EQUUSOCIAL

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This week I was asked to test and write about a new app just released in October known as EVS or, Equine Virtual Stable.  Designed to accommodate your own living horses, or created virtual horses in a social media format, allowing you to share them with your friends and fellow barnmates…

 

http://appshopper.com/sports/etg-virtual-stables

 

ETG’s Virtual Stable app, blends the convenience of hand-held technology with the passion of horse-ownership.  All horse-owners, regardless of breed or discipline, share the same common thread, we love to talk about our equikids and share them with our friends.  This app allows for and encourages exactly that.

 

Overall the application is clean and attractive to the eye.  It’s easy to find in your Apple app store or Google play store.  The app is a free download, providing two “stalls” with storage for one video and up to ten photos per horse.  Additional space is available for purchase through any browser.  If you have any experience with smartphones or tablets and apps in general, it takes only a moment to figure out the use of each function.  Once you create your horse, and input as much information as you’d like with options for public info as well as private, like passport number, tattoo, and microchip details, you’re free to share your horse with other users via your device’s contact list, or email.  That user is then provided a link to upload your horse’s information to store on their own device.

 

In addition to the social aspects of this app, it can be handy for a number of reasons.  Say you decide to go out of town for the weekend and ask a friend to care for your horses while you’re gone.  You could write down every instruction, but if it’s already saved in your virtual stable, all you have to do is share the link with them, and it’s done is a few simple screen taps.

 

In the future, ETG plans on adding more user-friendly features for showing, staying in contact with equine professionals (veterinarians, farriers, trainers, etc.).  Additional features may include selling and leasing options.  Users will receive notification before the launch of additional features and improvements are completed.

 

Since the app’s release in October of 2015, it was introduced at the world’s largest single breed horse show, the All American Quarter Horse Congress, with much positive feedback, and even some functional improvements in an effort to ensure that both Android and Apple users enjoy the same experience.

HEAVY IS THE HEAD …

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… that wears the engraved, sterling and gold crown of the All American Quarter Horse Congress Queen, and for good reason.  The 21 women, representing their state or regional associations competing for the title, know it isn’t one taken lightly, and the responsibilities that come as part of the package are substantial, but ohhhhh what a ride!

 

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As the title implies, the winner represents the national association, and the world’s largest, single-breed horse show.  For the next year, every appearance will be documented, every connection more valuable, and every experience one to not be forgotten.  The road to the crown and sash is paved with blood, sweat, tears, more sweat, show sheen, coffee, and a circle of “farmily” to help hold you all together.

 

Prior to the Congress Queen competition, each young lady, age 18-25 as of January 1 of the current year, and not having been married, divorced, or had children, must compete locally for the state or regional association queen title.  All tend to be comprised of the same puzzle pieces; interviews, written tests, and horsemanship tests.  That’s step one.  Once they’ve elected to vie for the Congress Queen title, it’s time to step up their individual games even more to compete at the national level.

 

Judging is based on the following model, 40% of their score comes from their interview results.  Each young woman must answer an impromptu question, as well as a new addition to the 2015 program, provide a one minute speech to introduce themselves.  As a national representative, she should be eloquent, articulate, poised, and in general, well-put-together.  Public speaking comfort, and self-confidence are key.  40% of the score is based on their written test results.  She needs to know the breed she represents inside out, as well as the rules and regulations of the association.  As Congress Queen, you are the breed’s recognized voice.  The final 20% is based on a ridden horsemanship class including pattern and rail work.  Equine royalty must be able to prove her metal both in person and in the saddle.

 

Once the scores are finalized, and the crowd grows silent in anticipation of the announcement, it all comes together during the crowning ceremony.  The 2015 All American Quarter Horse Congress Queen, is Miss Lauren Harrington, representing the Western Pennsylvania Quarter Horse Association!  It all happens so fast, and in slow motion, as she’s presented to her audience, then the real whirlwind starts.  The queen keeps a tight schedule.

 

lauren harrington wpqha

 

In the upcoming year, in addition to her “normal” routine which often includes college classes and jobs, she’ll be performing countless public appearances.  Her new responsibilities include awards presentations at the end of horse show classes, speaking engagements, fashion shows, photo opportunities, special meet & greets, and guest appearances just to name a few.  Her impact will be felt on a national level, as well as on a personal level with each individual she meets.  This is her year to make her mark, and she has a team to help her accomplish all those goals.

 

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As much as she takes on in her reign, the cash and prizes are nothing to sneeze at!  Each year vendors and sponsors donate thousands of dollars of merchandise to the program to keep the candidates and eventual queen representing in high style.  The lengthy list includes items like clothing, boots, and jewelry, a horse trailer with her royal logo, tack and equipment, a two-year lease on a new car, and many custom items designed just for her.

 

prizes

 

Congratulations to Lauren, on all your hard work and effort paying off in one glittering, fantastic package.  Enjoy your reign and be present in every moment afforded to you.  From one former queen (albeit at a local, 4-H level) to another, it goes so fast!

 

Warm regards,

K

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#TPT

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Not that I don’t enjoy photos from everyone’s past, but #tbt was growing a little old on me.  I decided to change things up and offer a new hashtag for October, Think Pink Thursdays!

 

Last week we talked about the Quarter Horse Congress, which is always a great supporter of Breast Cancer awareness and research.  But there are many other organizations joining in the fight, all year long.  Horses and hope are a powerful combination.

 

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Pink Horse, Inc. home of www.lopeforhope.com, founded by Renee Kozlowski, offers financial assistance to cowgirls undergoing breast cancer treatment.  Part of their program includes apparel featuring logos like “buck Cancer, and Fight Like a Cowgirl.”

 

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www.toughenoughtowearpink.com was founded by Terry Wheatley and Karl Stressman in 2004.  Their mission has been to empower rodeo and western events to focus on a cure, and in doing so, secured Wrangler as a title sponsor.  Their foundation inspires fundraising events all over the country, including the horse show in Wilmington, OH www.tetwphs.com.  The show features special events like the “Celebrity Ta-tas Showmanship” class (judged on the showman/woman’s “presentation” of themselves and their afore-mentioned ta-tas) and the Trainers Pink Challenge where area horse trainers are required to dress exclusively in pink, and generally ends up being a drag show of epic proportions!  Read more about it here:  http://www.equinechronicle.com/are-you-tough-enough-to-wear-pink/

 

www.texaspainthorseclub.com hosts an annual Power of Pink Horse Show in Waco, TX.  In March of 2014, they raised over $22,000 for the Careity Foundation.  Read more about it here:

http://www.equinechronicle.com/tphc-raises-22000-for-charity-with-power-of-pink-horse-show/

 

What I’ve always loved about horse people is our sense of community.  We’ve never met a cause we didn’t want to throw an event to fundraise for.  With Breast Cancer being such a prominent disease, one that affects everyone in one way or another, it makes sense that our organizations and associations would take the challenge head on.

 

I’ve only shared a few of many events and organizations, feel free to comment with ones you’re familiar with.  The more we share the more we can do!  Even if you don’t show, but you still want to show your support, go to www.warriorsinpink.ford.com and pick out your own pink!  I’m wearing the 2015 circle of strength tee $23.

 

think pink

 

 

 

ALL AMERICAN QUARTER HORSE CONGRESS

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For anyone in the horse industry, or living in central Ohio, October is synonymous with one thing, the Quarter Horse Congress.  The world’s largest, single breed horse show is held annually at the Ohio Expo Center in Columbus, OH, and is the epicenter of all things horse.  In addition to nearly a month of daily horse show classes, there is a trade show where you can buy anything from boots, spurs, and puppies, to trucks and trailers, and everything in between.  The event hosts it’s own Congress Queen program, with nominees from regional associations all over the country, as well as other paid entry special events like; Congress Cutting, PBR Bull Riding, and the most popular event, Freestyle Reining (where riders create their own choreographed ride, using reining elements, to music, complete with costumes).

 

It’s quite the spectacle, even for non-horsey folk, something everyone should see/attend at least once in their lifetime.  I encourage you to go!  Check here for all information about entry, parking, shopping, and related details:

http://www.quarterhorsecongress.com/

 

In addition to the standard roster of horse show classes, some neat additions have been made to include “EWD Classes” (equestrians with disabilities), which is fantastic.  It’s the best place to see such a wide spectrum of individuals and talents, now made better with the inclusion of EWD, horse showing is becoming truly limitless.

 

The Congress opened October 1, and will run through Sunday October 25.  Don’t miss it!

 

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