The weekend of April 10 and 11 Karen, Jamie and I headed out to North Dakota State University for the North Dakota Horse Fair. Karen was invited to do a demo ride while speaking about dressage.
Karen rode Bacara and Sparky the first day to show a beginning horse in Sparky and a more advanced horse with Bacara. She rode just Bacara on Sunday. Jamie rode Hazel, the rescue horse from Trempeleau County both days.
On Saturday, April 10, Karen talked about exercises she does to improve collection in Bacara. She also demonstrated the difference in collection in a beginning horse and one that is more advanced.
Sunday both Jamie and Karen rode dressage tests to show the audience what a test is like. I got a chance to practice reading tests on the fly. To add a touch of humor the arena was put up backwards. To Karen and Jamie’s credit they just kept riding able to figure out a way to keep going even though what I was reading did not match the arena. Even more difficult was Karen was showing Bacara with a third level test, not designed to be a small arena, which was set up for them. Way to go to keep the show going despite whatever is thrown at you. Jamie did well, despite suffering a cold and cough. She even got a chance to let Hazel take a bow at the end Sunday.
Isabella, the dog, went along. She may well have spent her first night in a motel. The first night she yelped at every noise. I spent much of the night keeping her quiet and missing out on some sleep. By the second night Izzy was a pro and snored the whole night after getting a treat off the local Chinese buffet. Izzy loves her chicken nuggets.
Izzy was quite a hit at the horse fair, enjoying the attention, although she is not sure if she is a fan of cows.
NDSU offered demos of a number of different types of horseback riding, including reigning, cow work and some natural horsemanship along with dressage. It was cool to see many different horses at work and play.