My Weekend At the Horse Show

Last week I had to attend a horse show in Red Deer with my wife.  For those of you that know me well, you are fully aware that I am by no means a cowboy or even a hobby horse person.  I used to own a pair of cowboy boots but I sold them in a garage sale after I was too old to be in 4-H.  I have never worn a cowboy hat outside of Calgary Stampede Week and my belt buckles are all no bigger than the face of your favorite watch.  With all my negative anticipation I promised Tricia (my wife) and our friends Ryan and Christy that I would make the best of it.  Now I know this is not a usual subject found on this website but my wife, and my friends Patty and Christy will be proud of me.  Besides we use horses all the time in agriculture right?

  • What I experienced was a very interesting weekend of people watching.  Like any ag-show there was people from all sorts of backgrounds.  Some people were ranchers, some were acreage owners and some were competitive riders.  No matter the background or reason to be there they all engaged in the event.
  • What was interesting was the way that people loved to share their stories with each other.  Countless times I heard people talk about what they were doing or had done with their horse.  Talking about what breed they owned, how many hands, and whether they were english or Western dominated the discussions.  The funny part is I actually asked my wife what the difference was between an English and western saddle.  LOL!!!
  • There is an extreme passion for horses and the care for them.  I have been to many agricultural shows and I have never seen anything like this.  And wrapped up in that passion was people being positive.  Sometimes in agriculture it is cool to either talk about how much money you lost or how bad it is and not focus on the positives.  People make money in agriculture for the most part yet we tend to focus on the negative more so.  This horse show was really full of 1000’s of positive people just looking to enjoy their passion of horses.
  • Natural horsemanship seems to be on the rise.  I attended the Jonathan Fields and it was like watching over 1000 people hang on every word he said.  His horsemanship was very obvious even to a novice horse moron like myself.  I really thought about some of the things he said and thought back to some of the crazy cowboys (only a couple I can think of) that had worked at our feed yard when I was a kid and always told me that you need to intimidate the horse so he respects you. Based on what Mr. Fields demonstrated that is definitely not the case.

All in all it was a pretty good time with the only disappointing thing being that Ryan and I could not find the beer gardens that the girls said would be there.  You should never lie about beer availability to your husband.  That is very mean.  Happy trails!!

 

Shaun Haney

Shaun grew up on a family seed farm in Southern Alberta. Haney Farms produces, conditions and retails wheat, barley, canola and corn seed. Shaun Haney is the founder of RealAgriculture.com. @shaunhaney

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4 Comments

Leighton Kolk

I am just glad to see you spent some time with your wife. way to go. takes the presure of me. LK

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Christy

it was a great weekend Shaun!! thanks for your amazing comments…you are right, horse people are amazing, dedicated and positive. Horses really are a great “bad habit” to have!!
had a great time with you and Trish!!!!

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Megan Oleksyn

Haha, well despite the beer availability ruse, she got you there and got you out of your comfort zone, which is a good thing! Passion is an important word here, and I think it applies to all of the ag industry. Passion is what keeps us involved when grain prices are low and fertilizer is high. When feed is high and cattle are low. When there is drought or floods (which we only hear about in fairy tales from manitoba), passion is what helps us remember the things we love about this industry – the first shaky steps of a foal (you learned the word ‘foal’ at the show, Shaun), the hum of a combine taking off 60 bushel canola. I applaud your perspective on passion, because thats why we all do what we do every day.

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