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AMHI Breaks Ground on Morgan Horse Pavilion at Horse Park

Lexington, Kentucky - The American Morgan Horse Institute (AMHI) and the Kentucky Horse Park (KHP) shared an historic milestone when ground was broken for the Morgan Horse Pavilion at the Kentucky Horse Park on August 28, 2009.

Slated for a grand opening in advance of the much heralded September 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games (WEG), the Morgan Horse Pavilion will showcase the Morgan Horse-whose heritage traces back to Vermont in the 1700’s. It was then that local choir director Justin Morgan’s legendary horse, "Figure", became the sole "foundation sire" of a breed that has made its mark on American History and has proliferated in over 30 countries.

"Building a Pavilion to showcase the Morgan Horse at the Kentucky Horse Park has been a long held vision of the Morgan community. The Morgan Horse Pavilion at Kentucky Horse Park will complement the National Museum of the Morgan Horse in Shelburne, Vermont. The Morgan Horse will now be showcased both in the state of its origin, as well as at the heartbeat of the Equestrian World at the KHP", said Robert Morgan, President of the AMHI, who co-hosted the groundbreaking event along with Bill Cooke, Director of the International Museum of the Horse.

Groundbreaking guests were welcomed with a taste of Lexington hospitality featuring donuts from Spalding’s. The greater horse park equine community was invited to attend the ceremony.

Members of the AMHI Morgan Horse Pavilion Committee, as well as other members of the Morgan community, traveled to the groundbreaking event from throughout the country to demonstrate their support. Committee Chair, Elaine Galatz from Las Vegas, was interviewed and featured by local television and print media. She was joined by Committee Members Susan Fu, from Dragonsmeade in the Lexington Area, Jack Gatewood from Michigan, Frances Pugh from North Carolina, and Jill Smith from California at the ceremony.

"The Pavilion will not only provide a venue to showcase the Morgan Horse, but will also feature an "Equine Education Center" which will include video conference facilities that can be made available to broader communities", noted Elaine Galatz.

The Pavilion was designed by Kee Fu, a world recognized Kentucky-based architect. The design incorporates such green aspects as geothermal heating and cooling, capture and recycling of rain water for water features, solar panels, and natural air exchange. Interactive exhibits and an immersive theater are also planned.

Morton Buildings is taking a leadership role in erecting the customized Pavilion. Byron Day of Morton has been instrumental in moving the Pavilion from concept to reality. Executives from Morton’s Illinois Headquarters were on hand for the groundbreaking, and hosted a VIP luncheon at "The Farmhouse"-the historic venue of the Kentucky Horse Park Foundation. The event was also attended by subcontractors Solar Design, Johnson Electrical Group and Meyer Plumbing.

"As we continue our ‘Path to the Pavilion Campaign’ in support of the Pavilion and related programs, we welcome the global Morgan community, broader equine communities; business, industry and education to engage, contribute and collaborate with us" said Linda Hall, Pavilion Project Director.

"We are delighted to welcome the Morgan Horse Pavilion to the Kentucky Horse Park –and look forward to its Grand Opening in 2010" said John Nicholson, Executive Director of the Kentucky Horse Park. 

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