On the Hunt – Equine Media Descend on Maryland

As I’m writing this, I realize that I have not been the best in updating my own website, and for that I’m embarrassed. However, maybe that’s a good sign to show that I’ve been so busy with projects and work and promoting others that I don’t have the time to promote myself? Yeah. Let’s go with that.

This weekend I’ve flown East to Hunt Valley, Maryland, for the annual American Horse Publications Media Seminar. It’ll be a weekend of learning, networking, inspiring and (hopefully) being inspired. The weekend starts with a tour of Maryland’s horse country, including fox hunting grounds and Sagamore Farm. It’ll culminate with the annual Equine Media Awards.

This year, I am a finalist in at least one category that I know of. I entered a few different stories, and one that I wrote for the Quarter Horse News was named a finalist in its category. It was a fun article looking into the history and the use of the romal rein, spurred by the use of them by 2016 NRHA Futurity Champion Andrea Fappani.

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You can read it here: Braided in Tradition

I’ll be sure to take photos and chronicle the weekend, in hopes that it kicks me back into updating things and sharing more of my work with you. To say life has been a whirlwind is putting it mildly.

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Horses Healing Humans

It’s no secret that the outside of the horse can bring out the best in any human. In fact, Winston Churchill’s famous quote, “There is something about the outside of a horse that is good for the inside of a man,” is seen everywhere horses are prevalent. That’s why equine therapy has started growing in popularity and use.

Last year I wrote an article on Acri Verde Farm in the suburbs of Chicago for the Equine Chronicle. I talked with owner, Jannee Pugliani, who is a horsewoman and a wife of a veteran. While she was finishing her college degree, at 46 years young, she learned about a mode of therapy called equine-assisted psychotherapy and the Equine Growth and Learning Association (aka EAGALA). It is through this line of work she joined with SheForce for female veterans and has made a huge difference in so many lives in just a short amount of time. 65-80

I invite you to read more about Pugliani, Acri Verde Farm and EAGALA…

Read more: Horses Healing Humans — A Reflection of Hope

The Importance of Balance in Reining Horses

While I lived in Lexington, I had the privilege of getting to work with leaders in the equine health industry in many facets. I’ve always enjoyed talking with Stuart Muir, resident farrier at Rood & Riddle Equine Hospital. Stuart is a wealth of information when it comes to the horse’s hoof, so when he knows of a podiatry topic horse owners need to learn about, he and I work together to get that information out there.

One such example is this article I wrote for the NRHA Reiner: “The Importance of Balance in Reining Horses.”

GH-Joe Schmidt

Why is balance so important? In order to alleviate the amount of stress and pressure on the horse’s front legs during movement, it’s imperative that the front legs breakover with as little force as possible. “We need to get the horse moving very efficiently,” says Stuart. “To do that, we work a lot at balancing the hoof with trimming and shoeing. It’s very important, especially in reining, to make sure that the front end is balanced.”

You can read the rest of the article: The Importance of Balance in Reining Horses

Saddle Up for Scottsdale

I know this post is more than a month overdue, but I wanted to share some of the excitement from my trip to the American Horse Publications Seminar in Scottsdale, Arizona, in June.

As you may recall, I was a finalist in one category, plus I had an article that was submitted by a client, the American Quarter Horse Journal, that was a finalist in another.

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I’m proud to say that this editorial series for the Journal won its class!

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My personal profile on Tootie Bland for Western Horse & Gun Magazine took second in the Freelance Writer division, which I’m very proud of.

It was so fun to see fellow writers and magazines that I work for be honored throughout the night. The NRHA Reiner, American Quarter Horse Journal, Quarter Horse News, Western Horse & Gun Magazine and Horse Illustrated were all honored with numerous awards. I’m so lucky to get to work with some of the best writers, editors, photographers and designers in the industry.

Also at the Seminar, I took in some motivating information from renowned editor and writer Jacqui Banaszynski. I had heard so much about her, so I was happy to spend a day in writing sessions to learn about reporting and writing.

I also took in the session led by the Freelance Remuda, and led a session speaking to our student members about careers in the equine media field. It felt a little odd to have younger writers come up and say they’d read my work and aspired to do what I do…wasn’t I just that person a few years ago?

And, who can forget the gorgeous location and scenery around the Double Tree? The cacti were gorgeous, the pool amazing, and the friendships that were solidified were empowering.

If you are ever interested in equine media of some sort, I highly recommend becoming a member of the AHP and attending a seminar. Next year we will be in Hunt Valley, Maryland, and I’m looking forward to the trip already!

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Trailer Shopping? Be Ready to Hit the Road

Summertime means road trips, and for a lot of horse people, that means taking your horses with you–whether it’s for a horse show circuit or a long weekend of trail riding. And, if you’re looking to purchase a new ride for your horses, it’s a lot more than just choosing gooseneck or bumper pull.

In the May 2017 issue of the American Quarter Horse Journal, I did the research so you can answer this question yourself: Are you looking at the right horse trailer?

 

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Read more: Hit The Road

Getting the Most from Your Horse

I just returned from a trip to Oklahoma City for the 2017 NRHA Derby, the aged event that celebrates 4-, 5-, and 6-year-old reining horses. It’s always fun to see the horses that competed in the prior year’s Futurity, as well as returning Futurity champions all in one building. I’ll post some photos from my trip later, but first, I thought it’d be good to learn how to get the most from your horse in the reining pen from the 2016 NRHA Futurity Champion (and NRHA Four Million Dollar Rider) Andrea Fappani and the NRHA Reiner.

The surprise wasn’t really that Fappani had won the Lucas Oil NRHA Level 4 Open Futurity, but the surprise was what horse he won it on, and how he did it.

Spooky Whiz joined the Fappani training barn at the end of his 2 year old year after Fappani purchased him through agent Eduardo Salgado for Rancho Oso Rio, an NRHA Million Dollar Owner. While the dark bay gelding was a bit on the small size, Fappani could tell, even at an early age, that he had exactly the mind he was looking for.

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Read more on the PDF:

Trainer Talk: Getting the Most from Your Horse with Andrea Fappani

A Tootie Bland Production – Western Horse & Gun

This weekend I set off for Scottsdale, Arizona, for the 2017 American Horse Publications Seminar. I’m so excited for this weekend, not only for the gorgeous backdrop of Arizona, nor the fact that I’m a finalist in two categories, nor that I’m presenting to our student members, but for the chance to catch up with friends and colleagues that I haven’t gotten to see in some time! I’m looking forward to face-to-face time with my editors and meeting new people, as well as all the education that I’m about to absorb to help better my writing!

Speaking on being a finalist, I wanted to showcase the article in which I’m a finalist for the Freelancer division. Tootie Bland is a legend in the equine world because of her groundbreaking event, Road to the Horse. She’s a firecracker who doesn’t have any quit to her at all, and I was excited to get to spend a couple of hours talking for this cover story for Western Horse & Gun Magazine.

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Tootie has lived a crazy life: growing up on her grandfather’s ranch, attending college, professional rodeo cowgirl, stunt woman, and now an equine production specialist.

One of my favorite quotes from our interview was: “One thing I am known for is: It is not what happens to you that matters, its what you do with it.”

You can read more from the magazine about this inspiring cowgirl: A Tootie Bland Production

I will share more from the seminar later!