by Jennifer Maack-Condren

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa - The Kirkwood Equestrian Center, on the campus of Kirkwood College, in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, was the setting for the Corn Belt Walking Horse Association Fall Classic, Oct. 29-31, 2009. One could not ask for a better facility in which to have a horse show. Show ring, warm-up arena and stalls are all located under one roof, climate-controlled for year around availability, and with the temperatures falling into the 30s, it was greatly appreciated. Troy Maples from Springfield, Mo., was called on to judge the 81-class event.

The four-performance event hosted just over 200 entries, which was consistent with the 2008 show. The conclusion of the event was, as usual, the Walking Horse Stake. The judge’s tie sent Brad Huffman and Coin’s Noelle to the winner’s circle, which gave this team back-to-back Corn Belt titles. They claimed the blue at the spring show as well.  Susie and Rick Graham of Bolivar, Mo., own this black mare.   

Leading the blue ribbon tally was the Jim Huffman Stables, taking 15 blue ribbons back to Ozark, Mo. Brad Huffman Stables, also from Ozark, earned a total of 11 blues, followed by Anne Hardin Stables with eight. The Ted and Glenda Nichols family and Sue Halvorson family each took home seven blues. Sandra Huffman took six blues home to Whispering Pines Stables in New Sharon, Iowa, and Don Bills Stables received five blues. 
With Stake night being held on Halloween, the costume class was larger than ever for those wishing to show their creative side. Kyndra Roberts turned into a perfect Minnie Mouse aboard Pusher’s Iron Heart, while Jennifer Condren and Susie Graham stamped out the “swine flu” with Armed And Proud and Macho’s Golden Coin. Show Chairman Jill Wait took advantage of the opportunity and donned a costume and mask and presented Into The Wind to entertain the spectators in this fun class. 

This is the fourth year the Corn Belt Walking Horse Association has held the final show for the Midwest circuit, and it definitely seems to be successful with an increase in entries and a very smooth-flowing show. This is certainly a show to place on your calendar for next spring as the association is already in the planning process for the spring show, which is generally held the first part of May and is likely to be held at a new location.

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