There were many happy faces and shiny cowboy boots on October 13, as competitors in the Ellis County Equine Association gathered for their year-end banquet at the Waxahachie Civic Center to receive a menagerie of custom made awards in honor of their hard work to win championships throughout the 2012 ECEA horse show season.
“We’ve had a great show season with increasing numbers in class size, membership level and youth participation,” announced ECEA President Jimmy Ballew at the beginning of the ceremony. “Thanks so much to all of the hard work from all of our officers and volunteers and especially our sponsors.”
Buckles were awarded to the individuals racking up the most points over five shows in halter, English, Western, reining, yearling performance, and walk and whoa categories. Other awards included leather bracelets, embroidered English and western boot bags, embroidered show pad carriers, trophies and plaques.
In addition to horse show awards, ECEA honored several special members or families for their dedication and helpfulness to the club. The Jody Clemons of Waxahachie won the Billie Wesson Most Active New Member Award. The Teri Owen Family of Terrell won the Randy McMullan Spirit Award for their active participation in all ECEA events throughout the year as well as the recruitment of new members.
Autumn Wells, age 9 of Waxahachie, won the Nancy Jessup Sportsmanship Buckle. This is a very special award honoring a youth who showed a great attitude in and out of the show ring throughout the year and is voted on only by the youth membership.
Mary Roberts of Waxahachie won the Charlie Huff Hall of Fame Award, which honors long time dedicated members of ECEA. Roberts as served as club secretary and newsletter editor for several years.
Becky Hansen won the Mighty Special Award, which is sponsored by the Flying Dollar Ranch in honor of one of their oldest and most special lesson horses.
“Becky really deserves the Mighty Special Award because she does such a disproportionate amount of work for this club. As show secretary she almost single handedly organizes the show which includes booking the arena, hiring judges, tabulating the show points, ordering the awards, coordinating volunteers and much more,” said ECEA outgoing president Julie Hinz while presenting the award.
A full list of 2012 ECEA Buckle Series Horse Show winners, and more information about ECEA and its activities is available on the club’s website at www.elliscountyequine.org