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Knollwood Knockouts Banquet

The beautiful Legend of Bristlecone Clubhouse was alive in celebration January 15th as more than 140 Knollwood Knockouts members, family and friends celebrated an amazing year of riding success and anticipation of further growth in 2010.

The banquet kicked off with a social hour where members caught up on horse and holiday news. After a delicious dinner, 2009 Knockouts president Emily Wiersma reviewed her year at the helm and introduced the new officers for 2010. Hannah Shepherd will serve as president, Rachel Ferrito and Lizzy Janikowski will be co-vice-presidents, and Sydney Budzinski will be secretary.

Cori O’Brien and Angela Darrow transported the crowd to South Africa with a beautiful slide show of their trip to the Saddle Seat Invitational. Angela’s mom, Mara, provided the breathtaking pictures of African wildlife, as well as great candids of the team competing at the event, all set to music.

Carol Matton presented a special award to long time customers and friends Paul and Barb Schwemer. Entitled the ‘Atta Boy’ award, it was conceived by a group of riders who have grown up riding at Knollwood, and who have enjoyed and appreciated the Schwemer’s support in good times and in bad. Equitation triple crown winner Sara Thordsen sent a letter for Carol to read to the couple, in which she thanked them for their help raising her as an important part of her barn family.

Knollwood’s Scott Matton delivered the impressive year in review that recapped the success of the four equitation riders who made it to the top 10 in the UPHA Challenge Cup and the USEF Medal Finals at Kansas City, as well as the success in the pleasure Equitation finals. He also introduced a few new teams for 2010. Sydney Budzinski will debut on Oh What a Feeling in pleasure equitation, and Emily Mayer is the new owner of Mocha’s Mudslide. Emily Gutenkunst will lease the enthusiastic Calloway’s Don’t Panic and compete in country pleasure.

Club advisor Nancy Turner handed out high point awards for events ranging from Leadline to A circuit riders. She also read the names of the academy riders who will be receiving academy awards from ASHA.

The evening ended on another high note as the DJ started playing and many of the guests, young and old, stayed to dance the night away in celebration of another fabulous year for the Knollwood Knockouts.

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