Annual Alabama 4-H Horse Show Opens
AUBURN, July 6---More
than 200 4-Hers from 28 counties will be competing at the 29th
Alabama 4-H Horse Show July 10-13 at Crawford Arena in Montgomery.
They will each compete in one or more of 64 show classes.
"It's a wonderful
opportunity for young people," says Dr. Cindy McCall, an animal
scientist with the Alabama Cooperative Extension System. "Not
only are there riding classes, there are a number of classes for
young people who are horse enthusiasts but may not own a
There are 12 classes in
which the competitor does not need an animal to participate. They
include public speaking, individual and team demonstrations,
photography, artistic expression, quiz bowl and horse judging.
In the riding events,
youngsters will be able compete in English or hunt seat, saddle seat
and Western riding styles. Visitors can see competition in classes
ranging from showmanship, where young people are judged on their
ability to show their horses, to riding classes, where riders and
their horses are evaluated on their abilities to perform certain
"There also will be
traditional Western events, such as breakaway roping, barrel racing
and pole bending as well as jumping and dressage among the English
events," says Bob Ebert, an Extension animal scientist who
coordinates youth livestock events.
In addition to these
events, Ebert says young people learn more skills than just
horsemanship with their involvement in 4-H horse clubs and events.
"Young people learn
skills they will use throughout their lives," says Ebert.
"They learn the importance of responsibility, sportsmanship and
time management. The horse depends on the youngster to provide for
its needs and that builds maturity in the young person. Young people
also learn the importance of being considerate of fellow competitors
and judges even when they may not win."
Four-H is the oldest and
largest publicly funded youth development organization in the United
States. Begun in the early part of the 20th century, it was a way to
extend the learning of land-grant universities to children in rural
communities. Today, 4-H has a presence in every county in the
In Alabama, there are
more than 80,000 young people between 9 and 19 involved in
4-H. It is a program
administered by the Alabama Cooperative Extension System.
SOURCE: Dr. Bob Ebert,
Extension Animal Scientist, Alabama Cooperative Extension System,