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NWSA Fall Classic Honors Be Happy

Posted October 3, 2001

by David Wise

Salem, Ore. The Northwest Saddlebred Association Fall Classic and Futurity Horse Show was held September 19-22 at the Oregon State Fairgrounds. In the wake of the terrorist attacks the previous week, the tone was somewhat somber, and the singing of the National Anthem before the performances had much more meaning than usual. There were numerous American flags in the arena, one of which was hung by Ed Ross was from his father's casket -- he was a veteran of World War I. The NWSA Youth Group collected donations for the recovery in New York and the Pentagon area, and passed around a scroll for people to write messages of support to the citizens of those areas. None of the barns from California were able to make it this year, some by previous planning, and some were affected by having principals back east on September 11 and unable to get home in time to make the trip. There were over 150 horses competing in 106 classes.

The hospitality, for which the show is famous, was once again on display. The usual highlight is the Friday night aisle party with a great variety of goodies. There was an additional event on Saturday evening with the retirement ceremony for one of the all time greats, Be Happy, and a reception in his honor after the show.

A large group of volunteers from the NWSA is another reason this show is so special. This year's Show Committee Chairperson, Martha Keck, worked out the plan which was carried out by many, including Manager Austin Van Wyck. The show was in its third location in three years, but everyone seemed happy with the facilities, which have been undergoing improvements for the past couple of years. "Have you ever seen the Oregon State Fairgrounds looking so good?", asked Keck.

For complete show coverage view the October 1st issue of Saddle Horse Report.

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