Contact: Lynne Richmond (609) 292-8896
(TRENTON) -- Each year, New Jersey designates June as the Month of the Horse. To celebrate the contributions made to the state by the official state animal, events are planned throughout the month, kicking off with an international level horse show, held at the Horse Park of New Jersey.
The horse was proclaimed the state animal by law in 1977. Equine is the third largest sector of New Jersey agriculture. There are 81,000 acres of farmland associated with the equine industry. The industry, not including purse and stake payments, contributed $109 million to the state’s economy in 2004.
Here are some of the Month of the Horse Events listed on the Department’s equine website www.jerseyequine.nj.gov:
June 1-4: Jersey Fresh CCI** and CCI***, the Horse Park of New Jersey, Upper Freehold Twp.
The Jersey Fresh Three-Day Event will include a dressage phase on June 1 and 2, cross-country on June 3 and show jumping, along with the awards presentation, on June 4. There also will be many vendors offering everything from jewelry, clothing and artwork to riding attire, horse equipment and food. Also on the agenda is a dog agility demonstration.
June 3-4: New Jersey Equine Expo, the Horse Park of New Jersey, Upper Freehold Twp.
The New Jersey Equine Expo will be held in conjunction with the Jersey Fresh Three-Day Event, giving spectators the opportunity to see many different breeds of horses found in New Jersey. Hours are 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday and 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Sunday. There will be a petting farm, face painter, educational exhibits and a clown. Designed to be both educational and fun, the Expo presents the many facets of the equine industry. For information, call (609) 259-0170, (609) 984-4389 or e-mail Debra.Moscatiello@ag.state.nj.us, or see www.horseparkofnewjersey.com.
June 3: Grand Opening Open House, West Milford Equestrian Center, 367 Union Valley Rd., Newfoundland
The West Milford Equestrian Center will hold a Grand Opening Open House that will include food and a petting zoo for children, as well as demonstrations of what the multi-discipline center will offer, which includes dressage, Western reining and cutting and hunters. For more information, visit www.westmilfordequestrian.com or call (973) 697-1149.
June 4: Show and Open House, Palermo Show Stable, 1555A Burnt Mills Rd, Bedminster
Palermo Show Stable will open its doors to the public on June 4 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. A schooling show for jumpers is being held that day. At 10:30 a.m. there will be a dressage exhibition/demonstration. After the dressage demonstration, the jumper show will resume and an explanation of how the horse show is being judged and how jumper classes are judged and scored will be given. For more information call (908) 719-7500, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or see www.palermoshowstable.com.
Tuesdays in June: Film Series, Monmouth County Library 125 Symmes Drive, Manalapan
All films begin at 2:00 pm:
June 6 -- Seabiscuit
June 13 -- Wild Hearts Can’t Be Broken
June 20 -- Into The West
June 27 -- The Horse Whisperer
June 9-11: 20th Annual Jersey Classic Horse Show, the Horse Park of New Jersey, Upper Freehold Twp.
See the largest concentration of American Saddlebred horses in New Jersey at the Jersey Classic Horse Show. Classes will be held Friday evening, all day Saturday, Saturday evening and Sunday. A variety of divisions showcase the breed in English, Western, Driving and Hunter disciplines in addition to the high stepping 3-gaited and 5-gaited performance competition. You will also see Roadster, Hackney, Morgan and Standardbred classes. The show will benefit the Mercer Street Friends, a charitable organization dedicated to improving the lives of children, their families, the homeless and disabled through a variety of programs. For more information about the show visit the website of the American Saddlebred Horse Association of New Jersey at www.ashanj.net.
June 10: Open House, Drill Team on Tap, Lord Stirling Stable, 256 South Maple Ave., Basking Ridge
Lord Stirling Stable in Basking Ridge will have an open house on June 10 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Riding lessons for current students will be going on throughout the day. Visitors can talk to both students and instructors between lessons. The Adult Drill Team will ride at noon and light refreshments will be served. Lord Stirling Stable offers a full complement of riding activities for riders of most ages and abilities. The stable is run owned by the Somerset County Parks Commission. Introductory Rides are offered to people who have never ridden English, aren't sure if they want to invest in a full 10 week session of lessons without trying it first, would like a refresher course or aren't sure if they qualify to rent a horse. The next introductory ride will be on June 4. Each ride begins at 10 a.m. with a brief talk on horses and riding techniques followed by a trail ride led by a certified instructor. Riders must be 12 years or older. Registration must be done in person and begins two weeks the ride. Lead line rides are also offered for small children and pony parties are available, as are horse rentals for ring or trail riding. Age and ability restrictions apply. Workshops and other events are held throughout the year. For more information contact Nancy Meola at (908) 766-5955, extension 28 or see www.somersetcountyparks.org/activities/stables/lord_stirling_stable.htm.
June 10: Open House, Riding ins Therapeutic, Rein Dancer Therapeutic Riding, 31 Archertown Rd., New Egypt
The newly opened Rein Dancer Therapeutic Riding will host an open house on June 10 from noon to 4 p.m. Located on 250 acres of permanently preserved farmland, the former home of harness racing great Vernon Dancer, the program is named in memory of him and his equally legendary brother, Stanley Dancer. There are seven horses, five of which were donated to the program. Rein Dancer is a North American Riding for the Handicapped (NAHRA) member center, and will be applying for NARHA premium accreditation. Written permission from a physician and an individual evaluation will be required before participating in the therapeutic riding program. For those who should not ride, other horse activities, including grooming and horse care, may be available. For more information, visit reindancer.org or call (609) 752-0900.
June 11: Open House, Sleepy Hollow Stables, 47 Woodruff Rd., New Egypt
Sleepy Hollow Stables will be open to visitors on June 11 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The local 4-H horse club will be on hand and Peruvian Paso horses will be strutting their stuff in a demonstration. For more information call Victoria Mather (609) 758-5114 or see www.sleepyhollowstablesllc.com.
June 15: Program on Sunnyside Equestrian Center, Monmouth County Park System Monmouth County Library 125 Symmes Drive, Manalapan
Monmouth County’s own brand-new facility features a stable, and outdoor and indoor riding rings. Sunnyside is the base for the County’s therapeutic horseback riding program. At 7:00 p.m., Pat Bernstein will tell us all about the Center’s programs and progress and plans for future improvements.
June 20: Program on the Horse Park of New Jersey, Monmouth County Park System Monmouth County Library 125 Symmes Drive, Manalapan
New Jersey’s 147-Acre Horse Park in Stone Tavern, Monmouth County is a world class equestrian exhibition facility, which offers a full season of events. Lynn Mathews of New Jersey Department of Agriculture, one of the operating organizations, will present the program at 7 p.m.
June 22: Pegasus as Muse: A Poetry Reading, Monmouth County Park System Monmouth County Library 125 Symmes Drive, Manalapan
Flora Higgins has been collecting poems about horses for many years. At 7 p.m., she will share some of these poems and she invites the public to bring their own favorite horse poems to read.
For the full list of equine events, view the New Jersey Department of Agriculture Equine Calendar of Events at www.jerseyequine.nj.gov/equinecal.htm. For more information about New Jersey’s equine industry, visit the Jersey Equine website at www.jerseyequine.nj.gov.