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Standlee Barn Bulletin

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A Daughter’s Inspiration

A Daughter’s Inspiration

There is something to be said about daddy’s girls. They’re usually tougher than most and come in handy when there is a flat tire. Often, they have their dad wrapped around their finger, whether he wants to admit it or not!

This Father’s Day, we wanted to recognize and learn more from a few women from across the country, about the impact their father (or grandfather) has had on their love and passion for horses.

Mikalla T. from New York

Mikalla’s family has had horses since before she was born, so she’s been raised around them all her life, around 20 years or so. She does a lot of rodeo events with barrel racing being her favorite! A few other things she’s participated in has included trail, roping, western pleasure, gymkhana, speed events and many others.

Mikalla Tweedie

How has your father impacted your journey with horses?

My father has impacted my journey with horses by always telling me to do what makes me happy! I’m currently a student at SUNY Cobleskill getting my Animal Science Bachelors in Technology with a concentration in Equine and minor in Equine Assisted Activities. My end goal is to be a PATH Certified Therapeutic Riding Instructor. SUNY Cobleskill is the same school my father went to and he was the one of the people that encouraged me to go to school and was a big part of making my dreams come true. He pushed me to do my best and get all the means I needed to pursue not only my passion but this career as well. He encouraged a job in the equine industry!

What is your favorite memory with your father involving horses?

My favorite memory of my father involving horses has to be the time I had a huge barrel race I attended with my gelding called the NBHA Syracuse Spectacular. I was nervous, scared, and most of all worried of messing it up. My horse and I did our thing in the warm up ring getting ready to make our run into the coliseum. But I sat in the corner, over thinking. My dad walked up and he knew automatically what I was doing. He told me “You and your big red moose...” (that’s what he called my gelding, Hippie) “are going to be fine! Push him before and between those barrels. Give him his head and do what you do best!” Trying to fight back the tears in my eyes, I nodded, he patted my leg and said “give em hell Kalla.” I set my gelding up for the alley, tugged my hat down tight as I watched my dad rush to the gate of the coliseum to get a video of my run. I finished my pattern with the fastest time I had ran that entire weekend! My gelding and I had run a 15.858 second run landing us in the cracks of the 2D. I was thrilled! I walked out of that alley with a huge smile on my face as I looked at my parents! My mom screamed “that’s how it’s done” and my dad said “See I told you to ride and push him! Way to go kid!” I was so happy in that moment not only because I had just beat my own time but because I made my mom and dad both proud!

If there was one thing you’d want to express or tell your dad this Father’s Day, what would you want him to know?

There are so many things I would like to tell my dad this Father’s Day but it would be a really long book! So I guess I just want to say thank you dad. You have impacted me in more ways than just one! Be it in the arena, the practice pen, or just life in general! You are my true hero and I’m so proud and glad to call you my dad! Love you always!

Jessi E. from Indiana

Jessi started riding horses when she was 4 years old. She’s mainly involved in hunter/jumper, dressage and shows on the Arab circuit and open shows but enjoys trail riding and riding in parades as well.

Jessie Elliot

How has your father impacted your journey with horses?

My dad and I have a really strong bond that centers around horses. I think he’s probably one of my best friends because of our mutual love of riding. All of the things I learned growing up around horses - hard work, integrity, confidence - I learned from watching my dad. It wasn’t even when we were winning classes, but when we would go volunteer to work a horseshow that I think I learned the most about how to be a good person.

What is your favorite memory with your father involving horses?

When I was about 12, we were out trail riding in the state park. We were trying to hurry back to camp because there was lightning when my stirrup leather snapped. The horse I was riding was basically pony sized but my dad who is about 6’3” agreed to switch horses with me. It was probably one of the funniest things you’ve ever seen. You just saw this cowboy riding along on this pony in an English saddle with his legs hanging down to her knees. As if it couldn’t get worse, the sky decided to open up and try to drown us. So you have this big tall guy riding this little chestnut pony and they are completely and utterly drenched. All of the camps got horribly flooded and I kid you not we had to dump water out of our boots.

If there was one thing you’d want to express or tell your dad this Father’s Day, what would you want him to know?

I think mostly I would want him to know how much he influenced me to become a horsewoman instead of just a good rider.

Kelsey M. from Missouri

Though in the saddle long before, Kelsey has consistently been riding since she was 5 or 6 years old. Her family mostly pleasure rides. Her dad used to run bird dogs off horseback in field trials. He bred and trained bird dogs, but also trained and sold horses as well.

Kelsey Myers

How has your father impacted your journey with horses?

Horses has always been a passion for my Dad and myself. He has passed a lot of that on to me now. He will still ride occasionally but it doesn’t take much to get him talking horses. Those are the conversations I absolutely love.

What is your favorite memory with your father involving horses?

I will never forget going through “trail” rides, if you will on our horses through town. The best part is, the horses I get on and train, I take them through the same courses my Dad used to take his horses through when he was training them.

If there was one thing you’d want to express or tell your dad this Father’s Day, what would you want him to know?

Dad, I love you with all my heart. You have made such an incredible impact on my life with memories I hope I never forget. Thank you for sharing your love of Horses with me and Kolt (my brother). Thank you for encouraging and coaching us in our passions for horses. You are an incredible Father and we are truly overly blessed.

Photo Credit: Prairie’s Edge Photography LLC

Raelle M. from Tennessee

Raelle took her first ride as an infant but was able to ride solo by the age of about 7. She trail rides and cart drives for fun, but also uses her horses for therapy work. Her horse influence came from her grandfather, Bompa.

Raelle Masters

How has your grandfather impacted your journey with horses?

He is an "old timey" horseman which makes him tough and stubborn but with enough tenderness for horses to respect and enjoy his company. I think he's a huge reason why I can confidently handle most horses and am able to read them so well.

What is your favorite memory with your grandfather involving horses?

I was riding bareback in mid-summer on my mom's little fat mare with him on his mare. We went down a hill, my mare choosing a steeper path as I tried yanking her back. I leaned way back but slid right over her silky shoulders and landed on my back in front of her. She jumped over me and we both slid down the hill. Bompa rode over trying his best not to laugh and asked, "What happened? Anything broken?" I gave him a thumbs up and used his stirrup to hop back on my mare while he chuckled. I can only imagine how funny I looked disappearing over that steep hillside. Must've been pretty funny because I kept hearing him chuckle ahead of me for about 5 minutes.

If there was one thing you’d want to express or tell your grandfather this Father’s Day, what would you want him to know?

He is a quirky old horseman and I love him, and I see myself becoming just as fiery and stubborn as him, riding till he can't but doing it anyway.

Darian N. from Kansas

Darian started riding horses when she was about 2 years old and then working alongside her father at the age of 7. She enjoys barrel racing, pole bending, breakaway roping and heading as a team roper.

Dorian Nicholson

How has your father impacted your journey with horses?

He was my trainer and my overall best friend! The best person you could ever ask for therefore, he made me into the horsewomen I am today, and I still am training horses because I want to and because he still has a special place in my heart and this is what I’m meant to do.

What is your favorite memory with your father involving horses?

Hauling to rodeos every weekend and laughing before I either ran barrels/poles or went and roped.

If there was one thing you’d want to express or tell your dad this Father’s Day, what would you want him to know?

I would tell him that I love and miss him a lot...thank you for making me the way I am today!


Happy Father’s Day to all the amazing fathers (and grandfathers) out there who have played dress up, fixed ponytails and taught us what it means to love unconditionally (humans or horses, for that matter). Share in the comments how your father has influenced your way of life with horses!

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