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Update to Forum Rules: Criminal Allegations

In our continuing effort to provide an avenue for individuals to voice their opinions and experiences, we have recently reviewed and updated our forum policies. Generally, we have allowed users to share their positive or negative experiences with or opinions of companies, products, trainers, etc. within the industry, and that is not changing.

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Forum rules and no-advertising policy

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(Revised 5/9/18)
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Trainers in Kentucky/Ohio/Indiana area & club ideas

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  • Trainers in Kentucky/Ohio/Indiana area & club ideas

    Hello all.

    I've offered to step up to run and, hopefully, rejuvenate a driving club in the Dayton, Ohio area. We are currently a strictly recreational/parade club but our membership and participation is dwindling. I would love to get some more excitement into driving in the area and getting new drivers started as well. I was thinking of organizing clinics, or schooling shows, maybe drive a test or something similar. I'd like to get a list of trainers/judges/clinicians to start speaking to some about the possibilities.

    The second part of my question is.... if you were a member (either new, old, or just getting started in the sport) of a driving club, what opportunities or schooling events would you like to see? What would get you excited to drive?

    Thanks in advance!

  • #2
    I don't belong to a club, but my area started a driving show series. A regular open show in the morning with driving in the afternoon. We introduced ADS reinsmanship classes and cones this year and those classes have been very popular. Other classes include working cart, driven trail and various ground driving classes for horses not ready to be hitched. I am hoping that driven dressage will be added to the show bill. The people with minis have really turned out for these shows. Some people drive a couple of hours to show.


    • #3
      Don't know anyone in the area, but a couple thoughts, heavy on the beginner friendly:

      Vehicle choice and maintenance! This can be intimidating for the newbie especially and so many of us get sucked into poor cart choices first than can ruin the driving experience either through uncomfortable rides or the wrecks they might cause.

      Harness fit and function, preferably with multiple types of harness and not just simply breastcollar and neckcollar, but buggy collars and work collars, straight breastcollars, curved, extreme V (empathy, comfyfit, Camptown Freedom etc.), Eurocollar/comfyfit collar/brollar, work harnesses versus pleasure harnesses, team harnesses, gig saddles, etc. Either someone(s) with horses and equipment to demonstrate or people bringing their own, the former probably being the safer option.

      Pre-show clinic/schooling show to help people be familiar with what is expected and tips for their turnout, etc. so something with feedback, not just a ribbon so people know why this turnout did better than that one.

      For shows offer classes that are "get your feet wet" or "greenie" type that allow more relaxed (still safe!) turnout for people who want to try showing without having to invest $$$ in turnout.

      Trail drives

      "Fun Days" with stuff like cones, hazards, or trail obstacles (carrying water cup from A to B without spilling, pivot in a hulahoop/on a board, etc.).

      Our state organization has a driving trial series of 6-8 a year depending on how many people want to host one and they do year-end high point awards and such.

      I like the idea above for the ground driving classes too.


      • #4
        First off thank you for stepping up to the role. I am glad to hear you are getting something going in the Dayton area and would be interested. I agree with the poster above that driving fundamentals and fun has a huge draw. I know a number of people that have purchased small ponies and mini's that have a tough time finding good basic instruction or places to go that aren't show or performance oriented, but would like to get off the farm. Possibly you can coordinate with local fairgrounds like 4H clubs do, or driving friendly places for people to bring their horses to practice and socialize it would bring people together. Good luck in this adventure.


        • #5
          My local Carriage Club does monthly drives - weather permitting - that always include a great potluck lunch.
          Besides local parks, a couple members have enough land to host drives on their property.
          Members also show at local fundraiser shows - 4H, County Fair, etc and a group always attends the National Drive.
          Besides drives they have visited a camel farm, Amish harnessmaker, the Shipshewana auction & last year a racetrack where we were invited to the paddock & Winners Circle.

          As nice as all of the above is, they don't seem to go in much for learning/clinic situations.
          I;d love to get more learning time at the lines & Dayton is not too far - 4+h - from home - so a weekend clinic would be doable.
          I'd love to play with CDE-type driving: dressage, cones, marathon w/o being in a competition.
          *friend of bar.ka*RIP all my lovely boys, gone too soon:
          Steppin' Out 1988-2004
          Hey Vern! 1982-2009, Cash's Bay Threat 1994-2009
          Sam(Jaybee Altair) 1994-2015


          • #6
            I am in Cincinnati and am looking to get a driving mini in the next year so I would be thrilled to see clinics locally! I was looking the other night and was disappointed that there doesn't seem to be any ADS shows closer than Kentucky.


            • Original Poster

              Thanks everyone! I've got a clinician interested in working with me next year to get some learning opportunities brought to the area. I have a couple of super fun drives planned (more than just the poke around variety, but those will be options too). We have some trail obstacles that we play with on at least one of our drives each year, and I expect those will continue as well. Basically, I want to keep the same format of recreational drives, but add educational and "dirty harness" show driving opportunities. If you're in the Dayton/Cincy area, watch the facebook groups and once I get things a little more put together, I'll be putting out information on how to join as well as what we have planned!


              • Original Poster

                Originally posted by Minxitbabe View Post
                I am in Cincinnati and am looking to get a driving mini in the next year so I would be thrilled to see clinics locally! I was looking the other night and was disappointed that there doesn't seem to be any ADS shows closer than Kentucky.
                Yes, I've seen this. The only ones "nearby" are the Kentucky Classic and one in Indiana. The Indiana one is supposed to be fantastic for beginners and minis to get started in the sport. The "dirty harness" shows I'm considering would offer classes like the ADS shows, but wouldn't be sanctioned, it would be an opportunity to get out, compete in a safe, friendly, and educational atmosphere. I think the educational aspect is definitely missing in this area. But a lot of people (myself included) LOVE a little friendly competition as well and to see how you stack up with others. Cincinnati also has the Ohio Valley Carriage Club and we've started a little mini group in the area as well. If you're on facebook, look up the Cinci Hyperbikes and Minis group, I'll be posting all of the Miami Valley Carriage Association (Dayton club) information there as well.


                • #9
                  I can vouch for the CDE at Hoosier Horse Park to be a good place for beginners.
                  I volunteered a couple years ago & everyone was very welcoming.
                  It was refreshing for me to hear judges discussing classes with the competitors while they were on course < I was setting Cones.
                  I got to see some of the Driven Dressage, but was not there for day 2 & Marathon.
                  They also treated volunteers like royalty:
                  Member taught us the ropes - having never done this it was great to get such good instruction.
                  We had a tent & chairs provided to get out of the sun.
                  A golf cart circulated with water & snacks.
                  & a free lunch was available, along with our choice of souvenirs (I got an ADS visor). Grownup Happy Meal
                  *friend of bar.ka*RIP all my lovely boys, gone too soon:
                  Steppin' Out 1988-2004
                  Hey Vern! 1982-2009, Cash's Bay Threat 1994-2009
                  Sam(Jaybee Altair) 1994-2015


                  • #10
                    Sounds like you have a good plan and I look forward to stopping by an event next year. Not ADS sanctioned would likely mean a little more budget friendly as well which would be awesome!