Dan and Kathy Conahan, Robin Stallings and Karen Kilheffer planned for almost every contingency when they put together the first Chesapeake Miniature Horse Sale at the Conahan's Valhalla Farm in Finksburg last weekend.
The one thing that they hadn't planned for, however, was tears.
"When we had the drawing for the free horse, one little girl cried and cried when her number wasn't drawn," Kathy Conahan said. "She really had her heart set on winning that horse. We didn't know what to do."
Conahan said that she, too, wished the youngster from Westminster would have won Valhalla Farms Fancy Dancer, a 24-inch black gelding who was born June 6.
"He went to a really good home," Conahan said, "to Ernie Rigney, who lives in West Virginia and breeds minis, but if that little girl had won him, that might have been the beginning of a lifelong involvement with minis for her."
The sale drew 102 consignments, 70 of which sold. The sale-topper was a brood mare who brought $4,500.
Conahan was pleased with the consignments and sales results, and she was especially gratified that more than 400 people showed up as prospective buyers.
"When we had 50 consignments in the first two days after we announced the sale, I wondered if we would have enough buyers. I was very pleased with the crowd that turned out," she said.
Consignors, buyers and spectators came from Tennessee, Mississippi, Connecticut, New York, West Virginia, Virginia, North and South Carolina, Pennsylvania and Ohio.
The Conahans, Stallings and Kilheffer already are planning the next Chesapeake Miniature Horse Sale for sometime in the spring. They probably will draw for another free mini. And this time they will have lots of crying towels on hand.
Horse show results
The results of last Sunday's Mid-Maryland Horse and Pony Show at Howard County Fairgrounds were as follows:
* Speed Division A Champion: Michelle Stowers on Rajun Cajun. Walk/Trot Division Champion: Ashley Atkins on Lacey Jay.
* Western Performance Division A Champion: Chris Morgan on Ima Impressive Bailey; Division B Champion: Sarah Hurdel on The Shining; Youth Division Champion: Amanda Naill on Lins Dashin Dandy; Walk/Trot Division Champion: Renata Ramonda on Ima Better Bailey; Leadline/Walk Division Champion: Mason Raphaelson on Whispering Pines' Spoiled Rotten.
* Novice Division Champion: Terri Jett on Cowboy's Elegant Heir.
* English Performance Division A Champion: Sandy Weinreich on Don's Expertise; Division B Champion: Tyler Lasher on Whispering Pines' Just My Style; Youth Division Champion: Julie McCutcheon on Whispering Pines' Just My Style; Walk/Trot Division Champion: Margaret Balch on Whispering Pines' Spoiled Rotten; Leadline/Walk Division Champion: Chelsea Insley on The Grand Slam.
The Mid-Maryland Horse and Pony Association is gearing up for its Halloween show at the Howard County Fairgrounds on Oct. 24.
The show will feature a spooky trail class complete with a coffin, a costume class for people and animals, a pumpkin patch and Halloween prizes. Entry fees for MMHPA shows are $4 for members and $5 for non-members. Call (410) 781-6303.
Calendar of event
Today -- Horse War and Feast. Sponsored by the Medieval Horse Guild. Independence Farm, Port Deposit. (301) 990-0019 or (410) 658-2147.
Today -- Mount Airy Saddle Pals English/Western Horse Show. Mount Airy Carnival Grounds. (301) 865-1432 or (301) 831-5230.
Today -- Howard County Fall Hunter Pace. Howard County-Iron Bridge Hunt Kennels, Tridelphia Road. (410) 442-1582 or (301) 898-3449.
Tuesday -- Closing day for Maple Spring Super Chicken Horse Trials scheduled Oct. 30. Divisions consist of Super Chicken Rider, Super Chicken Horse, Chicken Rider, Chicken Horse, Novice Rider and Novice Horse. (410) 442-2295.
Saturday -- Play Day Fun Show to help Ralf the pony raise money for good causes. Clarksville. (410) 988-9035.
Saturday -- Charter Oaks Winter Series Show. Forest Hill. (410) 836-0186.