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Horse Illustrated editorial staff
The Near Side - Dispatches from Horse Illustrated HQ

The Horse Illustrated staff works hard to bring you the best of the horse world each month. But when we're not in the office we're usually at the barn, or any place that’s horsey! In addition to living equestrian lives, we’re always finding fascinating horsey stuff that we think you might enjoy beyond the magazine. The Near Side is our place to share what goes on  in between issues at Horse Illustrated. Join us for the ride!

For more info on the Horse Illustrated team, read on >>

 

Monday, October 3, 2016
The Conflict of a Non-Horsey Family
By Leslie Potter

There’s a narrative in the modern American horse world that has become something of a trope. The most common example is probably the horse-loving woman who has to deal with the scorn of the husband who doesn’t understand the horses and resents the amount of time she spends with them. We’ve certainly contributed to this narrative here at Horse Illustrated over the years, but it’s always seemed a little outdated to me.
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Wednesday, September 14, 2016
9 Things I Miss About Being an Equestrian Science Student
By Leslie Potter

There are a lot of reasons I’m glad that I’m not 19 years old anymore. But occasionally I think back to my time as an equestrian science major at William Woods University and feel wistful. You can’t go back again, but you can turn your rose-tinted memories into a fun listicle, so let’s get started, shall we?
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Wednesday, August 17, 2016
Riding IS a Sport. Or It Isn’t. Who Cares, Really?
By Leslie Potter

In the previous post in this blog, I talked about some of the ways various non-horsey media outlets attempt to talk about equestrian during the Olympics. One type of post I’ve been willfully ignoring is the anti-equestrian rage-baiting posts with headlines like "Equestrian is Not a Sport” or "The Olympics are for Human Athletes, Not Horses,” and so on.
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Monday, August 8, 2016
The Media Discovers Equestrian Sports
By Leslie Potter

The 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro are underway, and it’s been interesting to see how the non-equestrian media covers—or at least acknowledges—horse sports. There are more media outlets now trying to find their own hot take on the Olympics, which leads to mixed results.
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Thursday, August 4, 2016
Horses in Drive-Thrus
By Leslie Potter

A story out of Saratoga Springs, New York, showed Officer John Sesselman and his police horse, King Tut, waiting in line at a local Dunkin Donuts. The pair reportedly purchased a coffee and a Munchkin. Horses in drive-thrus are nothing new, though. Local news outlets and individual social media accounts report such sightings with surprising regularity.
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Thursday, July 28, 2016
Relive Your 90s Horse Girl Years with Lisa Frank’s New Clothing Line
By Leslie Potter

If you grew up in the 1980s or 1990s, you’ll immediately recognize the cartoony, rainbow-hued artwork of Lisa Frank. There’s a pretty good chance you owned a Trapper Keeper, a notepad, or maybe some stickers featuring Lisa Frank characters. Now, with a new line of clothing from Rage On, you can wear your Lisa Frank love on your sleeve.
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Thursday, May 26, 2016
Travels with Donkey
By Leslie Potter

I’m writing this from my front porch somewhere near the center of Lexington, Kentucky. My dog is snoozing to my right. I have the remainder of this afternoon’s iced coffee (which was once this morning’s hot coffee) on my left. I’m finishing up the day’s work on my laptop. I’m about as content as can be. The only thing that would make me happier is if my horse was here with me.
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Tuesday, May 10, 2016
The Perspective of a Pony Hugger
By Leslie Potter

When contemplating how much you enjoy riding a particular horse, does the horse’s on-the-ground personality matter? There was a time I think I would have said no, but I’m rethinking this.
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Tuesday, April 19, 2016
Rider Fears
By Leslie Potter

"When I was a kid, I used to bomb around the fields, bareback and helmetless, on my half-broke pony. I’d fall off a dozen times every ride and just laugh and get back on.”

The archetype of the fearless kid with the devious pony riding recklessly and without a care is one of the most enduring icons of our equestrian community. And while I suspect some of these stories are fish tales, they persist.
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Monday, April 11, 2016
10 Things I Didn’t Buy at Equine Affaire
By Leslie Potter

I attended Equine Affaire for the first time last week. This despite the fact that I have lived within reasonable driving distance of one of the fair’s iterations for my entire adult life. I don’t know why I’d never been before. Clinics, demos, horses to pet, things to buy. What’s not to like?
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Monday, February 29, 2016
The Joy of a Frivolous Purchase
By Leslie Potter

I want to say that I pride myself on keeping my horse ownership and riding expenses in check, but I can’t really attribute my frugal ways to diligent budgeting or self-control. Mostly, I just don’t have a reason to spend money.
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Wednesday, February 24, 2016
I Regret Nothing. Well, Maybe One Thing
By Leslie Potter

"The only ride you'll regret is the one you don't take." This is the mantra I try to live my equestrian life by. In some 25 years of riding, I can’t think of a single episode where I look back now and think, "Wow, my life would be better if I hadn’t ridden that day.” Quite the contrary. When I think of the times in Snoopy’s younger years when I didn’t ride because it was inconvenient, I find all of my regrets. The lesson here is that you should always ride when you can. It’s never the wrong choice.
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Tuesday, February 3, 2016
The Parallels Between Running and Riding
By Leslie Potter

As a rider, I struggle with seeing distances. Maybe it’s because I didn’t really start jumping until adulthood, or maybe I’m just plain bad at it. Sometimes I overthink it or second-guess myself, but a lot of times I don’t even get that far. Instead, whatever tolerant schoolie I’m mounted on gets within spitting distance of the fence and I just think, "I don’t know. You figure it out.”
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Tuesday, January 12, 2016
Let’s Ride a Winged Horse
By Leslie Potter

I was sitting in the dentist’s chair this morning, my attention divided between the TV in the corner and my concern about that one sensitive molar. Then something on the TV caught my eye and I forgot about my teeth for a second. One of the Today show hosts was on a stationary bike, wearing a virtual reality (VR) headset, and the screen in the background was showing what looked like an animated version of those helmet cam videos we all love to watch. A horse’s head and neck in the foreground gave the perspective of riding. When the host turned his head to the side, the TV display showed what looked like a wing. I was intrigued.
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Friday, January 8, 2016
The Year in Horses – 2016
By Leslie Potter

Welcome to 2016, HorseChannel readers! I’m feeling good about this year and I hope you are, too. One thing I’m leaving behind in 2015 is This Week in Horses. I enjoyed putting it together, but since we have news writer Cari covering the new, trending and entertaining horse stuff from around the Internet throughout the week, doing the Friday roundup seemed redundant.
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Wednesday, December 30, 2015
2016: The Year of Yes
By Leslie Potter

Shonda Rhimes is the show runner behind TV megahits like Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal. If I were as professionally successful as she is, I would absolutely indulge in solitude whenever possible. If you’ve gone out and proven your worth in your chosen career many times over, I say you’ve earned the right to sit on your sofa and read books and not talk to anyone if you don’t want to.
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Wednesday, December 16, 2015
Did Sports Illustrated say American Pharoah was "just a horse”?
By Leslie Potter

There’s a little magazine called Sports Illustrated. Perhaps you’ve heard of it. I hear of it every time I’m forced to make small talk in social situations with non-horse people and someone asks what I do.

"I’m the web editor for Horse Illustrated magazine,” I say, overpronouncing the word "horse” even though I know it’s no use. The other person’s eyes get big.

"Sports Illustrated?” they say.

And then I repeat myself "Horse Illustrated. Y’know. Horses.” And then I have to tell them that I can’t get them tickets to whatever basketball game they were just going to ask about.

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Friday, December 11, 2015
This Week in Horses—December 11, 2015
By Leslie Potter

Glow-in-the-dark ponies, riding holidays in the UK, Mini Horses help with finals and more in this week's news roundup.
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Tuesday, December 8, 2015
The Lebanon Christmas Carriage Parade
By Leslie Potter

For the past few years, I’ve intended to make the trip to Lebanon, Ohio’s annual Christmas Carriage Parade, but I could never quite make it work. Last year, HorseChannel contributors MacMillan Photography covered the event for us, and seeing their photos made me want to go even more. So this year, I finally went, and it was well worth the trip.
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Friday, December 4, 2015
This Week in Horses – December 4, 2015
By Leslie Potter

The latest on NYC carriage horses, going to cowboy college, and aftershave that smells like sweaty horse and more in this week's news roundup.
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Tuesday, December 1, 2015
The No-Stirrups November Project Final Recap
By Leslie Potter

Have you ever played QWOP? It’s a simple yet impossibly hard game where you are expected to control the legs of a really incompetent runner to complete the 100-meter dash. After the first few No-Stirrups November rides, I felt like the QWOP man, waving my legs around uselessly as I staggered away from the barn after using neglected muscles for a few simple laps of posting trot. Not exactly Chariots of Fire.
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Tuesday, November 24, 2015
The No-Stirrups November Project Week Three Recap
By Leslie Potter

I come to you all in shame this week as my loyal adherence to no-stirrups November took a serious hit this week. It’s not that I gave up and took my stirrups out of their resting place in the tack room to use them again. It’s that I didn’t ride at all (almost.)
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Friday, November 20, 2015
This Week in Horses — November 20, 2015
By Leslie Potter

Runaways found on horse farm, Valegro's retirement rumors, celebs with horses and more in this week's news roundup.
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Monday, November 16, 2015
The No-Stirrups November Project Week Two Recap
By Leslie Potter

Riding lesson day. My instructor was again merciful and made no mention of no-stirrups November, but I do feel the benefits of all my practice rides sans stirrups with Snoopy. I do have trouble keeping my leg still on the narrow schoolie I ride, but I guess the best way to put it is that I feel less worried about it.
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Monday, November 9, 2015
The No-Stirrups November Project Week One Recap
By Leslie Potter

We’re just over a week into the No-Stirrups November Project! How’s it going so far? I’ve noticed a lot of the comments people are leaving on various NSN posts are along the lines of, "This’ll be easy! I always ride bareback.” Which is fair. But I’d argue that you can still make NSN a challenge.
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Friday, November 6, 2015
The Near Side: This Week in Horses — November 6, 2015
By Leslie Potter

U.S. Dressage Finals, ponies are good for your health, a 1902 Photoshop job and more in this week's news roundup.
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Monday, November 2, 2015
The No-Stirrups November Project
By Leslie Potter

Have you heard of The November Project? It started when a couple of friends in Boston wanted to stay motivated and improve their fitness during the very demotivating cold, dark days of late fall in New England. They agreed to meet every morning at 6:30 to work out. They invited other people. The group grew and expanded to multiple cities. Today, the November Project exists in dozens of cities around the U.S. and Canada and runs year-round (despite the name.)
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Friday, October 16, 2015
This Week in Horses – October 16, 2015
By Leslie Potter

Enormous ranch goes on the market, it takes a village to save a horse, world's oldest horse dies and more in this week's news roundup.
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Thursday, October 15, 2015
Facebook Reactions for Horse People
By Leslie Potter

New reactions will allow people to do more than "like” posts on Facebook, but we think horse people need even more options.
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Friday, October 9, 2015
The Near Side: This Week in Horses – October 9, 2015
By Leslie Potter

Lost horse rescued by snowboarder, a police horse retirement party, uncertainty for equestrian at the Rio Olympics and more in this week's news roundup.
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Friday, October 2, 2015
The Near Side: This Week in Horses — October 2, 2015
By Leslie Potter

Dressage mule and rider join The Century Club, celebs show jumping in LA, 22 tons of carrots and more in this week’s news roundup.
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Friday, September 25, 2015
The Near Side: This Week in Horses — September 25, 2015
By Leslie Potter

Missing Michigan horses, horses bring cheer to hospice patients, your own personal George Morris and more in this week's news roundup.
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Friday, September 18, 2015
The Near Side: This Week in Horses — September 18, 2015
By Leslie Potter

Horse makes sugar cube withdrawal from bank; police searching for stolen Chincoteague foal; don't ride drunk and more in this week's news roundup.
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Friday, September 11, 2015
The Near Side: This Week in Horses — September 11, 2015
By Leslie Potter

A newborn zebra foal, stolen world show trophies, watch the Mini Horse championships and more in this week's news roundup.
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Friday, September 11, 2015
Barbie’s Saddle ‘N Ride Horse Seems Like a Boring Toy
By Leslie Potter

In the days of my youth, there was a Barbie horse. I believe it was palomino. It had a mane and tail you could brush, but otherwise it was just a low quality plastic toy that didn’t do anything. You could jam Barbie on to its back, but her legs didn’t really bend in a way that was appropriate for riding a horse. I suppose she was really just meant to stand around in high heels and stare at her steed with those unblinking, heavily made-up eyes.
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Friday, September 4, 2015
The Near Side: This Week in Horses — September 4, 2015
By Leslie Potter

Loose donkey terrorizes town, beware of wild ponies, American Pharoah to race again and more in this week's news roundup.
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Wednesday, September 2, 2015
Farewell to the Horsemobile
By Leslie Potter

Earlier this year, I bought a new car. Well, new to me, but only slightly used. I didn't really want a new car, but it was time. I'd always said that I was going to drive my old Corolla into the ground, and certain events were indicating that I had done just that.
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Friday, August 28, 2015
This Week in Horses — August 28, 2015
By Leslie Potter

Irish show jumpers out of 2016 Olympics, Funny Cide on tour, neglected horse with three-foot hooves and more in this week's news roundup.
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Friday, August 21, 2015
This Week in Horses — August 14, 2015
By Leslie Potter

Da Vinci’s Horse in Wyoming, riders get naked because…reasons, Channing Tatum's new horse and more in this week’s news roundup.
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Friday, August 14, 2015
This Week in Horses — August 14, 2015
By Leslie Potter

Test run for equestrian in Rio, Miranda Lambert's Gypsy Horse, loose horses on Lousiana Army base and more in this week's news roundup.
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Friday, July 10, 2015
This Week in Horses — July 10, 2015
By Leslie Potter

Horses on the loose in New Jersey, The Rock's equine photo fail and more in this week's news roundup.
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Friday, July 3, 2015
This Week in Horses — July 3, 2015
By Leslie Potter

Name these future police horses, flaming man dragged by horse, and chocolate for riding in this week's news roundup.
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Tuesday, June 30, 2015
Why I Was at the Barn So Late
By Leslie Potter

A mostly true story about why I didn’t get home until just now.
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Friday, June 26, 2015
This Week in Horses - June 26, 2015
By Leslie Potter

Beware of crowdfunding, help find a lost horse, a film about a donkey and more in this week's news roundup.
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Wednesday, June 24, 2015
My First Horse Show
By Leslie Potter

I’m taking an involuntary hiatus from showing during this phase of my life, primarily due to the fact that I am currently funding my horse’s retirement years. It’s not a bad thing. I know I’ll be back someday. But around this time of year when my newsfeed is inundated with updates and photos from shows, I get a bit wistful. So, since I have no new showing stories to share, instead, I’ll recount my inauspicious start as a competitive equestrian.
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Friday, June 12, 2015
This Week in Horses
By Leslie Potter

American Pharoah vs. Secretariat, a headless horse and more in this week’s news roundup.
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Friday, June 5, 2015
This Week in Horses
By Leslie Potter

Conflict between rural residents, a university school horse is honored, The Belmont and more in this week's news roundup.
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Friday, May 29, 2015
This Week in Horses
By Leslie Potter

Punk band rescues a Thoroughbred, horse blows out his birthday candles and more in this week's news roundup.
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Tuesday, May 26, 2015
Split Rock Jumping Tour
By Leslie Potter

Here in Horse Illustrated’s hometown of Lexington, Kentucky, you can reliably go watch a horse show every weekend for most of the year. This is a double-edged sword, because while it means those of us who like horse shows always have an option for a weekend activity, it also makes it hard to drum up excitement for a horse show.
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Friday, May 22, 2015
This Week in Horses — May 22, 2015
By Leslie Potter

Horses help first graders learn to read, horse detects owner’s cancer and more in this week’s news roundup.
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Friday, May 8, 2015
This Week in Horses — May 8, 2015
By Leslie Potter

A horse-powered mobile library, happy endings for stolen horses and more in this week's news roundup.
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Friday, May 1, 2015
This Week in Horses — May 1, 2015
By Leslie Potter

Puppies predict the Kentucky Derby winner, act now to save equestrian trails and more in this week's news roundup.
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Tuesday, April 28, 2015
Rider Fitness Revisited
By Leslie Potter

The last time I brought up the topic of equestrian fitness, I tried to make the point that although riding IS a sport, it takes more than just riding and barn chores to stay fit. I don't think I did a great job of making that point, based on the comments on Facebook.
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Friday, April 24, 2015
This Week in Horses — April 24, 2015
By Leslie Potter

World's snuggliest foal, Zenyatta's son debuts and more in this week's news roundup.
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Friday, April 17, 2015
This Week in Horses — April 17, 2015
By Leslie Potter

Feral pig thinks she's a horse, horses in drive-thrus and more in this week's news roundup.
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Thursday, April 16, 2015
Embarrassing Moments at the Barn
By Leslie Potter

A few years ago in the old HI Spy column, we asked people to tell us about their most embarrassing moment related to horses. There were some good responses, many of them involving inopportune and/or awkward falls. They’re worth a read.
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Thursday, April 9, 2015
The Facebook Effect and How We Choose Our Photos
By Leslie Potter

For those of us who deal in website content for a living, social media is a mixed blessing. It certainly increases the reach of any article, photo or video we put out there. It allows for almost instant feedback and interaction with readers, which is generally positive. However, it has definitely changed the way people read (or don’t read) content and that has an affect on how we present things. Headlines and images take on added importance when people are likely to see them and even comment on them without viewing the content of the article.
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Friday, April 3, 2015
This Week in Horses — April 3, 2015
By Leslie Potter

Spectacular steeplechase fall, a statue of Cigar and more in this week’s news roundup.
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Friday, March 27, 2015
This Week in Horses — March 27, 2015
By Leslie Potter

Horse and alpaca friends need a home, win a horse farm and more in this week's news roundup.
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Friday, March 20, 2015
This Week in Horses — March 20, 2015
By Leslie Potter

Vintage horse-diving footage, uncertainty for Walking Horse shows and more in this week's news roundup.
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Thursday, March 19, 2015
18 Ways to Say You Fell Off Your Horse
By Leslie Potter

If you tell someone you fell off a horse, it sounds like something potentially tragic happened. But if you instead say that you ate dirt, it sounds sort of fun and lighthearted. Maybe that’s why there are so many euphemisms for falling off a horse. It’s just more pleasant to discuss an unpleasant event when you can use a creative expression to identify it.
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Friday, March 13, 2015
This Week in Horses – March 13, 2015
By Leslie Potter

Weird equestrian-inspired fashion, trouble in elite equestrianism and more in this week's news roundup.
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Thursday, March 12, 2015
The Fall Off Club
By Leslie Potter

One of the instructors at a barn I once rode at kept a big poster board hung up on the tack room door. At the top it said "Fall Off Club” and beneath were the signatures of everyone who’d met the footing that year. I think the idea was to show that falling off is something that happens to everyone sooner or later, and that it’s not a big deal and if anything, is something to be proud of. You’ve earned your stripes. You’ve joined the club.
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Friday, March 6, 2015
This Week in Horses - March 6, 2015
By Leslie Potter

New equine statue in London; more snow woes in the northeast and more in this week's news roundup.
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Tuesday, March 3, 2015
#EquestrianProblems: Freezing Your Butt Off
By Leslie Potter

It’s a frigid day, but you’re itching to ride. Your horse is well-fuzzed for winter, so you know he can handle a hack around the farm. Maybe you toss on a quarter sheet for good measure. You dutifully warm up his bit before bridling him, take him over to the mounting block and climb aboard. Your saddle feels like ice through your breeches, but no matter. It’ll warm up soon enough.
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Friday, February 27, 2015
This Week in Horses — February 27, 2015
By Leslie Potter

International endurance scandal, innovations for Pedro the pony and more in this week's news roundup.
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Friday, February 20, 2015
This Week in Horses — February 20, 2015
By Leslie Potter

A horse named Brian, runaway race horse and more in this week's news roundup.
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Friday, February 6, 2015
This Week in Horses — February 6, 2015
By Leslie Potter

Meet the newest Clydesdale, California horse stuck in a bathtub and more in this week's news roundup.
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Monday, February 2, 2015
Budweiser Clydesdales Top Ad Meter Rankings Again — with Help from a Puppy
By Leslie Potter

If you were one of the millions of people who watched Budweiser’s Super Bowl commercial, "Lost Dog” on YouTube (or here on HorseChannel) last week, you won’t be surprised to learn that it has been ranked as the viewer favorite.
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Thursday, January 29, 2015
This Week in Horses — January 30, 2015
By Leslie Potter

Helmet rule change, enormous bronze Pegasus and more in this week's news roundup.
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Thursday, January 29, 2015
Are Equestrians Athletes? Only If We Choose to Be
By Leslie Potter

Is horseback riding a sport? I say yes. Usually. One could argue that sitting on a trail string pony as it walks around the park for half an hour is not a physical activity, and I wouldn’t disagree. But pretty much any kind of riding that goes beyond that fits the definition.
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Wednesday, January 28, 2015
Aging Lesson Kids
By Leslie Potter

I have a theory about getting older in the world of riding lesson stables, and I’m wondering if anyone out there can back me up. I’ve been a lesson kid off and on since I first started riding at age eight. By lesson kid, I mean someone who takes regular riding lessons on a school horse.
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Tuesday, January 27, 2015
The 5 Types of Horse People You'll Find on Facebook
By Leslie Potter

Facebook is a powerful tool that allows humans to share photos of brunch and videos of cats in ways that we never could before. It also allows us to keep up with our closest equestrian friends and frenemies, former barnmates, childhood riding instructors, that girl we met at a show that one time, and our favorite celebrity trainer. You might notice that some of the members of your vast network of horsey friends and acquaintances start to fall into certain categories.
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Monday, January 26, 2015
Let's Talk about Saddle Seat
By Leslie Potter

I rode saddle seat for most of my teenage years and my twenties. I've alluded to this on the blog in the past. There's a lot of negativity toward this discipline among the greater horse world. If you want to see what I mean, take a look at the comments on any photo or video of a saddle seat horse posted by a multi-discipline entity, like the USEF or this fine periodical. The responses are predictable.
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Sunday, January 25, 2015
The Paradox of Colorful Horses
By Leslie Potter

I came across a photo of this flashy horse from the Winter Equestrian Festival this weekend. His name is Cornet 39 and from what I could find, it appears he’s an Oldenburg who competed in Europe before coming to America. He’s clearly a talented athlete, but there are lots of talented athletes at WEF. Let’s be honest: His color is what makes him remarkable.
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Saturday, January 24, 2015
Snow Day
By Leslie Potter

Here in Central Kentucky, we accumulated an inch or so of snow in early November. Since then: Nothing. So when it started snowing on Friday, I didn’t think much of it. The forecast was calling for up to one inch. Not exactly anything to write home about.
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Friday, January 23, 2015
This Week in Horses — January 23, 2015
By Leslie Potter

Clydesdale watch continues, massive theft of riding gear and more in this week's news roundup.
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Thursday, January 22, 2015
The Joy of Boarding
By Leslie Potter

Every time we post something on our Facebook page about boarding, we get a certain type of comment from a handful of at-home horsekeepers. These range from the sympathetic ("I’m so glad I have my horses at home now!”) to the baffled, ("Why not just keep your horse at home and take care of him yourself?”) to the kinda hostile ("If you can’t take care of your own horse, you shouldn’t have one.”)
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Wednesday, January 21, 2015
Clydesdale Watch 2015
By Leslie Potter

As I mentioned in last week's news roundup, Budweiser's Super Bowl ad appears to be featuring not only the Clydesdales, but their puppy friend from last year's adorable, top ranked commercial. Oh, let's just watch it again, shall we?
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Tuesday, January 20, 2015
What Happens to the Horse Girls?
By Leslie Potter

There was a meme going around Facebook for a while that said something like, "Every school has that one kid who’s obsessed with horses. I was that kid.” I was that kid too. I bet many of you were as well. I don’t know about you, but at the time, I was unaware that it made me weird.
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Monday, January 19, 2015
Working in the Horse Industry
By Leslie Potter

Follow your passion and "never work a day in your life,” or do something practical (and preferably lucrative) in your day job so that you can afford your passion as a hobby. In the former, you risk burning out on your passion. In the latter, you risk draining your energy at a day job that isn't meaningful to you.
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Sunday, January 18, 2015
Dog and Pony Show
By Leslie Potter

I don’t take my dog, Brit, with me when I ride Snoopy. She's prone to distraction and is very unkind to barn cats. She’s a wonderful dog and really is well-suited to our mostly urban life, so I really can’t complain. But I admit I’m always a little jealous of some of my co-boarders whose dogs stay close to them on the trails or even lie down by the side of the arena and wait patiently while they school.
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Saturday, January 17, 2015
Breed Affiliation (or not.)
By Leslie Potter

I love all horses, but I've always had a special place in my heart for Morgans. Like me, the breed is native to New England, and when I lived up there, I was figuratively surrounded by them. Maybe because they were so ubiquitous, I never really felt the need to get involved in the local Morgan horse club. There wasn't any reason to seek out other fans of the breed. They were everywhere.
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Friday, January 16, 2015
This Week in Horses — January 16, 2015
By Leslie Potter

New Budweiser Clydesdale commercial, win a Quarter Horse yearling and more in this week's news roundup.
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Thursday, January 15, 2015
Is Your Barn Located in 1997?
By Leslie Potter

I probably spend more time looking at professional stables' websites than the average horse person, in part because of my job, sometimes, but also because I'm sort of fascinated about what life is like for other horse people around the country and the world.
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Wednesday, January 14, 2015
Color-Coordinated
By Leslie Potter

When it comes to most pricey horse gear and riding apparel, my favorite color is whatever is on clearance. At some point in my early days of horse ownership, I imagined that I was on the road to one day owning my own barn, which would of course have to have stall drapes for show stabling and various other important things that would have to be in my barn’s official colors. I never did decide what those colors would be, though, and also, I joined horse-ownership reality.
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Tuesday, January 13, 2015
Trail Riding Travels
By Leslie Potter

If you follow Stacy Westfall’s blog, you may have seen this video she posted this week from a ride in New Mexico. Westfall and her husband, Jesse, went along with tour guide/horse hotel owner Diane Wiltshire to find what remains of an old homestead located on desolate federal land near San Lorenzo Canyon.
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Monday, January 12, 2015
America's Most Expensive Equestrian Properties
By Leslie Potter

Zillow, the website you use to find out how much your neighbor’s house costs and what it looks like on the inside, recently compiled a list of the most expensive properties in each of the 50 states. Not surprisingly, there are lots of over-the-top amenities included in pretty much all of them. Golf courses, movie theaters, indoor basketball courts and Roman spas (seriously) are among the features that I think we can all agree are necessary to make a house a ridiculously impractical home. But if you’ve ever shopped (or window shopped) for horse properties, you won’t be shocked to learn that there are several equestrian estates on this list.
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Sunday, January 11, 2015
Resolution2Ride
By Leslie Potter

In a perfect world, all riders would have the opportunity to ride at least one horse every day. We’d have a lesson with an expert trainer once a week at minimum. We’d cross train with a balanced mix of cardio, strength and flexibility workouts.

Yeah, I know.
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Saturday, January 10, 2015
My Dog is Addicted to Horse Manure
By Leslie Potter

I bring my dog to the barn fairly regularly. While we've more or less eliminated her worst habit, which was running away—sometimes towards the road—and ignoring me when I called her back, she still has some problems that prevent her from being a real barn dog.
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Friday, January 9, 2015
This Week in Horses—January 9, 2015
By Leslie Potter

World's oldest horse, Man vs. Horse marathon, return of the helmet cams and more in this week's news roundup.
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Thursday, January 8, 2015
Hey, Remember Summer?
By Leslie Potter

Yesterday I was browsing through my photo library looking for an image of something that led me through an archive of summery looking photos. I caught myself daydreaming a bit as I scrolled through, remembering what it was like to go outside and not have the cold air immediately slap me in the face.
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Wednesday, January 7, 2015
I’m Probably Going to Keep Blanketing My Horse
By Leslie Potter

There are a lot of tiresome debates in the horse world. Bit vs. bitless. Shod vs. barefoot. 24-hour turnout vs. part-time stabling. The answer to all of these debates is "Work with your veterinarian (or farrier or other relevant professional) to determine what’s best for your horse.” I feel like we could end it there.
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Tuesday, January 6, 2015
Annoying Things about Winter
By Leslie Potter

Complaining about the cold in winter is sort of ridiculous. We know it’s coming every year. We have ample opportunity to stock up on long underwear and hand warmers. If we’re cold, we have no one to blame but ourselves. On the other hand, complaining is sort of how we modern humans bond with one another.
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Monday, January 5, 2015
When Other Animals Compete in Equestrian Sports
By Leslie Potter

Well, here’s the best thing that came through my news alerts all weekend. It’s the Squirrel Grand National Nutional, where squirrels compete in a specially designed steeplechase course to determine who reigns supreme.
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Sunday, January 4, 2015
Riding While Old
By Leslie Potter

A reader recently left a comment on an article here on HorseChannel asking if it was possible to learn to ride when you’re in your 70s and have back problems. We posted the question to Facebook to find out what people thought.
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Saturday, January 3, 2015
First Ride of 2015
By Leslie Potter

If I look back at my 2014 as a series of notable events, it appears to have been a pretty crappy year. Just on the equestrian side of my life, things kind of nosedived (nosedove? No.)
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Friday, January 2, 2015
This Week in Horses—January 2, 2015
By Leslie Potter

Horse becomes zebra for Christmas, how not to transport your horse, Anky's shot at becoming an Olympic legend and more in this week's news roundup.
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Thursday, January 1, 2015
I Resolve to Blog More
By Leslie Potter

Last year, my New Year’s resolutions were to perfect a bagel recipe and learn how to make latte foam art. I don’t know where that came from. I must have been in an upscale café somewhere when someone asked me what my resolution was. Also, I don’t want to say I’m the only person in America whose 2014 resolutions would lead to increased consumption of refined carbs and caffeine, but I’d guess it puts me in a pretty exclusive club.
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Galadriel    Lothlorien, ME

5/23/2013 11:14:16 PM

Fun.

larry boy    hut, IA

2/17/2013 2:08:37 PM

lotta great info...

h    h, HI

2/4/2013 6:53:21 PM

h

wendy    Roseville, DE

1/20/2013 6:44:59 AM

any one care for grits and jowl?

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