Previewing the Western States Horse Expo

Do you live out west?  If you’re a horse person on the west coast, chances are you’ve heard of the Western States Horse Expo, which is taking place in Sacramento from June 11-13.  Here at Hodges we’ve been told that it’s the single biggest horse expo in the U.S.! (Yes, that mean’s it’s bigger than any of the Equine Affaires or Horse World Expo).  So, while we may be late to the party, this year we’re setting up our booth in the Main Market Mall Building A.

Looking at the schedule, there is something for everyone.  Clinicians include Olympian eventer Gina Miles and natural horsemanship proponent Julie Goodnight.  For the kids, there’s the BreyerWest exhibit and Young Rider West with arts & crafts and pony rides.  There’s also a new Dogs Pavilion (we hope the dog show folks will wander over to our area as unfortunately we can’t split ourselves in two) and an evening show each night.  Friday features the Magnificent 7, a multi-discipline trainer’s competition, and Saturday has the Alltech Equestrian Extravaganza, with previews of the events taking place at this year’s World Equestrian Games.

Want to find out more?  Western States’ website is very thorough, with schedules and details for each event.   They’re also on facebook- so check out their page (& maybe win some free tickets).

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Some IHSA snapshots

Rick Hodges and I have been at the Kentucky Horse Park for IHSA Nationals, which started on Thursday.  While we are always happy to come and show our support, this year’s event has been particularly special because we were here to unveil the newly designed Cacchione Cup at the International Museum of the Horse.  The trophy has been a big hit and we’ve been thrilled to be a part of the festivities.  Here are a few shots I’ve taken.

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Heading to IHSA Nationals

Rick Hodges and I are heading off today to attend the 2010 IHSA Nationals at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, KY.  As the official ribbon supplier of the IHSA (and as a past IHSA Nationals competitor myself), we are happy to support the teams and individuals that have worked hard to qualify for this end-0f-year event.

In addition to watching the competition there are a few other exciting events on the schedule.  This evening there is a reception at the USHJA  headquarters to celebrate the new partnership between the IHSA and the USHJA.  Hodges is also a sponsor of the USHJA and will be watching to see what develops between the organizations. 

On Friday, there is an IHSA celebration at the International Museum of the Horse, where the current Cacchione Cup will be retired and put on display.  Hodges has worked in collaboration with IHSA Executive Director Bob Cacchione to create a new trophy which will be presented to the winner of the prestigious class on Saturday.

Featured Customer Series- APHA Summer World Championship Show

Next up in our Featured Customer Series is the American Paint Horse Association, which happens to have one of their two largest events of the year coming up in June.  The 2010 Summer World Championship Show takes place June 23- July 3 at the Will Rogers Memorial Center in Fort Worth, Texas.    The APHA World Championship Show is the largest and most competitive exhibition of the Paint Horse anywhere in the world.  The summer show features the association’s Youth championships as well as Open and Amateur reining and cattle classes.

Just a brief glance at the class schedule of the summer show gives you an idea of the amazing versatility showcased by the Paint Horse.  Competitors will strive for the world championship in events as varied as reining, showmanship, roping, equitation over fences, Western pleasure, and halter classes.  In addition, new to the show this year are Open All-Breed Jackpot classes (allowing entrants from other breeds) in team roping, team penning and ranch sorting.  More information, including full class descriptions and the Premium Book,  is available on their web site, www.aphaworldshow.com/summer.

For those of you who may not be entirely familiar with the APHA, the association not only records and preserves the pedigrees of the American Paint Horse (they’ve recorded nearly 1 million horses since 1964) but also regulates competition, promotes recreational equine activities, and encourages responsible breeding among other programs.

Photo credit Paint Horse Journal/ Jessica Hein

Pictured above is Shannon Sullenberger and her world champion mare Jettn Champagne Chex.  The pair were the team to beat in the All-Around Novice Amateur division at the 2009 Fall World Championship Show.  The APHA chose Easton sashes with satin centers for their awards.  Finalists also receive Wheaton rosettes.

Finally, are you interested in having your group or organization highlighted in our Featured Customer Series?  Send us an email to info@hodgesbadge.com with blog in the subject line.

Meet our Customer Service Reps Part I

While brainstorming for blog posts, we had the idea that our customers might like to put a name with a face and find out a little more about the people they talk to while placing their orders.  So we’ve decided to do a series of posts introducing our Customer Service Reps.  First up is the smiling Diane G.

Diane has been at Hodges Badge Company for over 8 years.   In that time, she’s built up her horse show knowledge and has developed a knack for helping customers meet their budget restrictions.   In addition to answering calls, she is also responsible for replying to all our general customer emails.

When I asked Diane if there were any orders that stuck out to her, she told me she likes seeing the “cool logos” submitted by our brewery customers, and that she would never forget helping to put together the order for the Toaster Collectors Association (yes, they really do exist!). 

Outside of work, Diane enjoys spending time with her lab/sheepdog mix Squiggy and following the Red Sox.  She also admits to avoiding answering the phone, so a note to friends and family- if you don’t want to get the answering machine, try back on Sunday.