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What makes your area the best?

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  • What makes your area the best?

    As far as Area I, Area II, III, etc. So, why is your area the best? Number of shows? Overall affordability? General atmosphere? Climate?

    So tell me, COTHers, what do *you* like most about your area?

    Last edited by Eventer90210; Jul. 28, 2011, 02:32 AM.
    Via SillyHorse: "Honey, if you paid that much for a 'clinic', you are the gold plated sucker."
    The self-proclaimed old-thread-reader.

  • #2
    Area 2. There are 10 events within 90 minutes of the farm (half are probably 30-45min). Probably the same amount between 2 and 3 hours. That's VERY hard to beat. There is also easy access to great instruction. What more could you ask for? (There's actually lots more to love, but that's a start.)


    • Original Poster

      How are the rates for showing/lessons/boarding?

      I'm very curious to hear from everyone allover! The google maps did get me interested in Area I/II because of the number of events so close together.

      That number of events within that range is really hard to beat. I live in central OK and there's one event 45 minutes from me. The next closest are in other states.

      Thanks for the reply!

      Also, yellowbritches, the farm you ride at/own(?) is GORGEOUS.
      Via SillyHorse: "Honey, if you paid that much for a 'clinic', you are the gold plated sucker."
      The self-proclaimed old-thread-reader.


      • #4
        Area 1 for sure! Lots of quality events within a 3 hour radius of almost anywhere.


        Great organizers – great courses – great trainers and friendly, supportive competitors! You can find a recognized event, schooling event or local dressage show just about every weekend – and not break the bank w travel and entry fees. The Area 1 council is filled w knowledgeable horse people who not only care about the sport but also make an effort to keep everyone informed and involved. I also think we have the best website at www.area1usea.org. When they post a link to the results of each event, they also post a link to the photographer’s website *grin*

        Joan from Flatlands
        Joan Davis


        • Original Poster

          Thank you for the responses!

          Once I graduate college, I'll have the opportunity to move pretty much where ever and thought I migh as well start planning now!

          Via SillyHorse: "Honey, if you paid that much for a 'clinic', you are the gold plated sucker."
          The self-proclaimed old-thread-reader.


          • #6
            Area II for the same reasons YB said. Also great courses and lots of competition to really up your game. I also like the varied terrain for cross country.

            Check out my blog at http://lindsayberreth.com


            • #7
              Area 8:

              Good things:

              1. We don't typically have broiling, God-awful temperatures all summer long. Mid-July? Yes indeed. But the rest of the season is typically very, very tolerable. A little cold in early April and late October.

              2. Great people in general, good (if not great) venues

              3. Costs are usually just a little lower than average for entry/stabling, when you look at costs elsewhere.

              4. Decent unrecognized events, although I wish there were more.

              5. We own Rolex!

              Not-so-great things:

              1. Distance between shows is not nearly as brutal as our western USA buddies cope with, but we don't have six to choose from on a given weekend within a 2-hour drive, either.

              2. Although we enjoy good weather, the season is a little shorter than some places.

              3. Places that allow schooling are, in some places, challenging to find or nonexistent.

              4. It can be a little flat.
              Click here before you buy.


              • #8
                If you live near Lexington, KY, which is in Area8 and home to Rolex, you have seven recognized events at the KHP every year (except for the WEG year). There are several more wonderful venues just a few hours drive that include: Spring Run, Greater Dayton, Gemwood, Flying Cross, all of the events in Indiana and some of the ones in TN.

                We have tough hills to rolling hills on which to condition. Masterson Station Park is FREE to school and you can go there anytime. They have cross country jumps and dressage arenas set up all of the time, on which to practice.

                It is hot in the summer, but what place isn't right now? The winters can be very cold, but so are the winters in Area's I and II. Our winters are not as long as theirs, but our summers are longer.

                We get awesome clinicians to come to our area including Wofford (clinics at South Farm, a farm in Columbus, OH and one in KY after Rolex), Leslie Law (who was a clinician at LAZ's camp and this coming weekend to Flying Cross), Becky Holder (this past January and again in August), Jim Graham, Robin Walker, Stephen Bradley, plus great instructors who already live here: Diana Rich, Cathy Weischhoff, Dorothy Crowell, Eric Dierks....

                Despite our current heat index, I love living in KY and Area8!
                When in Doubt, let your horse do the Thinking!


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Eventer90210 View Post
                  How are the rates for showing/lessons/boarding?

                  I'm very curious to hear from everyone allover! The google maps did get me interested in Area I/II because of the number of events so close together.

                  That number of events within that range is really hard to beat. I live in central OK and there's one event 45 minutes from me. The next closest are in other states.

                  Thanks for the reply!

                  Also, yellowbritches, the farm you ride at/own(?) is GORGEOUS.
                  Area 2 itself covers a wide area, if not geographically, then economically. So, "cost of living" prices (board, lessons, care) will vary kinda wildly. Showings though seems pretty comparable to everywhere else. I compete often enough in Areas 1 and 3 and occasionally 8, and entry fees seem the same (obviously, you don't spend as much on gas, stabling, hotels, and meals when you only have to drive around the corner to an event!).

                  As for cost of horse keeping and lessons, THAT can really depend. Our farm is in the DCmetro area, which has high cost of living anyway, so horse keeping is the same. Board from about northern VA and north, probably solidly to NJ, can range from about about $500 for really basic board on up to $1000ish for pretty classy, fancy boarding. I don't know what costs are exactly, but I think they run generally less in the southern half of the area (but events are also not quite as concentrated).

                  Lessons are the same, when you talk about more local, lower level or non-big names. But lessons and training with the BNTs average between $75-100, and I think that is pretty much the same no matter if you're riding in Southern Pines or NJ.

                  Oh, and I am lucky enough to manage that farm! And it is even prettier in real life!


                  • #10
                    I'm in Middle TN, which is technically area 3, which is, in fact, an awesome area.

                    Unless you live in Middle TN, which means the best part of being in Area 3 is its proximity to Area 8's KHP.
                    Big Idea Eventing


                    • Original Poster

                      I was already kinda leaning towards the east coast before I started this thread anyways, but I do want to hear from people all over.

                      Keep the opinions coming!
                      Via SillyHorse: "Honey, if you paid that much for a 'clinic', you are the gold plated sucker."
                      The self-proclaimed old-thread-reader.


                      • #12
                        Area II is fantastic, especially if you're in the Northern VA, DC, or Baltimore area. Downside? Cost of living is high and traffic sucks. I solved this problem by living about an hour south of DC, in southern southern Maryland. For a 1.5 - 3 hour drive I can access 10 - 15 gorgeous venues that hold recognized events. Within 5 hours are some of the top trainers in the sport.

                        By not living closer to DC I add about an hour of driving to get anywhere. However, I can afford a house, I live 5 minutes from my office, and board at a lovely farm with an indoor and outdoor arena for $400/mo. Judging by the comments from folks in other areas of the country, my commute to events is nothing

                        So yeah. Area II kind of rocks.
                        The big guy: Lincoln

                        Southern Maryland Equestrian


                        • #13
                          Area II, but it also depends on what time of year you are talking about. January - May we could hit the shows in Florida (8 hours to Ocala) all the way up the eash coast to Virginia HT. Aiken is 3+ hours from me, and here locally I have 8 within 90 minutes.

                          Great footing, good weather for about 9 months out of the year (although TODAY might make me change my mind!) and lots and lots of all sorts of folks to ride and train with. If you don't have to be along Young's Road in SoPo, there are plenty of very affordable places to live within 20-30s of the foundation. Nice horse community.



                          • #14
                            No one brought up area VII so I will. Although we don't have as many events as our east coast brothers, we have a decent schedule, enough to keep you busy most weekends. The weather is unbelievable, right now mid-70s and sunny. We have the offshore marine flow that keeps the temps from getting too hot and virtually no humidity.

                            If you want to go trail riding, there are thousands upon thousands of acres of wilderness and backcountry to explore, all within a 1-2 hour drive from the west coast. If you want to ski, we have world-class skiing, water sports are also nearby.

                            Boarding costs run the gamut from $150/month all the way up to around $650-$700. Washington is a very horse-friendly state, sure it rains a bit but the summers more than make up for it.
                            Yogurt - If you're so cultured, how come I never see you at the opera? Steven Colbert


                            • #15
                              I've lived/ridden significantly in CA, VA and PA.

                              CA--beautiful state, expensive cost of living and everything was a bit of a hike. Some good trainers and riders but not the depth or level of competition I found in VA and PA. Great weather...fantastic trails/beaches.

                              VA--DC area. Extremely close to a number of events and many good trainers. I could easily (and did) compete at prelim all season (one to two events a month) without ever stabling overnight...and close to that for Intermediate. Cost of living in the meca area (middleburg) was pretty high. I worked in DC and kept my horse in Leesburg....which gave me quite a commute in high traffic. Great equine support (lots of top farriers and vets).

                              PA--Unionville area. Dense with good trainers (in all disciplines). Easy access to many shows and events although more slightly further drives than VA (not significant though). I can still go to most of my events without stabling. Cost of living is perhaps slightly less that I saw in VA. Easier commute into my job (while a slightly further distance, traffic is less). Access to many great vets and farriers. Great hacking out of most farms (big fox hunting area still).

                              Weather in PA/northern VA is similar. Northern VA is usually just about 2 weeks ahead of us coming out of winter. Weather in CA was better but I would still call PA/VA weather pretty mild....especially compared to the winters in MA!
                              Last edited by bornfreenowexpensive; Jul. 28, 2011, 02:39 PM.
                              ** Tact is the ability to tell someone to go to hell in such a way that they look forward to the trip. ~Winston Churchill? **


                              • #16
                                DFW Texas.
                                Not just area V. But the west side of Dallas/Ft. Worth.

                                because I am within 45 minutes of:
                                (schooling shows)
                                Denton Creek
                                Quail Run
                                Willow Draw
                                Hidden Lakes (h/j schooling shows)

                                Mike Huber
                                Heather Morris
                                Kadi Eykamp

                                being that I usually have kiddos that need tons of miles--and need to get to schooling shows often I couldn't ask for a better area.

                                In the spring and fall I have schooling shows almost EVERY weekend. They are cheap, have great prizes, and count towards points for Area V (North Texas Eventing Association) year end awards.
                                Horses are amazing athletes and make no mistake -- they are the stars of the show!


                                • #17
                                  I love Area II, not gonna lie. Plenty of big events and little events, and pretty convenient to KHP and such, depending where you are in the area. Plus we've got CHP, The Fork, Virginia stuff, MD stuff, Full Gallop, and a newer 3DE facility in SC.
                                  Trying a life outside of FEI tents and hotel rooms.


                                  • #18
                                    You've gotten a response on why Area 1 is great from an eventing standpoint (and it is: historic roots, legendary venues, a mix of events, supportive competitors, great coaches, trainers and teachers). All this but perhaps not as intense as other places. For me, it's the other things as well: the ocean, mountains, accessible cities, "culchah", Sox, Pats, Broons, seafood AND a strong horse community that make it outstanding. Don't forget that with global warming, our riding season is getting longer and longer, too.

                                    OH! And I forgot to add the best thing: Flatlands Foto!
                                    Last edited by frugalannie; Jul. 28, 2011, 05:07 PM.
                                    They don't call me frugal for nothing.
                                    Proud and achy member of the Eventing Grannies clique.


                                    • #19
                                      Area 8 - Rolex and Richland Park. 'Nuff said.
                                      \"In all manners of opinion, our adversaries are insane.\" Mark Twain


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by deltawave View Post
                                        Area 8:

                                        Good things:

                                        2. Great people in general, good (if not great) venues

                                        4. Decent unrecognized events, although I wish there were more.
                                        These! We have THE BEST local eventing association (TEAM!) and great unrecognized events in Michigan, held on the same courses and usually up to snuff with the USEA events.

                                        And DW, if you'd live on the right side of Michigan, it wouldn't be so flat AND there is lots of schooling!