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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan. 13, 2005
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    Middletown, USA
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    Question Question about sharing a show facility

    I am hoping for some advice from someone who is familiar with "Cowboy Mounted Shooting".

    I am managing a dressage show at a popular venue which usually hosts 2 or 3 different horse shows at a time. During the weekend of our dressage show, a group will be having a 2 1/2 day event called "Cowboy Mounted Shooting". The arena they will be using is approximately a block from the dressage rings.
    I am concerned whether noise will disrupt our dressage show. How loud is the noise and what is the nature of the noise?

    I intended to try to attend one of these "Shooting" events to see for myself but unfortunately I can't find one around here soon. I need to decide immediately about re-scheduling our show if that is the only sensible answer.

    Help, please??



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun. 1, 2002
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    Indiana
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    The horse park I show at borders Camp Atterbury which is a Nation Guard base. You have to deal with automatic weapons fire, artillary explosions, black hawks, and the occasional bomber or fighter jet. The noise is very noticable but far enough away I have not had a problem with it. Sometimes green horses are a bit jumpy, and the occasional explosion of smoke in the air doesn't make for a great hault salute, but it's not too bad. I was at a show just yesterday and people were shooting in the distance and it wasn't bad.

    A block is pretty close but the weapons are not very loud. I would make sure that YOU ignore it. They will be firing high velocity blanks from revolvers in short bursts.

    Here's a video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cgI_Br7mt_Q



  3. #3
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    Mar. 24, 2010
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    Tucson
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    I agree with enjoytheride - I would think a full block away would be quieter than the shooting ranges next to some of our show facilities, especially since the guns are quieter than in a lot of those. I assume separate warmups and trailer parking as well? The trailer parking only matters insofar as there needs to be enough, but even if it's not a rated show where it's required, I'm guessing your riders would not necessarily enjoy sharing warmup with riders who are trying to get their horses ready to gallop and turn on a dime as needed.
    My horse is a dressage diva so I don't have to be.

    Quote Originally Posted by katarine
    If you have a fat gay horse that likes Parelli, you're really screwed



  4. #4
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    Jun. 30, 2009
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    Quote Originally Posted by petit fromage View Post
    I am concerned whether noise will disrupt our dressage show. How loud is the noise and what is the nature of the noise?
    I need to decide immediately about re-scheduling our show if that is the only sensible answer.

    Help, please??
    You may want/need to inform your participants, I can think of more horses that would be upset by the shooting, than horses that would think nothing of it ...
    of course, by day 3, all remaining horses will likely be desensitized


    1 members found this post helpful.

  5. #5
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    Feb. 9, 2005
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    Ocala, FL
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    You must inform your participants before they enter. I know a few horse/rider combinations that would not enter due to this.

    L



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun. 1, 2002
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    Indiana
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    The same horse park that borders the national guard base also hosts simultaneous mounted shoooting, driving, and occasionally cow sorting shows.

    I have NEVER had a showbill come with a warning that there will be cows, horses in harness, or gun shots.


    6 members found this post helpful.

  7. #7
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    Oct. 27, 2009
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    I don't know what type of guns they use for mounted shooting but the people at the farm across the way from the stable I board my older horse at does a lot of target practice. It isn't excessively loud but definitely noticeable. I would guess they are about a block away from our arenas. I agree with some others that you absolutely must inform entrants if you decide to keep the date. I wouldn't hesitate to enter with my experienced horse but there is no way I would enter my youngster, who has never been. The show environment is already stressful for greenies and that could potentially cause a major safety hazard for those who haven't been out and about much.


    1 members found this post helpful.

  8. #8
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    Jun. 30, 2009
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    Quote Originally Posted by enjoytheride View Post
    I have NEVER had a showbill come with a warning that there will be cows, horses in harness, or gun shots.
    Or helicopters landing less than 100 feet away or local farmers with chainsaws randomly lopping off (tree) limbs (that's a good crack) ... but wouldn't it be nice

    I must admit, I'd leave the combination shooting/dressage show for the sake of my own delicate nerves



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct. 27, 2010
    Location
    Midwest
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    Cowboy mounted shooters use what are more or less blanks in replica Colt pistols to shoot at balloons. The balloons bursting is what creates the biggest noise. They used to hold practices in my college's indoor, and the school horses all across the property (about 20 acres) hated it - but the noise was amplified due to being in the indoor.



  10. #10
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    Jan. 13, 2005
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    Middletown, USA
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    Thanks all. After watching the youtube and considering everything, I think we might just re-schedule the show. Seems more comfortable for all involved.



  11. #11
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    Sep. 14, 2000
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    Chandler, AZ, USA
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    I boarded at a facility with cowboy mounted shooting. I never got desensitized, something about gunshots made me jumpy....as well as my horse.
    Theresa



  12. #12
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    Feb. 9, 2005
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    Ocala, FL
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    Quote Originally Posted by lorilu View Post
    You must inform your participants before they enter. I know a few horse/rider combinations that would not enter due to this.

    L
    Of course, I meant "must" as "the right thing to do". No rules about it, just common curtesy



  13. #13
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    Nov. 16, 2012
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    I've gone to a few shooting practices with my hunter/jumper horses, they jumped less at the noise then I did, one was more bothered by the flash than the noise but they did live on a farm in a area with a very busy deer hunting season. Sorry to bring up a stereotype but a lot of dressage horses are "sheltered" and will be unprepared for the noise compared to the family "fun" horses that are common at mounted shooting, and will be spooking not halting at x when the gunfire starts. It would be a great test of the horse's training but probably would not make you a popular show organizer.


    2 members found this post helpful.

  14. #14
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    Jul. 5, 2006
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    That's the kind of thing that (as a competitor) would make me furious if I did not know ahead of time. You only get so many horse shows to go to each year. No way, no how would I want to be at the same facility as mounted shooting.


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  15. #15
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    Nov. 1, 1999
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    Shangri-LA
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    I would agree with rescheduling. It might interfere with someone's test if shooting was going on while the test was being read to them during their ride, also, it might be hard to hear the bell if it is rang at the same time as the shooting is going on.



  16. #16
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    Mar. 16, 2006
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    Just curious if the mounted shooting event is indoors or outdoors. Based on the video, if it is indoors I can't imagine you would hear much at all from a block away. If it's outdoors I can see where some horses could be upset. In that case I may not show but I would take my horse to the showgrounds for some exposure.

    My neighbors on all sides are shooters so mine would not be bothered. It's the little fluttery things that get them.

    Last summer I took my two-year-old to his first show at Estes Park, where the dressage show shared the fairgrounds with a rodeo. Our barn was right beside the rodeo arena and they did some sort of shooting one night (same thing with balloons I think). Everyone was fine.

    PS: The mounted shooting event looks like some serious fun!



  17. #17
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    Mar. 24, 2010
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    I'm surprised to read all the "I wouldn't show!" and "You better tell riders!" because we have so many shooting ranges/race tracks/dog shows near our shows, and organizers are never told ahead of time if events are planned, and some things just happen every show and you have to deal with it. Mounted shooting isn't as much gunfire as someone taking a high capacity gun (not necessarily by the relatively low official definition - but truly high capacity) to a nearby range, nor is it as loud as a lot of the gun ranges. The horses at shows have always seemd pretty unaffected by it. If the shooting were *close*, yes I could see it being a problem - but not at a distance.


    Quote Originally Posted by LarkspurCO View Post
    Just curious if the mounted shooting event is indoors or outdoors. Based on the video, if it is indoors I can't imagine you would hear much at all from a block away. If it's outdoors I can see where some horses could be upset. In that case I may not show but I would take my horse to the showgrounds for some exposure.

    My neighbors on all sides are shooters so mine would not be bothered. It's the little fluttery things that get them.

    Last summer I took my two-year-old to his first show at Estes Park, where the dressage show shared the fairgrounds with a rodeo. Our barn was right beside the rodeo arena and they did some sort of shooting one night (same thing with balloons I think). Everyone was fine.

    PS: The mounted shooting event looks like some serious fun!
    I went to one and it was fun! It was about 50/50 with riders who fit the negative stereotypes of riders in speed events vs. riders who could easily go ride a dressage test in the snaffle they already had on their horses and put on a dressage saddle and do very well. I would like to get my horse to some mounted shooting practices and learn to let me shoot off him so I can buy/carry a gun when riding. We've had problems with dog attacks in our area, and it has kept me from trail riding so far.


    ETA: As the coordinator of the event, and with an option of changing the date, I think the OP is wise to have made that decision, especially after reading the number of post from folks who would be upset. I think it may be that they think it will be louder than it would, but if you're an organizer and know it would affect entries, a different date is a smart choice!
    My horse is a dressage diva so I don't have to be.

    Quote Originally Posted by katarine
    If you have a fat gay horse that likes Parelli, you're really screwed


    1 members found this post helpful.

  18. #18
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    Dec. 23, 2010
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    Lancashire UK, formerly Region 8
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    I think the wisdom of notifying riders stems largely from the possibility that some folks might be planning to bring green or sensitive horses for the schooling experience.... any sort of added distraction isn't conducive to ensuring a "good experience" for a youngster. Some horses are particularly sensitive by nature and it can take long, patient months of show exposure to get them working well in that environment (I had one that took over a year). I'd personally like to have the option to introduce gunfire on my own schedule!
    Proud COTH lurker since 2001.


    2 members found this post helpful.

  19. #19
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    Oct. 27, 2009
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    Quote Originally Posted by netg View Post
    I'm surprised to read all the "I wouldn't show!" and "You better tell riders!" because we have so many shooting ranges/race tracks/dog shows near our shows, and organizers are never told ahead of time if events are planned, and some things just happen every show and you have to deal with it.
    The way I see it, we all (should) be aware that unplanned weirdness may happen at a show... Or is even likely to happen at a show. However, as an organizer - if I know that there will be something like shooting going on ahead of time it will create a MUCH better show experience to either a) inform competitors ahead of time or b) change the date if possible like in this case. And isn't that the organizers job? To put on a show that people love, have a positive experience at, and want to come back to?

    I'll put it this way, if I were to go to a show with my greenie for example and something weird and unplanned happened that created a dangerous situation or caused me to have to scratch like the neighbors deciding to break out the semi-automatics next door I would not hold it against the show at all. It's just one of those things. HOWEVER, if I found out that the organizers knew three months ago when they chose the date that it was "Gun Fun Day" next door and chose not to tell anyone I would be really pissed and probably not come back. Shows are expensive, we all work very hard to afford them, and to the extent possible entrants should be set up for success. I think most of us do our best to de-sensitize our horses to as many things as possible but some things are not possible for all of us. I also think many would agree that we would rather not pay $500+ (assuming it is a recognized show) of our hard earned money to do said de-sensitizing in an already stressful environment. Just in the interest of customer service you are better off doing what the OP has decided to do and reschedule (or at least inform) so as not to piss off the people who are paying the entry fees.


    3 members found this post helpful.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Feb. 6, 2000
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    MA
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    No matter how far away the CMS folks are, and how minimal the noises, anyone who has a bad test will blame the organizers.
    "It's like a Russian nesting doll of train wrecks."--CaitlinandTheBay

    ...just settin' on the Group W bench.


    3 members found this post helpful.

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