Category Archives: Community/Charity

Dani the Wonderhorse: Breyer Meet & Greet plus Multiple Spring Championships

Dani, her fan, and her model during the Meet & Greet at Tackeria.

Wellington, FL (May 3, 2021) – Wellington’s spotted sport horse has had a busy spring, between wrapping up her 2021 WEF season, jumping into the winner’s circle during ESP’s Spring Circuit, and she was the gracious host of an exclusive meet and greet for Breyer Model Horses at The Tackeria! Dani, or Danash’s Northern Tempest, is the 2021 BreyerFest Celebration Horse, and will headline Breyer’s 2021 event as she embodies their theme, “A Horse of a Different Color.” Her eye-catching spots, while not the traditional color for a hunter, have nevertheless been paired with the tricolor champion ribbon and circuit champion cooler multiple times this year.

In late March, Dani was the star of Breyer’s Tackeria Meet & Greet, journeying to the equestrian superstore’s front lawn to greet shoppers and passersby. Lucky visitors were given Dani stickers, an exclusive look at her brand-new model, and information on BreyerFest 2021. Dani enjoyed the cool shade from a gorgeous stall set up by Darren Frazier Tents, and munched on her favorite forage, Hydroponic Farms organic grass mats, while enjoying pats and pictures with Breyer fans and equestrian enthusiasts of all ages. Breyer’s exclusive Dani model, which is a stunning anatomical and artistic miniature of the Leopard Appaloosa-Friesian mare, is available only available as part of the BreyerFest ticket package. Visit their website, www.BreyerHorses.com, for more information.

Owned by Palm Beach Sport Horses and trained by Ashley Glica of ATG Equestrian, Dani’s success in the hunters reached a crescendo during the 2021 Winter Equestrian Festival. The mare pulled in multiple ribbons and top placings with in both the WEF and ESP hunter rings, she earned blues in the equitation, gave amateurs and juniors a first experience at the prestigious show, and enjoyed rounds with dedicated equestrians like Isabella Pina, Xavier Gomez, and multiple USEF & National Hunter Champion Kat Fuqua. With the addition of Breyer’s Celebration Horse announcement in January, Dani is definitely fresh off the biggest winter season of her life, and is showing no signs of slowing. In ESP’s Spring Circuit, Dani & trainer Ashley Glica were the Circuit Champions in the USHJA 2′ Hunters, scoring Champion & Reserve titles to secure the cooler, and will be a major part of the 2021 BreyerFest, to be held July 16-18, 2021.

Danash’s Northern Tempest (aka Dani) is a 2013 Leopard Appaloosa Friesian cross mare (Danash K x Chief’s Bold Angel) registered with Friesian Heritage Horse & Sporthorse International as well as with the United States Equestrian Federation (USEF). Dani is owned by Palm Beach Sport Horses of West Palm Beach, Florida and is trained by Ashley Glica of ATG Equestrian in Loxahatchee, Florida. Dani was born in Michigan and bred by Jessica Bowman of North Horse Farm in Cheboygan. She was purchased as a filly by Jessica Collins and relocated to Southern Florida where she was slowly and properly started under the close eye of Brandy Rivas at Equines and Equestrians in Southwest Ranches. In 2017 she was purchased by Palm Beach Sport Horses, and makes her home at ATG Equestrian in Loxahatchee. Under the keen eye of ATG’s Ashley Glica, Dani has quickly become an exceptional sport horse, winning Circuit Champion in Rusty Stirrup at ESP in 2019-2020 as well as several notable ribbons in Hunter Derby, USHJA, and Green Hunter Classes at the 2020 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) in Wellington, Florida. She has also spent the fall perfecting her style in the hunter ring, including numerous USHJA National Hunter Derbies and the Low Children’s Hunter classes.

While Dani is not the typical Hunter horse, she is a shining example of her lineage’s versatility and a divergence from the typical sporthorses seen in Wellington. The mare has been recognized through a multitude of media outlets and has an active, engaged, and quickly growing following on social media. She has been featured on the cover of Wellington the Magazine and Equine America magazine, and her most recent press was a 6-page spread by Horse & Style magazine. She was profiled in Chronicle of the Horse in early 2020, has starred in numerous fun and fashion photo shoots, and was chosen to appear in an editorial for famed children’s photographer Olesja Mueller for publication in La Belle Kidz magazine. Much of her popularity has come from social media where she has her own Instagram account: @danithewonderhorse.

To keep up to date on all her shows and events, visit her website www.DaniTheWonderHorse.com.

Media contact:
Equinium Sports Marketing, LLC
Holly Johnson
holly@equinium.com
www.equinium.com

Support a New Home for Concrete Cowboys through Philadelphia Urban Riding Academy

Philadelphia, Pa. – April 21, 2021 – Netflix’s newest film Concrete Cowboy, starring Idris Elba and Caleb McLaughlin, has showcased a part of Philadelphia that few people knew existed. It tells the story of the Black urban cowboys in the city, and in 2019 the producers and directors of the film partnered with the late Eric Miller, and the riders of Fletcher Street to form the Philadelphia Urban Riding Academy (PURA). Created to preserve the life, legacy, and culture of Black urban cowboys in the city of Philadelphia, PURA recently launched “Fresh Start for Philly Youth” fundraising campaign through GoFundMe. The campaign’s goal is to raise money for its new facility in the Cobbs Creek section of Philadelphia that will provide a unique, safe space for children, teens, and adults to experience horses up close and personal.

Due to gentrification, many of the stables that once made up the community of black cowboys in Philadelphia are gone. With the help of Parks and Recreation Commissioner Kathryn Ott-Lovell and Councilman Curtis Jones, The Philadelphia Urban Riding Academy has found a new, permanent home in Cobbs Creek Park that will not only give the Urban Black Cowboy a permanent home but also offer new opportunities to everyone in the community. By supporting the “Fresh Start for Philly Youth” fundraising campaign you can be a part of the next generation of the Concrete Cowboys and Cowgirls.

PURA’s executive director Erin Brown, known as the Concrete Cowgirl, joined forces with North Run’s Missy Clark in June of 2020 to create Concrete to Show Jumping. With a mission to open doors to diversified worlds within the horse industry, Concrete to Show Jumping aims to open the eyes, minds, and hearts of equestrians by participating in new experiences, forming new alliances and building friendships with equestrians from diversified backgrounds.

The “Fresh Start for Philly Youth” fundraiser has the goal of raising $2,000,000 for PURA’s new permanent facility. This home will provide stabling for 20-25 horses, paddocks, and a covered arena, as well as recreational space for other youth and veteran programs. With the help of the entire equestrian community, PURA and Concrete to Show Jumping believe that this goal is attainable. Every dollar raised will be put towards the facility and the horses and students that will call it home.

As a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, PURA is now collecting donations for the “Fresh Start for Philly Youth” initiative. All donations are tax-deductible and corporate sponsors are encouraged to donate, with naming rights to the rings, paddocks, stalls, and lounge are available. PURA has joined forces with Spak Group, a real estate Development Company, along with Architects from OZ Collaborative and a Landscape Civil Engineer, Ruggiero Plante, LLC, to create a forever home for youth, the community, and the Urban Black Cowboy.

For more information, please visit thepura.org or donate here to be a part of PURA’s mission to preserve the life, legacy, and culture of Black urban cowboys in the city of Philadelphia.

Contact: Rebecca Walton
rjw@phelpsmediagroup.com

In Memoriam: FEI Pays Tribute to Longest Serving FEI President Prince Philip

Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, passed away peacefully at Windsor Castle in England. His death, at the age of 99, was announced by Buckingham Palace.

He was the longest serving FEI President (1964-1986) and was succeeded in this role by his daughter Princess Anne, the Princess Royal, for the following eight years.

Some of Prince Philip’s own greatest sporting achievements came in the sport of Driving which he introduced as a new discipline in the FEI and helped to develop during his FEI Presidency. He helped standardise international rules and became a hugely successful competitor himself, winning team gold at the 1980 World Driving Championship and bronze in 1978, 1982, and 1984. He also placed sixth individually in 1982.

Prince Philip strongly supported the FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ series, which is now one of the crown jewels in the Jumping calendar, and was hugely supportive of the launch of the FEI Jumping World Cup™ in the 1970s. He was also instrumental in the creation of the FEI World Equestrian Games™, having lobbied for such a competition for many years before it was finally staged for the first time in Stockholm (SWE) in 1990.

An all-round horseman, he played polo during his time in the Royal Navy in the 1940s and became one of Britain’s top-10 players. His passion for all things equestrian was shared by his wife and passed on to their children, particularly Prince Charles who was also a keen polo player, and Princess Anne, who claimed individual gold at the FEI European Eventing Championships in 1971, and individual and team silver four years later, before becoming the first British Royal to compete at an Olympic Games when she rode in Montreal 1976.

Prince Philip’s grandchildren have also inherited a love of horse sport. Princess Anne’s daughter Zara Tindall took the Eventing world title in 2006 and was a member of the British silver medal at the London 2012 Olympic Games. Princes William and Harry are also regularly spotted on the polo field.

Born in Corfu, Greece and educated in France, Germany, and Great Britain, he was just 18 years old when he joined the Royal Navy in 1939. During World War ll, he served with the Mediterranean and Pacific fleets, and by the time he left the service in 1952 he had reached the rank of Commander. At the age of 26, he married the then Princess Elizabeth (Queen Elizabeth ll) in November 1947.

“The passing of Prince Philip is a huge loss for equestrian sport and his legacy, particularly at the FEI, will live on for many many decades to come,” FEI President Ingmar De Vos said. “I first met him in London at the FEI General Assembly in 2005, and again at the FEI Eventing European Championships in Blair Castle in 2015. He was a man of incredible energy and a great sense of humour and the FEI was honoured to have him as our longest serving President.

“His dedication to equestrian sports cannot be underestimated and will never be forgotten, especially in the Driving community. He was born in the same year the FEI was founded and sadly he will not be with us to celebrate his own and the FEI’s centenary this year. We will celebrate his life and remember him as a great ambassador of our sport.”

The FEI extends its deepest sympathy to the British Royal Family and joins the equestrian community in mourning the loss of this remarkable man.

Media contacts:

Grania Willis
Director Communications
grania.willis@fei.org
+41 78 750 61 42

Shannon Gibbons
Media Relations and Communications Manager
shannon.gibbons@fei.org
+41 78 750 61 46

Brooke USA Raises over $210k during Signature Event

Timmy Dutta – GJ Racing © Rachel-Elizabeth.com/Rachel Spencer.

(Wellington, Fla.) March 30, 2021 – Brooke USA’s Sunset Polo® & White Party | Special Edition: Latin America, presented by Lugano Diamonds, proved to be an astounding affair, receiving rave reviews from the Wellington, Palm Beach, and Miami social scenes. Held at the International Polo Club Palm Beach with an exclusive guest list of only 350, the event provided an entertaining evening highlighted by its exciting signature Sunset Polo, gourmet Latin cuisine curated by Celebrity Chef Ingrid Hoffmann, and a live band, the Miami-based Tartara. The event raised more than $210,000 for Brooke USA, whose mission is to alleviate the suffering of working equines in some of the poorest parts of the world.

“We are thrilled with the results of our event, not only financially, but also because it allowed us to further our mission. We made new friends and supporters and educated those present about the plight of working equines and the families who own them,” Chair of the Brooke USA Board of Directors Katherine Kaneb remarked. “It is important to understand that these animals are the engines that fuel the developing world and if they are healthy and cared for, families will benefit from better living and working conditions.”

Brooke USA strives to significantly improve the welfare of working horses, donkeys, and mules and the people they serve throughout Asia, Africa, the Middle East, the Americas, and the Caribbean by raising funds and responsibly directing them to the areas of greatest need. The 2021 special edition event focused on the Americas, with program funding benefiting Nicaraguan fodder plots, COVID-19 response and recovery, advocacy to end the donkey hide crisis in the United States, and its newest project, scoping and research of Native American Reservations attitudes towards working equines.

“As Brooke USA grows, so do our investments in this hemisphere. We were thrilled to offer a means of support that focused on our work in the United States and Central America,” stated Emily Dulin, Brooke USA CEO.

The evening began with a thrilling sunset polo match, where three teams played in a six-chukker round-robin polo tournament consisting of three two-chukker games.

The tournament kicked off with Team Celebrity Cruises, made up of Mikey Matz, Whitney Ross, Marcos Bignoli, Tareq Salahi, and John Gobin challenging Team GJ Racing, the 2019 defending champions. Riding in orange for GJ Racing were Ignacio Cabrera, Timmy Dutta, Jake Schaufeld, and Jessie Graham. Salahi scored one goal in the opening chukker to secure the lead, and his alternate, Whitney Ross, made the second goal in the second chukker to take the first win with a 2-0 finish.

With one win under their belts, Celebrity Cruises then faced off against Team Invicta Farm, consisting of Annalise Phillips, Alyssa Braswell, Michel Dorignac, and Milo Dorignac. Salahi scored the first two goals of the second game, while Invicta scored one goal by Dorignac. Celebrity ultimately snatched the win with a 3-1 victory when Mikey Matz scored the final goal to take the win.

In the decisive last two chukkers, Team Invicta challenged Team GJ Racing in a match that went down to the wire as Invicta took the early lead with both Braswell and Dorignac scoring in the fifth chukker. Dutta tied up the game in the final chukker for GJ Racing with two back-to-back goals; however, Milo Dorignac pulled Invicta ahead with the final goal scored, securing the win with a 3-2 finish.

In the end, Team Celebrity Cruises was declared the winner with a final cumulative score of five. Team Invicta finished in second place with a score of four, while Team GJ Racing took third place with a final score of two.

For more information or to donate, please visit www.brookeusa.org.

Send Sahar & Whitman to the World Cup Final in Sweden

Photo by Susan J Stickle.

Israeli Sahar Daniel Hirosh and his longtime partner Whitman made history on Monday March 8th as the first ever Israeli dressage partnership to be invited to the FEI Dressage World Cup Final in Sweden this spring. He’s had a banner year this season in Wellington, and at 18 years old, Whitman has never been in better form. The total cost of overseas travel for horse and rider, especially factoring in quarantine procedures and costs to ensure both are safe from COVID-19 and the EVH-1 virus, will top out at close to $40,000.

Sahar’s generous sponsors and Whitman’s owners Salomon & Jane Suwalsky have already put up $10,000, and the FEI will be covering some costs. Sahar was totally surprised to be invited and so he’s humbly asking for your help to cover any costs and make this dream a reality.

He knows it is a tough time to be asking for donations, but even the smallest amount will be much appreciated any anything not required to fund his trip to Goteborg will be donated to the ASPCA to benefit horse, cat, and dog rescues.

Be a part of Whitman and Sahar’s journey to the top of the sport, and help send the first Israeli team to the World Cup Final.

Huge thank you to anyone who has or will support Sahar, especially Salomon & Jayne Suwalsky, the FEI, Whitman’s team of vets and grooms, Equinium Sports Marketing, and the community of riders and trainers in Wellington.

Media contact:
Equinium Sports Marketing, LLC
Holly Johnson
holly@equinium.com
www.equinium.com

Jessica Springsteen Presented with M. Michael Meller Style Award

Jessica Springsteen and Don Juan Van De Donkhoeve after the CSIO4* $150,000 FEI Nations Cup.

Wellington, Fla. – Mar. 8, 2021 – Top athletes from around the world visit the Winter Equestrian Festival each year to represent their countries during the famed CSIO4* Nations Cup week. Jessica Springsteen, one of the United States’ top young athletes, was presented the M. Michael Meller Style Award in honor of Kate Nash Boone on Sunday, March 7 after her winning performance with the U.S. Show Jumping team during the $150,000 FEI Nations Cup CSIO4*.

The award is given to the international equestrian who exemplifies the best riding style and maintains a sportsmanlike composure while competing in the CSIO4* at WEF during Nations Cup week. Presented in memory of Kate Nash Boone, the award is a way to honor the memory of Boone’s support and love of ‘all things equestrian.’ This award was the first of the iconic M. Michael Meller Style Awards, and was created after Boone battled cancer so that Meller could continue to hear her voice each year. Meller, of MMM Horseman, awarded the trophy to Springsteen following Sunday’s grand prix competition.

Springsteen represented the United States during the Nations Cup competition and proved to be a strong anchor for the team after her clear effort during the second round. After being a dominant force in the equitation and jumper ring as a junior, Springsteen has risen through the international ranks to become one of the top athletes for the United States. She has represented her country in several Nations’ Cup finals and has become one of the most decorated riders in the sport.

“I am so honored to win this award. It means so much to me, and it has been such a great week competing here. This is just an end to a very great week, and I am so grateful. We had so much fun Friday night. It is always such an honor to represent your country, and I have never done the Nations Cup here before, so I was excited to be named to the team, and it was really just a great night.”

Meller commented, “I believe that Jessica is one of the world’s most talented young riders. She works incredibly hard and is extremely dedicated to the horses and the sport. Jessica takes the time to really develop a partnership with each of her horses. As the anchor of Friday night’s winning team, she helped lead an aspiring group of riders on their home turf. It’s an honor to present her with the award; she truly deserves it.”

Founded by Michael Meller, MMM Horseman’s mission is to find and produce some of the world’s top young show jumping mounts. For more information, please visit www.mmm-horseman.com.

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.