Equine Canada has saddles ready for all during Horse Week

If you have a little equestrian in your blood, the week of May 29 to June 4 is the time to put it to the test. Equine Canada’s Horse Week has a host of activities designed for experienced and novice riders.

The Canada-wide annual celebration for those with a passion for horses will include a number of activities at area riding clubs that will wrap up the week.

Events in our area include:

The Western Riding Club
June 3, 2006
6095 Dickenson Rd
Hannon, ON L0R 1P0
(905) 670 1224

A fun day at Blacks Equine Centre, featuring half price trail rides, $3.00 pony rides, BBQ lunch and refreshments, raffles and prizes, Free admission, free parking. Visit www.Blacksequinecentre.com for more details. Call ahead to reserve your riding time.

Hamilton Hunt Club
June 3, 2006
Dundas Valley Conservation Area
Ancaster, ON L9G 3K9
(905) 304-5111

The Dundas Valley Ride and Gourmet Picnic is about a two-hour long guided ride through the spectacular scenery of the Dundas Valley on the Niagara Escarpment, followed by a gourmet picnic luncheon in the garden of a private estate. Riders will be grouped by the pace they wish to ride with their guides.

Healthy Happy Horse
June 4 2006
Boarding Stable
Grimsby, Ont. L3M 4E7
(416) 737-6691

Healthy Happy Horse presents an experiential, interactive 90 minute Lecture/Demonstration, showcasing the benefits and techniques to using Jin Shin Jyutsu (Acupressure) as a preventative health measure. Participants are taught simple step-by-step applications to perform on their horses prior to a ride to internally prepare the horse’s muscles and tendons for work, and how to de-stress and relax the horse’s body after a ride. These techniques are especially helpful for older, arthritic horses.

Horse Week across Canada

“Horse Week is unique in that it gives hundreds of people from all walks of life the chance to participate in a variety of events that will be held throughout the week,” said Jack de Wit, Horse Week chairman. “Horses offer tremendous potential for leisure and recreational activity. Our goal for this initiative is to have opportunities available to all who are interested in taking part: whether they are seasoned horsemen or newcomers to the horse-world.”

Provincial equestrian federations have worked in partnership with Equine Canada to make this fourth annual celebration a success. Ride & Drive Day Events happening in each province attest to the scope of the activities offered. From family trail rides, games on horseback and pony rides to high-end competitive trail and endurance rides, there will be no shortage of action. Spectators can choose from any number of 4-H Club and Canadian Pony Club events to attend; each featuring youth membership involved in friendly competition as they showcase their talents. National dressage competitions, western horse shows, and hunter and jumper shows round out the offering. Several breed associations have added to the celebration in promoting their favourite breeds including Canada’s own national horse – the Canadian Horse, the ever popular Quarter Horse, the versatile Morgan, the majestic Arabian, and the adorable Miniature Horse.

Children from a number of elementary schools will enjoy a change of pace as their teachers introduce them to the world of horses through live western horsemanship demonstrations, riding lessons, horse care, and tack demonstrations. The students will also work on their entries for the Horse Week ‘Kids Contest’ for a chance to win prizes donated by Miss Filly and Blaze Kids Magazine. For full contest details please visit http://www.equinecanada.ca/Recreation/ABOUT/horseweek.html and click on the ‘Kids Contest’ tab.

In conjunction with Horse Week 2006 and International Trails Day, the Nova Scotia Equestrian Federation has created the First Annual NSEF Trail Ride on June 3. A high turnout is expected in support of this effort to demonstrate that horses and All Terrain Vehicles (ATVs) can share the trails through the use of respect, safety and proper etiquette. Mounted riders from the RCMP and Halifax Regional Police Service will be joined by horses and riders, ATVers, volunteers, media, and the general public as they navigate the 35 km. trail.

The development, use and maintenance of multi-use trails will also be center stage during the Annual General Meeting of the Frontier Trails Association Inc. in Val Therese, ON, as volunteers gather to promote this cause. Elsewhere in the province, the Ontario Trail Riders Association has partnered with the Ontario Equestrian Federation and the Uxbridge Horseman’s Association as they host a ‘Camp and Ride Weekend,’ featuring a 30 mile ride each day through the beautiful Durham Forest.

Alberta’s Horse Showcase 2006 is sure to be popular as horse enthusiasts of Strathcona County gather for riding demonstrations, breed parades, educational sessions, an equine marketplace and a ‘Kids Korral’ area.

Several Therapeutic Riding Associations have jumped on board and organized events as fund raisers for their riding programs. The Ontario Therapeutic Riding Association will exhibit at the “Doors Open Toronto” event at the Toronto CNE. Two equine simulators will be part of their presentation as they provide information on therapeutic riding and the 41 member centres benefiting 4,000 riders throughout the province. Meanwhile on the west coast, the Cowichan Therapeutic Riding Association expects to have more than 120 riders take part in its 15th annual Ride-a-thon in Duncan, BC.