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EVENTS - OVERVIEW (Details in current Announcement below)
Message from Lynda Zimmerman
Saturday, March 31, 2018
Hello Paso Fino Lovers and Enthusiasts, MAPFHA Members and Friends!
Spring is SO close, we can almost taste it! Are you ready to ride??! I sure am! The couple light trail rides I’ve done already on warmer days between snowfalls has whetted my appetite for more! Now to just get rid of last night’s new snow, ice in the shady areas and dry out the ubiquitous mud… Here are a few upcoming events to get you in the saddle spirit again and a couple notes at the end.
-MN Horse Expo, April 27-29, at the state Fairgrounds in St. Paul. MAPFHA will participate in the Parade of Breeds daily, noon-1 p.m. (alphabetical order), and in the Breed Demonstrations on Friday & Saturday. Both events will be in the Coliseum. The daily schedule hasn’t been posted on their website yet, so stay tuned to find out our Demo performance time. I’ll post on Facebook and try to send another email, as time permits. Performers include Erica Woytcke and Zia, Jan Meyer and Mesa, Tracy Porter (from WI) and Jinx, as well as Chaco and I. We’ve been practicing our ride pattern and hope to show our beloved Pasos at their best!
-MAPFHA camps/rides again at Crow Hassan Reg. Park, Rogers, MN (Three Rivers Park District), on May 11-13 (Fri. – Sun., Mother’s Day weekend). It’s the season kick-off and a great time to reconnect and ride the early spring trails with newly leafed bright green trees. Plan for a potluck Saturday night and evening campfires. The weather is usually good, but can be chilly.
MAPFHA will pay the group camping fee for current members, but guests (family and friends) may also camp for a guest fee ($10 individual, $15 family). Other trail buddies, kids/grandkids, family members who love to ride are invited to come along. You’ll need a park horse trail pass for each rider. Daily passes are available at the kiosk in the parking lot; annual passes are available online (Three Rivers Park District). This is not a state park, so this horse pass is not the same as the MN state horse trail pass. Summer trails should be open by then, and 15 miles offers us a lot of riding opportunity. Riders can group up or go on your own as you prefer.
Firewood is provided by the park; any brought in must be from an approved park vendor or be milled wood. Vault toilets are available and a building/cabin for the potluck if weather is inclement. There is a water hydrant by the cabin. The big old barn is not available for horses, so they will need to be tied to your trailer, a picket line or in a secure pen. Bring your own hay. Quiet time starts at 10 p.m., so no overnight parties, loud music, etc. This has not been an issue in the past; everyone has been very well-behaved, enjoyable and welcome!
We have reserved the Blue Stem group campground on the west side of the park along the Crow River. Enter through the main trailhead parking lot (kiosk with trail passes and maps is there). Directions, map and other park info is here: https://www.threeriversparks.org/location/crow-hassan-park-reserve
Come for the weekend, the day or even just the potluck to socialize, whatever fits your schedule. If you know of former members who would like to come for the potluck, or who would like to rejoin as a member or guest member, please feel free to share this email with them.
-Memorial Day weekend: a few of us have made camping reservations out at Upper Sioux Agency State Park, Granite Falls, for another weekend of trail riding/camping (Fri.-Mon.). You’re welcome to join us! This is just an individual weekend, so please make your own camping reservations; but, we are planning a Saturday night potluck again. Day riding is also available.
Upper Sioux is located at the confluence of the Minnesota and Yellow Medicine Rivers, and there are several miles of beautiful prairie and wooded trails in western MN. It is the former site of the Sioux Indian Agency with an historic building and interpretive signs. There is also an authentic Indian teepee in the regular (people only) campground for those interested in other activities. Showers are available for our use in the regular (people only) campground. Additionally, Granite Falls is home to the Fagen Fighters WWII airplane museum and the Prairie’s Edge Casino. Park website: https://www.dnr.state.mn.us/state_parks/park.html?id=spk00277#homepage
-Labor Day weekend: Planning ahead, our “fall” MAPFHA event will take place at the end of summer. Jim and Susan Bartels near Rochester have graciously offered their farm for a weekend of trail riding and fun socializing! Jim has spent many hours and days over the years developing and maintaining his private trails along the Zumbro River, up and down the scenic hills and around their bean/corn fields. Their farm is located at the site of a former stagecoach stop, and their farmyard has an Old-tyme flavor. It will be a fun weekend, and you will enjoy the trails and camaraderie.
Camping in the horse pasture is primitive, but they can run an electric cord out. There is one big round pen, or horses can be tied to your trailer or penned. Most meals will be eaten in their multi-purpose pole barn/garage/workshop/outdoor kitchen/lounge area; we’ll coordinate menu planning as we get closer to the date (Jim and Sue are not catering). A vault toilet and water are available; bring your own hay. Since we will camp at their private farm, please plan to compensate them accordingly and generously for their hospitality and facility use.
-PFHA has joined the efforts to keep unwanted Pasos out of the slaughter/kill pen pipeline. Too many horses of all breeds have ended up in these bad situations for a variety of reasons, and you may have noticed there are Facebook groups for several breeds trying to rescue those individuals who should not be there (which is most of them). Some of these horses have been found to be registered, quality, well-trained animals that their owners simply can’t afford or don’t want any more; some have been top award winners. They are not necessarily problem horses.
PFHA is organizing information, references and referrals to horse rescues and resources to be published on their website. PFHA would like one representative member from each region to help coordinate the gathering of local resource information. I have put forward my name on a temporary basis and have already sent initial rescue information but would appreciate handing off the task. Please contact me if you would like to step up to support this initiative and coordinate resources for the MAPFHA region.
On this topic, if you know of anyone trying to sell or give away a Paso, please encourage them to ask a reasonable price. Many buyers around the country misrepresent themselves as legitimate owners who promise a “good home” only to turn around and re-sell the horse at auction or to a kill buyer for slaughter. Horses that are advertised on Craig’s list as “Free to a good home” are in severe danger of ending up in the wrong hands so someone can make a quick buck. Asking a reasonable price reduces those chances. A seller can always reduce the price in person if they feel it’s truly a good next home for their horse.
If it’s an emergency situation, and the horse must be moved along quickly, legitimate horse rescues offer a much better alternative. The MN Horse Council website lists several resources that may be able to help. For our beloved horses who have served us well, this is not too much to ask. Spread the word and let’s keep our Pasos safe.
If you haven’t renewed your membership or wish to re-join, please fill out and submit the attached membership application. Membership will be valid the entire calendar year due to recent changes in our Bylaws to synchronize with the new PFHA fiscal year.
Happy Easter, and I hope we’ll see you at the Expo (April), Crow Hassan (May), Upper Sioux Agency (Memorial Day weekend) and Bartels’ (Labor Day weekend) at the end of summer!
Lynda Zimmerman, President
Mid America Paso Fino Horse Assn.
Live, laugh, love, ride!