For about 10 years I haven't bothered getting any horse magazines, after having subscribed to COTH since the early 80's.
Sometime in the early 2000's, it seemed I was paying for mostly a lot of vanity ads and show results in micro-type, and very little else so I let it go. Others, like Practical Horseman or Horse Journal, seemed to be nothing but product placement and the "content" mostly consisted of "ask your trainer." There really wasn't much there for the serious horseperson any more.
WELL!!! A boarder asked me if I'd like her Chronicles when she was done with them so she brought me a bagful of this year's back issues yesterday, and I am ENTHRALLED! GREAT photos,
thoughtful commentary, no shrinking from the issues of the day, and a very well rounded multi-discipline focus.
I'll always miss Cooky McClung and Custer Cassidy from the old days, of course, but I must say the "new" Chronicle is well worth having! Sending in my subscription . . .
This is kind of funny as I've been a subscriber for years and just decided to let it lapse. I haven't been reading them when they come, just letting them languish at the bedside, and I felt guilty about spending the money and just recycling them unread. Probably has more to do with me no longer showing and keeping up with that whole "scene" than the actual magazine, however!
I, also, miss Cookie and Custer, as well as the paper covers, and there are many changes in the magazine. In spite of the changes over the years, I think the present staff is doing a very good job. Even though I'm not able to ride anymore, I can't imagine not getting COTH. I hope that all of us will continue to support the print version. So many newspapers and magazines are becoming victims of the times and technology. I fear that once we lose them, we won't ever get them back.
I think they are doing an outstanding job, just as they have always done.
I have been subscribing since about 1971 or so, have seen many changes.
I still like the humor pieces best.
Then, the articles about this and that barn are wonderful to get ideas about how others do things and steal the better ones for our own barns.
I had a hard time for many years to get used to those jumping with the over the top crest release and looking like constipated ducks with their behind up in the air.
Thank goodness that fad is easing up a bit, it is not cringeworthy to quickly scan thru those pages any more, but can enjoy the colors and horses more.
I have always liked COTH the magazine, any one way they cared to publish it and still do.
I give them a +.
I'm a little like Horsepoor- been subscribing since '71 but now am getting renewal notices, and considering letting it lapse- they do tend to backlog and my main interests, foxhunting and steeplechasing, don't get the level of coverage they used to. I did used to track the shows but there are so many shows, and so few I know showing these days, it's less appealing (plus as Bluey referenced a whole lot of the pics, especially in the equitation classes, are like fingernails on a blackboard to look at).
I also haven't ever been able to warm up to the on line 'Chronicle Connection'- one of the early issues had a story on an animal communicator and I thought to myself, if they are going down that path, I'm not interested. Plus, I spend most of every workday on the computer so reading for pleasure on the computer is not my first choice in the evenings.
I also on a whim recently subscribed to Western Horseman, which I read avidly as a kid and I have very much liked recent issues I've read. Of course I need another magazine like I need another hole in the head, the Chronicle isn't the only one that stacks up on me, but well, there you are, I did it anyway.
But we'll see. I think there is a digital only option for the Chronicle, maybe I will ponder that despite what I said above.
I used to like Western Horseman, too, as a more down-to-earth balance to some of the English mags' ritziness. It always had lots of good suggestions for solving farm managment problems, fencing, tractors, trailers, etc. Very real-world.
Then they kind of went down the same formulaic path a lot of the others were, and that's when I let it go---you know, the "Travel Issue," the "Breeding Issue," the "Holdiay Shopping Issue"--seen one year, seen 'em all. The content became utterly repetitive and a lot less helpful.