Open Barn Event sponsored by American Morgan Horse Assoc.

On October 28 or November 4, the American Morgan Horse Association is sponsoring a nation-wide Open Barn Event in an effort to share the love and appreciation Morgan owners have for their horses. People who are familiar or unfamiliar with the Morgan Horse can get an up close and personal introduction to the versatility of the breed, the history that has been instrumental in shaping our nation, and the many reasons the Morgan Horse is our Vermont State Animal.

Event information:

Participating Farms:

Our barn in Bristol will be open for this event and our three Morgans will be available for rides and carriage drives. Please feel free to contact me for further information. I look forward to hearing from you.

Cindy Mayer
4395 South 116 Road
Bristol, VT 05443
Cell: 802.345.1074, Home: 802.453.5129


Hoof Care Presentation at Stowe Equestrian Center


Join VHC Next Saturday, Oct. 21 at Stowe Equestrian enter on Route 100 in Morrisville for a presentation on hoof care by farrier Jen Poulin, Owner of Cold hollow hoof Care.  

Meet at 9:30 am for a tour of the facilities by host Ronda Foster, owner of Stowe Equestrian, followed by brief updates on VHC projects and programs. Jen Poulin will cover lots of info on hoofs, care options in an interactive and fun way!

Bring a chair and a dish to share if you'd like. Ronda will provide some chili!

More details at

VHC Survey

The Vermont Horse Council Board of Directors is asking all VHC members to take a moment to complete this survey to provide us with a better understanding of your interests regarding VHC meetings and programs. The survey is both easy to complete and very brief. It should take you only 5 minutes to complete. All survey responses are fully confidential. The insights from the survey will be used to help us develop meetings and programs that are supportive of our member’s collective interests.

VHC Awarded Grant

Good News! 

We have been awarded a grant from the State Recreational Facility Grant Program Building Communities for $1,900 to complete horse corrals at the New Discovery Campground at Groton State Forest. The Council will match those funds to install the remaining corrals at the campsite.

The equine site at New Discovery has seen increased use this summer with the installation of 4 corrals in the past year. 

Installation of the remaining corrals will likely take place next spring when the park reopens. In the meantime - donations are still being accepted to help defray the costs of this popular project. To Donate (choose donate for Groton/NEKET funds button)


The 21st Annual Benefit Trail Ride

The 21st Annual Benefit Trail Ride is on September 9 - just around the corner! Ride gorgeous trails, take an optional splash in the lake, enjoy a homemade BBQ lunch, and take home a T-shirt. CHAMP staff and volunteers work hard to make this a wonderful day for everyone. Riders raise $125 (or sometimes much more!) to participate, making this one of the most important annual fund-raisers for CHAMP. Sign up by visiting Or call 802-372-4087 to join the fun as a volunteer -- set up lunch and/or hold a horse while riders take a lunch break. See you there!

Vermont Outdoor Economy Public Forum

Please attend one of the meetings listed below to be sure equestrian recreational interests are considered in this important state initiative - read on for more info...

Dear Colleague,
I am writing on behalf of the Vermont Outdoor Recreation Economic Collaborative (VOREC) to invite you to participate in a Vermont Outdoor Economy Public Forum. We are hosting seven of these Forums around the state in September and October, and we hope that you can attend one. Please feel free to spread the word to people and organizations that you think would be interested.  You can find a copy of our press release here:

All meetings are open to the public, and take place from 6-8 pm. Open House style, so come when you can!

 Dates and Locations:

  •  Tuesday, September 12th: The Best Western, 45 Blush Hill Rd, Waterbury, VT 05676. 6-8 pm.
  • Monday, September 25th: Island Pond Town Hall, 49 Mill St, Island Pond, VT 05846. 6-8 pm.
  • Tuesday, October 3rd:  Community College of Vermont,  60 West St, Rutland, VT 05701. 6-8 pm.
  • Tuesday, October 10th:  City Hall, 100 North Main Street, St. Albans, VT 05478. 6-8 pm.
  • Monday, October 16th:  The Evening Star Grange 1008 East-West Rd, East Dummerston, VT 05346. 6-8 pm.
  • Monday, October 23rd:  Hartford Town Hall 171 Bridge St White River Junction, VT 05001. 6-8 pm.
  • Tuesday, October 24th: The West Mountain Inn, 144 W. Mountain Inn Rd, Arlington, VT 05250. 6-8 pm.

We will be looking for feedback and ideas on how Vermont might achieve the following principal objectives:

  1. Promote business opportunities.
  2. Increase participation opportunities.
  3. Strengthen the quality and extent of our recreational resources.
  4. Strengthen the stewardship of our recreational resources.

For those who cannot attend an in-person meeting, an online survey will go live on September 12th on our webpage,

For more information about this initiative, please visit If you have any questions or need special accommodations, please contact me anytime.

Best Wishes,

Jessica Savage
Recreation Program Manager
Vermont Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation
1 National Life Drive, Davis 2
Montpelier, VT 05620-3801

NOTE: new email address:

NEKET/ Victory Trail Work Day

“VHC is looking for volunteers to help with some trail clearing ahead of the annual Victory Trail ride scheduled for September 8-10.  We'll meet at Walt’s field at 9:00 AM on August 26th .   

Contact Jim Nickerson at or  802-624-0544.  Jim will provide details and directions to Walt’s field.  Please don’t just show up in case the date changes.

Annual Victory Basin Camping and Ride Event

Northeast Kingdom Equestrian Trail

Annual Victory Basin Camping and Ride Event

The Vermont Horse Council (VHC) is hosting the annual Victory Basin Ride in the beautiful Northeast Kingdom of Vermont on Friday, Sept. 8 – Sunday Sept. 10, 2017. The ride is free for members – joining is easy – just visit!

Camping for self- contained units and tents is available and two marked trails available. On Saturday there will be both Kirby and Bog group rides.  The majority of people ride the Bog loop. On Sunday the majority of people ride the Kirby loop.  Maps are available at

The Bog loop is 19 miles, has some hills but nothing too steep. It consists mostly of wooded trails, a few water crossings, pipe and powerline and dirt road.  There is a long bridge near the end of the trail. The bridge is safe. The trail length can be shortened by returning along River Road. The Kirby Loop is 15 miles and a mix of dirt roads and trails and several hills. Shoes or boots are recommended.

Register and join on-line or send printed forms and check payable to VHC (for new members) to: 

Cortni Cleveland, VHC Treasurer
PO Box 574
Hardwick, VT 05843
(802) 472-8448

We will enjoy each other’s company, but this is a “no frills” camping and ride event.  Please bring food and drink for you and your horse. 

 Negative Coggins test within 1 year, VHC membership and certified helmet required





Photos Needed

"The Friends of the Lamoille Valley Rail Trail (FLVRT) are looking for horse pictures to post on their new web site.  They should be taken in Landscape, jpg format and on any section of the LVRT.  Nice background with trail obvious; clear focus; single or group pictures appreciated. Please send the photos to

Please  be aware that these pictures will be public property and you are giving permission to use them by providing the picture. "

Thank you from Donna Higgons, Chair, FLVRT

​​​​​​​BCHA needs your help. Calls to members of Congress are critical this week!

Please everyone this is critical.  Our great trail partners BCHA has put together this very easy to use template for contacting your congressman.  Please do even if you don’t have federal lands in your area.  That once in a lifetime ride you’ve always wanted to do may be affected by this.

Monica Chapman
AERC Trails and Land Management Committee Chair

Take Action: Calls to Congress Needed this Week!

BCHA needs your help. Calls to members of Congress are critical this week!

We have learned that Congress could begin negotiations this week regarding 2018 funding for a number of programs important to horsemen, including the Land and Water Conservation Fund and recreation and trail programs administered by the federal land management agencies. There is much at stake for horsemen and trail users.

Congress has an important role to play in ensuring the agencies receive sufficient funding for the public to continue to enjoy and to access our public lands via trails that are safe, accessible and well-maintained. 

President’s Budget Proposal Would Doom Trails

Yet the President proposed a budget for 2018 that would eliminate most funding for trails and fails to provide even the most basic necessities to support and manage volunteers, like you, who maintain a growing proportion of these trails.

The President’s budget also would cut the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) by 84% compared to the amount approved by Congress for 2017. LWCF has proven crucial to completing the Pacific Crest and the Continental Divide national scenic trails.

Similarly, the President’s budget would cut the trails program of the U.S. Forest Service by 84%. There is little doubt the agency would be forced to make sweeping personnel changes that would leave few staff among local ranger districts to work with volunteers and partners—to say nothing about the complete lack of seasonal trail crews that could be expected next year. Such budget cuts would be disastrous and unprecedented. 

Congress has the Power to Create and Pass its own Budget

The good news is that Congress does not have to follow the President’s proposed budget for 2018. But members of Congress need to hear from you. Otherwise, they just might fall in line behind the President’s budget proposal.

Take Action!

BCHA asks that you call your member of Congress today.

  • Let them know that trails and outdoor recreation are important to you.
  • Ask them to maintain the Land and Water Conservation Fund in 2018, at the minimum, at a level consistent with what Congress approved in 2017.
  • Ask that they support levels of funding that keep agency trail programs intact, as volunteers alone cannot be expected to do it all.
  • Ask that funding for trails reflect the growing importance of trails to the American public, including the outdoor “recreation economy,” which directly supports 7.6 million jobs across the U.S.

To find information, including a phone number, for your representative in Congress click on this link. For contact information for your U.S. senators, click here.

The Facts (and our Strong Opinion!)

BCHA worked with the American Hiking Society, American Trails, and the Partnership for the National Trails System to create a three-page background paper if you're interested in the details of the President’s proposed budget for 2018 and our joint request to Congress. Perhaps it’s more information than you want, but feel free to pass along either or both to your member of Congress if their staff person requests more information. 

To find data on the growing outdoor recreation economy, which includes horseback riding, see a summary of the new study posted on thewebsite of the Outdoor Industry Association.

Hear Back from Your Representative?

If you receive feedback from your member of Congress or their staff, it would be very helpful if you would share their response with BCHA’s director for Public Lands & Recreation. His email address is:

Please share this alert with friends and family. Like we are doing with the hikers and other partners, let's all speak up for trails together! Our future access to public lands depends on it.

Please take action TODAY to preserve access to trails on public lands.

Thank you.  


Freddy Dunn


The good news is that we all could use relief, so we’re offering a Rainy Day Summer Deal.

The post entry fee for the Reciprocity Ride will be eliminated. 

Please come and join us.  We’ve been working hard to get the trails ready for you. 

We are hoping to have our 2017 Cliff Murray/Floyd Fuller recipient present for awarding of her scholarship. 

With Gratitude

The Vermont Horse Council is blessed with many generous volunteers.

Just recently a number of folks from around Vermont, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Canada sent wonderful letters of support to add to our application for a grant to help us complete the installation of permanent corrals at New Discovery Campground at Groton State Forest. Everyone please send good thoughts to the award committee to grant us our requested funds!

Then Doug Smith stepped up - left behind his kitchen renovation project to attend represent the Council at the quarterly meeting of the Vermont Trails and Greenways Council. Watch for a future blog with information about that meeting! Thanks Doug- now back to that kitchen!

And sadly, it is with the deepest appreciation that we offer our gratitude to Terry Rose who recently resigned her position as Secretary. Terry has filled nearly every role there is to fill in the Council. And she filled them all with professionalism, patience, commitment and dedication. "Thank you" does not begin to express the many ways the Vermont Horse Council has benefitted from Terry and her generosity. We wish her all the best in her next adventure.

Meg Costello has been appointed by the Board to fill the remainder of Terry's term. Meg is another dedicated volunteer, having most recently served as the Vice President just two years ago. Meg's contact information can be found on the website, on the About Us page.

If you'd like to volunteer, there are many opportunities to help - just contact a Board member to let us know you are interested!

And don't forget to sign up or donate to the Reciprocity Ride to support our Scholarship Funds!

Happy Trails!

Letters Needed in Support of Groton State Forest

Do You RIde at Groton State Forest? Please let us Know!


We're applying for a grant to complete the installation of new corrals at New Discovery Campground and need 3 letters of support from users of the area.

We need these letters this week so if you are willing, please contact Heidi at or send a letter to that address by Wednesday, July 12.

Still Time to Sign Up for the VHC Reciprocity Ride!

Saturday, July 22, 2017 (rain or shine)
10 am – 3 pm
65 Preston Road, Orange, VT 05641
Come join us for this fun event geared toward youth and the young at heart.

The VHC scholarship committee is hosting a Reciprocity Ride to raise funds for our scholarship accounts. It is specifically geared toward youth as a way to give back to our horse
community. All of the entry ($50) and any additional pledges that participants raise and donate are 100% tax deductible. There will be 6-­‐mile loop and an approximately 12-­‐mile loop to choose from. The trails are wooded and field and for the most part groomed and wide so they are specifically suited for a mentor and youth, novice youth or the young at heart. Our hope is that riders experience the joy of the trails with their equine partner. We hope you will be inspired to raise money for this important mission. Three scholarship funds exist; Cliff Murray and Floyd Fuller Memorial Fund (college), Youth Fund (< 19 years old), and Adult Continuing Education (>19 years old). Detailed descriptions can be found on the VHC website under services/scholarships.

On-­‐line entries are encouraged or printed forms and check can be sent to (checks payable to
Cortni Cleveland, VHC Treasurer
PO Box 574
Hardwick, VT 05843 (802) 472-­‐8448

We will have a staggered start of riders starting at 10 am.

Please note there are 30 rider spots. Entries are on a first come basis. We highly encourage pre entry. If spots are open on the day of the event, entries will be taken at that time ($25 post entry fee applies). Please call the ride manager, Jeannette Cole (802-­‐595-­‐9567) to assure availability if you are post entering.

We will enjoy each others company, but in order to assure all funds are used to support youth scholarships, this is a “no frills” ride. Please bring food and non-­‐alcoholic drink for you and your horse.

Negative Coggins test within 1 year, VHC membership and certified helmet required