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Summer Fun in Florida

by John C. Privette

When Florida women decide to do something, they simply make it work. Just look at what Pam Roush and Mary Jo Schmidt, both Tampa-area trainers, accomplished in three short months. In March, they realized local riders needed another opportunity to get into the show ring and see the “high-tailed” horses that will be heading to the world’s championship competition.

On June 14-16, UPHA Chapter 16 brought it all together at the Florida State Fairgrounds. Spearheaded by Roush and Schmidt, the show featured Saddlebred, Morgan and academy riders. An estimated 100 horses went through the gates at the backside covered arena with riders showing their stuff in front of Judge Adam Clauson.

Academy classes were full and competitive. While show horse numbers were limited, exhibitors, parents and spectators were treated to a preview of the coming summer. One highlight was the presentation of Pixie Dust & Steel’s newest fine harness star shown by Ruth Gimpel. R Farm brought several nice horses, showing that Andres Herrera is ready to head north.

Arboria Morgans, Avalon, William Dooley Saddlebreds, Five Gates, Gateway Stables, Ruth Gimpel Stables, Hawkewood Farm, Horseshoe Farm, MJO Stable, Porte Reve, R Farm, Rick Davis Stable, Waltz Awhile, Whispering Oaks and West Coast Morgans all took home top ribbons.

With the Association’s emphasis on more grassroots horse shows, this event filled the bill. Plans are already underway for next year’s second annual event the same week.

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