December 17, 2009

Congratulations to Liz Hartmann!

Liz Hartmann, from Hood River, OR, is the winner of our monthly $50 gift certificate drawing ... and all she did was sign up to receive our weekly e-News!

Congratulations Liz ... and good luck to all of you!

AAEP Convention Draws Largest Crowd Ever

New equine research, practical veterinary techniques and business education attracted a record 7,611 attendees to the American Association of Equine Practitioners’ 55th Annual Convention in Las Vegas, Nev., Dec. 5 – 9. The previous record was set during the 2007 convention in Orlando, Fla.

“The economy has affected all aspects of the horse industry in 2009, and I believe our record attendance indicates how strongly equine veterinarians value quality continuing education,” said David L. Foley, AAEP executive director. “I want to thank the Educational Programs Committee and convention program chair Dr. Nat White for their exceptional efforts putting together this year’s scientific program.”

Highlights from the convention include:

  • Installation of new officers and board members. The 2010 Executive Committee and new members of the board of directors took office Dec. 8. The members of the Executive Committee are Nat White II, DVM, Leesburg, Va., president; William Moyer, DVM, College Station, Texas, president elect; John Mitchell, DVM, Boca Raton, Fla.; Harry W. Werner, VMD, North Granby, Conn., immediate past president; and Jeffrey T. Berk, Ocala, Fla., treasurer.
    New members of the board of directors are: District IV – Jay D. Addison, DVM, Independence, La; District V- John A. Stick, DVM, Williamston, Mich.; District VI – Josie Traub-Dargatz, DVM, Fort Collins, Colo.; Director at Large – Roger Rees, DVM, South Jordan, Utah; and Mr. Bill Brewer, equine industry board member.
  • Annual awards presented. The AAEP honored the 2009 recipients of several awards. The following were recognized at the Dec. 8 President’s Luncheon:
    Distinguished Educator Award: John T. Vaughan, DVM, and the late Dean Scoggins, DVM
    Distinguished Life Member: Tom R. Lenz, DVM, MS, and C. Wayne McIlwraith, BVSc, Ph.D.
    Distinguished Service Award: Scott E. Palmer, VMD
    Equine Welfare Award – The Lavin Cup: North American Equine Ranching Information Council
    President’s Award: Steve O’Grady, BVSc
  • Prominent orthopedic surgeon delivers featured lecture. The Frank J. Milne State-of-the-Art Lecture – “Operative Orthopedics of the Equine Fetlock Joint: Fractures, Fragments, Failures and Fixes” – was given by internationally recognized surgeon Larry Bramlage, DVM, MS.
  • Auctions raise funds for AAEP Foundation. The annual live and silent auctions held during the Foundation Celebration raised $93,000 to help fund student scholarships, benevolence work and equine research.

The AAEP’s 56th Annual Convention will be held in Baltimore, Md., Dec. 4 – 8, 2010. More information is available at

The American Association of Equine Practitioners, headquartered in Lexington, Ky., was founded in 1954 as a non-profit organization dedicated to the health and welfare of the horse. Currently, the AAEP reaches more than 5 million horse owners through its nearly 10,000 members worldwide and is actively involved in ethics issues, practice management, research and continuing education in the equine veterinary profession and horse industry.

Plan Your Lodging for HITS Thermal

Winter showing is just around the corner and HITS Thermal is looking forward to welcoming you back.

HITS sends these recommendations of preferred lodging partners to help with your planning:

  • Best Western Date Tree*: 760.347.3421
  • Comfort Suites Palm Desert*: 760.360.3337
  • Desert Springs, a JW Marriott Resort & Spa*: 760.341.2211 | Special HITS rate promotion/code: H44
  • Fantasy Springs Resort Casino: 760.342.5000 | 800.827.2946
  • Hyatt Grand Champions Resort, Villas and Spa*: 800.233.1234
  • Indian Palms Country Club & Resort*: 760.775.4444
  • Inn at Deep Canyon*: 760.346.8061 | 800.253.0004
  • La Quinta Old Town Villas (Fairway Vacation Rentals)*: 760.345.5695 | 800.869.1130
  • La Quinta Resort & Club*: 877.503.3335 | 800.598.3828
  • Luxury Leasing Vacation Rentals: 877.883.9766
  • Super 8 Indio*: 760.342.0264

* Special rates, when offered, as well as pet-friendly designations, are listed on the Lodging Section of the HITS Thermal Website at

Make your reservations early in order to obtain the best rates available. Don't forget to mention HITS Thermal!

USEF Announces the Five Farnam/Platform USEF Horse of the Year Candidates - Including Ravel - Voting Now Open

By Brian Sosby

Excellence in equestrian sport does not come easy. It takes an amazing sense of dedication, incredible skill and a courageous heart. And in 2009, five horses (and their riders, drivers and handlers) have shown the world exactly those qualities. For each of them, their hard work and brilliant talent has garnered them a nomination for the United States Equestrian Federation’s highest honor bestowed upon a horse – the Farnam/Platform USEF Horse of the Year Award.

The five nominees represent the breadth of the Federation’s breeds and disciplines well. They will join the pantheon of past winners of this prestigious award: driving horse Jamaica (2008); event pony Teddy O’Connor (2007); jumping horse Authentic (2006); and dressage horse Brentina (2005).

This year’s awards will be presented during the 2009 Horse of the Year celebration as a part of the USEF’s Annual Meeting. The gala will take place at the Downtown Marriott Louisville on January 15.

USEF members may vote for their choice for the Farnam/Platform USEF Horse of the Year by visiting A link is located on the homepage, and voting will close on January 8, 2010.

Click here to read about the nominees.

Mustang Heritage Foundation & the American Competitive Trail Horse Association Create Mutual Support and Sponsorship

“That’s about the only way I can describe what we’ve done” states Tom Scrima of ACTHA. “The Mustang Heritage Foundation and ACTHA have created a relationship that promotes both organizations while increasing Competitive Trail Ride Challenges (CTC’s) and fundraising opportunities for Mustang trainers.

“The mission of the Mustang Heritage Foundation is to increase adoption of wild horses” states Patti Colbert, Executive director of the MHF. “ACTHA is focused on providing support for the abandoned and unwanted horses. With the Foundation and ACTHA working together, we can positively impact the lives of horses in so many ways.”

Together the way it works is MHF has hundreds of their trainers all across the USA. MHF will give them the opportunity to become ACTHA ride hosts, or as ACTHA calls their local ride managers AFFILIATES. An affiliate holds ACTHA’s Competitive Trail Challenges, CTC’s©, all over the nation. Hundreds of rides happen every year from coast to coast giving wonderful prizes and recognition to the riders on America’s great unsung hero’s…The Great American Trail Horse. Riders can ride unique trails for pleasure or to be judged on various natural skill challenges along the way. Affiliates earn money at each of these local events, sometimes as much as $4,000. But there’s a lot of work and expertise that goes into the effort!

The rides are a one day affair and allow participants to ride locally and often on private lands not normally accessible to them. Sponsors lavish prizes and awards to these representatives of the largest sector of the horse industry….the trail rider!

Click here to read more.

Anthropologie Shopping Event and Auction Held for the Equestrian Aid Foundation

Anthropologie’s “Socks and Shoes” holiday shopping event and auction, held Dec. 10, made gift giving a snap this season. The fundraiser – sponsored by Anthropologie, The Esse Family, The Macallan, and Stephen Vincent Wines – benefited the Equestrian Aid Foundation (EAF). The EAF is a nonprofit organization that provides assistance for basic medical needs funding for those in the equestrian community suffering from catastrophic illness or injury.

In the past, Anthropologie has graciously hosted holiday benefits for the EAF at its store in New York City and this year suggested moving it out of the snow to Beverly Hills. “We were pleased to once again partner with the EAF to raise funds to support our community,” said Chief Executive Officer of Urban Outfitters Inc. Glen Senk. “As a horse owner, I am eternally grateful to the myriad of people who keep my animals fit and healthy, and it is my pleasure to help those same people in their time of need.”

Click here to read more about the event.

(l-r) Tracy Esse, Alice Breidendach, Olivia Esse and Scot Evans
at the Holiday Soiree to Benefit the Equestrian Aid Foundation.
Photo by Elevation Photos

Katie Upton's First Annual Holiday Open Studio ... RAIN DATE!

Katie's Open Studio was postponed due to rain. The event is now being held this Saturday, December 19th from 1-5pm.

When: Saturday, December 19, 2009; 1pm-5pm
Where: 2262 Las Canoas Rd, Santa Barbara

Appointments Welcome.

Katie: 805-455-0977 or email

And don't forget to order your 2010 Katie Upton Perpetual Calendar!

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Super versatile, shows in every ring. Shown 1.2m in Germany and US. Currently showing Green Rider thru Children’s Hunters and Equitation with local wins.
Cute form, good mover, comfortable, lovely rhythm,
auto changes. Well schooled. Good x-rays.

Chestnut Hills Equestrian Center • Bonsall
760-945-9278 •

Wanted: Readers!

We frequently receive review copies of books before they're available to the general public. They range from beautifully illustrated, coffee table caliber books to training how-tos in every imaginable equestrian subject.

You can be one of the first to read these books. All we ask is a short review for our readers. If we OK your review, it will appear online at and possibly in print in California Riding Magazine. Best of all, you keep the book!

Click here for a list of available books. NEW BOOKS ADDED 12/2/09!

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