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September 2018 Newsletter

Exciting happenings at Western Dressage Association of America... Be sure to check it all out!
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A Letter From Your WDAA President

Dear WDAA Members,

As Western Dressage becomes ever more popular, WDAA is continuing to learn, adapt, and grow. We are excited to make some changes and add some services that we were too small to consider in the past.
WDAA is committed to providing our members the best-trained and most knowledgeable Western Dressage judges, so we have been aggressively training judges to become USEF Western Dressage judges for the past couple of years. WDAA wants to support judges who have gone through the expensive and time-consuming process to become USEF licensed Western Dressage judges. At the same time, we want to ensure the ability of show managers to find judges close to wherever Western Dressage shows are being planned, so they can offer Western Dressage shows in every area of the United States. Therefore, we have been methodically leveling (the same way we do when we train our horses) our way toward requiring USEF Western Dressage judges for all USEF-licensed and WDAA-recognized shows. It’s not quite time to go full Monty, but we are ready for the next steps in that direction. These steps involve modifications to USEF and WDAA recognized show rules:
1. USEF Regular and Local Competitions – Starting with the USEF 2019 competition year, which begins this December, only USEF-licensed Western Dressage judges will be allowed to judge USEF Regular and Local Competitions. Those competitions can no longer be judged by USEF-licensed Dressage judges, unless those judges are also licensed as USEF Western Dressage judges.
2. USEF Competition Lite –WDAA and USEF will meet to update requirements for Lite shows later this month. We will notify you of any changes that are made ASAP.
3. WDAA Recognized Shows – Starting with the 2019 show season,
 
USEF- licensed "r" Western Dressage judges will be eligible to judge Intro through Level 1 and all rail classes.

USEF-licensed “r” Dressage judges will be eligible to judge Intro through Level 1 but not rail classes.
 
USEF-licensed “R” Western Dressage judges will be eligible to judge tests at all levels and all rail classes.
 
USEF-licensed “R” or above Dressage judges will be eligible to judge tests at all levels but not rail classes.
 
*Beginning with the 2020 competition year, only USEF-licensed Western Dressage judges will be eligible to judge WDAA Recognized shows.
To support the changes above, WDAA will also modify and simplify the points system for the WDAA Horse Lifetime Points and Awards Program (WHLPAP).
Beginning with the 2019 show season, WHLPAP points will be awarded as follows:
 
½ points Shows judged by USEF-licensed Dressage judges
1x points Shows judged by USEF-licensed Western Dressage judges
2x points USEF licensed shows judged by USEF-licensed Western Dressage judges
3x points at the WDAA World Championship Show

I realize that growing pains are called “pains” for a reason and that changes can sometimes be difficult and take some time to get used to. WDAA is growing. It is getting better and better, one level at a time. I hope you will continue the journey with us as we continue to grow and keep sending us your ideas and answering our questionnaires to let us know how to best serve you. Because of your input, we come up with the best compromises and solutions.

Thank you for your continued support.

Cindy Butler, Your President
Western Dressage Association of America
 

See you soon at the 2018 Western Dressage World Championship Show!

Make sure to keep up with the festivities by watching the live feed at www.totalhorsechannel.com/wdaa/.

Who needs a golf cart?
Golf Carts can be rented for the World Show for $250 for the week, please contact Show Manager Jon Haugen at 970-217-7820 or fill out THIS FORM.
Century Club for Western Dressage riders from The Dressage Foundation

WDAA is thrilled to promote the Century Club from The Dressage Foundation. We will be adding a "WDAA Honors" page to the WDAA Website to honor these great, dedicated horse and rider teams whose ages add up to 100 years. For much more information on this wonderful program and possible grant opportunities read on.
Several years ago, as interest in Western Dressage was growing around the country, The Dressage Foundation (TDF) started to receive requests for grants to help the growth of Western Dressage and the education of its riders.  At that time, TDF’s Board of Directors offered to support Western Dressage because they agreed that classical dressage principles are beneficial to all riders and horses. 
 
Since then, grants have been awarded to dressage clubs hosting events dedicated to Western Dressage.  For example, the Western Dressage Association of Oklahoma teamed up with the Oklahoma Dressage Society in 2012 to host a “Classical Dressage meets Western Dressage Clinic and Workshop.”  The event was awarded a $2,000 grant from TDF’s Violet Hopkins Fund.  Since Western Dressage was relatively new at that point, the goal of the event was to introduce Western riders to the correct basics of dressage.
 
Around that time, TDF also started welcoming Western Dressage riders into the Century Club.  To join the Club, the ages or horse and rider must add up to at least 100 years and they must ride any level test at a dressage show or event.  As of September 2018, ten Western Dressage riders from across the country have joined the Century Club!
                       
  • 2012 – Cayce Black and Liquid Asset, Florida – Team #113
  • 2014 – John FitzGerald and Jacks Host, Hawaii – Team #161
  • 2015 – Thomas Faylor and Wildmoon, Michigan – Team #199
  • 2016 – Yan Ross and Merlin, Arizona – Team #232
  • 2016 – Suzanne Hall and April’s Cricket, Oregon – Team #246
  • 2016 – Harry Alban and MNK Made to Play, Michigan – Team #259
  • 2016 – Leanna Mae Bellinger and Fleeting Chance, Virginia – Team #263
  • 2017 – Isabel Surrey Saylor and Conclusions Shadow, Florida – Team #320
  • 2017 – Stella Gordon and Madoc Best Regards, Texas – Team #324
  • 2018 – JoAnne Percy and King’s Dutch Doll, Washington – Team #341

To learn more about TDF’s grants for educational events:
http://www.dressagefoundation.org/grants-and-programs/apply/educational_clinics_seminars_symposia/

To learn more about TDF’s Century Club:
http://www.dressagefoundation.org/grants-and-programs/century-club/
 
 
About The Dressage Foundation
The Dressage Foundation, located in Lincoln, Nebraska, is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit donor-driven organization that is dedicated to educating, supporting and advancing the sport of dressage.  The organization solicits contributions, appropriately allocates the donations and awards grants and scholarships to dressage riders, judges, instructors, breeders, high performance teams, nonprofit equestrian organizations and more.  For more information, please visit www.dressagefoundation.org.
 
ATTENTION ALL WDAA YOUTH!!
The USEF Youth Sportsman's Award Applications are due!! This is a great opportunity to earn a free WDAA membership for 2019 and become the WDAA Nominee for the USEF Youth Sportsman's Award. Applications due now to [email protected] to earn your free WDAA membership. Let's show them what our Western Dressage Youth are all about!

https://www.usef.org/media/press-releases/applications-available-for-2018-usef-youth
2017 USEF Youth Sportsman's Award
As a result of WDAA submitting a nominee for the 2017 USEF Youth Sportsman's Award WDAA receives a grant from USEF to pass onto a worthy youth program. The most recent $1500 grant was presented to the WDA Florida Affiliate. WDAFL is grateful for the opportunity to produce an educational video promoting junior riders in the discipline of Western Dressage, made possible with a youth focused grant from the United States Equestrian Federation through the Western Dressage Association of America. WDAFL has obtained footage from the Florida Championships Show in November 2017 and WDAA shows at Fox Grove Farm earlier this spring. On September 9, the WDAFL production team will interview four junior riders who have competed at the Southeast Regional 4-H Horse Show in Perry, GA, WDAA shows throughout the state of Florida and the WDAFL Championship Show. WDAFL appreciates the funds to complete this important educational project and look forward to sharing the media soon.

Safe Sport FAQ
Safe Sport Training Frequently Asked Questions

From the US Equestrian Communications Department

Lexington, KY – The US Equestrian Federation (USEF) announced a rule change on Tuesday, August 28, 2018, requiring that, effective January 1, 2019, all USEF members 18 and over with an Adult Competing Membership must complete Safe Sport training in order to be eligible to participate in USEF activities, including competitions. Since that announcement, we are pleased to report that over 3,500 USEF members completed the Safe Sport training. To provide further guidance, below are a list of Frequently Asked Questions regarding the new rule change.  
 
Where can I locate the required Safe Sport training? How long does it take? 
The required Safe Sport Core Training is on the U.S. Center for SafeSport website. Instructions on how to set up an account and access the training are here. It will take approximately 90 minutes to complete and consists of three modules: Sexual Misconduct Awareness Education, Mandatory Reporting, and Emotional and Physical Misconduct. All three modules must be completed in order to satisfy the requirement.
 
Who is required to take the Safe Sport training? 
Any USEF member who is 18 years old and above and who has a USEF Adult Competing Membership is required to take the Safe Sport training, including amateurs, professionals, and owners who have an annual, three-year, or lifetime membership. The Safe Sport training requirement does not include USEF Fan Members.



























































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August 2018 Newsletter

Exciting happenings at Western Dressage Association of America... Be sure to check it all out!
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A Letter From Your WDAA President

Dear Members,

    Horse shows are my life.  I don’t know about you, but it has been a few months since I have been home over a weekend.  I have been burning up the highways and airways rushing from show to show.  Everywhere I go, I am impressed by the people working at the competitions. Therefore, I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who volunteers to work so others can ride and show horses.
    I see volunteers working diligently for little or no pay so their friends, family members and people they don’t even know can show.  They even take off work to do it!  These volunteers are fantabulous people!!!  Managing and working at horse shows is hard and finding people willing to help is even harder.  I have witnessed volunteers giving their all and working long hours in devastating heat to provide excellent service to riders.  At one show, the ring steward was limping and obviously in pain, but he still ran back and forth to perform his duties at the show. 
I also want to recognize the horse show moms, dads and spouses who support their horse-loving children and spouses.  I could never leave home if not for my husband taking on both of our chores while I am away.
    Because of the efforts of volunteers, exhibitors are given the privilege to compete. From the bottom of my heart, I am grateful to all of you who volunteer your time and talent to support horse shows. 
    Volunteers themselves, Ellen DiBella and Katharina Nowotny-Boles are coordinating volunteers for our own WDAA World Show.  If you will be at the show and have time to help, please check in with Katharina. www.wdaaworldshow.org is where you can find the link to the World Show Volunteer application. There are some fun positions still available and volunteers will have the opportunity to meet and hobnob with Ellen and Katharina as well as learn something about putting on a World Class Show. Regardless of your ability to volunteer at the World Show, I thank you for supporting it and any other show through competing or volunteering. 
    To the Volunteers:  I see you.  I respect you and most of all - I cherish you for your time and dedication to allow horse shows to happen.  Because of you, I can say what I said in my very first sentence: Horse shows are my life.

Your President,
Cindy Butler
Western Dressage Association of America








The 2018 WDAA World Show hotel reservation blocks end in 10 days! There is a huge demand for rooms at that time so after the cut off dates the hotels will not have any available rooms. Please book your rooms ASAP.

For hotel information please go to 



















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June/July 2018 Newsletter

Exciting happenings at Western Dressage Association of America... Be sure to check it all out!
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A Letter From Your WDAA President

Dear Members,

One of my favorite things about WDAA is the spirit of positivity, support, and encouragement our members have for each other and for all horses.  I think part of what made us this way is the individualized nature of our sport.  We work with an animal, progressing through levels and achieve individual accomplishment regardless of what happens at a show.  I also think sharing and learning each other’s stories has given us a level of compassion that is rare in other disciplines.  For example, we all root for Cobra the Mustang who was rescued from the kill pen and now performs Level 4 Western Dressage. Even if you compete against him, your heartstrings are with him. 

Cobra’s story isn’t even unusual for Western Dressage.  Many if not most of our horses and exhibitors have amazing stories of overcoming adversity which sometimes culminates in competing at the WDAA World Championship Show.  Our membership is made up of outstanding individuals.

I bring this up because it is special.  You are special. I want us to stay this way.

We are in the midst of show season and WDAA and I, personally, are receiving an abundance of messages to report rule infractions at shows.  WDAA sees this as an opportunity to educate people, not tear them or the process down.

All people make mistakes.  I do. Our judges do. Our stewards do. Our riders do. Our show managers do.  Even the people who make statements on social media are wrong sometimes.  As hard as we try, and believe me, I really try, none of us are perfect. 

I believe all our judges, stewards, riders, show managers, and even Facebook posters (ok, well mostly) are well-intentioned people of integrity doing the best they can to represent WDAA, themselves and the Equestrian discipline in the most positive and accurate way possible.  Therefore, when one of us falls, it is up to the rest of us to catch that one so s/he can successfully continue on. 

If you feel it necessary to report a rule infraction at a show, please report this to the steward or show manager first.  If you feel the need to further report to WDAA, please supply WDAA with enough information that we can provide helpful, educational information where it is needed.  We are not interested in witch hunts or glorifying those who nitpick.  We are interested in providing a supportive and level playing field for exhibitors to show their horses.  Sometimes we do need to be made aware of problems in order to address them. 

We want all of our exhibitors, judges, stewards, show managers, and general members to be successful.  When we work together in a positive manner, that is possible in Western Dressage.  Everyone can be successful.  We can help each other without hurting ourselves in the process. We can learn with our horses through the levels.  As you improve, you lift your horse.  Your horse lifts you.  Our membership, board, employees, partners and show officials lift each other.  It is real and it is special.

Thank you for being one of the outstanding individuals who chose to join WDAA and make it the organization we love and are proud to be a part of.

Cindy Butler, Your President
Western Dressage Association Of America
Please plan to attend the 2018 WDAA Honors Banquet, Thursday Night Sept 27th in the Ropers Cantina at the Lazy E Arena in Guthrie, OK. It will be the social event of the season where the WDAA Top Hand Volunteer Award, Milestone Memorial, and all Horse Lifetime Points and Awards Program presentations will be made. These are such important and exciting awards we felt they deserved their own night! Ticketing information coming soon.
   
The World Show prize list is now available, many classes have been added this year, there will be 7 new Buckle divisions;
  • Lower Level Gaited Horse Open Rider
  • Lower Level Gaited Horse Am/Jr Rider
  • Level 2 Junior Rider 
  • Level 3 Junior Rider
  • Level 4 Open Rider
  • Level 4 Am/Jr Rider
  • Upper Level Gaited Horse Open Rider
Click here to download the WS Prize List
For the first year we will be offering a full Gaited Horse division and the juniors get their own classes through Level 3. We can’t wait to see you there!
What does it take to put on a World Championship Horse show?
The list is long but it starts with lots of sticky notes and a very large surface to put them on!  Our 2018 Western Dressage World Championship show has lots of sticky notes and I have plenty of room in my office on cabinets.  We also have an outstanding Show Manager in Jon Haugen and a premier Show Secretary in Susan Peacock. Our list of judges and stewards is amazing and we have announcers, a videographer, and so many others to support a wonderful show experience for all of our exhibitors.  You deserve nothing less!

Putting on a World Championship Horse Show is a very expensive undertaking.  Somehow the bills have to be paid.  The board of WDAA is the Executive Show Committee and it has a fiduciary responsibility to do this.  The board has made a commitment to make the cost of showing at our 2018 World Championship Show as affordable as possible.
When we look at the budget, we consider the costs of getting show officials like judges, stewards and more to the show and home again and housing them and feeding them while at the show.  WDAA has decided that live streaming each of our rings is very important to marketing our discipline to the equine world.  This is another very significant expense.  We have facility costs, a huge hospitality budget, insurance and more to consider.  Ribbons, jackets, belt buckles are important to our competitors but they are not inexpensive.  The bottom line is a little scary!

If WDAA is going to put on a first-class show and make it affordable for our competitors, we need help.  The help comes from our wonderful sponsors.  The wide variety of sponsorship opportunities has been created to offer everyone to be part of our World Championship Horse Show.  You can sponsor a class for $100 which covers the cost of the ribbons and the jacket.  High point breed awards are also $100 each.  WDAA is committed to making the show a celebration with parties each night.  Sponsoring a party costs $250.  A division award with an amazing belt buckle and ribbons is only $250.

Whether you are competing at the World Championship Show or watching on free live streaming, won’t you be part of our celebration of the discipline of Western Dressage?  Stand up and cheer for our wonderful horses and riders by being a sponsor!

Follow the link to the World Show Sponsorship Page to discover all the different ways that you can support the championships. 
This is the third in a 3 part series concerning the WDAA Mission Statement, by Ellen DiBella

Words matter! In keeping with my belief in this short statement, I would like to explore our core mission statements with you all. I do my best thinking in the barn with a brush or a manure fork or broom, so I will include the long-suffering horses in my thinking process.

We celebrate the tradition of the American West. So what does this mean? Does this statement limit in any way the universal appeal of Western Dressage? Once again, words matter.
What are the traditions of the American West? How are they unique and what do they offer us today in our Journey as horsemen and horsewomen? Take my words and my thoughts with context. I am a fourth-generation Californian who grew up when there were not so many people in California. I moved to Colorado 50 years ago. Geography always forms our view of the world and our values.

When the founding board met in December 2010 to create a vision and a mission, the reality of the American West, both historically and currently, was a reality for us all. Horses have been man’s major means of traveling, moving goods, etc for thousands of years. This was true for all of our country until a little more than a hundred years ago when cars first appeared on our roads terrifying horses and people alike.

The realities of geography and distance do not change even when our means of travel change. Generally speaking, distances in the western parts of this country are greater than the distances in the east when moving from one population center to another. When I hooked up the truck and trailer, I planned to travel 500-600 miles in a day. I do not think I would have planned to travel that far if I lived in the east.

Following the Civil War, a huge number of Americans moved West to find land, new lives, and new opportunities. They traveled huge distances, and those distances became a reality for any new commercial realities. Moving cattle from Texas to summer pasture in the north and moving cattle railroads created a culture of horsemanship to serve those goals and challenges.

Moving west to California following the discovery of gold at Sutter’s Mill introduced us to a long tradition of horsemanship coming from great European routes in the Spanish and Mexican vaquero tradition. These traditions were found in early horsemanship in Florida, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, and all of the Southwest.

The vast distances and challenges of making a living perpetuated and amplified a tradition that is uniquely American. You are judged on what you can do, and what you can do involved what you and your essential partner, your horse, could do. This is the tradition of the American West and it is no less important now than it was a hundred years ago. We live in a complex, confusing world that presents daily challenges that can confound us. Each of us can carve out a part of our lives that involve our horses and our partnerships with them. We can create and cherish who we are in that context. It can still be about what we can do with our horse partners. What a gift!
Update for the WDAA Horse Lifetime Points and Awards Program

We have several achievements to announce since last month for horses enrolled in the WDAA Horse Lifetime Points & Awards Program (WHLPAP). Zips Vanilla Bella, a very cute palomino mare owned by California resident Sandra Ogden and shown by Carole Perkins has reached Silver Medalist, the second horse to reach that level. We have added another horse, Danville Dinero, a talented Morgan owned and ridden by Nady Peters from New Hampshire, to the Bronze Medalist level. We also have a very capable horse who has earned awards at two levels in a very short time, Gallod Ffantastic, a Welsh cob, owned and ridden by Joann Williams from Wisconsin. Every level reached provides a fantastic award for your horse.

We have received a few questions and comments from members regarding the WHLPAP program that they would like to have an easier way to see the show history and point-tracking information on horses in the program. A very thorough and comprehensive listing of each horse’s show and award level history is easily accessed on the WDAA website. To reach a horse’s record, scroll down to the Important Links section on the WDAA home page and click on the link for the Top 100 horses in WHLPAP.
Whatever final award levels are achieved by horses in the program will be calculated from scores submitted up to approximately September 1st to allow time for personalized awards to be ordered for presentation at the annual meeting.

To date in 2018, WDAA has recognized 209 shows, including many that are licensed at some level by USEF and judged by a USEF-licensed western dressage judge. These shows provide double point opportunities for all members with horses enrolled in WHLPAP. We have found the easiest way to provide a listing of WDAA recognized shows is to have a listing available on the WDAA event calendar, so we recommend that you check the WDAA event calendar for recognized shows near you. We also ask that you speak with shows having western dressage classes/divisions judged by a USEF-licensed dressage or western dressage judge to have their show recognized to earn points for horses enrolled in WHLPAP. We hope that many of you will be able to find shows in your area to continue your journey to higher achievements with your partners.

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Western Dressage Education!

Find all the WDAA Tests, Guides and lots of great reading materials in our Western Dressage Education Center!
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Clinics & Shows
Looking for a Schooling Show or Clinic to brush up on your skills. Stop by the Events Calendar on the WDAA website where you will find lots of events happening all over the USA!
View Calendar
 

WDAA Social Corral

If you wish to be more informed about the Western Dressage movement, we do have a private Social Corral Facebook Group where members of the Western Dressage Association® of America can interact, discuss various topics, conceive new ideas and generally share all things Western Dressage, including people who are instructors, clinicians and even judges like yourself.
Join the Social Corral
 

Judges Education Program

The WDAA Western Dressage Judge’s Education Program is open to all licensed Dressage judges, Western, Breed judges and those starting out who want to learn about Western Dressage. This Judges Education Program offers training so that they can accurately evaluate horse rider combinations, score the tests and provide comments.

Learn More
Current Licensed WDAA Judges
 

Find A TTT Graduate

The Western Dressage Association® of America has a list of professionals that have graduated from the past few years of Train The Trainer Clinics. If you are looking for an instructor or trainer in your area..
Find A Graduate
 

WDAA General Store

Where You can purchase WDAA Customized Apparel in our Apparel Boutique as well as Books, DVDs and other educational material all about Western Dressage in our Products General Store.
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Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook for all of the latest Western Dressage updates from all over the US and Canada.

Find new WD groups, follow your favorite riders, find shows and clinics and connect up with Western Dressage friends in your neck of the woods.

Please Join our rapidly-growing online community...
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Why Be A WDAA Member?
Ever wondered what it means to be a WDAA member? Sure, you get access to the Social Corral, events, dressage tests, and tons of information on our website; you can participate in high points programs and receive our awesome newsletter each month, but what else?
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About The Western Dressage Association® of America is a 501(c)3 educational non-profit organization focused on providing a model of horsemanship which optimizes the partnership of horse and rider for their mutual benefit.  The mission of the Western Dressage Association® is to honor the horse, to value the partnership between horse and rider and to celebrate the legacy of the American West which it focuses on through its offerings of educational opportunities and events to the equestrian community.

 
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May 2018 Newsletter

Exciting happenings at Western Dressage Association of America... Be sure to check it all out!
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A Letter From Your WDAA President

Dear Members,

We have only one full-time staff contractor and two part-time staffers who work for WDAA. All the rest of us are volunteers. In order to keep up with the incredible growth of Western Dressage and continue providing outstanding services and educational opportunities to members and enthusiasts nationwide, WDAA must prepare to expand in a fiscally responsible manner. There are so many benefits I would love to provide to members, but with the lowest membership fee of any equine organization I am aware of, WDAA’s capabilities are limited. We are contemplating a small raise in our annual membership fee, but we don’t want to cause a hardship for any of you.

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April 2018 Newsletter

Exciting happenings at Western Dressage Association of America... Be sure to check it all out!
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A Letter From Your WDAA President
Happy Spring!  At least that’s what I’m hoping for.  This month has been rainy and snowy and hot and cold and all I can say is I am looking forward to May flowers.  My mom has a favorite joke: if April showers bring May flowers, what do May flowers bring? (Answer at the end of this article)

Spring is the beginning of show season for many of us.  I am excited to say that USEF has acknowledged, “Western Dressage is blowing all other breeds and disciplines out of the water”, their words not mine, when it comes to sanctioning USEF Lite shows.  I have already judged several of them and have been amazed by the growing numbers of exhibitors.  I also judged my first 4th Level riders last week!  It’s really something to see horses grow and improve through Western Dressage training.  

Many of you are working to come and show at our World Show this year.  WDAA staff and board members are also working to make sure you have the best show experience of your life at our World Show.  We want to outdo ourselves every single year.  We need help to do this.  We are asking for you to become a World Show sponsor or round-up some World Show Sponsors.  Please, visit the World Show webpage to find out how to become a sponsor:  http://www.wdaaworldshow.org/sponsor-the-wdaa-world-show/

All sponsorship funds go toward improving the show for you.  I hope you will all come and show or cheer for our outstanding Western Dressage horses.  Our World Show has an atmosphere like no other show.  You must go for the experience of a lifetime.

(Joke Answer: Pilgrims!)

Have a great show season!  I wish you all a wheelbarrow load full of blue ribbons... oh yeah, and good health, safe travels, and all that stuff too

Your President,
Cindy Butler
Level 4, Test 2 Revision
You will notice that Level 4, Test 2 has been revised as of 4/18/18 on the WDAA website.
I would like to explain why: 

Before the recent amendment, Maneuvers 4 and 7 included lengthened jogs across a diagonal and continuing further down the track.  Both maneuvers have been amended so the lengthening ends at the end of the diagonal, when the horse gets to the track.  This is to make the maneuvers more consistent with our other tests.  

I encourage our judges to realize that some exhibitors may not see this revision right away and give them credit either way for a couple of weeks.
 
I apologize for this oversight and hope it will not cause anyone too much grief.  We have chosen to fix the mistake on Level 4, Test 2 rather than leave it and live with it.  We hope you will respect our decision and we think you will like the test better since it has been revised.  

As much as we try to be perfect, we’re not.  We’ll keep trying, anyway.

Thank you for understanding,

Cindy Butler, Your President
Western Dressage Association Of America
Level 4 Freestyle
The Level 4 Freestyle is ready for your viewing & riding pleasure! We cannot wait to see you riding this test at the shows, put on your creativity hat and start building your freestyles!
Get the Test
Equisure offers Excess Personal Liability Coverage to all WDAA members that can be used in addition to the coverage offered by USEF to total up to $2,000,000 in coverage. Please see the FAQ page for more information.
Sign Up for Equisure Coverage

Why you need extra personal liability coverage

by Ellen DiBella

When I am out in the barn feeding, cleaning, clipping my horses, I see my well-loved equine partners.  When my homeowner’s insurance company looks at my equine partners, they see lawsuits waiting to happen!

Each state has different laws that govern equine liability that range from very helpful to horse owners to very difficult for us.  Activities such as allowing someone else to ride your horse, having visitors in your barn all have an effect on liability.































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March 2018 Newsletter

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Exciting happenings at Western Dressage Association of America... Be sure to check it all out!
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A Letter from your WDAA President
Dear Members,

Spring is certainly arriving with a flourish around here! I think most of us got enough rain or snow to keep the muck boots by the back door a bit longer.. Even with all the blustering and blowing, Spring symbolizes foaling, new beginningsand hope. I am working with our board and staff to plan for the future and I have a couple of projects I need your help with.

First, I am excited that many of you participated in our first Question of the Month membership poll to help us with planning.

The first Question of the Month was emailed to ask for your opinion regarding saddle types. The rules committee will use your preference to guide us as we attempt to clarify the rules regarding saddles.

We received responses from 302 members.

We learned:
  • 58% are in favor of side saddles,
  • 59% want saddle horns to be optional,
  • 60% don’t think Australian saddles should be allowed for shows.

I will present this information to the rules committee this month before we work to amend rule WD 120.

Thank you for your enthusiasm for this project. I have been receiving wonderful, encouraging emails from some of you, thanking WDAA for respecting our membership’s wishes and offering some inspiring suggestions. We will send you another question soon so you can continue to help us plan for our future together.

Second, I have been working with USEF to expand Horse of the Year (HOTY) awards for Western Dressage to include Open, Amateur, and Youth divisions for each level and rail classes and Equitation.

USEF conducted a study and determined we have enough competitors to offer Open and Amateur awards, but not Junior rider or rail classes and Equitation. They say we have to propose a rule change that can’t be effective until December 1,2019 to get just the Amateur and Open awards.

Since the standard rule change procedure takes so long, I took a leap and proposed a change to include the Junior rider division, all rail classes and Equitation as well as Open and Amateur divisions. I need you to increase the number of riders in divisions you want USEF HOTY Awards for. If the number of riders falls short, the proposal will be amended in committee to include only Open and Amateur divisions for HOTY Awards and it will take us at least another year to try again for junior riders, rail classesand Equitation.

So, grab all the junior riders you can find and help them become USEF competing members and record their horses. Then, bring them to USEF shows and let them ride in Western Dressage classes where they will have the time of their lives! I know that we can get HOTY awards expanded for them if we put our notions in motions! Don’t forget to ride in the rail classes and Equitation classes too. We can do this!!!

Thank you for riding with us!
     Cindy Butler,
          Your President Western Dressage Association Of America
USEF Fan Membership
As a WDAA membership benefit, USEF is offering every WDAA member a free USEF Fan membership for the 2018 competition year. All WDAA members will be sent an email with directions to claim your USEF Fan Membership. Both USEF and WDAA are very proud of our affiliation and are thrilled to extend the following USEF fan member benefits, normally costing $25. This is not a USEF competing membership.
  • Full access to Learning Center with educational videos and content featuring elite athletes, trainers, and industry experts, with new videos released frequently throughout the year
  • Access to full USEF Network coverage with over 4,000 hours of live and on-demand content
  • A fresh and updated US Equestrian magazine with digital stories that educate and celebrate, delivered quarterly to members
  • Ability to access full search, standings, and competition results
  • Optional $1,000,000 excess personal liability insurance for as low as $18/year for Junior members
  • MemberPerks Program including cost-saving discounts like:
    • 10% off purchases online and in-store at Dover Saddlery
    • Up to 40% off at Sherwin Williams
    • Up to 28% off John Deere Equipment
    • 10% off Premier Equestrian arena footing
    • Buy 10 bags of feed, get one bag free from Triple Crown Nutrition
    • $15 off your activation fee with US Rider...and many more
  • Youth participation in US Equestrian Lettering Program and other opportunities
  • Special member-only offers from ShopUSEF
  • Exclusive discounts from our Media and Education Partners
  • Member communications via press releases, US Equestrian Weekly, and more
  • Access to USOC Safe Sport training and compliance
Update for WDAA Horse Lifetime Points & Awards Program by Kathy Newcomb
We have several achievements to announce for horses enrolled in the WDAA Horse Lifetime Points & Awards Program (WHLPAP). First of all, one horse (Truly Unsurpassed, owned by Nancy Conley) has achieved Silver Medalist since last September, and more recently earned Gold Medalist. We also recognize six horses that have achieved Bronze Medalist level. We are truly amazed at how many new levels have been achieved since the month before the 2017 World Show.

Remember that you can review each horse’s record, which includes points earned at each show as well as their current award level, by scrolling down to the Important Links boxes on the WDAA home page and clicking on the link for the Top 100 horses in WHLPAP. We will be providing an updated listing of new achievements periodically in our newsletters through the year, and final award levels will be calculated from scores submitted up to approximately September 1st to allow time for personalized awards to be ordered for presentation at the annual meeting. Below is the list of new level achievements from September 2017-March 27, 2018. Congratulations to all!!

In the first quarter of 2018, more WDAA recognized shows than ever have been submitted, including several that are eligible for horses to earn double points. All recognized shows are listed on the WDAA event calendar, and you will see that shows are available from coast-to-coast. Many of these are breed shows that are offering open western dressage divisions. We are truly inspired by these shows and their support of western dressage. We hope that many of you will be able to find shows in your area to continue your journey to higher achievements with your partners.

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Attention College Students!
Are you a horse-loving (and western-dressage loving!) college student who would love to have some real-world experience for your resume? WDAA is offering an exciting opportunity: event internships at the 2018 Western Dressage World Championship Show, which will be Sept. 27-30 at the Lazy E Arena in Guthrie, Okla.

A media intern will help run the press room, working with WDAA board members and staff to send out press releases on all world champions and top-10 finishers. This valuable work helps spread the word about WDAA and western dressage, it also gives much-deserved recognition to our wonderful exhibitors and horses. Although a journalism background is not required, this would be a plum learning experience for anyone interested in or majoring in ag communications, marketing or journalism.

The WDAA intern will help in all facets of event planning, from awards presentations to candid photography to judges hospitality, office work, etc.

Applications are welcome from youth who will be competing at the show; we are more than happy to work around your show schedule! To apply, email a resume and cover letter telling us about yourself and why you would be perfect for one of these internships to [email protected] Applications will be accepted through July 15.
Grooming for the Show Ring
written by Nance McManus

One of my favorite things about riding Western Dressage is that we can express ourselves in so many ways when it comes to how we dress and the tack we use to say nothing about the breed we ride. WD judges have said to me that it is so nice to see the differences and not have to keep looking at the same outfit on every rider for the day.

And one of the main things it’s good to think about is how to shine when you show off your style and your horse.

Remember to start from the inside to get a shiny healthy looking horse. After your horse is in good shape now it’s up to you to bring on the good looks.

Good points to remember when cleaning your horse is don’t stop at the coat. You will want to double check that your horse’s hooves are also clean outside and inside. When I enter the ring I want my horse’s coat to be clean and therefore shiny. No tangles in the mane or tail….and especially keep an eye on those pesky stall shavings. And check that your horse hasn’t been smelling the soil in the warm up pen and has dirt all over his muzzle.

Many of us don’t agree that one needs to take ALL of the hair out of their ears or off of their face. Depending on the time of year that you are showing your horse you may choose for a simple trim of ear hair that is sticking out past the ear. Personally, I only shave face whiskers (and tidy up the jaw line) when I show at the WDAA World Show.

I like to step up just a little more when it comes to the World Show. Knowing that the show is streamed live around the world I like to be looking my best. Also, I want to be respectful to our judges. I figure I have 5 seconds to make a good first impression before I start my test. I would like the judge to know that I brought my “A” game to the dressage court.

Since I ride in a hat I like to make sure it is dusted and the crease is good. I like to make sure that my shirts are pressed. I don’t worry so much about my jeans being pressed since I wear chaps. However, if I am not wearing chaps I make sure that my jeans are well pressed and long enough to drop past my boots when I am on a horse.

Riding in short jeans that creep up while you are riding your test will only make your legs look short and messy. You could choose to tuck your jeans in if you have a taller boot to ride in.

Now that you are wearing such nice clothes you REALLY want to make sure your saddle and bridle are not dusty or crusted with dirt or sweat. You don’t have to have silver on your saddle for it to shine.

Remember the judge has made an effort to look nice for the day and we are “asking” them for a judgement by riding into the dressage court. The judge WANTS you to do well. They enjoy seeing a good ride. And that includes how you present yourself as well as how well you ride the test.
Connect with us on Facebook!
Follow on Twitter
WDAA Website
WDAA Social Corral
 

Western Dressage Education!

Find all the WDAA Tests, Guides and lots of great reading materials in our Western Dressage Education Center!
Get More Info
 
Clinics & Shows
Looking for a Schooling Show or Clinic to brush up on your skills. Stop by the Events Calendar on the WDAA website where you will find lots of events happening all over the USA!
View Calendar
 

WDAA Social Corral

If you wish to be more informed about the Western Dressage movement, we do have a private Social Corral Facebook Group where members of the Western Dressage Association® of America can interact, discuss various topics, conceive new ideas and generally share all things Western Dressage, including people who are instructors, clinicians and even judges like yourself.
Join the Social Corral
 

Judges Education Program

The WDAA Western Dressage Judge’s Education Program is open to all licensed Dressage judges, Western, Breed judges and those starting out who want to learn about Western Dressage. This Judges Education Program offers training so that they can accurately evaluate horse rider combinations, score the tests and provide comments.

Learn More
Current Licensed WDAA Judges
 

Find A TTT Graduate

The Western Dressage Association® of America has a list of professionals that have graduated from the past few years of Train The Trainer Clinics. If you are looking for an instructor or trainer in your area..
Find A Graduate
 

WDAA General Store

Where You can purchase WDAA Customized Apparel in our Apparel Boutique as well as Books, DVDs and other educational material all about Western Dressage in our Products General Store.
Shop Now
 

Follow Us on Facebook

Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook for all of the latest Western Dressage updates from all over the US and Canada.

Find new WD groups, follow your favorite riders, find shows and clinics and connect up with Western Dressage friends in your neck of the woods.

Please Join our rapidly-growing online community...
Follow Us on Facebook
 
Why Be A WDAA Member?
Ever wondered what it means to be a WDAA member? Sure, you get access to the Social Corral, events, dressage tests, and tons of information on our website; you can participate in high points programs and receive our awesome newsletter each month, but what else?
Learn More

Breed Alliances



 

Corporate Sponsor




 
 

About The Western Dressage Association® of America is a 501(c)3 educational non-profit organization focused on providing a model of horsemanship which optimizes the partnership of horse and rider for their mutual benefit.  The mission of the Western Dressage Association® is to honor the horse, to value the partnership between horse and rider and to celebrate the legacy of the American West which it focuses on through its offerings of educational opportunities and events to the equestrian community.

 
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February 2018 Newsletter

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Exciting happenings at Western Dressage Association of America... Be sure to check it all out!
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A Letter From Your WDAA President
Dear Members,

Your staff, directors, and volunteers have been busy as beavers working on new programs for you.

Your World Show Chairman, Ellen DiBella, is starting a monthly column in your newsletter to inform you about preparations for the 2018 World Show.  Don’t miss her entertaining and informative reports each month.  I am sure she is also scheming up a new idea for the golf cart decorating competition.

I have recently returned from the 2018 WDAA Judges Seminar.  I was blown away by how great our staff and trainers did and how dedicated our judges and judge applicants are.  You will truly be judged by the best-trained Western Dressage Judges in the World when you compete at USEF and WDAA recognized shows.  

Seminar attendees were the first to see the new Level 4 tests and everyone seemed thrilled with the content and opportunity for new challenges.  

Speaking of new, I would like to explain USEF’s new Competition Lite program here:  Essentially, a Competition Lite is a USEF schooling show.  USEF developed Competition Lite as a gateway into USEF Competition for new exhibitors and new shows.

Benefits of Competition Lite include lower costs and fewer requirements for riders, horses and show managers while still allowing USEF competing members to earn 1/2 points toward USEF Horse of the Year awards.

Only first time USEF shows are eligible to be Competition Lite shows.  

Keep in mind that shows must be WDAA recognized whether or not they are USEF Licensed in order for riders to earn points in the WDAA Horse Lifetime Points and Awards Program.  Rules for that can be found at:  
http://westerndressageassociation.org/wdaa-horse-lifetime-points-and-awards-program/

The following are eligible to judge USEF Competition Lite shows:
1. USEF Licensed Western Dressage judges,
2. USEF Licensed Dressage judges only for the 2018 Show season,
3. Judge applicants who have passed the written test and attended an official WDAA judges’ seminar within the past two years.  A list of applicants who attended the seminar and passed the written test in the past two years can be found on the USEF website https://www.usef.org/compete/disciplines/western-dressage.

Further, Judge applicants may receive USEF credit for apprentice judging at Competition Lite shows only if the presiding judge is fully USEF Licensed to Judge the levels being apprenticed.

Equipment checks at Competition Lite shows may be conducted by C2 stewards or appointed, knowledgeable show staff who have familiarized themselves with the WDAA Attire and Equipment Guide found online at: https://www.usef.org/compete/disciplines/western-dressage
and http://westerndressageassociation.org/western-dressage-rules-tests/

This chart offers a comparison of show types: http://westerndressageassociation.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/USEF-lite-local-licensed-chart-final-2-21-2018.docx.pdf​

Additional information is available at:  https://www.usef.org/compete/disciplines/western-dressage

With so many different show options, I hope you throw your hat into the ring that works best for you and show your horses.  There is nothing more satisfying that setting a goal with your best equine friend and reaching it together.

Enjoy the Journey,

Cindy Butler, Your President
Western Dressage Association Of America
Bringing Joy, Embracing Change

US Equestrian’s 2018 Annual Meeting spotlighted progress on the ambitious strategic plan. Bottom line: it’s working!

By Glenye Cain Oakford








































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November 2017 Newsletter

Exciting happenings at Western Dressage Association of America... Be sure to check it all out!
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A Letter from your Past WDAA President - Ellen DiBella

I invite every member of WDAA to join me in welcoming Cindy Butler as the new president of WDAA. Each November, the board elects board members for three-year terms and also elects officers. We have a wonderful slate of officers who will guide our Journey for this next year.

Cindy is uniquely qualified to serve as president of WDAA with her extensive background in the equine world and her dedication to Western Dressage. Cindy has provided outstanding leadership to the USEF Western Dressage Committee; her willingness to put time and effort into finding just the right words for our rules has amazed me. Anyone who has seen Cindy in action at our Annual Meeting going over the Western Dressage rule proposals will agree.


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November Commemorative 2017 Newsletter

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Exciting happenings at Western Dressage Association of America... Be sure to check it all out!
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A Letter From Your WDAA President

The red, orange, and yellow leaves are falling fast. Time to get out the rake. The barn is full of hay, which is critical when you have hungry horses. I am recovered from our World Championship Show, and the board is already working hard on our 2018 show!

USEF show dates revolve based on dates of holidays. For many years, shows have been scheduled around holiday dates to make it more convenient for competitors and for show venues. Almost all large venues suitable for horse shows book contracts with shows for several years; our contract with the Lazy E is for three years. The initial dates of our 2018 show were October 4-7. These dates would have created a conflict with the Morgan Grand National, which is literally “just down the road” in Oklahoma City. The USEF “holiday-based calendar” means the Morgan Grand National show, which revolves around Columbus day, always starts the weekend before Columbus Day, which moves their dates each year.

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August 2017 Newsletter

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Exciting happenings at Western Dressage Association of America... Be sure to check it all out!
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A Letter From Your WDAA President
 

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO US! WDAA celebrated its 7th birthday on July 26, 2017. Seven years ago when we received the letter of incorporation from the State of Colorado, we were delighted, enthusiastic and ready to introduce the world to the new discipline of Western Dressage. So many hard working volunteers, staff, and board members have put uncounted hours into the mission of sharing the reality of this wonderful Journey with riders and horses. Thanks to all of you, we have come a long way! Toast yourselves for your hardwork and commitment and give you horse a hug! 

I hope that each of us lights a candle on our cake by stepping up to support our upcoming WDAA World Championship Horse Show. You can visit the website at http://www.wdaaworldshow.org/sponsor-the-wdaa-world-show/ 

Seeing happy horses and happy riders working together to test their progress as partnerships, is celebrating our birthday in the very best way.
WDAA Annual Meeting

Mark your calendars for September 27th, 2017! Plan to join the Western Dressage Association® of America in Guthrie, Oklahoma for our Eighth Annual Convention. The Annual Meeting will be held in the Roper’s Cantina at the Lazy E Arena and will consist of several speakers that you do not want to miss; including Bill Moroney, the CEO of USEF. Reports from the WDAA Board of Directors and a report on proposed USEF rule changes are also on the agenda.
 
The WDAA Annual Convention offers members an opportunity to learn more about Western Dressage from a wide variety of experts; to network with Western Dressage folks from all over the country; and to gain firsthand input in guiding the development and direction of this wonderful discipline.
 
The Annual Convention is also the time when we get to recognize our special volunteers and horses at our Honors Luncheon graciously sponsored by the United States Equestrian Federation. Awards for the Horse Lifetime Points & Awards Program will be presented at this time. Other exciting highlights of the Honors Luncheon include the presentation of the Top Hand Award as well as Hall of Champions inductions.
 
Reservations are required and registration should be completed no later than September 15th, 2017. Pre-registration fees include the WDAA Honors Luncheon and are priced at $45 for members and $55 for non-members (registration after 9/15 will increase to $65 for members and $75 for non-members).
 
For more information, please visit: http://www.wdaaworldshow.org/annual-convention/
 
A tentative agenda of the Annual Meeting will be made available for download on the website very soon
First Horse to Earn WDAA Bronze Medalist Award
The Western Dressage Association® of America is very proud to announce that Truly Unsurpassed is the first horse to ever achieve the WDAA Bronze Medalist award level in the Horse Lifetime Points and Awards Program.

The Horse Lifetime Points and Awards Program tracks points achieved by a horse with their riding partner throughout their Western Dressage career. The WDAA Bronze Medalist Award level is reached when the horse has earned 300 points with at least 5 tests submitted at riding Level 1 or higher. To learn more about the Horse Lifetime Points and Awards Program, please visit http://westerndressageassociation.org/wdaa-horse-lifetime-points-and-awards-program/.

Achieving the WDAA Bronze Medalist level also signifies that Truly Unsurpassed—owned by Nancy Conley—has also obtained the WDAA Register of Merit, the WDAA Register of Achievement, and the WDAA Register of Excellence.

Nancy Conley shared these sentiments about this exciting achievement:
“Well, it is official […] Truly Unsurpassed and I have earned her Western Dressage Bronze award. We are the first team in the WDAA to achieve this. I am so proud of Truly Unsurpassed. Western Dressage has been an awesome journey for me. I have met so many new friends and acquaintances. My husband, Randy Conley, has even been motivated to learn to ride Western Dressage” and he is doing great on his horse Texas Barcode."

Congratulations to Truly Unsurpassed on achieving this high level of excellence! The WDAA Bronze Medalist Award will be officially presented during the Honors Luncheon at the WDAA Annual Meeting on September 27th at the Lazy E Arena in Guthrie, Oklahoma.
Youth Sportsmanship Award
Each year, the United States Equestrian Federation sponsors a Youth Sportsmanship Award. This award was created to complement other programs that focus on excellence in horsemanship by identifying a youth’s determination to excel as a student and to give back to the equine and their home communities. The award also recognizes youth that demonstrate the potential for leadership in the equine industry after their education is completed.

We were so proud of last year’s WDAA nominee Emma Santellan. Each year a USEF Recognized Affiliate who submits a nominee receives a $1500 grant to support Youth programs for that affiliate. Information and the applications for this award are available on the WDAA website at:

Please encourage your outstanding youth to send their applications to WDAA at [email protected]. If you have any questions, please contact WDAA at the same email address, and we will do our best to provide answers. WDAA board will select our nominee at the end of August, so time is short. We look to our youth as our future, and USEF shares our belief.

Download the application here: www.usef.org/youth
Learn More and Apply
Safe Sport

What comes to your mind when you hear the words “Safe Sport.” I used to think of driving home with myself safe in the truck and my horse safe in the horse trailer. USEF has expanded by my understanding of what Safe Sport means and I would like to share my new understanding with you.

































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July 2017 Newsletter

Exciting happenings at Western Dressage Association of America... The World Show is coming up quickly!
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A Letter From Your WDAA President

May snow is bringing July hay here in Colorado. It is also bringing a bumper crop of weeds; I am losing the war on weeds so I am just looking at the hay crop. This newsletter focuses on our upcoming 2017 World Championship Horse Show. We are really excited about so many things. Dini and Jon Haugen, our new Show Manager, flew to Oklahoma City to meet with Jake and Shane our new video company to look at the Lazy E and view the improvements that Helen Price and her great team have made since out show last year.

We have some wonderful volunteers who have stepped up with generous offers to help make this show a memorable celebration of Western Dressage. If you will not be able to join us, you will have the opportunity to watch the live stream of the show in HD thanks to IDK Media and their technical expertise. Do plan to watch for your favorite riders and horses for days of great Western Dressage.

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June 2017 Newsletter

Exciting happenings at Western Dressage Association of America... Be sure to check it all out!
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A Letter From Your WDAA President
Has anyone else had to put blankets on shivering horses in May? The strange weather continues here in Colorado; the rule of thumb is that you can safely put in tomato plants after Mother’s Day. Not this year! We had six inches of snow and three nights below freezing. The horses and I followed our usual calendar. They were wearing blankets and I had to replant the garden!

Show season is in full swing. Be sure to check the Events Calendar on the WDAA website for clinics and shows in your area. Participation in our Show Recognition Program and our Lifetime Horse Points and Awards Program continues to grow. For information about both programs just click on: http://www.wdaaworldshow.org/wdaa-horse-lifetime-points-and-awards-program/. WDAA has recently received some point submissions for horses from shows that were not WDAA recognized and has sadly had to decline those submissions. Share your pride in your horse and your partnership by enrolling your horse now. Also, if you know of WD shows in your area that could qualify for WDAA recognition, speak with the organizers about the possibility for the show to be recognized and send the show organizer’s contact information to us at [email protected] The more shows we have, the more points and awards your horse can earn.

I hope that everyone had a wonderful Mother’s Day and enjoyed graduations at every level. I sobbed through a high school graduation for our grandson, Alec, who is heading to the Air Force Academy where he will play football and study hard. I have promised not to bring him homemade chicken soup, but I may send his grandfather down to check on him from time to time.

Enjoy the sunshine and the warm weather if you are in the Midwest or north. If you are in the south, stay cool and bug free. Go out and hug a horse who will not shed on you!
WDAA Horse Lifetime Points & Awards Achievements June 2016 – April 2017
WDAA would like to congratulate the following Horses on their amazing achievements in the WDAA Horse Lifetime Points and Awards Program, these awards among others will be presented during the Honors Luncheon at the WDAA Annual Meeting Sept 27th at the Lazy E Arena in Guthrie, OK . Registration information will be posted soon. Great job to all of the horses and their partners! 

 
Give an Away Show a Try

Preparing for a competition begins at home and in the barn with feeding and grooming for success and conditioning and training both horse and rider. This takes months of hard work but it is only the beginning. Checking tack and bits and other equipment to ensure that it fits well, is just right for the horse, in good repair and legal is another challenge. Choosing our attire is fun but also takes time. Packing sheets, blankets, grooming equipment, buckets, stall cleaning equipment, feed, supplements, tack, clothing, and so much more can be overwhelming.
Read More...
Recognized Show Information
Attention all Western Dressage exhibitors, the following links are included with all WDAA Recognized Show confirmations, please make sure these items are being opened by show management and used.
  • USEF rules for Western Dressage link
  • Western Dressage Judges Guidelines
  • Western Dressage Guidelines for Gaited Horses
  • Western Dressage Equipment guide for your designated person
  • A Letter describing the WDAA Horse Lifetime Points & Awards Program for quick reference by show management
  • A trifold describing the WDAA Horse Lifetime Points & Awards Program that can be copied for competitors
  • WDAA Show recognition logo
Judges Seminar Announcement
The 2018 WDAA/USEF Judges Seminar will be held Feb 6th - 8th in Denver Colorado.The host hotel is the Hilton Garden Inn - Denver Tech Center. The room block has not been set up yet. Registration for the seminar will be open in the next few months, attendees are required to attend the entire program so plan on arriving mid-day on the 6th and not leaving until late night on the 8th. This program is provided as the first step in the application process to become a USEF licensed Western Dressage Judge. Auditors are welcome and encouraged, the seminar is intense, extremely informative, and lots of fun too!
 
Connect with us on Facebook!
Follow on Twitter
WDAA Website
 

Western Dressage Education!

Find all the WDAA Tests, Guides and lots of great reading materials in our Western Dressage Education Center!
GET MORE INFO...
 
Clinics & Shows
Looking for a Schooling Show or Clinic to brush up on your skills. Stop by the Events Calendar on the WDAA website where you will find lots of events happening all over the USA!
GET MORE INFO...
 

WDAA Social Corral

If you wish to be more informed about the Western Dressage movement, we do have a private Social Corral network on Facebook where members of the Western Dressage Association® of America can interact, discuss various topics, conceive new ideas and generally share all things Western Dressage, including people who are instructors, clinicians and even judges like yourself.
INTERACT NOW...
 

Judges Education Program

The WDAA Western Dressage Judge’s Education Program is open to all licensed Dressage judges, Western, Breed judges and those starting out who want to learn about Western Dressage. This Judges Education Program offers training so that they can accurately evaluate horse rider combinations, score the tests and provide comments.
LEARN MORE...

Current Licensed WDAA Judges
 

Find A TTT Graduate

The Western Dressage Association® of America has a list of professionals that have graduated from the past few years of Train The Trainer Clinics. If you are looking for an instructor or trainer in your area..
CHECK IT OUT...
 

WDAA General Store

Where You can purchase WDAA Customized Apparel in our Apparel Boutique as well as Books, DVDs and other educational material all about Western Dressage in our Products General Store.
SHOP NOW...
 

Follow Us on Facebook

Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook for all of the latest Western Dressage updates from all over the US and Canada.

Find new WD groups, follow your favorite riders, find shows and clinics and connect up with Western Dressage friends in your neck of the woods.

Please Join our rapidly-growing online community...
JOIN NOW...
 
Why Be A WDAA Member?
Ever wondered what it means to be a WDAA member? Sure, you get access to the Social Corral, events, dressage tests, and tons of information on our website; you can participate in high points programs and receive our awesome newsletter each month, but what else?
LEARN MORE...

Breed Alliances



 

Corporate Sponsor



International Alliance Partners


            
 
 

About The Western Dressage Association® of America is a 501(c)3 educational non-profit organization focused on providing a model of horsemanship which optimizes the partnership of horse and rider for their mutual benefit.  The mission of the Western Dressage Association® is to honor the horse, to value the partnership between horse and rider and to celebrate the legacy of the American West which it focuses on through its offerings of educational opportunities and events to the equestrian community.
 
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April 2017 Newsletter

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Exciting happenings at Western Dressage Association of America... Be sure to check it all out!
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A Letter From Your WDAA President
After several strange weather months here in Colorado, the meadowlarks are here singing their beautiful song and the crabapple trees are blooming. I can best describe the shedding horses as “moth eaten.” I love to take a shedding blade and just peel that nasty winter hair off! We are getting ready for Easter, which means counting the plastic Easter eggs and stuffing them with candy and money; the older the grandchildren get, the more important the money component is!

Dini Swanson and I made a quick trip to Kentucky to meet with the USEF Marketing Department about partnering to create educational videos about Western Dressage. USEF is following up on their commitment to focus on education, and WDAA is an eager partner in this. Dini and I saw Bill Moroney, the CEO of USEF; he is looking forward to being at our 2017 World Championship show. His experience at our 2016 show was wonderful; he saw horses and people having fun at a horse show. He is working on a golf cart theme; it worries me a little because my daughters are his partners in this. Cross your fingers!

The 2017 show season is launching; folks who live in warmer climates have never stopped showing in Western Dressage, but those of us who have cold weather, snow, and bad roads and horses with lots of hair are getting ready to ride and show. The WDAA Show Recognition Program and the Lifetime Points and Awards Program are both very busy; Kathy Newcomb, who manages these programs as well as our membership and state affiliates, is really busy, but just as excited as we all are.

WDAA has received two grants from our partners at USEF; one is for Membership, which we have used to support our Honor’s Luncheon at the Annual Meeting and the other is for Youth promotion. The WDAA board is open to proposals for using these grant funds. For more information on the guidelines for these grants, please go to the USEF.org site. In 2016, the Youth grant supported a Western Dressage clinic hosted by Ohio Southern University, which hosted five university teams and one 4 H group.

My thanks to our wonderful staff at WDAA. They continue to amaze the board with their devotion to Western Dressage and their commitment to customer service. I keep thinking that there must be downtime, but I have not found it yet.

Go hug a horse! Ellen
Here Comes the Judge
A Western Dressage competitor has a list of “must haves” when they look for a show. Showing takes time, money, and a great deal of effort. WDAA’s commitment to education of judges and USEF’s licensing process are focused on ensuring that the pool of licensed judges are the best that they can be.

WDAA has committed significant resources to support the goal of an educated pool of judges to officiate in Western Dressage. This has been a “work in progress” since WDAA became the USEF Recognized Affiliate for Western Dressage. We began by “grandfathering” all USEF-licensed dressage judges and have worked to broaden that pool of judges by creating the Accelerated Training Program to bring both dressage judges and breed judges into our judging pool. The WDAA Judges’ Seminar held each February and the Group Apprentice Judging Program at our WC show are part of WDAA’s commitment to education for Western Dressage judges. This program recognizes very explicitly that Western Dressage is different than dressage in that we use the principles of classical dressage training to improve our Western horses in all disciplines and endeavors.

As our pool of USEF-licensed judges grows, WDAA tracks the number and geographic distribution of our Western Dressage judges. The Licensed Officials Committee of USEF meets several times a year to review applicants who have complete the rigorous requirements for licensing a USEF Western Dressage Judge. The process is time consuming, expensive, and demanding intellectually. WDAA is committed to rewarding those individuals who complete this challenge; they have demonstrated their determination to understand Western Dressage and to hone their skills as judges.

The April Licensed Officials Committee meeting will have 10 new applicants who have gone through the very demanding process for licensing. The USEF website shows that there are 43 individuals who currently have a Western Dressage license. This includes “r” judges who can officiate through Level 1 and “R” judges who can officiate at all levels. These judges can also officiate in rail classes, including Suitability, Hack, and Equitation.

WDAA has tasked our WDAA Rules Committee with proposing any changes to the requirements for licensing to judge Western Dressage. You will see a rule change proposal that would limit this to judges who are licensed by USEF to judge Western Dressage rather than to allow any judge that holds a USEF dressage license to officiate. This rule would apply to USEF licensed shows only and would NOT impact schooling shows. If approved by the WDAA board after input from members and state affiliates this proposal would go to USEF to be reviewed by USEF committees and for a vote by the USEF Board in January of 2018. If adopted, this rule would take effect 12/1/2018 for the 2019 competition year.

WDAA looks for your input on all of the rule change proposals and for your suggestions for rule changes. Please look to our website for information and guidance for your thoughts.
USEF Western Dressage Judges by Region

Blue = 6
Green = 12, April applicants = 2
Yellow = 2, April applicants = 2
Purple = 12
Orange = 8, April applicants = 4
Red = 3, April applicants = 1

*USEF Licensed Officials Committee will meet mid-April to review 10 Western Dressage judge applicants.

2017 WDAA World Show Prizelist

Are you ready for the 2017 WDAA World Show? We are! And now the 2017 WDAA Western Dressage World Championship Prize List is posted!
 
View the Prizelist
Words Matter
Words matter and knowing what terms mean and don’t mean is not always as easy as it is important. Here is a quick cheat sheet for all of us:

1. “Western Dressage Judge” USEF licenses Western Dressage Judges; WDAA does NOT license them. WDAA is responsible for training and testing judge candidates; we work closely with the Licensed Officials department at USEF and the Licensed Officials Committee to ensure that our training and testing program is excellent. Western Dressage judges can have either a “r” which allows them to officiate through Level 1 or an “R” which allows them to officiate at all Levels.

2. “WDAA Recognized Show” WDAA does NOT license shows or approve them or sanction them. A show can be “recognized” by WDAA if that show files the appropriate paperwork and meets the requirements set by WDAA. The purpose of Show Recognition is to ensure that competitors who are involved in the Lifetime Points and Awards Program are competing on a fair and level playing field. WDAA Recognized shows may or may not be licensed by USEF or approved by a particular breed. WDAA has breed alliance partners who are not part of USEF and would not be licensed by USEF; the shows put on by these groups can be WDAA Recognized Shows if they meet the requirements. Local groups may put on shows that are not USEF licensed and these shows can also be WDAA Recognized Shows.

3. “USEF Rulebook” Each year, the United Stated Equestrian Federation publishes the rules that govern competitions licensed by USEF. This rulebook can be found on the USEF.org website. It is huge; this year’s rulebook must weigh more than five pounds! There is a chapter for each discipline and breed that is a recognized affiliate of USEF. There is also a General Rules chapter which contains rules which apply to USEF licensed shows. The rules are updated every year in a complex process that attempts to involve all stakeholders and the rulebook is regularly updated on the USEF website. There is a chapter for Western Dressage which contains the rules that apply to Western Dressage.

4. “WDAA Horse Lifetime Points and Awards Program” This program was created by WDAA and is governed and managed by WDAA. It is separate from any USEF awards program such as Horse of the Year (HOTY), breed awards programs, WDAA state affiliate award programs, etc. WDAA does not make rules for any awards program other than our Horse Lifetime Points and Awards Program. If you have questions about other awards program, contact USEF, the breed or the state affiliate for answers and help.

If you have questions about other terms, please email [email protected] for information. We look forward to getting your questions and to help you find answers.
Meet the new World Show Manager Jon C Haugen
Jon grew up with horses in his life. His mother and sisters all competed in the Saddlebred show world and at the age of 16, he was blessed with an amazing Standardbred that he competed in the Roaster division. He and his great horse were undefeated for 10 years at the National Western Stock Show. 

He married into the horse business to his wife of over twenty years, Julie,  and they worked together, training and competing horses in the show horse, dressage and combined driving worlds,  while raising their two children. During that time he managed and was secretary for numerous local Morgan Dressage competitions. 

In the last five years, he has had the opportunity to work in the open Dressage show management and assistant secretary position with a large company in Colorado.  Where he has gained much experience with multiple ring shows and the various challenges that can arise. 

His true passion is his family and love for people in general. He knows no strangers and has a wealth of information about various topics. His friendly, happy demeanor makes everyone feel welcome and relaxed. He has been told by many he is the best test reader in the world!
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WDAA Website
 

Western Dressage Education!

Find all the WDAA Tests, Guides and lots of great reading materials in our Western Dressage Education Center!
Get More Info
 
Clinics & Shows
Looking for a Schooling Show or Clinic to brush up on your skills. Stop by the Events Calendar on the WDAA website where you will find lots of events happening all over the USA!
View Calendar
 

WDAA Social Corral

If you wish to be more informed about the Western Dressage movement, we do have a private Social Corral network hosted as a Private Facebook Group where members of the Western Dressage Association® of America can interact, discuss various topics, conceive new ideas and generally share all things Western Dressage, including people who are instructors, clinicians and even judges like yourself.
 
Join the Social Corral
 

Judges Education Program

The WDAA Western Dressage Judge’s Education Program is open to all licensed Dressage judges, Western, Breed judges and those starting out who want to learn about Western Dressage. This Judges Education Program offers training so that they can accurately evaluate horse rider combinations, score the tests and provide comments.

Learn More
 

Find A TTT Graduate

The Western Dressage Association® of America has a list of professionals that have graduated from the past few years of Train The Trainer Clinics. If you are looking for an instructor or trainer in your area..
Find a Graduate
 

WDAA Merchandise General Store

Where You can purchase WDAA Customized Apparel in our Apparel Boutique as well as Books, DVDs and other educational material all about Western Dressage in our Products General Store.
Shop WDAA Gear
 

Follow Us on Facebook

Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook for all of the latest Western Dressage updates from all over the US and Canada.

Find new WD groups, follow your favorite riders, find shows and clinics and connect up with Western Dressage friends in your neck of the woods. Please Join our rapidly-growing online community...
Follow Us
 
Why Be A WDAA Member?
Ever wondered what it means to be a WDAA member? Sure, you get access to the Social Corral, events, dressage tests, and tons of information on our website; you can participate in high points programs and receive our awesome newsletter each month, but what else?
Learn More

Breed Alliances



 

Corporate Sponsor



International Alliance Partners


            
 
 

About The Western Dressage Association® of America is a 501(c)3 educational non-profit organization focused on providing a model of horsemanship which optimizes the partnership of horse and rider for their mutual benefit.  The mission of the Western Dressage Association® is to honor the horse, to value the partnership between horse and rider and to celebrate the legacy of the American West which it focuses on through its offerings of educational opportunities and events to the equestrian community.
 
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March 2017 Newsletter

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Exciting happenings at Western Dressage Association of America... Be sure to check it all out!
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A Letter From Your WDAA President

The days are getting longer and sometimes warmer. Can Spring be on its way? This is the time of year when the weather makes great promises one day and then sends snow! The horses continue to take therapeutic mud baths and are keeping a sharp eye on the pasture for any signs of green grass. The season of shedding is getting closer; I love to look at shiny, slick coated horses but filling trash cans with muddy winter hair is not so much fun.

In some parts of the country, folks are riding and even competing while others are shoveling snow or building boats! As we look forward to a new competition season with new tests, WDAA is working on production of videos on the new tests. The raw footage for this was shot at our 2016 WC show; that is the easy part. Reviewing each ride to be certain that it is correct and timing voice over is a much more time consuming process! Stay tuned.

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December 2016 Newsletter

Exciting happenings at Western Dressage Association of America... Be sure to check it all out!
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A Letter From Your WDAA President

It has been a wonderfully warm fall here even if it is very dry.  The past week or so has seen some very cold temps and snow.  The horses have known all along that winter was coming sometime and are very, very furry.  We bundled up to watch high school football; it was 20 degrees with wind!  Our grandson played his last high school football game.  Thanksgiving was wonderful with too much great food to eat and not enough willpower to resist.  I predict a serious diet after the holidays!

The Executive Board of WDAA met in late November; this is our annual reorganizational meeting.  The board had a chance to review our very successful World Championship Show which made money!  Hurray!  We also looked at things that we need to do better for our 2017 show.  Your responses to the survey were read and reviewed by the entire board.  Thank you so much for taking time to share your thoughts with us.  Your feedback guides us in making the next WC show even better and more fun.

The new officers are:  Ellen DiBella, President; Lisa Blackstone, Vice President; Thallia Blight, Secretary; and Cindy Butler, Treasurer.  We are very excited looking forward to getting several new programs going and focusing on exhibitor education.  Memberships for 2017 are coming in at a great rate; this year WDAA is going to a calendar membership year.  No matter when you join, the membership is $25.  Join early!

READ MORE FROM THE PRESIDENT'S LETTER
 
Points and Awards are going strong!

Our first year…what a year it’s been for the WDAA Horse Lifetime Points and Awards Program! We’ve had 89 horses entered into the program, and already 14 of these horses have earned a Register of Merit award, two of which also earned Register of Achievement. The database software with its built-in intelligence was launched to record horses enrolled into the program, post their scores show-by-show, keep a tally of their points to display when they have reached a new award level, and have all of this information available for everyone to view on the WDAA website with just a couple of keystrokes. We also have made adjustments to the program following the launch to ease the requirements for enrolling horses in the program and to make it easier to access the program rules and other information, including the listing of horses and their points on the website. We will continue to monitor the forms, the site, and the program rules themselves to determine if and when additional modifications would be beneficial or are needed. We are dedicated to making this program enjoyable and rewarding for owners, riders, trainers, and of course…the horses.

We want to remind everyone who has enrolled horses in the program that annual recording renewal forms and fees should be submitted before you go to your first show in 2017. Speaking of forms: we currently receive many forms filled out by hand and mailed through USPS. It appears this method of reporting is being done when payment for the scores posting is being completed by bank check. We encourage everyone to use the online forms for more efficient and faster posting of their test scores, and we now provide a field for participants to select that they are paying by check and to enter that check number so that it can be properly assigned when it comes in the mail.

The Western Dressage Association® of America’s educational mission focuses on honoring the horse and the value of the partnership of horse and rider. Our Horse Lifetime Points and Awards Program recognizes and celebrates the devotion of this relationship through our awards offerings. We look forward to honoring all of the participants in the program though its second year.

For more information on the Lifetime Points and Awards Program go to
http://www.wdaaworldshow.org/wdaa-horse-lifetime-points-and-awards-program/

Also add, for your Annual Recording Renewal Form visit
http://www.wdaaworldshow.org/wdaa-annual-recording-submission-form/


 
Ellen answers the question, "Where are the New 2017 Tests???"

It is almost Christmas! I can tell because my office and my kitchen look like a bomb went off! Wrapping presents, baking and decorating cookies and making candy make a mess. Hopefully, I will get presents under the tree and treats boxed up and delivered by the time I have to put the turkey in the oven! I suspect that most of you are in the same situation.


















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October 2016 Newsletter

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Exciting happenings at Western Dressage Association of America... Be sure to check it all out!
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A Letter From Your WDAA President

The horses are getting really furry as fall is starting to fade and winter is knocking on the door. The board and staff of WDAA are still working to finalize reports on our World Championship Show, the Annual Meeting and Group Apprentice Judging. The visual on this is my very large dining room table completely covered with piles of paper and my office a disaster. My husband has stopped asking when I will get my office organized or when we will have a dining room table again!

I had a fantastic time at the Lazy E for our meeting, show and the GAJ. The additional benefit is that walking that many miles every day helped me to lose some weight which is no small challenge at my age! Watching great horses and riders, wandering through the barns with USEF CEO Bill Moroney and hearing his excitement about Western Dressage and our show and most of all being able to hear from you all was a wonderful experience for me and for our staff and volunteers.

Dini Swanson went to the Morgan Grand National Horse Show to support Western Dressage there; this show went from one day of Western Dressage tests to two full days. Dini heard lots of excitement about our WDAA show; I went to this show a week later and everyone was still talking about what fun everyone had at our show. Several Western Dressage judges had great things to say about Western Dressage at the Arabian Sport Nationals. We are growing and horses and riders are so excited about this wonderful discipline.

I need to thank so many people whose belief, support, hard work and courage make WDAA and Western Dressage a reality for us and for our horses. The list is almost endless and I am humbled and grateful to each of you. Give yourselves a standing ovation and go out and hug a horse.
2016 WDAA World Show

The party is over and I can’t wait for next year’s party. The board of WDAA wanted our World Championship Show to be a celebration of Western Dressage. Every day at the show was wonderful fun for all of us and I hope for you as well. The weather was perfect: sunny with a breeze and not too warm. Everyone came to have fun, and we did.

When the Executive Board of WDAA took a deep breath and committed to put on our World Championship Show in 2016, it was a little intimidating. Okay, maybe more than a little. Your Executive Board serves as the Show Committee; they have the fiduciary responsibility for our association because we are a 501c3. I would guess that they dealt with more than 500 emails, endured endless hours on conference calls and had a few sleepless nights leading up to the show. We had long lists and high hopes!









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September 2016 Newsletter

Exciting happenings at Western Dressage Association of America... Be sure to check it all out!
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A Letter From Your WDAA President

The days are getting cooler here and the horses are starting to get some extra hair. It is still August but they are planning ahead. I am calling about more hay and sending in blankets to be washed and repaired; I am planning ahead as well.

I met the daughter of a friend of many years who is now grown with a daughter of her own at a horse show; she was leading her wonderful older saddle seat equitation horse back to his stall. She was so excited and could not wait to tell me that her horse was winning all of his equitation classes thanks to Western Dressage. She went to a clinic and has been using Western Dressage to school her horse and he is calm and confident now. I got a hug for a thanks and was so happy for everyone!

Entries are terrific for our WC show! We are also getting sponsorships for parties, divisions and awards. I hope that you will consider become a sponsor as well; there are a wide variety of levels to fit every budget. We hope that you will be part of this very special show experience whether you will be at the show or not.

Our Group Apprentice Judging program at the WC show is full! This program offers aspiring Western Dressage Judges the opportunity to see a wide variety of rides at all levels and to work with three outstanding judge clinicians. We are an educational 502 c.3 and this program is an integral part of our mission.

Our Annual Meeting will be September 28 and 29; in addition to our Honors Luncheon, we will have a USEF Rules Forum, reports from the President, financial reports, a presentation on Marketing, an Affiliates Roundtable and more. Most exciting of all, we will see demos of the new tests for 2017. Thanks to a generous sponsorship from USEF, the cost of the Annual Meeting is less than half of last year’s meeting.

Both the WDAA rules committee and the USEF Western Dressage rule committees have met in the last two weeks. Both groups have worked very hard to review the Western Dressage chapter and make recommendations for rule changes in response to your requests, feedback from competitions and the requirements of our new tests. Cindy Butler has worked especially hard to put these rules changes in the required format. The members of the USEF WD rules committee spent almost three hours reviewing the proposed rule changes which include a complete rewrite of the entire Equitation Chapter to make it more appealing to both competitions and competitors.

If it sounds like the Executive Board and the staff of WDAA have been busy, you would be correct. We live in a forest of sticky notes! On to the next thing on my list if I can find the right sticky note!

Ellen
Welcome Thalia Blight to the Executive Board of WDAA

Thallia is a Program Manager at the OSU College of Pharmacy in the Doctor of Pharmacy program. Her job involves daily communication with students, pharmacist-preceptors, instructors, and clinical site staff members. She is the primary person responsible for attending to educational contracts, and monitors the health requirements compliance for more than 500 students that those contracts require. Thallia also assists in the coordination of the internship scheduling for the program.
 
After riding in the Equine Affaire “Ride with the Best” clinics in 2013 taught by Cliff Swanson, Thallia helped organize a WDAA Train the Trainer event in Ohio that same year. She has been an active spokesperson for Western Dressage, giving presentations to college clubs, 4-H advisor workshops, and equestrian organizations. She has also coordinated presentations about the sport at the Equine Affaire in Columbus, Ohio for the past three years. Since 2012 Thallia has been blessed to be the human partner of Finest Five, a talented Paint mare whom she leases from her instructor. Thallia and “Five” have shown at the first three WDAA World Shows, and have won three WDAA World Championships at Basic Level.
 
Thallia has been an active member of the WDAA Marketing Committee and authored a marvelous brochure that WDAA sends to potential commercial partners.  Thallia has a background in and special interest in video education and views a comprehensive member education as a critical next step for WDAA.
 
Please join us in welcoming Thallia Blight to the Executive Board of WDAA.

 
Meet the WDAA Staff

Dini Swanson is a familiar face from past World Championship shows and our Judges’ Seminar; she was a wonderful volunteer and is an even better staff member.  As Staff Supervisor, Dini’s job description is long, varied and constantly subject to change.  In addition to being in charge of event planning and execution, Dini works closely with the rest of our staff on day to day operations.  Dini has a talent for asking the right questions of us all and her endless patient and attention to detail are remarkable.  Her biggest challenge is dealing with me!
 
Kathy Newcomb is a lifelong and well respected horsewoman and breeder whose background in technical writing and editing makes her uniquely well suited to provide support to our state affiliates, our membership program, Lifetime Points and Awards, Show Recognition and more.  Kathy is dedicated to customer service as you know if you have spoken to her or written to her.  Kathy is also in charge of our association cloud; the board has asked Kathy to put all of the important information, minutes, documents, etc on this cloud to protect and to preserve this material.  We are so lucky to have Kathy’s attention to details, commitment to service and her intelligence.
 
WDAA is delighted to welcome Una Schade to our staff as our new IT support and Online Operations Manager.  Deirdre Davenport left WDAA to pursue other career opportunities and we were without formal IT support for a month.  The Executive Board and staff have had many interesting adventures while operating without an IT net and we are delighted to have Una on our staff.  She has been working very hard catching up with so much ranging from day to day operations and more.  In addition to her extraordinary IT credentials, Una has a significant background in Social Media Marketing.  She combines patience with those of us whose IT ignorance tests her daily with a wonderful sense of humor and love for horses. 
 
WDAA is fortunate to have a talented and committed staff that is in charge of the day to day business of the association.  Each of these wonderful individuals brings a special set of skills to our association.  Each is a talented horsewoman with specialized knowledge and talents.  To read more about this very special staff please visit:  http://westerndressageassociation.org/category/board-of-directors/staff/


 
2016 WDAA World Show

Please join us for five fabulous days celebrating our favorite discipline, Western Dressage!

The Annual Meeting and Convention beginning on Wednesday the 28th will start with the debut of the new 2017 tests, meeting registration is required to view the tests, this is an exclusive for meeting attendees. The Honors Luncheon on Wednesday will include the presentation of the first Horse Lifetime Achievement Awards and the Top Hand Award. Thursday morning continues with more educational and instructional information and will culminate with the General Meeting and conversation with the WDAA Board of Directors.
Ellen Says "Be Prepared For a Party or Four".

I have been studying the schedule of events for the WDAA World Championship Show and I see parties and opportunities to get together and celebrate our discipline, our horses and our friends.

Following the Annual Meeting on Thursday and a full afternoon of rail classes, we get together for the Exhibitors’ Meeting and Welcome Pizza Party at the Covered Arena.  I listen better when I have pizza in hand!

Friday will be another busy day filled with classes; be sure to use your imagination when it comes to stall decorations.  The guest judges will be in the barn area on Friday morning. Awards for the Stall Decorating Contest will be a sweet little something complements of the World Show Committee. The girls and I will have two golf carts; you will not be surprised to hear that one will have a Denver Bronco theme.  

Friday night we have the Costume Freestyle and party in the Roper’s Cantina.  Bill Moroney, CEO of the United States Equestrian Federation, will be on hand to share in our celebration.  Be sure to come by and introduce yourself to Bill; he is a wonderful horseman who was instrumental in creating the United States Hunter Jumper Assn.  USEF is providing generous sponsorships for our Annual Meeting and for our show.

Saturday night is the Gala Dinner and Silent Auction plus the raffle drawing for the custom Western Dressage saddle donated by Mike Corcoran.  Get those raffle tickets for the saddle now; you do not need to be present to win the saddle. Click Here to Win A Custom Saddle. A great time is planned with great food, music and fun. Be sure to purchase tickets ASAP $30 each contact Stacia Wert-Gray at [email protected] . I will look for everyone at the covered arena with their party bling on and ready to cut a rug!

After the show on Sunday, we will have a Farewell Party and presentation of Awards for Breeds, Division, State Affiliate sponsored Awards and High Score Rider Awards for Open, Amateur and Junior. 

This hospitality and the outstanding awards are made possible by the generosity of our sponsors; you can check this ever growing list on the WDAA World Championship Show website and in the program at the show.  Each of these wonderful sponsors deserves our thanks. They certainly have the thanks of the board and staff of WDAA and our show management team.  See you at the Lazy E!

World Show Website | Annual Meeting Schedule
Shout Out to Sponsors for the World Show

WDAA and the Western Dressage World Championship Show would like to thank our sponsors, with out their thoughtfulness and generosity we would not have a show to put on. It takes all of us pitching in to produce this spectacular stage on which we will display the best that Western Dressage has to offer to the world. We will also be able to produce educational materials for use by enthusiasts through out the world. Please open the link below and thank these people and companies when you come across them at the show, they have made it all possible!"
CHECK OUT OUR SPONSORS!
WDAA Adopts New Calendar Year Membership Format
The new year–2017–is not that far away. WDAA staff are making the final preparations for our first year of memberships that will follow calendar-year renewals, replacing the previous anniversary-based renewals. All WDAA memberships will now begin on January 1st and end on December 31st. This system will better serve our members by allowing for more efficient administration of programs and memberships, eliminating troublesome bookkeeping for members to remember when they need to renew. Following the practice of most organizations, including USEF, AQHA, AMHA, and USDF for example, memberships in WDAA will not be prorated during the year, since this practice also produces inefficiency in the membership administration. We most likely will be sending out invoices for 2017 in November.
 
We also are pleased to tell you that your membership cards will be commercially prepared and sent to you through USPS instead of emailed to you by MailChimp. We understand that some of these emails end up in spam folders instead of reaching the members. WDAA wants the card to be of better quality for members to keep in an accessible place all year.
 
The WDAA highly values our members and wants to ensure that they are able to access the full scope of their benefits for the time frame which they have joined the organization. If you have questions or comments regarding the change to the calendar membership renewal date, please message the WDAA via [email protected]. We thank you for sharing this amazing Journey of Western Dressage!


WDAA Horse & Lifetime Points & Awards Program
We are very pleased how the WDAA Horse Lifetime Points & Awards Program is going. There are already 14 horses who have achieved Register of Merit and 2 who have reached the next level Register of Achievement. Many of these horses will be honored and receive their awards at the upcoming WDAA Annual Meeting and Convention at the Lazy E Arena in Guthrie, OK September 28 & 29, followed by the WDAA World Show September 29-October 2.

 
Connect with us on Facebook!
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WDAA Website
 

Western Dressage Education!

Find all the WDAA Tests, Guides and lots of great reading materials in our Western Dressage Education Center!
GET MORE INFO...
 
Clinics & Shows
Looking for a Schooling Show or Clinic to brush up on your skills. Stop by the Events Calendar on the WDAA website where you will find lots of events happening all over the USA!
GET MORE INFO...
 

WDAA Social Corral

If you wish to be more informed about the Western Dressage movement, we do have a private Social Corral network where members of the Western Dressage Association® of America can interact, discuss various topics, conceive new ideas and generally share all things Western Dressage, including people who are instructors, clinicians and even judges like yourself.
INTERACT NOW...
 

Judges Education Program

The WDAA Western Dressage Judge’s Education Program is open to all licensed Dressage judges, Western, Breed judges and those starting out who want to learn about Western Dressage. This Judges Education Program offers training so that they can accurately evaluate horse rider combinations, score the tests and provide comments.
LEARN MORE...

 

Find A TTT Graduate

The Western Dressage Association® of America has a list of professionals that have graduated from the past few years of Train The Trainer Clinics. If you are looking for an instructor or trainer in your area..
CHECK IT OUT...
 

WDAA General Store

Where You can purchase WDAA Customized Apparel in our Apparel Boutique as well as Books, DVDs and other educational material all about Western Dressage in our Products General Store.
SHOP NOW...
 

Follow Us on Facebook

Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook for all of the latest Western Dressage updates from all over the US and Canada.

Find new WD groups, follow your favorite riders, find shows and clinics and connect up with Western Dressage friends in your neck of the woods.

Please Join our rapidly-growing online community...
JOIN NOW...
 
Why Be A WDAA Member?
Ever wondered what it means to be a WDAA member? Sure, you get access to the Social Corral, events, dressage tests, and tons of information on our website; you can participate in high points programs and receive our awesome newsletter each month, but what else?
LEARN MORE...


















































































































































 

Breed Alliances



 

Corporate Sponsor



International Alliance Partners


            
 
 

About The Western Dressage Association® of America is a 501(c)3 educational non-profit organization focused on providing a model of horsemanship which optimizes the partnership of horse and rider for their mutual benefit.  The mission of the Western Dressage Association® is to honor the horse, to value the partnership between horse and rider and to celebrate the legacy of the American West which it focuses on through its offerings of educational opportunities and events to the equestrian community.
 
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July 2016 Newsletter

Exciting happenings at Western Dressage Association of America... Be sure to check it all out!
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Western Dressage Education!

Find all the WDAA Tests, Guides and lots of great reading materials in our Western Dressage Education Center!

 

Clinics & Shows

Looking for a Schooling Show or Clinic to brush up on your skills. Stop by the Events Calendar on the WDAA website where you will find lots of events happening all over the USA!

WDAA Social Corral

If you wish to be more informed about the Western Dressage movement, we do have a private Social Corral network where members of the Western Dressage Association® of America can interact, discuss various topics, conceive new ideas and generally share all things Western Dressage, including people who are instructors, clinicians and even judges like yourself.
 

Judges Education Program

The WDAA Western Dressage Judge’s Education Program is open to all licensed Dressage judges, Western, Breed judges and those starting out who want to learn about Western Dressage. This Judges Education Program offers training so that they can accurately evaluate horse rider combinations, score the tests and provide comments.

Find A TTT Graduate

The Western Dressage Association® of America has a list of professionals that have graduated from the past few years of Train The Trainer Clinics. If you are looking for an instructor or trainer in your area...
 

WDAA General Store

Where You can purchase WDAA Customized Apparel in our Apparel Boutique as well as Books, DVDs and other educational material all about Western Dressage in our Products General Store.

Follow Us on Facebook

Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook for all of the latest Western Dressage updates from all over the US and Canada.

Find new WD groups, follow your favorite riders, find shows and clinics and connect up with Western Dressage friends in your neck of the woods.

Please Join our rapidly-growing online community...

 

Why Be A WDAA Member?

Ever wondered what it means to be a WDAA member? Sure, you get access to the Social Corral, events, dressage tests, and tons of information on our website; you can participate in high points programs and receive our awesome newsletter each month, but what else?

Why Be a WDAA Member?
 

A Letter From Your WDAA President

So many wonderful and exciting things are happening for WDAA and Western Dressage that I don’t know quite where to begin!  Every day brings new opportunities and challenges. There is never a dull moment!












Read More

June/July 2016 Newsletter

Exciting happenings at Western Dressage Association of America... Be sure to check it all out!
Is this email not displaying correctly?
View it in your browser.

Western Dressage Education!

Find all the WDAA Tests, Guides and lots of great reading materials in our Western Dressage Education Center!

 

Clinics & Shows

Looking for a Schooling Show or Clinic to brush up on your skills. Stop by the Events Calendar on the WDAA website where you will find lots of events happening all over the USA!

WDAA Social Corral

If you wish to be more informed about the Western Dressage movement, we do have a private Social Corral network where members of the Western Dressage Association® of America can interact, discuss various topics, conceive new ideas and generally share all things Western Dressage, including people who are instructors, clinicians and even judges like yourself.
 

Judges Education Program

The WDAA Western Dressage Judge’s Education Program is open to all licensed Dressage judges, Western, Breed judges and those starting out who want to learn about Western Dressage. This Judges Education Program offers training so that they can accurately evaluate horse rider combinations, score the tests and provide comments.

Find A TTT Graduate

The Western Dressage Association® of America has a list of professionals that have graduated from the past few years of Train The Trainer Clinics. If you are looking for an instructor or trainer in your area...
 

WDAA General Store

Where You can purchase WDAA Customized Apparel in our Apparel Boutique as well as Books, DVDs and other educational material all about Western Dressage in our Products General Store.

Follow Us on Facebook

Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook for all of the latest Western Dressage updates from all over the US and Canada.

Find new WD groups, follow your favorite riders, find shows and clinics and connect up with Western Dressage friends in your neck of the woods.

Please Join our rapidly-growing online community...

 

Why Be A WDAA Member?

Ever wondered what it means to be a WDAA member? Sure, you get access to the Social Corral, events, dressage tests, and tons of information on our website; you can participate in high points programs and receive our awesome newsletter each month, but what else?

Why Be a WDAA Member?
 

It is summer for sure!

I am spending lots of quality time on the riding lawnmower mowing and spraying for weeds. Although it's a continuing battle, the best that I can manage is a draw! I love having fresh veggies, herbs in the yard and flowers but the “war on weeds” is a constant battle and I do not think that I am winning!
 
Even though we are all enjoying competing and being able to ride, WDAA has a calendar that focuses us on next year. That may sound silly but as an association that is committed to education and to our obligations as the recognized national affiliate, we have to look ahead. We have several wonderful WDAA committees who are guiding us.
 
The WDAA test writing committee has been looking critically at the current tests that WDAA has used for the past four years.  They are making revisions to tests based on feedback form competitors, judges. Stewards and show organizers.  This wonderful group has also been asked to create Level Four tests.  As Western Dressage matures and grows, we need to look at our tests as a continuum and ensure that every level offers a consistent approach to building and testing skills and the partnership between horse and rider.
 
The WDAA rules committee is reviewing the USEF rules the govern Western Dressage and will make recommendations to the USEF Western Dressage Committee.  This group of volunteers is looking at each rule and is eager for input.  You can go to:  www.westerndressageassociation.org/western-dressage-rules-tests to provide your input. 
 
The WDAA International Committee met to review our international relationships and to ask for input from the Executive Board as we move forward to meet the international demand for Western Dressage.  This committee is grappling with complex issues and brings experience and energy to this committee.
 
Without the wonderful volunteers who have stepped to serve on committees, the Executive Board would not have the input that it must have to make good decisions for this association and for the discipline of Western Dressage.
 
Enjoy your horses and enjoy summer!
Ellen DiBella
 

World Show Entries NOW OPEN!

Entries open TODAY... July 1st for the 2016 WDAA Western Dressage World Championship Show.  Join us for 3 ½ days of prizes, parties, education, friends, points, silent auctions, belt buckles, shopping and some competition thrown in there for good measure! For more information on this great event... please visit www.wdaaworldshow.org
 

August TTT Clinic by WDFTX

The Western Dressage Federation of Texas will host their TTT clinic August 3 & 4,2016 in Magnolia, Texas.
 

The Train the Trainers™ program is designed educate professional trainers, judges and Western Dressage enthusiasts who want to learn the standards of Western Dressage and how to train, hold clinics, show and judge this exciting new discipline.  A Certificate of Completion will be provided to all clinic graduates.  The WDAA lists all TTT graduate trainers on the WDAA website. Amateurs may also attend, being awarded an Amateur Certificate of Completion. Please note that you must be a current WDAA member to attend.

For more information and details... visit www.wdaatrainthetrainers.org
 

Custom Saddle Raffle at World Show

As you know, Mike Corcoran or Mike Corcoran Saddlery has supported WDAA again by donating a saddle to be used as a raffle at the 2016 Western Dressage World Championship Show... up to a $4,000 value. He will custom design the saddle to the winner's specifications, so that it can be the correct size for the rider, and most importantly, a custom fit for the horse. Mike is a long-time supporter of WDAA, as well as a WDAA world champion. He is one of very few saddle makers who specialize in saddle-fitting and who is a rider himself, so he understands first-hand how a saddle should function for both horse and rider.

 

Become a USEF Western Dressage Judge

When WDAA became the USEF Recognized National Affiliate for the discipline of Western Dressage there was an immediate need for a pool of judges to officiate.  With this need in mind, the initial Western Dressage rules specified that USEF licensed dressage judges were able to officiate in Western Dressage.

READ MORE >>>
 
 

New Breed Alliance Partnership

WDAA is proud to announce its recent Breed Alliance Partnership with the American Bashkir Curly Registry (ABCR). The American Bashkir Curly Registry shares the WDAA’s deep respect and care for the soundness and longevity of the horse and also values the importance of education for the horse and rider team.  The WDAA is excited for the educational and competitive opportunities that this breed alliance can offer for American Bashkir Curly horses and members of the ABCR to explore additional opportunities to learn, grow, and train to the maximum benefit of the horse and rider partnership.

READ MORE >>>

 

WDAA Needs your Support!

WDAA needs you!  Whether you plan to attend the 2016 WDAA World Championship show as an exhibitor or a spectator or will be joining by live video feed, you can be part of this amazing celebration of Western Dressage.

Not only will WDAA hold its Annual Meeting and Honors Luncheon at the 2016 World Championship Show, we will also offer educational opportunities for Western Dressage Judges with our Apprentice Judging Program.

There is a wide variety of sponsorship opportunities and levels to chose from.  Many levels of sponsorship offer box seats, tickets to parties and more.
 

Your Sponsorship at any level is
Tax Deductible!

Breed Alliances



 
 

Corporate Sponsor



International Alliance Partners


           
 
 
About The Western Dressage Association® of America is a 501(c)3 educational non-profit organization focused on providing a model of horsemanship which optimizes the partnership of horse and rider for their mutual benefit.  The mission of the Western Dressage Association® is to honor the horse, to value the partnership between horse and rider and to celebrate the legacy of the American West which it focuses on through its offerings of educational opportunities and events to the equestrian community.

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June 2016 Newsletter

Exciting happenings at Western Dressage Association of America... Be sure to check it all out!
Is this email not displaying correctly?
View it in your browser.

Western Dressage Education!

Find all the WDAA Tests, Guides and lots of great reading materials in our Western Dressage Education Center!

 

Clinics & Shows

Looking for a Schooling Show or Clinic to brush up on your skills. Stop by the Events Calendar on the WDAA website where you will find lots of events happening all over the USA!

WDAA Social Corral

If you wish to be more informed about the Western Dressage movement, we do have a private Social Corral network where members of the Western Dressage Association® of America can interact, discuss various topics, conceive new ideas and generally share all things Western Dressage, including people who are instructors, clinicians and even judges like yourself.
 

Judges Education Program

The WDAA Western Dressage Judge’s Education Program is open to all licensed Dressage judges, Western, Breed judges and those starting out who want to learn about Western Dressage. This Judges Education Program offers training so that they can accurately evaluate horse rider combinations, score the tests and provide comments.

Find A TTT Graduate

The Western Dressage Association® of America has a list of professionals that have graduated from the past few years of Train The Trainer Clinics. If you are looking for an instructor or trainer in your area...
 

WDAA General Store

Where You can purchase WDAA Customized Apparel in our Apparel Boutique as well as Books, DVDs and other educational material all about Western Dressage in our Products General Store.

Follow Us on Facebook

Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook for all of the latest Western Dressage updates from all over the US and Canada.

Find new WD groups, follow your favorite riders, find shows and clinics and connect up with Western Dressage friends in your neck of the woods.

Please Join our rapidly-growing online community...

 

Why Be A WDAA Member?

Ever wondered what it means to be a WDAA member? Sure, you get access to the Social Corral, events, dressage tests, and tons of information on our website; you can participate in high points programs and receive our awesome newsletter each month, but what else?

Why Be a WDAA Member?
 
It is Show Time!  The winter hair is history and we have footing to ride.  For those of us who live where we have four seasons, this is a great season.  We wade through snow drifts and then mud to care for horses that are covered with heavy fur coats; clean stalls in snow storms; and search for our shining horses under mud and nasty winter hair.  When show season arrives, we are more than delighted!
 
This is our chance to measure our progress working towards our individual goals with our equine partners as we compete in Western Dresssge.  It is also time to see old friends and make new ones as we are competing.  This is our time to recall old memories and to make new ones. 
 
I have owned, shown and bred Morgan horses for 45 years.  Yes, I am officially very old but that is my good news.  As I look back on these wonderful years competing with my horses, I am overwhelmed by wonderful memories of great horses, mine and others, and very special friends.   I have learned a few lessons, many of them the hard way.  There might be something about us horse folks that makes us a little hard headed sometimes!
 
For most of my competition years, I competed in Western Pleasure and sometimes in hunter pleasure and dressage.  I quickly learned that I was a cowgirl at heart and focused on Western Pleasure until Western Dressage came my way and I found the perfect place for me and for my Morgan horses.  I look back on each of my Morgan show horses and realize that every one of them would have loved Western Dressage; their competition careers would have been longer and happier for them and for me if we had Western Dressage.
 
One of the lessons that these years have taught me is that ribbons and trophies are not everything.  I have accumulated boxes of them over these many years.  I recall my first ribbon as in many ways my most important; after competing for three years, I won a third place ribbon.  I have absolutely no innate talent as a rider; I am dyslexic and do now know my right from my left and have a terrible time looking at a pattern or test and translating it into a riding reality.  I am also stubborn and determined and do not know how to quit. 
 
I am looking at several World Champion plaques on the wall in my office as I write this letter.  Each brings to mind wonderful horses who did their very best for me.  My life in our equine industry is richer because of these horses and because of the wonderful horsemen that I have known.  As you enjoy every minute of this show season, capture wonderful memories of great rides on great horse partners; savor every moment with old horse friends; and make new friends in our Western Dressage world.
 
We are so fortunate to have this new discipline of Western Dressage to build extraordinary partnerships with our horses.  We have feedback from each or our rides for every movement as well as individual comments.  We know what we did well and what we need to do better.  We are so lucky!  Time to celebrate Show Time!

Thanks to each of you and go hug a horse!
Ellen DiBella
 

Meet USEF Liaison Joyce Hamblin!

WDAA is the Recognized Affiliate for Western Dressage; this special status requires WDAA to operate at the highest level of accountability to its members and to our discipline of Western Dressage.  We work hard each day to fulfill this responsibility.  As a Recognized National Affiliate for USEF, we have access to some very special support and resources.  One of these resources is a wonderful individual, Joyce Hamblin, who is our staff liaison with USEF.



























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