Friday, July 13, 2007

Area V Adult Summer Camp

I was recently asked to write up my experiences at the Adult Summer Camp for Area V. I have included it below for grins.

Attending the Adult Summer Camp for Area V was the very best introduction to eventing I could imagine. I already knew some about horses, coming from a hunter background, but learning about eventing was like seeing a whole new world open up. Rainey Andrews was tremendously generous with her time, effortlessly shifting her attention from rank beginners to some truly great horse and rider combos. She even offered more sessions during her free time so people could soak up all of her immense information. Max Corcoran stepped right into her role as clinician with all the grace and expertise she uses daily at her job as head groom for Karen O' Conner. In additional to teaching the students about conditioning programs, she spent endless time covering the more mundane but very important topics of braiding, wrapping, feed, supplements, turnout and (everyone's favorite) tail pulling.

The Summer Camp was hosted at one of the most amazing facilities in area V, Cedar Creek Farms. Most students' jaws dropped when they saw their work and play accommodations for the four short days of the camp. The immaculately groomed farm included a airy covered arena with PA system, schooling
Trakehner and ditch in front of the cobblestone aisled barn, and more distinct cross country schooling areas than I could count from the complimentary ATVs we got to play with. Perhaps event better than the farm were the meals, which included excellent fresh food with plentiful lounging beverages. It was the best vacation resort, er, eventing facility I have ever seen.

In addition to the excellent instruction, the students got to participate in some of the finer aspects of living in Mabank, Texas. Students were treated to waking up at a lakefront property complete with wave runners. They even got to celebrate the clinic with a surf and turf meal at the local country club, all courtesy of Allison Freeman, our most gracious host. Allison tirelessly looked after all of her guests, even providing special accommodations for myself and my friend when her mare fell sick. She provided the rest of the students with free use of her ranch, equipment, beverages and perhaps most entertaining, her excellent wit and humor which was never in short supply. She succeeded in making everyone feel like an honored guest instead of just a clinic student.

In short, the clinic farm surpassed my wildest hopes and showed me just how hard eventers work and play. I cannot wait until Allison hosts another summer camp and I hope I am first in line when she does.

No comments: