The 4th of July is usually surrounded by parades, cookouts, warm friendships, hot grills, cold drinks and fireworks (you either love ‘em or hate ‘em). With the pandemic still hanging around our shoulders, get-togethers may not be exactly the same as they were last year (or hopefully will be next year). As equestrians, cancelled plans never really bother us- more time to be at the barn!
Thankfully, horse shows with USEF and FEI have started to resume. Just to mention a handful:
Tryon Summer 4 Hunter (AA)
Great Lakes Equestrian Festival (Week 1 CSI**) in Traverse City
Canada Erin Welcome Gold fromBy Angelstone Tournament
The Great Lakes Equestrian Festival (Week 1 CSI**) in Traverse City will be offering jumper, hunters and equitation classes. Usually, spectators would enjoy booking a room at the local resort and spending the day ring-side cheering and shopping in the evening.
Will allow for live coverage only for the rest of the 2020 season to prevent large groups of people in concentrated areas. The governing bodies are adopting appropriate guidelines given by the World Health Organization, the Center for Disease Control, and FEI’s Enhanced Competition Safety Policy.
With opening during a pandemic comes some guidelines to follow to ensure everyone’s safety and mitigate the spread of COVID-19.
President and Founder of Angelstone Tournaments, Keean White, states that the Erin Welcome Gold in Ontario, Canada will commence with many changes and accommodations to ensure the safety of competitors, grooms, assistance and grounds workers.
Complying with necessary guidelines, though necessary, has proven to be especially difficult for the planning committee, “This was the most difficult competition we have ever planned by a massive amount. The requirements for an organizer to be compliant are nearly impossible, and there are so many factors you must consider to make sure your competitions are safe, and meet local health requirements…” says White. Despite their 50% capacity restriction, their functioning cost has inflated compared to a typical capacity event.
Interest to start competing again has also decreased as stated by White, “Definitely less, but seems to be a big group that are a little unsure. I think as the summer goes forward, a lot more will want to participate.”
With the 4th of July and Canada Day fast approaching, take care if you live close to a venue or stable to be mindful of your use of pyrotechnics. These often heighten stress levels for pets and horses.
With more uncertainties than ever before, it is difficult to see a bright future, but us equestrians are resilient and know there are greener pastures ahead!