Category Archives: Community/Charity

Georgina Bloomberg and Beth Behrs to Host Shopping with Ruchi NY to Benefit EQUUS Foundation

Georgina Bloomberg.

March 7-11: Virtual Shopping with EQUUS Foundation EQUUStar Beth Behrs
March 15: In Person Shopping in Palm Beach with EQUUS Foundation EQUUStar Georgina Bloomberg

The EQUUS Foundation is thrilled to be partnering with Ruchi New York for a charity shopping event featuring the elegant and timeless jewelry designed by New York designer Ruchi Kotahwala.

Hosted by EQUUStar and renown world class equestrian, Georgina Bloomberg, and co-hosted virtually from California by newest EQUUS Foundation EQUUStar and horse welfare advocate, actress Beth Behrs, this event will give horse lovers and lovers of fine jewelry a chance to shop both in person and virtually.

For those in the Palm Beach area, the event will be held on Monday, March 15, 2021, from 2pm to 7pm at the White Elephant Hotel in Palm Beach, Florida. Please RSVP in advance at https://ruchinewyork.com/pages/ruchi-equus.

Beth’s fans and all horse welfare advocates across the country who are not able to join us for the Palm Beach event are welcome to shop from March 7 through March 11 24/7 using this special code, EQUUS15, here, which will offer not only a 15% discount on lovely and timeless jewelry, but also ensure that 10% of all proceeds go to the EQUUS Foundation to offer a lifeline to America’s at-risk horses.

“We are proud to partner with the EQUUS Foundation and support the extraordinary work they do to protect these incredible animals,” said Ruchi. Ruchi’s passion for gemstones and jewelry began as a young girl growing up in Mumbai, India where colorful and lively jewels are part of everyday life and celebrations. She transformed her passion into a business with her husband, a fifth-generation gemstone authority from Jaipur. Ruchi’s access to some of the world’s most remarkable and exotic stones laid the foundation for the Ruchi New York collection launched in 2018.

To learn more about the EQUUS Foundation and their mission, please visit www.equusfoundation.org.

Harsh Realities & Boundless Opportunities: EQUUS Foundation 2020 in Review

Without a doubt, we can all agree that 2020 was by far the most challenging year in our history. We are hopeful that you are staying heathy and that there will be a return to some normality this year. Despite event cancellations caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, we are persevering and continuing to make a lasting difference in the lives of America’s at-risk and transitioning horses and in the lives of individuals who benefit from their magic and power.

During our fiscal year ending in August 2020, we were able to help provide care for nearly 5,000 horses at 160 charities nationwide. We’d like to double that number and provide a lifeline to 10,000 horses in 2021. We awarded over $500,000 in grants, including awards of new and gently used riding apparel, valued at $240,000, to 547 individuals through The Rider’s Closet program.

We believe that for horses to remain an important part of American life and have a viable future, we need to embrace a fundamental shift in our attitude towards horses – from the horse as a commodity to the horse as an athlete, companion, teacher, and healer.

We focus our efforts on raising awareness of the issues impacting the future of horses and inspiring horse lovers to be horse protectors. However, at the heart of our mission is our effort to empower and invest in the very best equine charities that are finding homes for at-risk horses and horses in transition, providing a safe haven for aged horses, and increasing opportunities for all people to engage and partner with horses in new and innovative ways. Informed giving has never been more important.

View our 2020 Annual Report here.

To learn more about the EQUUS Foundation and their mission, please visit www.equusfoundation.org.

Encore and Knight — a Timeless Love Story

“Wild Heart Song” by Deb Lee Carson.

Love is in the air! Everyone enjoys a great love story and when it comes to wild horse couples, Encore and Knight’s story is unbeatable.

Wild horse photographer Deb Lee Carson has immortalized this iconic pair – Cloud’s lookalike daughter Encore and her roan stallion, Knight. As a couple, they’ve been inseparable since 2015, living wild in the Pryor Mountains of Montana.

Thanks to Deb’s amazing generosity, The Cloud Foundation brings you a chance to win this one-of-a-kind, matted, and framed piece of photographic art. It could be yours for just the price of a single raffle ticket… only $25! All proceeds go directly to TCF’s work keeping wild horses WILD.

Click here for ALL the details:

  • Deb’s story “behind the scenes”
  • Encore and Knight’s touching love story
  • How to buy your raffle tickets, and more!

We’re drawing the winning ticket from this Valentine’s Week Fundraiser on February 22nd. Don’t miss your chance to own a truly unique photo with its own wild love story!

The Cloud Foundation
www.thecloudfoundation.org

Over $1 Million Distributed to Local Non-Profit Orgs. at the 12th Annual Great Charity Challenge

Shane Sweetnam and Heart on Fire ©Sportfot.

Wellington, FL – February 6, 2021 – HOPE: one word, four letters and so much more. For 46 Palm Beach County Charities, the feeling of hope shifted into a reality on Saturday, February 6, at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC). What is usually the biggest night of the 12-week Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF), the Great Charity Challenge presented by Fidelity Investments® (GCC) pivoted to a blend of in-person competition for riders and virtual celebration for charities and supporters. Those supporters cheered as equestrians and their mounts, representing local non-profit organizations, competed for a share of more than $1 million in prize money.

Held at PBIEC in Wellington, Palm Beach County, Florida the past 12 years, the GCC has become a highlight of the winter season and has distributed a stunning $15,928,227.66 to 276 local non-profit organizations.

Determined to show the power of united communities, the GCC is an exciting show jumping event that combines equestrian sports and philanthropy, bringing hope to Palm Beach County charities every year. Three riders made up the top team of the night out of 23 pro-am combinations, which are paired with randomly selected Palm Beach County charities. Each team was made up of junior and amateur riders competing side-by-side with top professionals, including Olympians.

In addition to the 23 charities that were part of the GCC competition, an additional 24 non-profits received funding through grants that were awarded leading up to the event. For a full list of benefiting non-profit organizations, we invite you to visit: www.GreatCharityChallenge.com.

“Seeing the level of need in our community and knowing how difficult the past year has been, we quickly realized that we couldn’t turn our backs on our most vulnerable neighbors,” said GCC co-founder Mark Bellissimo. “We are truly grateful to see that the community was able to adapt to this format while stepping up to provide crucial funding to local organizations.”

A moment of silence at the beginning of the event paid recognition to all of the friends of GCC we lost and those who we lost to the pandemic in the past year.

Following a year of uncertainties and challenges, the GCC featured riders dressed up in costumes and horses adorned to match them, paying recognition to the #Heroes who stepped up during the pandemic as well as those who have inspired us to push beyond our own limits and driven us to “dream bigger.”

The winning team of riders – Lindsey Tomeu riding Bonapart, Ashley Vogel on Lucy in the Sky, and Shane Sweetnam aboard Heart on Fire – sponsored by team sponsor Spy Coast and Preston and corporate sponsor Diamante Dressage, came in the ring representing the United States Army as their heroes and finished with a time of 91.664 seconds. Their strategy and teamwork paid off for their assigned charity YWCA of Palm Beach County, a local non-profit organization that is dedicated to eliminating racism, empowering women, and promoting peace, justice, freedom, and dignity for all, earning them the top prize of $100,000. The sliding scale for the balance of the proceeds, down to 22nd place winning a minimum of $15,000, ensured that everyone was a winner.

For more information and results, please visit www.PBIEC.com.

Actress Beth Behrs Joins EQUUS Foundation as an EQUUStar

Beth Behrs and her rescue horse, Belle.

The EQUUS Foundation is excited to announce that actress Beth Behrs will be joining its esteemed roster of EQUUStars, who are popular and iconic horse lovers that assist the Foundation in raising awareness and support for horse welfare across the country.

Fans of the current hit CBS sitcom, The Neighborhood, and those who tuned in to the enormously popular sitcom, 2 Broke Girls, created by Michael Patrick King and Whitney Cummings, will know actress Beth Behrs — especially in her role as Caroline Channing with her horse, Chestnut!

In addition to being one of Hollywood’s most exciting actors working today, Beth is a huge animal lover and horse welfare advocate and owner of rescued horse, Belle, who has inspired her to get more involved in horse protection and equine therapy programs for survivors of sexual assault. She is also the host of her very own podcast called HARMONICS which explores themes of creativity, healing, and wellness and has released a health and wellness book titled The Total Me-Tox published in the summer of 2017.

“There is nothing I feel more passionate about than protecting America’s horses and strengthening the bond between horses and people. When I rescued my horse, Belle, I didn’t realize that she was actually going to be the one rescuing me.” — Beth Behrs        

“Horses force us to live in the present moment with a zen-like tranquility,” said Behrs. “They are the greatest healers, and we must treat them with the respect and love they deserve. I am so excited to inspire and educate the public on the value of horses in our lives.

“The EQUUS Foundation is the only national charity in the United States 100% dedicated to ensuring the welfare of America’s horses and fostering the horse-human bond. I am beyond honored to be named an EQUUStar and cannot wait to better the lives of both humans and horses through the incredible work of the EQUUS Foundation.”

“We could not be more thrilled to welcome Beth as our newest EQUUStar,” said Valerie Angeli, VP Engagement for the EQUUS Foundation. “Beth walks the walk in promoting the welfare of all animals, but especially horses, and her social media is filled with inspiring messages and information on how to make the world better for the horses we love. With her large following of fans, we know Beth and her beautiful, rescued paint horse, Belle, will significantly help further our message of compassion, action and responsibility for horses across the country and engage more horse lovers to #HorseProtector!”

Beth will be joining current EQUUS Foundation EQUUStars Georgina Bloomberg, Brianne Goutal-Marteau, Clementine Goutal, Paige Johnson, and Jessica Springsteen. Look for Beth in the future on EQUUS Foundation social media as well as in EQUUS Foundation virtual events — and even live events — For the Love of Horses!

To learn more about the EQUUS Foundation and their mission, please visit www.equusfoundation.org.

Racing Special Achievement Winners

Each year, the American Quarter Horse Association recognizes the hard work of several individuals in the racing industry. For 2020, the John Andreini Special Recognition Award goes to Dr. Charles Graham of Elgin, Texas; the Mildred N. Vessels Special Achievement Award to Betty Raper of Norman, Oklahoma; and the Gordon Crone Special Achievement Award to Matt Vance of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

Dr. Charles Graham is a member of the American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame. The respected Texas horseman is known as a veterinarian, a horseman, and an influential voice in governance and political matters that benefit the horse industry.

He founded the Elgin Veterinary Clinic and Southwest Stallion Station, is a co-owner of Heritage Place Sale Co., and has numerous other businesses, including a 30,000-head feedyard. He was influential in getting Texas pari-mutual legislation passed, and in 2019 was instrumental in assisting with the passage of Texas legislation that boosted purses and significantly benefitted Quarter Horse racing in the state.

Dr. Graham is an AQHA director-at-large and has served on the AQHA Equine Research Committee.

Mildred N. Vessels Special Achievement winner Betty Raper has dedicated herself to the industry and is best known as the co-owner of Belle Mere Farm at Norman, Oklahoma. She and husband Dee stood legendary stallions Easy Jet, Mr Eye Opener, and Bully Bullion. Belle Mere was inducted into the Oklahoma Quarter Horse Association Hall of Fame in 2019.

As the vice president of racing operations at Remington Park, Matt Vance was instrumental in helping the Oklahoma City racetrack operate during the earliest months of the COVID-19 pandemic. For that, Vance earns the Gordon Crone Special Achievement Award. The racetrack not only operated through its season; it also shattered records with a 271.8 increase in pari-mutual handle and helped introduce people all over the world to American Quarter Horse racing.

For more information on AQHA racing, visit www.aqha.com/racing.

Racing Identification and Tattooing Fee

The American Quarter Horse Association is the largest single-breed association in the world and strives for excellence as a breed registry. As part of this endeavor, the AQHA Executive Committee and AQHA leadership are committed to maintaining financial transparency and making important business decisions that are essential to current and future business needs, while delivering the best services to our members and horse lovers around the world. AQHA must continue to reduce expenses, maximize resources, and drive efficiency, and fees must reflect the services provided to our members. These factors are essential to continue to be a financially healthy Association.

As part of this process, the Executive Committee has approved a fee increase for racing identification and tattooing that will go into effect on January 15. The updated rate is $120.

Racing identification via permanent tattoo is an effective way to ensure integrity at the racetrack and identify horses. Trained professionals identify the animals and apply the tattoo, which is duly recorded by AQHA. This tattoo is checked before every race to protect both horsemen and the wagering public.

All fees are kept as low as possible in order to be cost effective for AQHA members. These fees are used to help the Association maintain its commitment for recording the pedigrees and performance records of its horses, promotion of the breed and its sports, and maintaining the integrity of the horse.

For more information on AQHA racing, visit www.aqha.com/racing.

In Remembrance: Naomi Blumenthal 1942-2020

Naomi Blumenthal. Photo by EQ Media.

FAIRFIELD, Conn. – Dec. 15, 2020 – The Intercollegiate Horse Shows Association (IHSA) leadership is saddened to announce that Naomi Blumenthal passed away peacefully Dec. 13, surrounded by her family. Blumenthal, 78, from Manlius, New York, served the IHSA for over 40 years. She taught equestrian studies and equine business management at Cazenovia College for 27 years and was a coach of the Cazenovia College IHSA Equestrian Team. She was a longtime member of the IHSA board of directors, first as a regional president, then as zone chair and for many years as executive treasurer.

“She helped a lot of people in the horse industry get a leg up,” said Peter Cashman, IHSA executive director. “People will never know how many she’s helped. She always thought about other people. She was a self-made woman and could be tough but had a soft heart. As a human being, she was tops. She will be thoroughly missed. There will be a void without Naomi Blumenthal.”

Bob Cacchione, the founder of the IHSA, first met Blumenthal as a new coach at Cazenovia College. Their friendship spanned over 40 years.

“I can’t begin to say how much her heart and soul were invested in the IHSA,” Cacchione said. “She was a mover and shaker and a major force for moving the organization forward.”

IHSA Director Emeritus and founder of the State University of New York at Stony Brook Equestrian Team, George Lukemire was Blumenthal’s predecessor in the IHSA treasurer role. He credits her with making everything function seamlessly as the organization grew.

“She’s got to be one of the busiest people I’ve known,” Lukemire said. “We were pretty close through the years and I really appreciated her. She was the basic foundation of the IHSA. I had so much respect for her.”

“She was indispensable,” added Tom Bishop, IHSA director emeritus, former national steward and founder, with his wife Claiborne Bishop, of the University of Virginia Equestrian Team. “She was independent and she worked her fingers to the bone. I have no idea how she did it.”

Blumenthal was active in governance at the United States Hunter Jumper Association (USHJA), where she served on multiple committees. She was a US Equestrian licensed R-rated judge in hunters and hunter seat equitation and a steward and often officiated at shows across the nation. Blumenthal also devoted time to the Professional Horsemen’s Association (PHA), serving as national president and the Syracuse chapter’s chair.

Blumenthal dedicated her life to horses and equestrian competition. After graduating from Syracuse University, she taught public school and ran a boarding barn in Oran, New York. It was one of the few facilities in the area with an indoor arena and she began holding horse shows during the winter months, an introduction to her successful career as a show manager.

With Blumenthal’s company, Equine Productions and Marketing, she organized and ran horse shows in upstate New York and New England. She managed shows for the USHJA, Palomino Horse Breeders of America, American Quarter Horse Association, Pinto Horse Association of America, American Paint Horse Association, Appaloosa Horse Club of America, National Barrel Racing Association, and the North American Classic Series for Draft Horses.

The 17-day, multi-discipline New York State Fair Horse Show was expertly managed for many years by Blumenthal. The show was a highlight of the Syracuse fairgrounds and it included one of the largest draft horse shows in the nation. She also introduced thousands of fair-goers to horses with her World of Horses tent, a popular breed and educational exhibit.

Blumenthal was the mastermind behind the development of the first Apple-compatible show management software. When Apple heard about what she and a developer had built, they flew her to their headquarters to demonstrate their breakthrough software.

“Naomi embodied the spirit of the IHSA in her commitment to student-athletes from her time as a coach to the legacy she helped build as part of the organization’s Executive Committee,” said Vanessa Bartsch, IHSA board member and head coach of the Stanford University Equestrian Team. “She was generous with her time and did so much to ensure that the IHSA flourished, from helming the National Finals to advising each new team through their first years. She was deeply rooted in the organization’s history through her decades of service and an advocate for the evolution of change, making her an inspiration to the next generation of coaches and riders. She will be deeply missed.”

Blumenthal is survived by her daughter Shari Schneider, from Scarsdale, New York, son-in-law Corey Schneider and their three sons, Cooper, Riley, and Corey, and her sister Elaine Pinsky Bluman (David) and many nieces and nephews. She is preceded in death by brothers Roy and Phillip Pinsky and her parents Norm and Rose Pinsky.

Donations in Naomi Blumenthal’s name can be made to the Intercollegiate Equestrian Foundation (IEF), an organization awarding multiple scholarships each year to deserving students. For more information, contact Kelly Francfort at ief.kfrancfort@gmail.com.

For more information, go to IHSAinc.com or contact media@IHSAinc.com.

Catherine Tyree Joins EQUUS Foundation’s Movement to Protect Horses across America

Catherine Tyree and BEC Lorenzo. Photo by Mackenzie Clark.

Wellington, Fla. – Dec. 14, 2020 – American show jumping athlete Catherine Tyree has been announced as the newest EQUUS Foundation Athlete, a program that brings together professional equestrians that are dedicated to providing their equine partners with the highest quality of life possible and sharing the charitable message of the EQUUS Foundation. Tyree is thrilled at the opportunity to join in this movement and is eager to begin helping horses across the United States by joining the EQUUS Foundation’s empowering, inspiring, and educating initiatives.

Throughout Tyree’s professional career she has supported several charitable efforts within the equestrian industry, including the Winter Equestrian Festival’s Annual Great Charity Challenge, the Hampton Classic Horse Show’s Jump for Charity, and various other events and competitions that benefit philanthropic efforts across the country. With the welfare of horses at the forefront of her mind, Tyree is dedicated to building an alliance with the EQUUS Foundation by being involved with their initiatives and sharing the programs that directly impact the lives of horses looking for a second chance.

“I am so honored to be a part of the EQUUS Foundation. I have admired this organization for many years and followed their story and different programs closely,” shared Tyree. “I am excited to begin this journey and I am hopeful that I can help bring more awareness to the EQUUS Foundation, the horses that need our help and the ways that people can contribute to the greater good of equines across the country.”

As the only national charity in the United States that is solely dedicated to ensuring the welfare of America’s equines and creating long lasting horse-human bonds, the EQUUS Foundation connects individuals and organizations in the equine community that are committed to the welfare of horses. Through its programs and educational initiatives, the EQUUS Foundation ultimately aims to build a support base of equine advocates and affect change.

The EQUUS Foundation is deeply grateful to their Athletes for lending their names and joining its #HorseProtector campaign to help promote the charitable efforts of the EQUUS Foundation. Currently, EQUUS Foundation Athletes represent the hunter and jumper disciplines with the goal going forward to embrace all disciplines that wish to participate and honor their outstanding athletes. To learn more about EQUUS Foundation Athletes, click here.

“We are thrilled to welcome Catherine Tyree as our newest EQUUS Foundation Athlete. It is so important to have inspirational role models in the world of equestrian sport that exemplify passion for horse welfare as well as for the sport itself,” said Lynn Coakley, President of EQUUS Foundation. “The horses should always come first — and what happens to them after their sport careers are over is just as important. We are excited to have Cat join us along with our other influential athletes to help us raise important awareness on behalf of the horses we all love.”

To learn more about the EQUUS Foundation and their mission, please visit www.equusfoundation.org.

2020 Horse Stars Hall of Fame Nominations Open

The Horse Stars Hall of Fame was established by the EQUUS Foundation and US Equestrian in 2013 to celebrate the extraordinary talent of horses and the magical bond between horses and people.

The EQUUS Foundation inducts horses that have had a life-changing impact in public service or on the public’s perception of horses, have excelled or are excelling in the area of equine assisted activities and therapies, and/or have excelled or are excelling in their competitive or public service career after overcoming significant hardship. The United States Equestrian Federation (USEF) inducts its “Horses of Honor” selected by USEF annually.

Nomination Deadline – December 31, 2020
Click here to submit a nomination.

Contact the EQUUS Foundation, Inc., at 168 Long Lots Road, Westport, CT 06880, Tele: (203) 259-1550, E-Mail: mail@equusfoundation.org, Website: www.equusfoundation.org.

Learn more about the US Equestrian at www.usequestrian.org.