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ASHA Convention, Youth Conference, Saddlebred Ball Set for Feb 14-16

Lexington, Ky. ­– The American Saddlebred Horse Association's Annual Meeting and Youth Conference will be held Thursday – Friday, February 14-16 at the Embassy Suites in Lexington. The weekend ends with the annual Saddlebred Ball at Keeneland Race Course.


Open meetings and forums with committees begin Thursday, as is customary, and the Charter Club Council will also conduct a workshop. Thursday evening is highlighted by a Welcome Reception sponsored by the FEI & Emerging Disciplines Committee.


Friday features a pair of forums as well as the ASHA Awards Luncheon. Later in the evening, the youth arrive in droves for their conference, greeted with a pizza party, arts and crafts, a book signing by author and ASHA Youth member Sarah Hinds, and dancing – a DJ and a dance floor are set for Friday night.


Saturday offers the ASHA Open Members Forum and the Annual Members Luncheon. Also, the American Saddlebred Museum will host a book signing by the daughter of Saddlebred legend Art Simmons; Jane Simmons will autograph her new book chronicling the Simmons family. The Youth, following their Awards Breakfast, will head to Shelby County, Kentucky, also known as the “Saddle Horse Capital of the World,” for field trips to some Saddlebred farms. That will be followed by the Youth Awards Luncheon at the famous Claudia Sanders Dinner House.


The weekend’s grand finale is the Saddlebred Ball and Annual Prize Giving at Keeneland. This awards gala has grown over the years to become a quite a production. The awards ceremony is projected onto several jumbo screens, as are the video montages of award winners. An 18-piece band provides the ceremony’s soundtrack, then plays late into the evening once the ballroom floor opens up for dancing. This is the one night of the year when the Association honors the breed’s most important contributors and its brightest stars.


Official meeting materials will be mailed to all members the week of Monday, January 7, 2008. Registration forms for the Annual Meeting are available on the Association's Web site at Youth Conference registration forms are available at


A custom web page has been made for ASHA convention attendees to book hotel rooms at the Embassy Suites. To receive the discounted rate of $118 per night, make reservations by clicking here. Reservations may also be made by contacting Embassy at 1-800-Embassy (1-800-362-2779) or 859-455-5000. The “Promotion/Offer Code” to receive the special $118 per night rate is ASH. Reservations must be made by Saturday, January 26 to receive the reduced rate.


2008 ASHA Annual Meeting & Youth Conference Schedule

Schedule is tentative. ASHA reserves the right to alter as needed.

All meetings are open unless otherwise designated.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Time                       Event                                       

8am–4:30pm                 Annual Meeting Registration                  

8am–4pm                      Saddlebred Ball Tickets & Seating Registration      

8am–4:30pm                 Saddlebred Service Center  

8am–9am                      Finance Committee       

8am–8:45am                 Sweepstakes Committee       

9am-9:45am                  Breeders Committee     

9am-9:30am                  Hunter Discipline Committee       

10am-8pm                     Vendor Area Open        

10am-12pm                   Charter Club Workshop 

10am-11am                   KY & National Futurity Committee       

11:15am-12pm               Grand National Committee       

12pm-12:30pm               State Futurities Committee       

1pm-2pm                       Standards and Rules Committee                                           

2pm–2:45pm                 Charter Club Council     

3pm–4pm                      Ad Hoc Committee: Riding Schools & Instructor Certification

3pm–3:45pm                 Registry Committee (closed)

4pm–4:45pm                 Pleasure Disciplines Committee       

4pm–5:30pm                 Advancement Committee                   

5pm–9pm                      Welcome Reception Sponsored by the FEI & Emerging Disciplines Committee

7pm–9pm                      ASHA Board of Directors Meeting (closed)           


Friday, February 15, 2008

Time                       Event 

8am–8pm                      Annual Meeting Registration                  

8am–4pm                      Saddlebred Ball Tickets & Seating Registration      

8am–4:30pm                 Saddlebred Service Center  

8am–9:30pm                 Vendor Area Open        

9:30am–10:30am           Youth Committee       

9:30am–11:30am            Amateur/Owner-Trainer Open Forum     

10:30am–11:30am          Auction Committee       

11:30am–1pm                ASHA Awards Luncheon

1pm–2pm                      Scholarship Committee

1:30pm–5pm                 Open Forum: Challenges and Opportunities for the American Saddlebred – Brainstorming the Future                       

2pm–4pm                      Youth Planning Committee

2:30pm–3pm                 Equine Welfare Committee       

4pm–5pm                      FEI Disciplines Committee       

4:30pm–8pm                 Book signing by Sarah Hinds     

5pm–9pm                      Youth Conference Registration      

5pm–9pm                      Youth Clothing Consignment Sale     

6pm–7:30pm                 Youth Pizza Party      

6pm–7:30pm                 Youth Activities          

6:30pm–9pm                 American Saddlebred Museum unveiling of plans for expanded Showplace for Saddlebreds, Exhibit Opening and Reception – For the Love of a Horse: Children and Saddlebreds at the American Saddlebred Museum, Kentucky Horse Park                  

7:30pm–9pm                 Youth Dance Party     


Saturday, February 16, 2008

Time                       Event 

7:30am–2pm                 Annual Meeting Registration      

6:45am–7:45am            Youth Awards Breakfast                     

8am–3pm                      Saddlebred Ball Tickets & Seating Registration      

8am–9am                      Registry Board of Directors Meeting (closed)           

8am–12pm                    Youth Clothing Consignment Sale     

8am–11pm                    Vendor Area Open        

8:30am–4:30pm             Youth Field Trip to Saddlebred Farms in Shelbyville, KY

9:30am–11am                Saddlebred Breeders & Owners Educational Forum  

11am–12pm                  ASHA Open Members Forum  

12pm–1pm                    ASHA Annual Members Luncheon/Keynote Speakers

12pm-4pm                     Jane Simmons Book Signing

12:15pm–1:30pm            Youth Awards Luncheon at Claudia Sanders Restaurant in Shelbyville,  KY                                               

1:15pm–1:45pm            ASHA Annual Meeting                                                                         

2pm–2:30pm                 American Saddlebred Museum – Annual Membership Meeting

2:30pm–4:30pm            American Saddlebred Museum – Board of Trustees Meeting (closed)           

3:30pm–5:30pm            ASHA Board of Directors Meeting (closed)           

7pm–8pm                      Saddlebred Cocktail Reception at Keeneland Entertainment Center                                                                                             

8pm–11pm                    Saddlebred Ball at Keeneland Entertainment Center


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