(Dr. Blevins) Hello and welcome to Horsing Around. I’m Dr. Chris Blevins from Kansas State University Veterinary Health Center down here at EquiFest and today, we’re joined by Kathy Huser. She is in charge of the Horse Judging here at EquiFest and all the contestants and this morning, it was great. (Female) Yes. (Dr. Blevins) There were a lot of people here and a lot of student contestants. How many showed up for today’s show? (Female) Well I haven’t heard an official count yet, but I’m thinking about a hundred and sixty-five to a hundred and seventy kids. (Dr. Blevins) Wow and what makes up those kids, what groups do they come with and where do they come from? (Female) We have 4-H groups and FFA groups, so we have ages anywhere from seven clear on up to eighteen. (Dr. Blevins) And how do they know about this, because it’s been a while since we’ve done Horse Judging here at EquiFest. Do they plan on doing that next year or do we know? (Female) Well by golly, I hope we can do it again next year. The way they found out about it is through their local 4-H program and a personal letter sent out to the FFA programs. (Dr. Blevins) And I heard also, there are some groups from Oklahoma that came and are there any from Missouri? Do we get any of them from Missouri or not yet? (Female) Well this is the first year it’s been back, so maybe next year we can get some Missourians in. (Dr. Blevins) Cool, good. And how many shows or classes do they have at the EquiFest Horse Judging today? (Female) Today we had six classes. We judged a Trail class, Confirmation classes, Gypsy Vanner’s and Morgan’s and then we had a Western Pleasure class, horsemanship class and then English pleasure class. (Dr. Blevins) Right now, kind of behind us, they’re getting ready to give their reasons. Can you explain what reasons are when it comes to horse judging? (Female) Well, of course, horse judging is you’ve got the four horses in a class and the kids have to rank them the best to the worst, in their opinion, and we have an official set of people that come in. We’ve got K-State and Cloud County Community College Judging Teams in today and they’re putting our officials on. So the kids have to get as close to those officials as they can get and then for the reasons, they have to go in and orally defend why they placed the class the way they placed it to one of
those official people. (Dr. Blevins) And, so, this is a really great thing to build their communications as they become older. And what aspects or I guess how young and then how do they get, they could participate at K-State in horse judging and could go on further, even at horse shows, I suppose, as they become adults. That would be something they could do if they wanted to continue with it too. (Female) Yes, yes. Judging a horse, as you probably know, is the basis of anything, improvement on horses starts at the judging level even if you’re not overly interested in judging. It still helps when you go to buy a horse. You’re judging which one you want over the other, so judging has a very important place in the horse industry and the kids can take it on in the college and move on up into the world shows if they want to judge and, of course, become leaders and help train the next generation. (Dr. Blevins) Train the next generation, that is great. You know I did Horse Judging when I was in 4-H and it’s helped me as a veterinarian too because confirmation and those things, it all blends together and, so, it definitely is a broad aspect of getting them involved with horses and understanding horses a lot more and just the judging activity. (Female) Yes, yes. (Dr. Blevins) I mean I think this is a great aspect of EquiFest and what you’re doing here for all the kids here in Kansas, Oklahoma and maybe Missouri in the future or other states in the future, so sure appreciate what you’re doing here at EquiFest. (Female) Thank you, thanks. (Dr. Blevins) This is Horsing Around. Dr. Chris Blevins at Kansas State University and EquiFest. We’ll see you around.