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A Night of Success: 2012 Morgan Weanling Gala



Thursday evening of the Jubilee Regional Morgan Horse Show showcased fifteen beautiful weanling foals in the Fourth Annual Morgan Weanling Gala.

Up in numbers from last year’s event, the class consisted of colts and fillies sired by nine of the sixteen nominated stallions. Mark Staehnke, Gala Chairman, had this to say about this year’s event. “We were so pleased with the both the size of the class this year and the quality. This was an exceptional class of Weanlings.  The winner was a double first.  Sired by a first year stallion nominee and bred and owned by a first year exhibitor.”

Minion Millennium was represented by four entries, Benediction, Astronomicallee, Dragonsmeade Axios and Mastroianni each had two foals competing while JDS Paladin Pazzaz, Treble’s Timepiece, and Whispering War Chant sired the remaining foals. 

The Gala was well orchestrated and ran seamlessly following eleven performance classes that kicked of the evening’s events. First to show, was a beautiful foal by Dragonsmeade Axios, and the first round ended with Bob Morgan’s filly by Mastroianni.  All of the entries in between were amazingly prepared and put on shows usually seen by much older horses. 

At the end of two rounds of judging, it was LSB Game Time, sired by Treble’s Timepiece, led by Whitney Bodnar and assisted by Kurt Hufferd, who was the judge’s top choice. The chestnut colt showed extremely well in both rounds and was as sharp eared as they are made.  Owned and bred by Lavern and Sara Bontreger of Middlebury, IN, Game Time is the first foal to represent Treble’s Timepiece in the Gala. His dam, Motown Miss Loggins, is sired by Minion Millennium and out of Up Hyre Queen of Hearts. Not only is Minion Millennium siring foals that have shown and won the Gala, but he now adds Grand Sire of Gala Champions to his list of accolades.

Reserve Champion, Newmont’s Lucille Ball, traveled all the way from Vermont to show with Jaisen Von Ballimos leading for owners Walter and Margret Gladstone. This extremely athletic filly is sired by Minion Millennium and out of the champion English Pleasure mare, RKB Sizzle. This breathtaking filly represented the best of her lineage in every step she trotted.

More than $50,000 in cash and prizes was awarded that evening with $9,300 going to the winning owner, $1,100 to the trainer and $1,000 to the Stallion owner. Reserve champion took home over $7,000, with money to the trainer and Stallion owner also awarded. The payouts continued from there with sixth through 10th place earning over $1,900 each. 

In addition to the cash prizes, Top Ten winners received gift bags with gift certificates to clothiers, Marsha D’ Arriaga and Becker Brothers. Churchwells Jewelers, Saddle Horse Report, Freedman Harness, Terry Bennett’s Tack, Howard Schatzberg Photography, and Event Mix Productions also added to the prizes with their generous gifts.

Maretta Kennedy has donated the Champion and Reserve Bronze Trophies to the Gala since its beginning, and this year’s trophies were over-the-top gorgeous and very coveted by their winners. Radon Inc. rewarded the Top Ten entries with foal-sized show sheets garnering the Gala logo and special recognition for the Champion and Reserve. They were also the generous donators of the Special Ribbons and garlands of roses.

Following the action-packed evening, everyone was invited to celebrate at the Morgan Weanling Gala After Party just outside the Coliseum. Festive cocktail tables with food, drinks, and music helped keep the celebrations going until late in the evening.  The beautiful weather and evening stars were a festive backdrop for the newly formatted party, which seemed to go on and on as owners, trainers and exhibitors revisited the night’s events.

“The Morgan Weanling Gala again proved it is the premier showplace for the future of the Morgan Breed.  The Committee wants to express its sincere appreciation and thanks to the Stallion Owners whose on-going support makes this all possible”.  Staehnke concluded.

Stallion nominations are now being received for the 5th Annual event that will take place at the Jubilee Regional Morgan Horse Show in 2013.  For nomination contracts please visit their web site at www.morganweanlinggala.com

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