It was not an art show that came to town but the paints were still involved.
The Alberta Paint Horse Club held its first Alberta-based show of the season in Ponoka, at the Calnash Ag Event Centre, June 22 to 23.
With 495 entries the two-day Spring Classic featured both kinds of paint horses. “We have a variety of classes. It’s mostly paint horses but we have the solid paint bred horses too,” explained show manager Leslie Noble McCleave.
The Spring Classic had horses competing a number of classes, including halter, English, western, trail and showmanship. The four judges look for movement in both English and western classes, conformation and gait transition. “In showmanship it’s grooming. You presenting your horse is showmanship,” said Noble McCleave.
CCF classes were also offered during the Spring Classic; they were the only classes with monetary prizes, all other classes were item based. Approximately $7,000 was available in prize money.
CCF classes only allow yearling and up to four year olds to compete. “It’s a futurity designed to help breeders promote their foals,” said CCF administrator Janene Moch.
Before foals are born they are nominated through the foal’s sire and dam and only those born nominated may enter.
The young horses compete in classes and earn points. “They accumulate points for their first two years and the one with the most points wins a horse trailer,” explained Moch.
After the two years, three and four year olds are still eligible to compete but are no longer in the running for the trailer. “There’s still money available to them, just not as much, said Moch.
Members of the Alberta Paint Horse Club who were not entered in CCF classes were also hoping to earn points of their own. The points count toward the Alberta Paint Horse Club and the Alberta Paint Horse Association World Show. “Some of them (competing members) travel outside the circuit but some stay within these weekend warrior shows,” said McCleave.
Those wanting to attend bigger shows are “hunting” at smaller shows, such as the Spring Classic, for points.
The Spring Classic also offers youth classes and many families attend together to compete. “We have a pretty broad spectrum of who can come and show,” said McCleave.