Skip to content

Friday Editorial-David L. Howard

Random Thoughts on Celebration 2007

Friday, August 31, 2007


By David L. Howard



The Nashville Tennessean

            The Nashville Tennessean devoted its entire editorial page in the Thursday edition to the Tennessee Walking Horse. They printed views from Chuck Cadle, Executive Director of the TWHBEA, Keith Dane, Director of Equine Protection for HSUS, Wink Groover, Chairman of the NHSC, and their editorial writers.

            The article by Keith Dane was about what you would expect – a continuing endorsement of the TWHBEA plan and criticism of the NHSC without naming them. His comments on the Celebration were disingenuous, particularly as it relates to access to observing inspection. He fails to mention that he was escorted into this area by Celebration Director Charles McDonald and that a separate room with a television filming the entire process was set up for him and others who wanted to watch all evening.

            Chuck Cadle is well intentioned but his article points out how much he has to learn. He simply needs to spend more time listening and learning and less time giving interviews. He has been exposed to this breed in his new job less than a year and he is not a knowledgeable source.

            I am admittedly biased in praising the article by Wink Groover since my daughter Christy Howard Parsons worked closely with Wink in preparing it. In 500 words it tells a lot about the progress being made without being self-serving.

            The Tennessean’s editors did a fair and balanced job in their article and are to be commended for giving this amount of coverage to our breed while allowing divergent opinions to be expressed.

            On balance, it is the kind of coverage that we have been unable to get in the past and The Celebration must continue its efforts communicating with the Tennessean and presenting all of the facts about our horse, not just the negative ones cited by our critics.




Dr. Chester Gipson

            Dr. Chester Gipson of the USDA has been here all week and has been a steadying force in the performance of the VMOs and the inspection process. He met with Celebration officials on three occasions this year, including a trip to Shelbyville to prepare for all possible contingencies in the inspection area. His advice and help has been invaluable to The Celebration.

            Dr. Gipson also released the following quote several days ago, “Trainers have responded well to changes made by the Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration to ensure compliance with the HPA. They have presented horses in good condition and compliant with the act.”

            Enough said!





            A number of people have asked how horses are selected for a workout in the large classes at the Celebration. After the class comes into the ring, the judges decide if they are going to have a workout. Each judge then selects eight horses and any horse that appears on three of the five cards is in the workout.

            The other horses return to the rail and any single judge can call additional entries for the workout. You can look for more small workouts in the professional championship classes this year as the Celebration continues its efforts to create more excitement.




Excusing Horses

            You have noticed that as the horses come into the ring the five judges gather together and observe their way of going. They occasionally excuse an entry for not exhibiting the proper image.

            In order for a horse to be excused, he must appear on two of the five cards marked by the judges as the horses enter. I commend the judges for doing an outstanding job in this area during the show and I can only imagine how very difficult it must be to make that decision.




Some Thoughts


            The reason dogs have so many friends is because they wag their tails and not their tongues.


            Better to be occasionally cheated than perpetually suspicious.


            Don’t judge folks by their relatives.

More Stories

  • Latest Issue September 24 18

    Read More
  • A Mighty Strong Finish

    Going into the coveted World Grand Championship class Saturday night, Sept. 1, the field was somewhat wide-open for contenders riding for the biggest prize of the show. The preliminaries had given several horses a chance to shine, a few surprises emerged, and the judges were spread out with their opinions throughout the week, as was the crowd, demonstrating stiff competition. Read More
  • Oxford, NC show rescheduled

    North Carolina's PPWHANC Show scheduled for Oxford,N.C. on September 15th has been rescheduled; the new show date is September 29th with the same class schedule as previously presented.  Read More
  • #900 never to return to Celebration competition

    At the 79th anniversary of the Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration, Bill Callaway and Gen’s Black Maverick rode into the ring on the last Saturday night to a roar of applause and cheering, and they exited the ring in the same fashion as they claimed the title of 2017 Tennessee Walking Horse World Grand Champion... Read More
  • Obituary – Pat Kirk

    Pat Kirk, 89, of Purdy, Missouri entered into eternal rest on Tuesday September 11, 2018 while at Cox South Hospital in Springfield, Missouri.  Read More
  • Obituary - Burl Dale

    The Report has recently learned of the sudden passing of Burl Dale on September 18, 2018. A Memorial Service will be held on Saturday, September 22 at 2:00 PM at Camp Yonahnoka in Linville, North Carolina. Read More
  • Allen honored with Evan Lloyd Adamson Humanitarian Award

    The Celebration and the Adamson family are proud to announce the 2018 winner of the Evan Lloyd Adamson award, Connie Allen, director of office operations for The Celebration. Read More
  • Stalls available for hurricane Florence evacuees

    The Celebration will make grounds and stalls available at NO CHARGE for horses evacuating the Carolina’s due to Hurricane Florence. To make arrangements to stall your horses please call 931-684-5915. Read More
  • Nelms becomes first to win all three model titles

    It didn’t take long for Robert Nelms to get noticed at this year’s Celebration. Right out of the gate he was busy leading his winning model entries into the Calsonic for both the morning classes of the show as well as the National Futurity, which serves as the first set of evening classes during Celebration week. Read More
  • Obituary – Noble Stout

    Noble Hooper Stout, Jr., 69, passed away Friday, September 7, 2018 at Cookeville Regional Medical Center. Noble was born in Jackson County on July 12, 1949 to the late Noble Hooper Stout and Mable Carter Stout... Read More