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NEMHS Benefit Auction Caps Friday Night With Spirited Bidding

Friday night at New England brings the NEMHS Benefit Auction. Since 2003, proceeds raised from this event have helped to fund the general expenses of the New England Morgan Horse Show.


This year's event took place under the tent in the infield, where exhibitors gathered after an exciting evening of classes to relax and socialize, and of course, bid on a wide variety of items. Announcers Peter Fenton and Bill Carrington served as Masters of Ceremonies.


Before the bidding began, attendees were asked to participate in the philanthropic side of the auction by donating to Love Lane Therapeutic Riding. Located in eastern Massachusetts, Love Lane is a busy program with seven instructors who teach over 4,000 sessions of therapeutic riding annually. Therapeutic riding has grown exponentially across the country over the past several years as more and more families of people with disabilities, as well as professional therapists, see how horses can help in ways that traditional therapies alone cannot. Like all equestrian activities, it is an expensive endeavor. Fundraising activities such as the donations earned at the NEMHS Benefit Auction help to subsidize the cost of tuition for students in Love Lane's therapeutic riding program.


Love Lane Therapeutic Riding was one of the

 beneficiaries on Friday evening. They were
with a check in center ring during
         the Saturday
evening session.
     (photo by Shane Shiflet)


After many generous attendees committed to donating to Love Lane, the auction began. On the table were 19 items, most horse-related, but also several that appealed to other interests. Items ranged from a Freedman show bridle to UConn Basketball tickets to a Caribbean vacation to ringmaster Grace Yaglou’s horn, which came in handy for buyer Grace Steere the following night. Among the most popular lots were breedings to And The Beat Goes On, which went for $4,100; Astronomicallee which brought in $3,000; and Mizrahi, whose $6,500 winning bid was the highest bid of the auction.


Among the most desirable items were Red Sox 400 Club tickets. These tickets are almost impossible to get, but at New England there were three sets of four tickets available. Each of these sets went for $1,200 after some spirited bidding. 


Another item that piqued many attendees' interests was the Northampton package for 2008. This package included VIP parking, 2 ringside box seats, a golf cart rental, a full page advertisement in the 2008 show program, and gift certificates to on-site vendors. This will no doubt be a prized possession a year from now for the winning bidder.


The final item of the night was also one of the most desired: The 2008 Combined Prize List Cover for the New England Morgan horse show circuit, which went for $6,000.


Overall the auction raised over $40,000 for the New England Morgan Horse Show thanks to the many generous donors who provided items for the auction and those who raised their hands.


Show manager Fred Nava commented again on the success of the evening, “My sincere thanks to everyone who donated to the auction and helped make it a success. Without this support, we would be hard pressed to continue with the improvements to the show.”

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