August 1, 2014 at 10:57 AM

Meet a Mule

'This is an event for anyone with a horse, donkey or mule that wants to work the animal through challenging obstacles that might cause concern.'

By Susie Morgan

Hoof Prints in Santa Fe

Susie Morgan is a lifetime lover of horses, the outdoors and lives for adventures. She lives in Las Campanas, and is reconnecting with horses after working 27 years in New York City.

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Come out and watch or participate in a fun event at the Northern New Mexico's Horseman Arena at 3233 Rodeo Drive.  This is an event for anyone with a horse, donkey or mule that wants to work the animal through challenging obstacles that might cause concern.  You can ride or ground-work your animal.  While the event is free, donations to the Rio Grande Mule and Donkey Association would be greatly appreciated.

Last year, there were 28 registered entrants who were challenged by some unique obstacles among the fifteen in the arena: a pair of devilish self-propelled weasel balls, a fire-breathing dragon, and a pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey board.  Not your usual trail course!

This in-hand or under saddle non-competitive course is a good test of how well folks had worked with their animals beforehand there was at least one obstacle or another that was new and different, and therefore presented some challenge to each team.  With a couple of unfortunate exceptions which resulted in humans hitting soft arena dirt (a short jump/bolt in one case, and a buck in another), most teams got through all the obstacles without undue incident.  There was one unfortunate casualty when a self-propelled weasel ball took a hit from a hoof and needed first aid to continue duty.



Register upon arrival and present your current Coggins.  The event is scheduled to begin at 1 p.m. and run through 5 p.m. on Saturday, August 9, the final day of the Santa Fe County Fair.

For more information, call Karen Denison at 660-0394.
Rio Grande Mule & Donkey Association:  http://www.rgmda.com/
Photos courtesy of Shelley Bachicha of Northern New Mexico Horsemen's Association

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