? The horse is very small, you of all people should know this. I get it that it's not for everyone, but feel that this is very hypocritical for you of all people to post. Just remember that there is abuse everywhere in the horse world, not just AQHA or USEF or eventing or ASBs or Walkers or whatever else.

Plumcreek
Sep. 29, 2012, 01:13 PM
mvp, I went by myself the first time in the 70s - my aquaintance, who said she had gotten her ticket, did not show up at the airport, so I got on the plane and went. I met so many people, and was taken in by a bunch staying down the hall, who were from a different part of the country, knew Congress and the major players of the time well, and I hung out with them for a great 4 days. Just go. Congress is a major equine bucket list item, like WEF, the NCHA futurity, Devon, etc.

Same with WEG. I decided at the last minute, watching prices come down, to go. Found a roomate, with room, on the COTH classified, bought discounted tickets on COTH classified, decimated my airline miles account for last minute tickets, and went. Room mate turned out to be one of those encyclopedic source of knowledge people, reasonably sane, had a CAR, and we had a great time together. Met Peggy, and saw some fabulous barns.

Plumcreek
Sep. 29, 2012, 01:18 PM
Not to hijack the thread, but I'd love to have some raw video footage of the warm-up pen before the hunter-under-saddle classes. Can anyone oblige me? I want to show my eventing friends why I left the breed show world...

Congress is one place where you can see some GOOD riders on wonderful horses in the warm up HUS pen, along with everything else.

mvp
Sep. 29, 2012, 01:25 PM
Not to hijack the thread, but I'd love to have some raw video footage of the warm-up pen before the hunter-under-saddle classes. Can anyone oblige me? I want to show my eventing friends why I left the breed show world...


Congress is one place where you can see some wonderful GOOD riders and horses in the warm up HUS pen, along with everything else.

Yeah. Nothing wrong with hijacking threads in general, but I think you are barking up the wrong tree here.

As a newb, I think I'll see better and worse in the warm-up pens. But! I'd like a sherpa by my side to explain what I'm seeing. There's no reason that I-- coming mainly from English world-- would understand why the horses were being ridden as they are.

I assume that I'll see much better horses, training and riding at Congress than I have seen at my local AQHA or breed shows.

propspony
Sep. 29, 2012, 01:36 PM
One of my very favorite things to do at congress is to just plant myself at the warm up rings and watch. I can stand there for hours! Of course you have people doing stupid things, but you also have the very best of the best out there. I've had quite a few "lightbulb" moments over the years just hanging out at the warm up pen. :-)

So... Sparky, in about 4 years when my little girl is ready to hit the wonderful world of QH working hunter. (an aside can I say that I am *SO* freakin' excited about the Huntfield stuff!?!) Will you guys help hold our hands/hoofs??? :-D

After all, a barn that comes with it's own sweet shop sounds like heaven to me!!! ;-p

Sparky
Sep. 29, 2012, 04:17 PM
One of my very favorite things to do at congress is to just plant myself at the warm up rings and watch. I can stand there for hours! Of course you have people doing stupid things, but you also have the very best of the best out there. I've had quite a few "lightbulb" moments over the years just hanging out at the warm up pen. :-)

So... Sparky, in about 4 years when my little girl is ready to hit the wonderful world of QH working hunter. (an aside can I say that I am *SO* freakin' excited about the Huntfield stuff!?!) Will you guys help hold our hands/hoofs??? :-D

After all, a barn that comes with it's own sweet shop sounds like heaven to me!!! ;-p

This made me LOL! I will be going to Congress as long as they keep putting it on, although my daughter is looking at retiring in a few years, so I'll need a little bit of an excuse--your daughter would be a fine reason to attend! And thank you for being excited about the Huntfield derbies, because we are too. Come watch the finals in OKC in November :)

propspony
Sep. 29, 2012, 06:55 PM
LOL! My daughter is a little Appendix filly out of my TB mare. ;-) But she likes sweets as much as any human child, so a barn with it's own pastry shop would be right up her alley too!

I'm keeping an eye on airfare to see if there's any bargains to be had for the Finals. I would LOVE to come see them. I've been watching the videos that have been posted. Hope they continue in the future! I've never been to the world show, and I hear that it is pretty darn cool.

Sparky
Sep. 29, 2012, 08:27 PM
LOL! My daughter is a little Appendix filly out of my TB mare. ;-)

Well, there ya go--totally misunderstood that, but it's all good because I don't need much of an excuse to watch a QH hunter. She would like the Sweet Shop horsie treats I'm sure www.sweetnays.com :lol:
The world show is pretty cool, and well worth the trip.

EquineLegalSolutions
Sep. 29, 2012, 10:52 PM
Gee Rachael:
How do you think all your AQHA clients would feel if they read this post? The horse is very small, you of all people should know this. I get it that it's not for everyone, but feel that this is very hypocritical for you of all people to post. Just remember that there is abuse everywhere in the horse world, not just AQHA or USEF or eventing or ASBs or Walkers or whatever else.

Funny, I never mentioned abuse. Rather, I was thinking of movement and head carriage... But thank you - your post made a great start for my latest editorial: http://equinelegalsolutions.blogspot.com/2012/09/show-horse-abuse-one-insiders.html

PS - Apparently, I wasn't "barking up the wrong tree," as several folks sent me private messages offering to send warm-up pen footage.

Plumcreek
Sep. 30, 2012, 12:36 AM
Sparky, what day is the Huntfield Derby Finals at the World Show? I know the draw party is Friday evening, but I am arriving Sat morning.

Propspony, the World Schedule has morphed a bit, with finals now scattered around, following near their preliminary go days, not all grouped at the end. Better schedule for many owners.

TrakHack
Sep. 30, 2012, 01:00 AM
Sparky, what day is the Huntfield Derby Finals at the World Show? I know the draw party is Friday evening, but I am arriving Sat morning.

Propspony, the World Schedule has morphed a bit, with finals now scattered around, following near their preliminary go days, not all grouped at the end. Better schedule for many owners.

I'm not Sparky, If I'm reading the Preliminary schedule correctly, the Derby goes Saturday morning.

I'm in Nebraska and OKC is relatively close, so I may go for a few days, probably Thursday evening - Sunday morning.

Sparky
Sep. 30, 2012, 11:05 AM
The Derby is Saturday Nov 10th. It has some time constraints so the start time is still being tweaked. Right now the jog is at 6:30 am with the first horse on course around 7. Depending on entries, it might have to be earlier ---everyone's being a good sport about it but the fact is we have to have that arena completely cleared out by 11!

AQHA4me
Sep. 30, 2012, 11:08 AM
Funny, I never mentioned abuse. Rather, I was thinking of movement and head carriage... But thank you - your post made a great start for my latest editorial: http://equinelegalsolutions.blogspot.com/2012/09/show-horse-abuse-one-insiders.html

PS - Apparently, I wasn't "barking up the wrong tree," as several folks sent me private messages offering to send warm-up pen footage.


If you want is movement and headset why does it need to be from the warmup pen?

PS - I never made any threats, its common business sense not to bite the hand that feeds you.

Chuckles
Sep. 30, 2012, 11:35 AM
Not to hijack the thread, but I'd love to have some raw video footage of the warm-up pen before the hunter-under-saddle classes. Can anyone oblige me? I want to show my eventing friends why I left the breed show world...

You did indeed hijack the thread, so why bother with your opening line. MVP would like to see what Congress is about. Your comment was quite snarky and gave MVP no added information.
Since you have decided to go another way with your equine pursuits, why bring up the warm up pens at all? I imagine you really don't need a reminder, just an opportunity to be snide.
I looked at your website and noticed that you are a sponsor on the Pleasure Horse Journal and publish in the AQHA journal. I am left wondering why you are, based on your previous post.
Unfortunately I would not be able to use your services, nor refer anyone to them based on this apparent dichotomy between your negative opinion about the same industry you are using to help you establish a practice.

So as not to hijack the thread, MVP the busiest weekend is usually around the 17th, 18th 19th of October. It is a big weekend for youth exhibitors and is the weekend of the Super Sale.

findeight
Oct. 1, 2012, 01:22 PM
I live about 90 minutes south and go up most years...alas that job thing and need for some overtime bucks is in the way this year so can't make it.

mvp, you are fine by yourself. I mean, have you ever been at any show and asked somebody about a nice horse and not gotten a nice reply often including baby pictures, pedigree and anecdotes? Congress is no different, see good, bad and some ugly but most people are nice and willing to share. Travel should be about meeting new friends anyway, not cacooning amongst those you know.

The only 2 caveats are the weather, which ranges between 80f and 28f and the area immediately surrounding the grounds. However they sell lots of really cute clothing for the first and there are tons of hotels outside that local area for the second. Some adjacent to major shopping (like Polaris).

Oh...actually there is a third, do NOT wear blue or anything that says Michigan on it:lol:.

snydere02
Oct. 1, 2012, 03:12 PM
Oh...actually there is a third, do NOT wear blue or anything that says Michigan on it:lol:.

LOL I had to laugh at this because it is so true! ...GO BUCKS!

mvp
Oct. 1, 2012, 03:18 PM
PS - Apparently, I wasn't "barking up the wrong tree," as several folks sent me private messages offering to send warm-up pen footage.

No, what I meant is that the "tree" in this thread is my Bucket List Item, not the virtue of high-end western showing.

You guys can hate on the Congressers if you like, but I'll keep this thread to the business of getting to the show.

mvp
Oct. 2, 2012, 01:48 AM
I consent to further enabling, leaving my momma in the dust and coming to Congress alone.

So which would be the 3 or 4 days you'd want to see?

Here's the schedule for your convenience:

http://www.oqha.com/aaqhc/schedule


So as not to hijack the thread, MVP the busiest weekend is usually around the 17th, 18th 19th of October. It is a big weekend for youth exhibitors and is the weekend of the Super Sale.

Super Sale of horses?

Thanks for the enabling!

appyrunner
Oct. 2, 2012, 07:30 AM
Super Sale is Sunday 10/21. Lots of super nice horses, some going for upwards of $300k. To all making comments about warm up etc. I've been showing AQHA all summer. It's my first year. Maybe I'm not in the "wrong place at the wrong time", but I've met nothing but nice people and have seen no horses with ripped up sides or mouths. I've stood and watched the warm up pens at some big shows and while I have seen some riding I would consider a little rough - I've seen equal or worse at local dressage schooling shows. I did make it clear when I was looking for a trainer that there would be no tolerance of spur marks or other nonsense. It was not hard to find a trainer that had a kind program and where my horse gets turned out every day. I ride in a smooth snaffle and no rock grinder spurs. There are bad people in all horse sports -- but a lot of good people too. AQHA has a lot of good people.

findeight
Oct. 2, 2012, 09:30 AM
...
Thanks for the enabling!


Gald to be of help:D.

I like to watch the Reining and some of the Cutting so I always went up the first weekend but the real "glamour" events are the weekend of the sale-and it's packed.

The Horsemanship is really kind of fun to watch as they have to execute a very precise pattern. Likewise I always enjoy Trail and Western Riding which is where I usually showed.

I showed WP (correctly) and Halter a little and appreciate the better examples seen there as well as the (legitimate) handling and training that goes into them but...a day full of just that can get a little...looooong. But it's fun to watch a few and listen to the crowd "help" the judges decide.
Might want to check your hotel rates and availability too. There is plenty to see and lots you can learn from just watching regardless of when you go...sometimes it's more fun to see something you never imagined you would be interested in and realize you are interested.

mvp
Oct. 2, 2012, 11:38 AM
Thanks for the suggestion of Super Sale Sunday.

Other things I'd like to see:

Reining and cutting, HUS and over fences and some finished WP horses. Oh, and I'd got watch the Amateur Select oldies doing their thing. Trail would be good, too.

I'm not so into halter; maybe I could learn something.

Not so into barrel racing or pole bending and similar gaming stuff.

Given that-- seeing mature horses at the top of their game-- any other dates look good to you guys?

Yeah, and I'd like the Hotel/Plane Ticket Gods to smile upon me. Maybe those deities will decide in the end.

fordtraktor
Oct. 2, 2012, 12:38 PM
Definitely the Freestyle Reining is the most fun. Totally worth it. Take heavy coats and layer. The shopping is warm, the stands can get very cold.

The night warmups are scheduled by class/# so you can pick a warmup ring at night for the classes/trainers you want to see.

Modern trail is very cool/challenging. It has always been challenging but in the last 10 years the difficulty has gone through the roof.

I'd skip the halter. They used to be good-looking horses but the modern ones are so post-legged behind they make me cringe every month when I get my QH Journal.

If you want to see hunters go to see the 3'6 Maturity, the quality will be a lot better than the smaller classes. You will see some really nice horses in that class. Don't bother with the jumpers (and I say that with love and as someone who has ridden/won in the jumpers there). The C/As at any big A show are more competitive.

findeight
Oct. 2, 2012, 12:53 PM
Hey, how about Showmanship at Halter if you don't care for the big boys and those tank horses?

It's for Ammies and kids and they also have to do a little something like a pivot, are judged on piositioning the horse properly as well as figure out how to be "on" every time they are in the judge's line of sight and "at ease" the other 45min+ they are out in the ring-that gets more challenging with multiple judges. Lots of bling out there for that too:lol:. You can usually judge along with it and do pretty well even without a background in it.

Thats the one huge difference I saw when I switched, we typically don't spend as much time with the ground skills as they do-we typically let ours drag us around and walk all over us (we meaning as a group in general).

mvp
Oct. 3, 2012, 03:12 AM
If you want to see hunters go to see the 3'6 Maturity, the quality will be a lot better than the smaller classes. You will see some really nice horses in that class.

Yup, I'd like to see that. Hey, are these Appendix horses or do they have to be pure QH? I have a soft spot in my heart for the Appendix QH-- the American WB of my youth before the WB invasion. But these AQHA hunters are bred tall and narrow, right?


Hey, how about Showmanship at Halter if you don't care for the big boys and those tank horses?

It's for Ammies and kids and they also have to do a little something like a pivot, are judged on piositioning the horse properly as well as figure out how to be "on" every time they are in the judge's line of sight and "at ease" the other 45min+ they are out in the ring-that gets more challenging with multiple judges. Lots of bling out there for that too:lol:. You can usually judge along with it and do pretty well even without a background in it.

Thats the one huge difference I saw when I switched, we typically don't spend as much time with the ground skills as they do-we typically let ours drag us around and walk all over us (we meaning as a group in general).


I can't decide if showmanship is silly or not. Perhaps I should go see some well done. I'll join you in your criticism of "us." We could get our horses a whole lot more broke on the ground the way the Western folk do. I'll bet the halter people really control all four feet. I could learn something of value there, I'm sure.

bugsynskeeter
Oct. 3, 2012, 10:29 AM
No - halter people don't control all 4 feet. Showmanship people do. You can't touch your horse in showmanship, but halter horse people can set feet.

Well executed showmanship patters are hard. Here is the World Champion from the 2011 AQHYA World Show - very nice, brisk, clean pattern: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2pnbjvxdwnU

I really wish they had a Huntfield Derby at Congress, but maybe next year!

If you want to see reining and cutting, you have to be there the first week.

erniewalker
Oct. 3, 2012, 10:52 AM
Super Sale is interesting, but it's a lot of sitting in place for my tastes.

I have the advantage of living about ten minutes away, so I usually go a few times throughout the show.

I haven't looked at the program yet, but generally the classes on the same day as the Super Sale aren't terribly intriguing. I had the super-awesome duty of watching a bunch of kids while their parents (my alleged friends! LOL) watched the Super Sale in that totally zoned out, drooling, taking furious notes sort of way. They weren't even there to buy!

We ended up watching about eighteen thousand splits of the Small Fry Walk-Trot and buying ALL the junk food in the immediate vicinity just to keep the kids happy. Then they wanted to play in the super-awesome trailer displays, which are super-swank and NOT playgrounds.

I will cheerfully be going out alone this year. LOL

If you do the Super Sale, that would be a good day for shopping. Big events like that tend to draw crowds away from the trade show part, so you'll be able to maneuver around without 15,000 of your closest friends breathing on you. :)

mvp
Oct. 11, 2012, 11:28 AM
The Plane Gods have spoken: I'm crashing your horse show from the 21st to 24th or so.

I'd be pleased to meet and hang with any COTHers who will tolerate my newbiness.

propspony
Oct. 11, 2012, 01:42 PM
UGH! I so wish I could go this year!!! Have fun. Shop 'till ya drop, and prepare to see some of the most spectacularly, meticulously groomed horses IN THE WORLD.

It's an experience you'll never forget. :-)

mvp
Oct. 11, 2012, 04:17 PM
UGH! I so wish I could go this year!!! Have fun. Shop 'till ya drop, and prepare to see some of the most spectacularly, meticulously groomed horses IN THE WORLD.

It's an experience you'll never forget. :-)

Oooh, I can turn out a show hunter with the best of 'em. Can I learn a thing or two from the AQHA folks? Like what. I'd love to watch someone get a horse ready. Topnotch mane banding would be good.

Plumcreek
Oct. 11, 2012, 05:15 PM
Then plan to hang out by the ingate/make up area before any showmanship class to see the last minute prep and the banding up close.

Prepare for your trip by paging through the Congress editions of the online Go HorseShow (The cover stud, Huntin Big Dreams, is worth finding in a class or schooling session to watch in person, IMO. )http://viewer.zmags.com/publication/053a4262#/053a4262/1

and/or Equine Chronicle http://www.onlinedigitalpubs.com/publication/?i=128680 magazines.

Have Fun !

ex-racer owner
Oct. 11, 2012, 06:48 PM
So excited! My sister and I are driving out tomorrow morning to spend the day. We go strictly for the shopping- love it! It truly is a spectacle. From bargins that you couldn't believe all the way up to $20,000 Harris show saddles and $100,000 lq trailers. We do take shopping lists and have an idea of what those items normally cost, but also budget extra for the "OMG, that is a steal of a deal!" and the "Wow,I love that and have to have it" stuff.

Yes, people are up all hours of the day and night schooling horses, lunging horses, and partying, as per my BO who spent many Octobers at Congress.

VirginiaBred
Oct. 11, 2012, 09:00 PM
My employer, The Clothes Horse, is a proud sponsor of the Leading Consignor for the Congress Super Sale!!!

Hope it's a huge success! :)

paulosey
Oct. 11, 2012, 09:05 PM
Just got back from my very first Congress! It was wonderful...I was there for the cutting and reining, which was great. The shopping was fantastic and the crowds non-existant. Because it was a quiet time compared to later in the show I actually won a pair of Nacona boots from Pard's in their draw! My friend and I stayed in Polaris and the Comfort Inn was inpectably clean with a nice hot breakfast everyday. After we were done with the show, there was enough shoppping in Polaris to keep us very busy. Polaris was great for the number of wonderful restaurants as well. We were thrilled with our experience with all the friendly people we met at the show. I must say if you buy things at the shops, they are more than willing to take you and your purchaes back to your car. I can't wait til next year....I will go for the first weekend again!

propspony
Oct. 12, 2012, 12:35 AM
Oooh, I can turn out a show hunter with the best of 'em. Can I learn a thing or two from the AQHA folks? Like what. I'd love to watch someone get a horse ready. Topnotch mane banding would be good.

LOL! I always thought I was a pretty awesome groom, and then I went to my first big QH show. I was in awe. I heard a judge in a clinic once say (about showmanship) If it's day five of a show, and you clipped on day one, and you come into my class without having re-clipped, that's just plain lazy. (and unacceptable)

I've always thought I would love to groom for some of the big guys for a summer, just to see how in the heck they do it.

Endevor
Oct. 12, 2012, 08:26 PM
What are the hours for the trade show? I must be missing where that info is posted on the Congress website.

Sparky
Oct. 12, 2012, 09:26 PM
Trade show hours are listed as 9:30-7:00.

appaloosalady
Oct. 13, 2012, 09:23 PM
The Plane Gods have spoken: I'm crashing your horse show from the 21st to 24th or so.

I'd be pleased to meet and hang with any COTHers who will tolerate my newbiness.

I'll be there the 20th and 21st with my youngest daughter watching my God-daughter show. She is showing Showmanship and HUS after placing top 10 at the Novice Worlds last week in TN. I would be more than happy to take you "behind the scenes" if we have a chance to meet :).

I will also be at the Super Sale sitting on my hands to stop myself from bringing a horse home in the empty spot in the trailer, lol!

McVillesMom
Oct. 13, 2012, 11:38 PM
mvp, I'm planning to come up the 22nd! We can have a (tiny) COTH contingent!

mvp
Oct. 14, 2012, 02:22 AM
appaloosalady and McVillesMom, I'd be psyched to hang out with both of you.

Best of luck to your God-daughter, appaloosalady. Huge props for getting to such a big show! It will be nice to have someone to watch (and watch with) for showmanship since I only kinda sorta get it.

Perhaps I'll leave having learned where my own standards for in-hand training are too low. I had another friend whose mules are World Champions at some kind of in-hand trail stuff and man those things were broke beyond anything I had thought to do. I'm primed to appreciate Showmanship.

mvp
Oct. 17, 2012, 12:58 PM
Two more questions:

1. Why the huge emphasis on futurities and stuff on the flat (lots of HUS as opposed to over fences, so far as I can tell)?

2. And prices structure of western show horses vs. USEF hunters and jumpers?

Is it that the entire western world is geared to the young horse or prospect? Prices are highest for, say, 3 and 4 year olds? What age horses do ammies and kids ride? These are 8 year olds who have been "finished" for several years and already having soundness issues but are broke, broke, broke? Those horses are cheap or expensive? If so, does that mean that owners can still buy investment horses for their pros to ride? This used to be true in HunterWorld long ago but now it seems that owners don't fund the industry in this way-- they want one they can ride and ride now.

I'm confused. Looking around at stuff like Dreamhorse, it seems that the competitive western show horse is a helluva lot cheaper than the hunter or jumper.

Plumcreek
Oct. 18, 2012, 01:58 AM
Two more questions:

1. Why the huge emphasis on futurities and stuff on the flat (lots of HUS as opposed to over fences, so far as I can tell)?

2. And prices structure of western show horses vs. USEF hunters and jumpers?

Is it that the entire western world is geared to the young horse or prospect? Prices are highest for, say, 3 and 4 year olds? What age horses do ammies and kids ride? These are 8 year olds who have been "finished" for several years and already having soundness issues but are broke, broke, broke? Those horses are cheap or expensive? If so, does that mean that owners can still buy investment horses for their pros to ride? This used to be true in HunterWorld long ago but now it seems that owners don't fund the industry in this way-- they want one they can ride and ride now.

I'm confused. Looking around at stuff like Dreamhorse, it seems that the competitive western show horse is a helluva lot cheaper than the hunter or jumper.

Futurities promote stallion fees and yearling sales, and offer good purse money. Way easierto do the flat than learning to ride a horse over fences, and way, way, way more prospective buyers than for fence horses.

There are plenty of older ammy and youth horses, some have been lucky or been well taken care of and are still sound. The extreme collection and riding down to go slow at a young age does not help long term soundness, and QH trainers/owners do not usually complain loudly about hard footing as do H-J folk.

An investment horse in the AQHA world is a yearling for the pro to ride in the 2 or 3 year old futurities, then to sell for an ammy or youth to ride at 4 and beyond. There are some owners who know they will never ride at a top level and do have the finances to fund the World Beater for the pro to show year after year. Not many, but some.

A top quality $$$$ hunter or jumper is harder to find and make up than a top quality western horse, in general. Most things cost less in the breed show world (except the show tack and custom shirts!), including training fees and stall fees at the same show venues. Now reiners are a different story, and are approaching the hunters in cost per qualtiy.

Chuckles
Oct. 18, 2012, 08:43 PM
1. Why the huge emphasis on futurities and stuff on the flat (lots of HUS as opposed to over fences, so far as I can tell)?

2. And prices structure of western show horses vs. USEF hunters and jumpers?

1. Many of the HUS horses are also allaround horses that may show in western classes as well. The nice thing about AQHA is that you can ride a huntseater in multiple classes if jumping is not your cup of tea.

2 The Congress is the grandaddy of the big money futurity shows. People do buy horses as primarily trainer's horses for the futurities, but far more non-pro riders want to be able to show them as a three.

I know many, many great horses that started as wp futurity horses who have gone onto be greats in all around horses.

The reason that you are probably not seeing the big money western horses on web based selling sites is that they still tend to be brokered between trainers. I know a very nice wp gelding who did well at the futurities (didn't win any of the big ones, but did make some money) that ended up as a very nice western rider and trail horse (show trail). The owners turned down 6 figures before he was proven (and that was actual 6 figures as I knew both parties).

So the big money is in the all around horses. A great pattern, trail, western riding, showmanship horse that can still show on the rail is hard to find and can't be bought for less than 6 figures.

mvp
Oct. 18, 2012, 09:26 PM
A top quality $$$$ hunter or jumper is harder to find and make up than a top quality western horse, in general. Most things cost less in the breed show world (except the show tack and custom shirts!), including training fees and stall fees at the same show venues. Now reiners are a different story, and are approaching the hunters in cost per qualtiy.

Thanks very much for the explanation.

So... why is it harder to find/more expensive to make a reiner, hunter or jumper than the others? Is it that the WP or barrel horse is easier to make or knows less? Or these horses stay sounder than the reiners, hunters and jumpers so that there are more of them around?

I'm ready to think that it takes some time to make a top WP horse. Or is the gap between tippy top and pretty good there narrow enough that a great ride can close it in a pleasure class? Or another option: Are WP horses largely a matter of inborn stuff-- you get the pretty gaits, (relatively) uphill carriage? Is it a genetic beauty contest the way the USEF hunters have become?

Oh, and friends that do cutting horses claim that most of 'em have back problems by the time they are 4 or 5. So are these expensive because few can last long enough to get super great or broke?


Thanks again for the education. I'm really looking forward to my first Congress.

mvp
Oct. 18, 2012, 09:28 PM
So the big money is in the all around horses. A great pattern, trail, western riding, showmanship horse that can still show on the rail is hard to find and can't be bought for less than 6 figures.

You know, that all-around horse seems worth the money to me. You can't say that horse isn't useful and broke. They sound like pieces of art!

Chuckles
Oct. 18, 2012, 09:54 PM
They really are cool. And can be difficult to ride because they are smart and can be opinionated (I know what I'm doing-- leave me alone already).

I have a friend who owns a great one who is still very competitive in his late teens. His career started as a youth wp horse who either won the youth world show or was top five.


WP is supposed to be a gateway class to the all-around. The horses that are good minded, athletic, and brought along properly will win wp as youngsters and go on to be a great pattern horse.

A perfect example is A Certain Vino. He is a multiple world champion and Congress champion (he just won Sr. WP last night ---again) and he is also a very good western rider.

His correct build is where his talent starts. Add a great mind and you have a legend.

Plumcreek
Oct. 18, 2012, 11:13 PM
Thanks very much for the explanation.

So... why is it harder to find/more expensive to make a reiner, hunter or jumper than the others? Is it that the WP or barrel horse is easier to make or knows less? Or these horses stay sounder than the reiners, hunters and jumpers so that there are more of them around? There are more of them being bred (or were before the recession). The western all around horses can be modified by good training to a much larger extent than the H-J or Reining horse. Those have to be born with the body and mind to win at the top.

I'm ready to think that it takes some time to make a top WP horse. It should, but most are evident as yearlings therefore go to the futurities. If they have good management, they get stronger and more broke and show smart over time. Or is the gap between tippy top and pretty good there narrow enough that a great ride can close it in a pleasure class? No, they have to have the movement, backed by great body structure to win at the very top. Even a great rider cannot make up for a lack there. Usually the winner is apparent in WP. Classes like western riding, where there is more chance for the unlucky error, can be won by a just pretty good horse who is having a very good day

Or another option: Are WP horses largely a matter of inborn stuff-- you get the pretty gaits, (relatively) uphill carriage? Is it a genetic beauty contest the way the USEF hunters have become? Yes, which is why a few top sires and bloodlines are seen so often in winners. That is one reason they can have 2 year old WP futuritues - the top horses look the same there as they do on the longe line. The rest are the topic of chat room discussions.

Oh, and friends that do cutting horses claim that most of 'em have back problems by the time they are 4 or 5. So are these expensive because few can last long enough to get super great or broke? From what I have seen, the ante has been upped so far in cutting (like reining) that it would be strange if the big winners did not have problems eventually (like high achieving human athletes). The expensive horses are born with their style and desire to control the cow, it is just brought out by their trainers, and getting one too broke can interfere by making them think about their rider rather than the cow. I remember Larry Mahan's fun TV show where he took top trainers from diverse disciplines and put them on each other's horses. Hilda Gurney did OK cutting by staying out of the horse's way, but Buster Welch had no idea how to do flying changes on the big horse.

Thanks again for the education. I'm really looking forward to my first Congress.



Do find High Point Performance Horse's stalls and watch when Jason and Charlie, or assistant Adam Wainscott (sp?) ride (especially Huntin Big Dreams). They are one of the current top western barns.

propspony
Oct. 19, 2012, 12:09 AM
I got to meet Huntin Big Dreams in "person" this year at the Silver Dollar show. Not only is he breathtaking to look at, but is also a lovable golden retriever puppy in a horse body. He was unbelievably sweet. :-)

mvp
Oct. 19, 2012, 01:39 AM
Do find High Point Performance Horse's stalls and watch when Jason and Charlie, or assistant Adam Wainscott (sp?) ride (especially Huntin Big Dreams). They are one of the current top western barns.

I'll put those guys on my list of celebs to mob.... by myself.

Oh, and their nice horse/golden retriever in a horse suit.

Ware Whip!
Oct. 19, 2012, 11:56 AM
Went yesterday, saw what we went to see, bought what we went to buy :)

Three States, two weather systems, one fantastic day. Think I will go for a few days next year.

Heart is still racing from the Phil Harris and Blue Ribbon saddles.

mvp
Oct. 19, 2012, 01:05 PM
Went yesterday, saw what we went to see, bought what we went to buy :)

Three States, two weather systems, one fantastic day. Think I will go for a few days next year.

Heart is still racing from the Phil Harris and Blue Ribbon saddles.

Good for you!

So.... what did you buy? Did you have to bring something large like a horse or a new show saddle back across three states and storms?

Ware Whip!
Oct. 19, 2012, 06:18 PM
Nothing quite that exciting :)

Found a pair of boots I had been looking for, an arena jacket, and a smart cinch. Surprise, added to my saddle pad collection.

I was pretty impressed by these pads, http://www.impactgel.com/equine.html
The M&M demo ( you can see it on the video) sold me.

Found some good buys on turn outs as well.

Was gobsmacked by the ratio of men to women in some classes, six women to twenty five men.

Enjoy yourself, wear comfy shoes, and stay " late" if you can, the night life was very interesting.

PA to Ohio, not a bad drive, you are in WV for about twenty five miles. Rain on the way in, fog, crazy thick fog on the way home. Took it easy today :)

Thank you!

Plumcreek
Oct. 19, 2012, 06:48 PM
..... and stay " late" if you can, the night life was very interesting.



Ask about "The Green Wall". Is it still there? Of course, there is now an larger official 'night club' on site.

Ware Whip!
Oct. 19, 2012, 06:59 PM
Yes the " green wall" is there, and the "fronts" for the stalls and businesses in that barn are beyond fantastic! They go way past stall curtains.

There is the " night club" but the outdoor vendors on the midway were doing a bang up business with beer and live music.

It really is a city, and it never sleeps, my bff rode at 2 am last night. Texted me at 5 am today to tell me she was going to sleep for a bit.

My hat is off to the people, and horses that make a week, let alone a month of it.

The lights never go off in the barns, and the loud speaker goes pretty much 24/7 as well.

Horses, bikes, golfcarts all over the place. It is pretty darn impressive.

Lot's of eye candy pretty much everywhere you look.

mvp
Oct. 19, 2012, 07:47 PM
I think I can figure out how to enjoy a horse show during the days.....

But any advice for touring at night?

Ware Whip!
Oct. 19, 2012, 07:52 PM
Stay on the grounds, follow the music :)

jn4jenny
Oct. 19, 2012, 09:10 PM
Big Dee's always sends a $5 off $50 purchase coupon to their email subscribers (click here for that http://www.bigdweb.com/media/emailimages/Quarter-Horse-Congress-2012.html?utm_source=Big+Dee%27s+Big+Deals+Mailing s&utm_campaign=3ffa896ea2-Congress_201210_9_2012&utm_medium=email ) but they just sent out an interesting variant on that promotion.

AQHA Congress is doing a reduced parking fee on 10/22, 10/23, and 10/24, $15 per car instead of the usual $20 per car. If you bring your parking receipt to Big Dee's on those days, they'll give you $15 off a $100 purchase--essentially paying for your parking on that day.
http://www.bigdweb.com/media/emailimages/congress_101912.html?utm_source=Big+Dee%27s+Big+De als+Mailings&utm_campaign=c35e621df3-Congress_10191210_19_2012&utm_medium=email

Now I must say, I'm a major bargain shopper and I'm not always impressed with what others consider "deals" at Congress, Equine Affaire, etc. But if you have a coupon, you can score bigtime at Big Dee's on everyday essentials like fly spray, hoof picks, salt licks, etc. The coupon isn't valid on dewormers, but everything else is fair game.

mvp, I *really* should not go to Congress next week because I'm studying for my PhD exams in December, but it's awfully tempting to come out and meet you. I live close to the state fairgrounds.

mvp
Oct. 19, 2012, 09:59 PM
mvp, I *really* should not go to Congress next week because I'm studying for my PhD exams in December, but it's awfully tempting to come out and meet you. I live close to the state fairgrounds.

I think you should play hookie for one day (or one night while we "study" the pros training in the rings). I say this as someone who has already finished her PhD. Make of that "quality advice" what you will.

AQHA4me
Oct. 19, 2012, 10:50 PM
I think I can figure out how to enjoy a horse show during the days.....

But any advice for touring at night?

What interests you? Are you into arts, sports, etc?

Chuckles
Oct. 19, 2012, 11:15 PM
[QUOTE][/Ask about "The Green Wall". Is it still there? Of course, there is now an larger official 'night club' on site.QUOTE]

Yes, the green wall is still there ( it's a bar in the Gilligan building for those who are wondering ). Fortunately they moved the entrance to the west side. It is no fun to lead your horse past drunk cowboys! The Corral is the other bar where they have seminars during the day and entertainment at night.
One year the entertainment was extra special when someone decided to take their horse on the stage- cowboy was drunk, horse wasn't but it managed to keep them both from getting killed!!

mvp
Oct. 20, 2012, 12:58 PM
What interests you? Are you into arts, sports, etc?

I meant touring the horse show at night.

I'm up for the horse on stage. But also finding great pros to watch tune up their horses "off camera."

AQHA4me
Oct. 22, 2012, 11:10 PM
The show pens have a posted warm up schedule. You can find the schedule on the show office walls or in the celeste. All of the other pens are fair game for whatever whenever, except for lunging, which can only be done in certain pens. The over hang and denny hales are where you find most people schooling.

Flash44
Oct. 26, 2012, 06:52 PM
I've stood and watched the warm up pens at some big shows and while I have seen some riding I would consider a little rough - I've seen equal or worse at local dressage schooling shows.

I was at local day at Washington one year when it was down in VA and a trainer got on a pony and jumped it about 30-40 times over a jump in the schooling ring, cantering the whole time and yanking the pony onto the correct lead in the air over the jump. The pony was EXHAUSTED. The trainer got off, pulled the tack off and handed it to a groom who proceeded to walk the pony for 10 minutes, wiped the sweat marks off and tacked it up with the kid's tack. The trainer then walked the kid and pony over to the indoor and cracked the pony on the rear with a crop (because the pony was exhausted from the trainer riding it) and sent it into the ring.

I wholeheartedly support a rule that Ammy and Junior horses can only be ridden by the Ammy or Junior on the day that the horse is entered into those classes.

mvp
Oct. 28, 2012, 11:59 AM
^^

At Congress I didn't see as much Trainer Tuning, then Ammy/Kid Gets On To DO NOTHING In The Class as you'd think. The hardest tune ups close to the class was for the Select division (oldsters).

propspony
Oct. 28, 2012, 02:24 PM
^^

At Congress I didn't see as much Trainer Tuning, then Ammy/Kid Gets On To DO NOTHING In The Class as you'd think. The hardest tune ups close to the class was for the Select division (oldsters).

I saw nothing *but* this at the Novice West show. Even in showmanship. I was shocked at how much it went on... shocked and disappointed.