Friday, 1 October 2010

Ambitions Equestrian Centre Open Day


The Planning
The open day was the brain child of the Ambitions staff; during a meeting the topic of mirrors for the indoor school came up and everyone agreed how great it would be for their students and themselves to see themselves as they rode. I completely agreed as it would be wonderful to help train myself between my monthly lessons. Sadly I informed them that arena mirrors cost a lot of money and Ambitions isn't blessed with a large fortune so the mirrors would have to go on the wish list. "lets have a fundraising open day" Rhiannon said, just like that, I was skeptical as my already 8 day week schedule would not allow for organising such an event. So, I threw it over to her "if you want to organise it, I am right behind you" and she accepted whole heartedly.
Over the next few months they had meetings, messages for ideas and organising to be done, there was a real buzz from all the staff. They have achieved so much by working as a team, it was wonderful to see their idea come to life and be so successful. Here is what happened........

 Farrier Demonstration
Performed by Tom Godfrey
Our lovely yard farrier Tom Godfrey donated his sunday afternoon to Ambitions to provide a fun and informative demo of shoeing a horse. He really put his skills on show and had the audience captivated with his easy to understand explanations and displayed his kind and patient way with the horses.
The Wild West Musical Drill Ride
Performed by Beth Tilley riding Robby, Darcey Scott riding Katy, Hannah Tilley riding Barney and Mitzi Scott riding Chuckles.
This was a fantastic display from the young riders, all of which first learnt to ride at Ambitions only two years ago. They worked together with Jo to produce a lively western themed display that included jumping towards each other across the diagonals. Their timing was perfect, the ponies ears were pricked and the girls all had huge smiles on their faces - well done girls, I heard the audience clapping and chearing from the top yard, I knew it was going to be a tough act to follow!
Dressage Demonstration
Performed by Charlotte Jackson and Saab (Splodge)
I must say I don't usually get nervous about competing, even at the National Chamionships, or doing the evening demo's we have at Ambitions but when I was getting ready for the Demo at the Open day my stomach was churning! Splodge was none the wiser and did the usual routine of trying to pull the stool out from under my feet whilst I was plaiting him up.
Well it started ok, Splodge of course felt very relaxed with a large crowd of admirers around him - butter wouldn't melt - he is such a hero! The microphone was a great idea over my hat but it wasn't liking Splodges bouncy trot so kept slipping down around my neck - take two - lets try underneath the hat? Voila! a success. The crowd were able to hear my every breath perfectly as I took them through the basics to more advanced movements- sorry for the heavy breathing guys! Anyway, the demo went really well and we had some great questions from the crowd although the crowd did become quite quiet when I asked them some questions - they came out of their shell in the end and we had a great time until we got kicked off the stage for running over time! Have a look at the videos they are on the Ambitions Equestrian Centre facebook page along with other photos from the day.
Dog Agility Demonstration
Performed by Alison McBride and Archie and Debbie Davies and Maddie. 
What a fantastic display form the two ladies and their dogs. They have both been attending evening classes at Ambitions ran by Sheila McDonald. They showed their training off by skillfully completing an obstacle course including jumps, tunnels and obedience exercises. The crowd loved it and were then allowed to have a go with their own dogs around the course. Again this display ran over time due to everyone having so much fun!
Alison and Archie
Debbie and Maddie
Millie and Lauren with Scully
Su and daughter Darcey attempting to coax Panda inside the tunnel
Ben and Flick

Showing Demonstration
Performed by Madge Morrow riding Jimmy Morrell
Madge did a very professional demo of what's required when showing your horse. Jimmy is an 18 year old ex race horse who with Madge have qualified for Hickstead, Stoneleigh and many other prestigious shows in the Retrain of the Race Horse and veteran classes. Madge and Jimmy showed their individual show routine; this involves walk, trot, canter, extended canter, extended trot and rein back. This is performed in front of the judge to show your horse off and display their obedience and the harmony between horse and rider. Madge then took questions from the audience, people were really interested and for some it had been their first introduction to the world of showing. 

Show Jumping Demonstration
Performed by Rhiannon Morris riding Clary and Hana Uvirova riding Ruby.
The girls put on a fun performance that got the crowd going. Clary and Rhiannon have competed at county level show jumping to a height of 1 metre 30cms! She was able to show us the technique used by a more experienced horse versus that of a more novice horse like Ruby and Hana. The girls had a jump off - the fence went higher as each combination cleared the fence. The fences began to fall as the pressure was on, Ruby gave a brave effort, really giving it her all but it was Clary (after a dramatic knock down - caught in the pictures below) who cleared a height of 1 metre 15cms.
 Rhiannon and Clary
Hana and Ruby

Pimp my Hat Competition
Entered by all the helpers at Ambitions.
Well the stakes were high - it was serious competition as you will see in the photos. We got the crowd to do a cheerometer to determine the winner.  It was close. I had to parade the hats for the audience as they deliberated the winner. Finally after three goes they crowned Esme Sanderson as the winner, her prize  - a private lesson at Ambitions with the instructor of her choice!
 I couldn't understand why everyone was laughing?
The Winner - Esme
At the end of the day
Once everything was packed away the Ambitions staff, family and friends got together for a celebration drink - there were quite a few laughs involving some face paint, a mountain board and a wig?!
 Rosie had her hair painted
 Bev at the heart of the fun
 Even Bess getting in on the action
Hasan, Aziz, Beth, Bev, Hannah, Rhi, Roy, Charlotte and Hana.
Lynne creating another masterpiece
Ta da!
I couldn't resist!
and No....I wasn't drunk! 
 Scully loved her new makeover!
Who is this handsome fellow?

As you can see, the day was a huge success! There was a smile on every face. We managed to raise a whopping £780.00 for the mirror fund, which will be coming soon, also we are donating a portion to Cancer Research in memory of  one of our clients and friend Mrs Wakelyn who sadly lost her battle against cancer earlier this year.
A massive thank you to.......................
Su Porter-Scott for her services on the mic, Chris Young for arranging a much needed bar, Lesley and wonderful husband Mark for providing a delicious BBQ, Lynne and Arlene for their fantastic face painting, Mom and Dad, Pete for taking great photos, Albert Honey for lending the marquee and tending the bottle stand, Paul Simpson for lending his camper van and organising the parking, Mr Tilley for helping with the car park, Debbie and Alison for the dog agility demo, Jo for organising the Musical drill ride, Tom Godfrey for the Farrrier demonstration, Nikki's dad for lending the tables, Mr Townsend for providing soothing live jazz throughout the day, all the donators of prizes for the raffle especially John for his star prize of the Jumps, now all the staff (in no particular order) Rhiannon, Jo, Hana, Laura, Madge, Fliss, Tryna, Michaela, Alison, All the helpers and anyone and everyone who helped us achieve such a fantastic day - if I have forgotten anyone at all I am truly sorry!

1 comment:

  1. I had fun reading this Charlotte... it was a good day as I went down as well for the open day!!! x