The live show blog for the veteran live shower. We'll talk about the haps in Region 10. We'll talk about issues around live showing and NAMHSA. We'll dip into my big box of ancient photos and discuss history. It will be a grand old time.

Saturday, February 7, 2015

BCS Winter Photo Challenge!

Hello all! I could not resist Jen Buxton's Winter Photo Challenge, though I fear my time challenged universe may leave this as a late entry. Anyway, enjoy it--I wish I had more time to retake some of these, but the vet gods weren't taking my hobby time into consideration this week.


These are my very first Breyer models. I got them for my birthday when I was they are 40 years old! Their names are Blacky and McTrot, and you can see they are well loved.


Everyone thinks of unpainted resin. Few consider them pole dancing.

Scale Issues

Me too, drafty mare, me too....

I See Spots

I am consider blowing this up as a print for my living room

Unbridled Passion

Model horses, wacky performance set ups, veterinary medicine...yep, all passions.

Rare Breed

The rarest of them all. International multimedia superstar Beowulf, the most famous horseless head in the land.


Harpo, Reserve Champion Sport Type English pleasure photo 100_6167.jpg

I don't have a photo of the real Harpo, but he was a charming and patient Belgian/thoroughbred cross owned by the DC of my pony club. Harpo was not much of a looker, but he was kind and gentle, and I always admired him. My Harpo exudes the gentleness of the real one. Of all my models, I would choose Harpo to ride.


THE GREAT CIRCLE OF ALBOROZO. No, I do not own all of these, they were a conglomeration among my Breyerfest roomies

The Great Outdoors

Snowy Silver Winter Wonderland

Best in Show

This one was my hardest pick. It is my favorite horse, Polka Parr T with just some of his awards in his 15 year show career. No, I will never retire him.

This was super fun, and I hope that someone offers more of these to do!!!

Monday, June 24, 2013

Nearly forgot!

My favorite picture of the day! My nieces Mackenzie and Riley (and their mom) came to help out on Saturday. The girls served as ribbon runners, and they had a great time doing it. They are handing me ribbons for Lasher and All About Khemistry...just as those two are being announced as champ and reserve.

The NAN 2013 Wrap Up

NAN Harrisburg is officially in the record books. And what an amazingly well run show this was. This was my best ever NAN experience as an entrant. I found the show very well paced--I never felt rushed, and I only rarely felt things were dragging without explanation. I did not miss a single class, despite over scheduling myself on Friday with performance (I had 4 horses in CM/AR English Trail. AAAAHHHHHHH!) The staff was professional, and things ran smoothly.

I thought that NAN 2010, when Eleanor Harvey and I ran it, was the best NAN ever-best organized, most fun, whatever. No longer true. We are second, and very solidly beaten. Not a photo finish at all. Chair Niki Hertzog and registrar Jim West were super organized and super professional. I thank you all for your hard work. You've set the bar high for 2013.

I also want to thank my husband David, who agreed to come along and help for the weekend. I am sure that by Friday night he was over hearing grown women talk about little plastic horses and the politics thereof, but he really did not let on. I am so very grateful he gave up his weekend to something he doesn't have any interest in at all, because I asked him to. I love you, David. You're awesome.

I took 33 horses to Harrisburg, and showed in 81 classes. I came home with 28 Top Tens, 5 Reserves and 6 Champions. And here they are, and these are the people who created them. All pictures will blow up if you click on them, so you can get a better look:

First off, here are my horses that didn't get noticed:

These are my resins, from left to right, the back row:

Elidar, a "Daffyd" resin sculpted by Sarah Minkiewicz-Bruenig and finished by Daphne Mazuz
Oscar Wilde, a "Showman" resin sculpted by Kathi Bogucki and finished by Carol Williams
Firefly, an "Elsie" sculpted by Sarah Minkiewicz-Breunig and finished by Stephen Michaud
Margo, a "Koko" resin sculpted by Lynn Fraley and finished by Tom Bainbridge
Valerian Steel, the Animal Artistry large Andalusian by Donna Chaney and finished by Ann Harris
Bruce, an "Otto" resin by Sarah Minkiewicz-Bruenig finished by Morgen Kilbourne

And in front, left to right:

Sundance, a "Taboo by Sarah Minkiewicz-Bruenig and finished by Mel Miller
Tyrion, an "Imp" by Sarah Minkiewicz-Bruenig finished by Jenn Danza (he fell over during his class or I think he would have been pinned!)
Shock Value, a "Nevada" by Sarah Rose finished by Mel Miller

And in customs land:

Khandan, a Breyer classic Arabian mare by Bev Manderfeld
Hot Zone, a Black Horse Ranch hunter by Ann Harris--Hot Zone arrived with a broken leg I found Friday morning. Happily, Jenn Danza put him back together and he did not miss a class!
Just Another Guy, a Stone Ideal Stock Horse by Kirsten Wellman
Armaan, a Breyer Stablemate G1 Arabian stallion by Kirsten Wellman

I managed to not get images of my horses in their performance classes (something had to give!) so for many I don't have pictures of them in set ups. Sorry. Also, in general, a lot of my older horses did very well this year, so please indulge me with some stories.

Top Tens

Harpo, a Mittens resin, sculpted and finished by Ann Harris, Top Ten in CM/AR English Trail. Tack by susan Doolittle, doll by Cari Chaney. I think Martina Vanelli took the performance picture. I have had Harpo for 10 years now.

Viva Las Vegas, a Matriarch sculpted and finished by Carol Williams. Dave gave me this horse early in our courtship. She took Top Tens in CM/AR Reining/Western Dressage, Trad/Classic/LB scale QH, and Tr/Cl Other Dilute. This horse's barn name is Priscilla--she got some tack damage repaired this weekend, so I think her performance career is over. Her saddle is by Janet Eddington, bridle by Sue Bensema Young and doll by Rosewood dolls

Polka Parr T is a customized Black Horse Ranch Reiner done by me. I have been showing Polka since 2000! He is a multiple past NAN champ and holds 3 separate Superior Event Horse awards (marathon driving, reining and roping) This year he got his Top Ten in Reining/Western Dressage. She was shown with a Terry Newberry saddle and bridle (which I purchased for Polka the night before NAN 2001 started!) and has a doll by Anne Field. I will show this horse forever.

Polka Bueno, an Okie Too sculpted and finished by Carol Williams. This foal is 12 years old, and still wins for me! He got his Top Ten in AR Stock Foals.

Snickerdoodle, a Loki resin by Lesli Kathman, finished and haired by Sarah Minkiewicz-Breunig. I am not his original owner, so I am not sure of his age, but I think the date on him is 2004. He is a resin that was a cast custom, something that is frowned upon now. His Top Ten is in Workmanship-Classic/Traditional Tobiano

Airline Amy and Waps Baby Doll. I think of these two as sisters, and that is why I show them together. Both are finished by Danielle Feldman (I own a third appaloosa by her as well!) They both earned Top Tens in Sport/Carriage/Draft Foals, Patterned. Amy is a Lets Fly resin by Tibbi Searcher, and Doll is a Gesche resin by Carlee Balling-that latter resin was released in 1997, though Doll is probably wearing a different paint job than the one she started out in.

Secret Weapon, a Valinor by Sarah Minkiewicz-Breunig and finished by Jennifer Scott. Secret had some repair work to her tail and scored third in her workmanship class, SM/LB scale Greys

Roxanne, a Working Girl resin by Sarah Rose and finished by Sommer Prosser. Roxy won her Top Ten in QH/solid colored stock horse SM scale.

Chakra, a Vixen by Sarah Minkiewicz-Breunig finished by Steph Michaud. Chakra is still new here, and I really love her. Her Top Ten was in workmanship, SM/LB scale Overo pinto

Reserve Champions

Dun in Pastels, a custom Black Horse Ranch Hunter by Lesli Kathman. He was owned by Paula Hecker who showed the heck out of him in the 90's, and she sold him to me about 18 months ago. Paula stalks him on my Facebook page, which makes me happy. I think he was done in 1996. I am honored to own him now, and clearly, he's still got it--he placed Top Ten in CM/AR Huntseat pleasure, Stock/pony and took reserve champ in CM/AR Other English. He used tack that was made for him by Jennifer Kistler and used dolls made by Cari Chaney and Anne Field.

Frasasti, a custom Breyer Weather Girl by Danelle Gatcombe. Danelle is a wonderful regional customizer, and it was great to tell her that Frasasti followed up her Top Ten from last year with a reserve in CM Grey, where she was judged on the technical work Danelle did on her.

Lasher, a custom Breyer Classic Swaps by Sarah Minkiewicz-Breunig. Lasher was made in 1992 and refurbished in 1996. He is older than NAN or NAMHSA! The fact that he took reserve in CM Other Sporthorses Classic/LB/SM scale speaks to how ahead of his time he was in 1992.

Josie Whiplash, a tiny Breyer Stablemate scale scratching foal finished by the late Judy Renee Pope. Josie took reserve in workmanship, LB/SM scale dilutes.


Skipper Dan is my lone OF horse this time-he's a Breyer Enchanted Forest, and was one of many versions of this pony on the table. He had three classes, and failed to place in 2 (he shouldn't have) but did manage to not only place but win OF Dressage with a Prix Caprilli entry. His tack is by Jana Skybova and his doll-an adorable kind with glasses and jodphurs-is by Anne Field.

Heidi, a Hazel resin by Morgen Kilbourne, finished by Sonya Johnson, had a great day--she is super fun to play with. She started the day winning the harness class (harness by me, cart by BillDuncan, dolls by Anne Field), then picked up Top Tens in Cross Country/Jumpers and dressage (tack by Corrine Ensor and Susan Doolittle, dolls by Anne Field) and then a Reserve in Poles/Barrels/Keyhole/Flag and Balloon Racing (tack by Pam Perkins, doll by Anne Field) I really enjoy showing this horse-she is just FUN.

Smoke N Satin is a customized Breyer Lonesome Glory by Pamela Hutton. This horse has been around since 2001, and she is a past champ at Breyerfest Live. This year she took a Top Ten in CM Thoroughbreds and then won her workmanship class, CM Greys--yes, I took both champ and reserve in that class!

Sadira, a Jezebel resin by Sarah Rose finished by Sommer Prosser. She went Top Ten in SM/LB Bay and then won the ARab mares class, beating horses of all scales!

All About Khemistry is a CM Breyer classic Man O War by Kirsten Wellman. He was created as a donation to help raise money for a mutual friend, and I won him at auction for about $100. He does well, and is consistent. This weekend he went and won the class Lasher was reserve in. He is Kirsten's first ever NAN champ that she created!

Chump Change is a Genoveva resin by Brigitte Eberl finished by Ann Harris. I adore this horse. Her color is perfect, and I love it. She does well locally, but has never placed at NAN. This year she won her workmanship class, Trad/Classic Bay Mare/Filly/Geldings

Finally, and you may skip this if you are easily grossed out, I want to present my favorite entry to set up. Friday morning brought us the Scene class where you can set up all sorts of non competitive horse type things, like a horse standing for the vet, or milling about at a check on a hunt, or....avoiding being eaten in the world of The Walking Dead. Photos by me, Marisa Evans and Martina Vanelli. I would appreciate any other photos people had of this set up. I absolutely LOVED watching the reactions to it (mostly along the lines of "Gross. But cool." And if there had been some sort of popular vote, this entry would have won. Alas, he was out of the ribbons by a single point. Still a win for me though!

That's my NAN wrap. See you at Breyerfest in about a month, yikes!!

Thursday, February 7, 2013

The Model Horse Hobby in the Mirror?

I am gleefully working on a Walking Dead inspired performance set up. Its one of those projects that started out as being very specific, and has sort of evolved into being something that will be more versatile. I am really excited about showing it off. While I was in the gathering stuff I need for this phase, I stumbled on a website that sells 1:6 scale accessories for Old West figures. They also have a nice supply of Breyer scaled rifles, and well, who doesn't need firearms in the zombie apocalypse? I ordered some and joined the yahoo group for the company.

Most of the posts have been from people who appear to be on the older side, mostly men, who customize Marx figures and make little dioramas with them. The details are pretty neat. Naturally, some of these figures need horses. The original web site I found this stuff on did some CM work on Johnny Marx horses and sold them. Nice, but not hobby quality.

And then this lady posted an update to her website. And I really feel like I am looking at that first issue of Just About Horses I ever laid hands on in 1978. Though she does not call her horses RRH--she calls them customs. I realize I may be coming across as though I have posted this to make fun of the work--I'm not--its like I am looking at a parallel evolution to what we do. She's just doing it with a smaller group that is focused on what she does.

I was going to put my little WD scenario together and photograph it to see how it looked--its definitely a scene type entry (and its a behind the scense type scene. No zombies. Yet.)--and post a picture to this new yahoogroup to say "Hey, here's what I do in 1:8" but now I am not sure that I should, for some reason...I feel almost like I'd be...disrespectful? I don't know why though--I don't know that they'd be particularly interested in what we do in competition. Its possible they just enjoy doing their own thing, after all, and not care about our hyper realism.

There's a yahoogroup for 1:6 horses, and I *know* I have seen Rio Rondo selling 1:6 scale hardware (and wondering who was buying it)and I am pretty sure Sue Bensema Young had some 1:6 scale stuff at Breyerfest last year. Its like this whole sister group is out there and no one knows about it. I have heard of Luis Aguilar's horses, but I've never seen one. Here are cavalry sets that rival anything I've seen shown...and he does all sorts of different eras. The tack whore in me is going "Those prices are pretty good." Its not like having the right horse has ever stopped me before. I almost feel like I should snoop around these guys to find a set of hames and a it that would be a good fit for my monstrous Equus Maximus.

Did we scare off the Marx people early on with Breyer and Hartland snobbery? Does anyone out there have one of the Luis Aguilar horses? Do you show it? Why not?

Full of questions.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

That's Racing

My brother is a professional race car mechanic. No kidding. He's worked in NASCAR, and for an American LeMans Series team. This weekend, he worked a race called the 24 hours of Daytona. Apparently there was a great shot of him sleeping standing up on Speed in the wee hours. I followed the race on FaceBook. Early on, the car had some issues with the gearbox, but they thought they resolved the problem. They were running well. And in hour 23, the gear box failed and the race, for them, was over.

Sucks, right? As my brother puts it "That's racing."

Yeah. There's hundreds of thousands of dollars on the line, in building the car, and prepping it for the day of the race. I don't know what it costs to actually enter the race, or pay the team that cares for that car. And despite all the money and all that work...they can't even place, they are Did Not Finish.

That's Racing.

I swear it will make sense in a moment.

So. If you took a moment to actually read the NAN packet when you enter, you'd see that there's a note that classes that have fewer than 20 horses entered in a given class (or if less than 20 actually show up on the table--a lot of times not all the horses who are entered show) then half the class is pinned, and its not a Top Ten, its a Top Seven, or whatever. Its been like that since 1995. Some of its economic--prizes are about $60 per class, and if you have 20 horses entered, the class breaks even. Some if it is in the spirit of competition--to earn that rosette, you have to beat someone, not just show up.

You don't get a prize just for showing up.

I know, right?

NAN is not a member show. Its our National Championship show. Those awards should mean *something* that isn't "I paid my entry fee and got up on time."

And no, we don't track horses who qualify. So you have to compete against what actually shows up that day, not what is hypothetically qualified to be there, but isn't for some reason. Using that logic, its possible that the True Best Horse Ever never gets to a show, because not everyone who collects stuff--even resins, even CMs, even tack--shows it. I realize that seems like a waste to those of us who do, but its true. So you have to be judged against what shows up to compete, not what is hypothetically going to compete.

And while I agree that a good, consistant sponsorship program is something NAN and NAMHSA desperately need...I don't think its ethical to be able to just create a class to sponsor. You get to pick what the NAN committee offers. If you get to create a class--say Traditional scale CM Glaze Walkaloosa, bay base color, then you sure as hell don't get to show in it. Its cheaper to just make your own trophy.

Should we just give out "PARTICIPATION" ribbons with the NAN packet? Or maybe just forget the show and let people order trophies on demand? That would save the org money and a lot of aggravation, certainly. It would also make your cookie worthless.

It would be awesome if we could all count on winning a championship at every show we go to, but that doesn't happen. Sometimes all you get to show for an effort is the experience. I spent a lot of time and money on the 1999 NAN and I think I got one Top Ten to show for it. I've been just nudged out of champs at local shows and missed a National Reserve by a point. I suppose I could waste time being furious about how I'd been cheated out of a prize...but that's showing.

If actual professionals can have this attitude about competition, why on earth don't we, who are doing it, in theory, because we enjoy it? Do we enjoy just having the prizes?

Monday, January 28, 2013

The NAN Webcam Calamity

OK, since this has been posted on a public list, I feel like I can discuss it. And I also think I am done posting on N-D for now. Its become an echo chamber for about half a dozen people who are apparently ill informed about the show, and just enjoy hearing themselves. No one disagrees with them because the discussion is actually going on in other places, just not the official venue. Shocking, I know.

Anyway, when the webcam idea was developed and announced by Jim West and Andy Faraci last year, I was skeptical about it. Let's face it, model horse showing is sort of boring if you're not actually showing. Its not a spectator sport. When the jumpers come out, they don't jump. And at NAN you have to keep your distance, you can't go up and gawk at the entries and admire the detail and care that go into them. I thought a static camera shot was going to be kind of dull. But a lot of others were excited with the idea, so I kept my Debby Downer crap to myself.

And I was totally wrong. The webcam ended up being a freaking hit, especially after someone mounted it to a rolling dolly and pushed it around the hall. Laura Pervier eventually ended up doing most of the dolly rolling and commentary on the thing. I am not sure how that happened, I guess she got bored when she didn't have enough to do judging. It happens.

And hey, kudos to Laura for then writing an organized proposal that was submitted to the BOD. We were in the middle of another discussion, and per our long established protocol, discussion of the web cam was temporarily tabled to be discussed later. Laura wasn't happy with that, as she stated on NAMHSA-Discussion, as she is trying to swing plane and hotel fare and her proposal included a clause for reimbursement of part of those expenses. Eventually she withdrew the proposal as it was becoming economically unfeasable for her to wait.

This does not mean that the webcam isn't happening, folks. It just means that Laura won't be running it. Laura was not behind getting the webcam set up last year, her equipment was not used. So there is no point in getting your panties in a wad over it because you'll still have it.

I am not personally sure that this should be a $300 paid position. I mean, the webcam is a nice addition to the show, but with out the NAN chair (who gets $525, increased for this year, unless there is a co-chair, in which case, the stipend is split), a registrar ($525, also increased for this year--both these posts were $450 before 2013) or judges ($100 per day, an increase in 2012) a head steward ($300, position created in 2010) and a vast army of volunteers who work for a $10 lunch and a T shirt. The other staff members I already mentioned also get lunch and a shirt, and there is breakfast and refreshments provided to judges each day.

Now--its possible that at some point in the future, the webcam does develop into a paid position. I have a hard time saying that the organization should be spending $300 plus whatever the parking pass, and special food request for what is, really, a non essential part of the show. Without a chair, a registrar, judges and the ring stewards, there is nothing for the webcam to stream. I'm glad Laura is so eager to shift to this position, but it might be smarter to work it up more slowly than what she's got outlined. Probably, this needs to be a team of people-two or three-because that schedule she has is a long one. I love the idea of some structured programming--interviewing folks, that sort of stuff, but man, that is a lot of work for a single person. Worth $300? Probably...if the show wasn't already so far in the red. Are you willing to raise the entry fee so your mom can watch the show? People are also clamoring for small classes to be pinned all the way to 10, which is another way to spend. And there will be more on that later in the week. At some point, we have to start trying to get the show to raise revenue. And it can't all be subsidized with sponsors and raffle tickets. We either need to cut stuff or raise the entry fee. We probably need to do both, but I can't imagine what else CAN be cut at this point--does it make sense to add in another expense that isn't vital?

I don't think anyone who works for NAN expects to get most of their expenses recouped. Some folks don't even pick up their stipends, they feel that its part of their hobby pay back (I'm not one of those people--any little bit helps!!)

For reference, here's the proposal:

NAN Webcam Walkabout Proposal

I would like to propose that NAMHSA hire me as the official webcam operator
(aka Walkabout) for NAN 2013 and NAN 2014. There was a significant amount
of positive feedback from those who had never attended a NAN or who were
unable to attend this past year, but were able to watch it live via the
internet. People checked in from all over the US, Canada and overseas, and
really appreciated the ability to see what was happening in real time and to
ask questions of me. Not only did I have an enjoyable time running the
camera all over the show hall, I believe the ability for many who have never
been to NAN is a great benefit to NAMHSA, NAN and the hobby at large.
Ideally I'd like to do this for all years of NAN going forward, depending on
where the Indy NANs will be held.

Many people feel NAN is very cutthroat, scary and intimidating. I would
like to change their perception with the walkabout. Show them that folks
are having a good time at NAN and they're busy congratulating those that did

My goal for the walkabout is to show those at home how much work is put in
to NAN by the entrants and staff, as well as what exactly goes on during the
day. I will be showcasing all of the classes during NAN, as well as entrant
tables, the judge's corral, podium, championship photo area, whiteboard,
registrar's table and anything else related to NAN. In addition to
featuring the nuts and bolts of the show, I will be happy to again field
questions from those watching and to highlight areas as they request it.

What I would be providing with the walkabout:

Broadcasting via LiveStream (or something similar) during the entire 3 show
days, from beginning to end

Broadcasting on the day before NAN from the show hall, both as a test for
the system and to show those at home what goes on in getting the hall ready
for NAN

Interviews with various entrants, judges, stewards and other volunteers and

Lots of positive promotion for NAMHSA and NAN which will encourage those at
home to attend a future NAN

I will provide:

My own laptop with an extended time battery and a back up battery
A wireless router (if needed)
A portable, moveable platform for the computer, webcam and microphone
An account with Livestream (or similar)
Lots of great commentary during all days of NAN for those at home
A very loose time schedule of when pre-arranged people will be interviewed
so those at home can tune in to see their favorite artist or whomever - this
can be published on the NAMSHA site, N-D and other lists ahead of time

What NAMHSA/NAN will provide:

Access to the Comcast hard-wire connection via my (or Niki's) wireless
Paid parking pass for the 4 days of NAN (show and set up days); if parking
fees are applicable
A large fruit plate in the morning (I'm gluten-intolerant), each day of NAN
Compensation for 3 days of NAN at standard judges pay rate - including per
diem for lunch. Set up day will not need to be compensated as this is
strictly to test that the equipment is ready and working.
A printed seating chart and cross reference list of entrants by first and
last name (so I can find entrants at the show for those at home that would
like to "meet" them) or provide me with the files so I can print them myself
Judging assignment schedule
Class list, in order of when they'll be called
Name tag
Official NAMHSA staff shirts
NAN FAQ on the NAMHSA web site (further details on the FAQ available from
both Stacy Faraci and Niki Hertzog)

Saturday, December 15, 2012

The year end wrap

I started inventorying my collection about 2 years ago. It's still a work in progress, but the bulk of the horses are described and photographed, as is the tack. The big project for 2013 is props, and then the valuable stuff should all be documented. The big plan is to put it on a flash drive. During the last 2 weeks of the year, I review stuff as I have time. Today was mostly reconstructing my "New Stuff" list that I was meticulous about until Breyerfest ended. Then I just fell off the wagon hard.

But, I did get it done, and, bonus, I also got most of the horse counts confirmed. I still need to do the unpainted resins since either I am missing a box, the inventory lists on the boxes are wrong, or the various lists I have are wrong. Anyway-should I get all these goodies painted, I will have some awesome future show horses.

I also learned that I apparently have not unpacked from TRXC. There are horses I did not see upstairs that I know I have, because I showed them at TRXC!

And need more shelving, but I have a plan.

Still need to photograph the new stuff, but it's not much...and match up certificates, awards and all that stuff. Maybe I should hope for a snowy winter so I won't feel bad pouring over paperwork and the pony room for hours on end.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad