Rain can't dampen Hampstead sale


The weather was not particularly favorable for Dixie Hughes and Fay Miller last Sunday as they set up for their first Horsey Yard Sale at Hughes' Tall Maples Farm in Hampstead.

As the day progressed, however, the rain did not stop buyers from packing into Hughes' indoor arena looking for bargains for themselves and their horses.

Most of the vendors were selling used tack (Western and English riding apparel, saddles, bridles, whips, horse blankets), but there were also custom-made T-shirts, horse art and handcrafted rocking horses to be found.

"We were lucky we could move everything into the indoor arena," Hughes said, "but a couple of people who were going to sell things didn't come because of the rain."

Even Hughes and Miller were not immune from buyer's fever. Miller bought a whip from Hughes, who bought a turn-out blanket for Goose, her 3-year-old Paint filly.

Goose, aka Moon's Cotton Candy, was off in New Jersey being shown by her trainer. The accomplished and versatile filly picked up another honor by earning the title of Performance Horse of the Weekend at the show.

Most of the Paint horses that Hughes and her husband raise are shown in halter classes, but not Goose.

"She got her nickname because she has such a long neck and big head," Hughes said. "She's definitely not a halter horse."

Beauty is as beauty does, however. And Goose does it all. She earned the title of Reserve Junior Hunter Hack at the Paint World Show and recently has earned ribbons in speed and Western classes.

Goose will be back at Tall Maples for the winter and will be wearing the turn-out blanket that Hughes bought at the sale. During the winter Hughes and Miller will plan next year's Horsey Yard Sale.

"We'll have another one next year, same time, same place," Hughes said. "But on a sunny weekend."

Something a bit different

Bored with just plodding around the same old show rings or trudging along the same old trails? Well, here's something a little different. The Medieval Horse Guild is holding a Horse War and Feast next weekend, Oct. 8-10, at Independence Farm in Port Deposit.

You will be able to learn such skills as javelin throwing and banner tossing. Bring your horse and compete in a tournament. There will be trail riding and jumping for the more timid riders. Call (301) 990-0019 or (410) 658-2147.

Free horse care tips

I stopped by Stablemates Tack Shop in Mount Airy this week and picked up a copy of Farnam Horse Product's horse care tips. This informative handout gives tips on fly control, grooming and hoof care. Pick up your free copy at Stablemates and other area tack shops.

Calendar of events

Today -- Mid-Maryland Horse and Pony Club Show. Howard County Fairgrounds. Western, English and Novice classes. (410) Tuesday -- Carroll County Equestrian Council general meeting. East Middle School, Longwell Avenue, Westminster. (410) 833-4593.

Friday through Oct. 10 -- Horse War and Feast. Sponsored by the Medieval Horse Guild. Independence Farm, Port Deposit. (301) 990-0019 or (410) 658-2147.

Saturday -- Hoofbeat's 4-H Saddle Club's All-English Open Horse Show. Lehigh Riding Club Show Grounds, Deep Run Road, Westminster. (410) 848-3192.

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