Letters 11-23-2015

Cheering From Petoskey While red-eyed rats boil fanatically up from the ancient sewers of Paris to feast on pools of French blood, at the G20 meeting the farcical pied piper of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue thrusts a bony finger at the president of the Russian Federation and yells: “liberté, égalité, fraternité, Clinton, Kerry--Obamaism!”

The Other Mothers And Fathers Regarding the very nice recent article on “The First Lady of Yoga,” I have taken many classes with Sandy Carden, and I consider her to be a great teacher. However, I feel the article is remiss to not even give acknowledgement to other very important yoga influences in northern Michigan...

Drop The Blue Angels The last time I went to the National Cherry Festival, I picked the wrong day. The Blue Angels were forcing everyone to duck and cover from the earsplitting cacophony overhead...

Real Advice For The Sick In the Nov. 16 article “Flu Fighters,” author Kristi Kates fails to mention the most basic tool in our arsenal during Influenza season... the flu vaccine! I understand you might be afraid of being the victim of Jenny McCarthyism, but the science is there...

Keeping Traverse City in the Dark Our environment is our greatest asset. It sustains our lives; it drives our economy. We ignore it at our peril. Northern Michigan Environmental Action Council (NMEAC) has submitted letters of concern to both the city commission and planning commission regarding the proposed 9-story buildings on Pine Street. We have requested an independent environmental assessment with clear answers before a land use permit is granted...

All About Them Another cartoon by Jen Sorensen that brings out the truth! Most of her cartoons are too slanted in a Socialist manner, but when she gets it correct, she hits the nail on the target! “Arizona is the first state to put a 12-month lifetime limit on welfare benefits.” That quote is in the opening panel... 

Unfair To County Employees It appears that the commissioners of Grand Traverse County will seek to remedy a shortfall in the 2016 budget by instituting cuts in expenditures, the most notable the reduction of contributions to various insurance benefits in place for county employees. As one example, the county’s contributions to health insurance premiums will decrease from ten to six percent in 2016. What this means, of course, is that if a county employee wishes to maintain coverage at the current level next year, the employee will have to come up with the difference...

Up, Not Out I would like to congratulate the Traverse City Planning Commission on their decision to approve the River West development. Traverse City will either grow up or grow out. For countless reasons, up is better than out. Or do we enjoy such things as traffic congestion and replacing wooded hillsides with hideous spectacles like the one behind Tom’s West Bay. At least that one is on the edge of town as opposed to in the formerly beautiful rolling meadows of Acme Township...

Lessons In Winning War I am saddened to hear the response of so many of legislators tasked with keeping our country safe. I listen and wonder if they know what “winning” this kind of conflict requires or even means? Did we win in Korea? Did we win in Vietnam? Are we winning in Afghanistan? How is Israel winning against the Palestinians? Will they “take out” Hezbollah...

Home · Articles · News · Features · Horse Shows By The Bay
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Horse Shows By The Bay

Erin Cowell - July 19th, 2010
Giddyup! Horse Shows by the Bay rides again...
By Erin Crowell
Strength, elegance and discipline – these words probably best describe
the athletes who have taken over Northern Michigan in recent weeks. At
Horse Shows by the Bay, nothing commands attention more than a
stallion leaping several feet into the air or a gelding that glides
effortlessly across the earth to the rhythms of a song.
Think Cherry Festival was a long week? Try four.
Horse Shows by the Bay, the equestrian festival held at the
Flintfields Horse Park in Williamsburg, runs July 9 to August 1 –
bringing over 1,500 horses and their riders to compete in a series of
events for more than $400,000 in distributed prize money.
Grandeur, pride and history -- this is what inspires Horse Shows by the Bay.

Prior to the Horse Shows event, the 80 acres of Flintfields Farm is
fairly quiet. But come late June/early July, the property located just
north of M-72 comes alive with the whinny of horses and the sound of
engines, clanking metal and voices of workers as hundreds of horse
stalls are assembled underneath behemoth white tents.
Horse trailers roll through the property, and soon after – the
thousands of spectators from across the state and around the country.
Horse Shows has a $10 million per year impact on the local economy,
says Kimberly Van Kampen Boyer, of Hampton Green Farm, which is one of
the event’s biggest supporters, particularly in the dressage category.
“Everyone can enjoy this event because there’s so many things to do in
Traverse City,” says Maria Lithander, head trainer of Hampton Green’s
Florida farm.
“Three quarters of the year, (Michigan) is great horse country. The
other one quarter, it’s like Siberia,” laughs Lithander. “Michigan is
kind of a well kept secret.”
Lithander has traveled all over the world, competing and training in
places like Mexico where she won over 60 national and regional
Her specialty is in dressage, the “step child” of equestrian, as she
says, which involves nine progressive levels which incorporate
multiple tests within each. The most popular of these is musical
freestyle, where horse and rider perform a series of movements, with
various speeds, to music.
It’s the most elegant event at Horse Shows: braided manes and careful
grooming on the horses, short top hats and white gloves for the
riders. And of course, there’s the delicate way the horse seems to
float through the arena.
“Dressage is all about a happy, quiet rider and a happy, athletic
horse,” says Lithander.
Other events include the hunters and jumpers – both involving horse
and rider leaping over an obstacle; however, the primary difference
between the two is in execution. The hunter category is judged on the
consistency, pace and style in which a horse jumps, providing the best
comfort for its rider. Jumpers must complete a series of at least 10
jumps, also of various heights, in the fastest time.

When talking about horses—champion horses—the context of the
conversation is much like describing a rare car: performance, history,
country of origin…price. At Horse Shows by the Bay, the average rider
can spend anywhere from $25,000 to a million on an equine, says Horsse
Shows co-founder Alex Rheinheimer.
Horses range from a variety of breeds and bloodlines, from Dutch
Warmbloods and Hanoverians to Oldenburgs and Pure Raza Esponolas
(PRE), the latter being the preferred competition horse by Lithander
and the breed specialty of Hampton Green Farm.
“PRE’s are known for their sensibility,” says Lithander.
She will be competing in Horse Shows with Hampton Green’s head PRE
stallion Idilio II, a Spanish import who came to the farm in 1999.
“He has his own personality,” Lithander laughs. “The other horses on
the farm know to stay out of his way.”
Just some of his previous accomplishments include 2002 Top 20 Senior
Stallions SICAB, Spain; First Place, Intermediate II at the 2006 IDCTA
Summer Kickoff Dressage in Wayne, Illinois; and Second Place for the
2006 USDF All Breeds Award Grand Prix Open. The stallion was also once
described as “poetry in motion.”

Come see “poetry in motion” as horses and riders from all over the
country compete at Horse Shows by the Bay, happening now, July 9-Aug.
1, at Flintfields Farm in Williamsburg. Week three (July 23-25)
features the Open Jumper Welcome Prix, Children/Adult Jumpers, Show
Hunter Classics, along with a special Dressage Demo by local rider
Betsy Van Dyke.
Horse Shows by the Bay continues July 30-Aug. 1, as well as a Fall
Classics Competition, Sept. 10-12. More information is available at
horseshowsbythebay.com or by calling 231-267-3700.

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