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What A Difference A Year Makes!

What A Difference A Year Makes!

Hats off to Carousel Charity Horse Show management, staff, horse show committee members and volunteers for listening to suggestions, working together and implementing needed changes and improvements to make this year’s show a success.

Horse show manager Austin Van Wycke, Desert Show Horse Association president and Carousel Charity show committee co-chairperson Matthew Roberts, co-chairperson Suzanne Lyons, the DSHA board of directors and the horse show committee members listened hard to what those who came last year had to say and set out to correct the problems and improve virtually every facet of the show.

Carousel Charity welcomed Saddlebreds, Morgans, Roadsters, Hackneys,Tennessee Walking Horses, Arabs, Half-Arabs, Peruvian Pasos and Paso Finos to the West World Equestrian Center, March 17-20.

One of the most important changes made was to the schedule and it was a huge improvement over last year. No one had to show their horse twice in one day, and things moved along relatively smoothly both in and out of the ring. Those who occasionally needed gate holds were accommodated and with different breeds alternating classes, most exhibitors were able to make it to the ring in the allotted two minutes without any problem.

Fern Bittner judged the Saddlebreds, Morgans, Hackney's, Roadsters, Equitation and Academy divisions. Ringmaster William Whitley joined Bittner in center ring, along with photographer Casey McBride, organist Bruce Faber and announcer Tuffy Owens to keep things running smoothly in the huge Equidome Arena.

The show benefited Florence Crittenton Services of Arizona, Inc., an organization founded over 100 years ago that was originally created to provide a refuge for sick and destitute women. The organization today offers counseling and programs to help teen and young girls. The silent auction alone raised over $1,500 to benefit the organization due to the generosity of bidders.

The exhibitor's party and awards banquet for the Pacific Coast Horse Show award winners was held Friday afternoon at the conclusion of the session. The nominal fee charged for a ticket was considerably less than last year and every horse entered in the show entitled the owner to two tickets. Proceeds from this event also benefited Florence Crittenton Services.

To highlight the fact that Carousel Charity is a multi-breed horse show and help answer questions about breeds that may have not been familiar to the audience, several different breeds were showcased during the weekend with short performances during the afternoon and evening sessions.

Mangalarga Marchador and the Arabian breed were on display Thursday, the Tennessee Walking Horse and Morgan breeds performed on Friday and the American Saddlebred and Paso Fino showed their versatility on Saturday. The Peruvian Paso breed was highlighted on Sunday.

With all the positive changes made for this year’s show, the mood was great all weekend, although bittersweet. Trainers Barry and Teri Yount have been a big part of the show for years and always bring a big, competitive group to Carousel. The recent passing of Barry Yount left a big hole in the industry and his presence was sorely missed at the show.

Teri Yount put on her game face and brought the big group of Barry Yount Stables horses and riders to compete at the show despite her recent tragedy, and she met them in the winner’s circle time after time.

Yount was stoic and composed throughout the weekend, appearing shaken only once, when it was announced that her rider Amanda Zale would receive the Barry Yount Memorial Perpetual Trophy for winning the Junior Exhibitor Five-Gaited Stake with Apache Rose of Silver Oaks.

Martin Cockriel had two winners in the five-gaited division. High On Champagne was the open champion and Five-Gaited Grand Champion, and his junior horse Dit Dot Com was also a blue ribbon winner.

Teri Yount rode Five-Gaited Reserve Grand Champion Premier's Belief for Hollett Farms and Stables.

Barbara Farrell and The Champagne Rebel Rouser moved up in the ribbons to capture the amateur tricolor, directed by Teri Yount, and Georgine's Show Girl took the reserve ribbon in the stake with Jackie Deatherage from Bugle Boy Stables. Sky's Blue Angel and Bobbie Reid won the open qualifier.

Warwick Castle and Kendall Weber took the reserve tricolor in the juvenile stake for Patrick Weber.

Pop Secret and owner Katherine Williams were the winning entry in the Three-Gaited Stake after qualifying in the amateur class. Williams also went home with a reserve tricolor from the amateur stake. Peggy Mehagian, 76 years young, and Priceless Heirloom were two for two in the amateur three-gaited division under the direction of Roy Tuttle.

Trainer Matthew Roberts, of White Star Stables, rode Celtic Charmer to the blue ribbon in the UPHA Classic for Sterling Silver Farm to close out the division.

Lucky's Revelation and Teri Yount went to the winner's circle in the Three-Gaited Park Stake, topping a pair of competitors. Casey of Stoneview and Roman Marcos finished in the number two slot in the stake for owners Sean and Joan Macauley. Matthew Roberts was back in the winner's circle, but this time it was with the Prieser/Windchase Farm entry Periaptor's Chief Executive in the open park class.

Lynda Lord represented White Star Stables in the winner's circle in the park division as well. She rode Maximilian's Court to the tricolor in the amateur stake after having taken the blue ribbon ride in the amateur qualifier.

A.J. Jenkins directed his wife Penny Jenkins to the amateur reserve grand championship effort with Mt. Dell Turning Point.

Casey Of Stoneview and teammate Alex Macauley turned in two blue ribbon rides in the junior exhibitor park division from Emerald Hills Ranch.

The team of Sass With Class and Heather Greenbaum were new teammates in the amateur fine harness division but that didn't stop them from working hard and making it look like they were a veteran pair as they won both the amateur stake and qualifier. Philosopher and Alex Macauley gave Emerald Hills a sweep of the fine harness division by taking the victory pass in the ASHAF Youth Fine Harness Driving Challenge.

The top two ponies in the open roadster division, according to judge Fern Bittner, swapped places between the open stake and qualifier. Fit To Be Tied and Cayce Marcos won the stake class for Emerald Hills and open winner What Luck was reserve with owner Sandra Surber driving from Dixon Stables.

Dr. Robert Saretsky and Kilbro's Sly Devil closed out the division with the blue ribbon effort in the amateur class. Matthew Roberts met the pair in center ring for their presentation.

No Illusion and Julie Greenbaum Belgrad added yet another tricolor neck ribbon to the Emerald Hills Ranch total when they were called out as the winners of the Hackney Pleasure Pony Driving Stake. Dixon Stables' entry Heartland Entitled was the winner of the qualifier and took the reserve tricolor for owner Yvette Scandling.

The Five-Gaited Pleasure Grand Champion, Will's No Doubt About It, had the added distinction of earning the Arizona State Championship title with the victory. Bruce Dixon met owner Helen Taylor in the ring to pin the tricolor. Taylor and her mount had previously won the qualifier as well.

Callaway's Shotgun was the reserve grand champion with Dr. Robert Saretsky up. Saretsky qualified Callaway's Shotgun for the stake class by taking the blue ribbon in the novice rider class.

The Three-Gaited Park Pleasure Stake was one of the show's more competitive classes, with six talented entries showing. Makin' A Splash made an impression on Bittner and went to the winner's circle for owner Amy Barmeier Dru. Dave Hysaw brought a boatload of entries, owners and exhibitors to Carousel and stayed busy all weeken. He showed Atlanta Brave to the Three-Gaited Park Pleasure Reserve Grand Championship for Thomas and Janet Callahan.

Jannie Giles and Corsage were the team to beat in the open park pleasure qualifier. Giles took the black mare to the winner's circle for owners Daniel and Suzanne Murphy.

Trainer Mike Mooney, of Destrier Morgans, rode OH Harper's Elegance to the top of the card in the Junior Three-Gaited Park Pleasure class for owner Donna Harper. The UPHA Classic for three-year-old park pleasure horses closed out the division and Reedann's Son Of A Gun finished with the blue ribbon with Matthew Roberts up for Rosanne Land.

The Three-Gaited Pleasure Stake was also an Arizona State Championship and all four entries from the qualifier returned to compete in the stake. Undulata's Charm ended up with the prestigious title and tricolor with owner Donna Kinard in the saddle. CH J. Peterman, now teamed with owner Corrine Tomlinson, followed up the win in the qualifier with the reserve grand championship title.

Ko Ko B Ware of Silver Oaks and Gentry Beaudair swept the juvenile show pleasure division, taking the victory pass both the stake and qualifier. Casino Lights and Kendall Weber were the reserve grand champions for Sabino Equestrian Center. Aly Young rode Undulata's Dekspose to the win in the Three-Gaited Pleasure Novice Rider class.

It's Good Karma added two more winning ribbons to the Emerald Hills Ranch tack room wall. Julie Greenbaum Belgrad drove for both wins. Commander's Return was the reserve grand champion with owner Ron Harris driving.

Remember Me of Silver Oaks teamed up with Kendall Weber for the blue ribbon in the ASHAF Show Pleasure Youth Driving Challenge. Weber drove for owner Lauren Kaplin.

Suzanne Federico and Ruler of the Roost moved up in the ribbons to be named the Country Pleasure Arizona State Grand Champion, edging out five other top teams including adult qualifier winner Sedona Red ridden by Mary Strohfus.

Kendall Weber continued her busy and successful week by going to the winner's circle twice more. Weber rode her country pleasure mount CH Highpoint's Abba Zabba to the junior exhibitor grand championship and qualifier wins. Both classes hosted six competitive teams and were some of the largest classes of the show.

Harley's Angel was the juvenile reserve grand champion with Hannah Vandeventer up for Robert and Marilyn Saretsky. Vandeventer rode under the direction of Matthew Roberts and instructor Marcia Everett.

Mike Setzer and Wingsong's Sassy Day won the novice rider class for owner Desert Palms LLC. Setzer topped three other riders for the win.

Julie Greenbaum Belgrad and Corrine Tomlinson were headed up by Roman and Cayce Marcos, respectively, as they waited in the lineup of the Country Pleasure Driving Stake for Bittner's decision. When the results were announced, qualifier winner Money Train and Belgrad were the winners. Tomlinson and Shadow Valley claimed the reserve grand championship title.

Sedona Red and Mary Strohfus moved up in the ribbons to claim the Western Country Pleasure Grand Championship title. Undulata's Blustery Day was reserve in the four-entry stake with owner Patti Harms. Exquisite Step and Teresa Amen won the blue ribbon in the qualifier.

Desert's Indian Fireworks and Kendall Weber finished with the Western Country Pleasure Junior Exhibitor Grand Championship title. They were followed in the ribbons by reserve grand champion Desert's Hundred Memories, with Loren Prieser up for Windchase Farm, winners of the qualifier.

Exquisite Step and Amen also won the Saddle & Bridle Shatner Western Pleasure class.

The junior/limit horses had their own qualifier and stake classes in the western division and New Wave moved up in the ribbons to finish with the tricolor. Owner Joanna Kuehl-Shine rode for the victory pass. Undulata's Blustery Day and Harms closed out the division with the win in the junior/limit qualifier and topped four other teams for the victory.

Telemark's Flame and Donna Neessen were the team to beat in the Saddle & Bridle Hunter Classic Stake. Exquisite Step proved a versatile champion with owner Teresa Amen by winning the six-entry Hunter Country Pleasure class.

Two of the four riders in the 17 and under class returned for the Saddle Seat Equitation Championship. One of the two was Kendall Weber, riding Casino Lights, and she won both classes under the direction of her mom Tara Weber. Ashley Reinke was the reserve grand champion with Deerhaven's Roll Call.

Hannah Rahav went to the top of the class in the 10 and Under Walk and Trot Equitation Championship with her mount Susie Serenade. Rahav rode under the direction of Emerald Hills Ranch.

Sydney Shaw, riding Joe Perry, was reserve in the stake under the direction of Teri Yount. Madison Marino and Kiss A Spot won the walk and trot qualifier.

Cameron Blackwell rode Sweet Delilah to the win in the USEF Saddle Seat Medal class. CF Prowler's Keepsake and Kendall Weber teamed up for the win in the 17 and under UPHA Challenge Cup and Hannah Rahav won the 10 and Under UPHA Walk and Trot Challenge Cup.

With one of the best facilities in country, a great locale with great weather and plenty to do, Carousel Charity had many things going for it already. With the hard work and positive changes made by the management, staff and horse show committee, the list of reasons why everyone should be heading to Scottsdale, Arizona in March each year, grew even longer.

The only thing that could have made the show better would have been more horses. So often, people are quick to dismiss a horse show that doesn’t seem to draw big numbers. At some point, the question has to be asked “Whose fault is that?”

Carousel Charity Horse Show was as good as it could be this year. Exhibitors, owners and trainers were treated well, those involved had fun and left happy, and the staff worked very hard to prove to the horse show world that they want you to attend and are willing to work hard to make the show a “must do” on everyone’s list in March. Now its up to owners, trainers and exhibitors to make the choice to perhaps step out of the box and make the trip to Scottsdale next year to judge for themselves.

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