The 55th Annual Dixon Horse Show was Oct. 9 at the Dixon Saddle Club in Dixon, Mo. This show had been previously scheduled in July but was rained out. Mother Nature was evident in October as well with Dixon receiving over an inch of rain the day before the show. Despite the efforts of Saddle Club member Bill Withers, the ring remained wet and “challenging.” Beautiful trophies are tradition in Dixon, along with many memorial and challenge trophies from past members and family of the Saddle Club. A total of 95 entries made the gate call, including both Walking Horses and Missouri Fox Trotters.

Tom Burton of Strafford, Mo., was judge for the Walking Horse classes while Steve Rees was announcer. A show is always more enjoyable with a good organist, and Tina Potts has done a great job this season at many shows. Farrier Jim Queen was on hand in the event of any cast shoes.

Steve Skopec started off the night for the Walking Horses winning a blue in the Open Model class with Toppin High Cotton. The Texas Lexus and Lynn Womack received the red for 4-J Land & Cattle Co. Summer Snow and Josh Richardson earned the top spot in the Two-Year-Old Open class for Ron Boyer and Karen McKinnis from the Huffman Family Stables banner. Jim Huffman and Spun Gold’s Cinderella made the reserve ride for Robert Willis.

Peppermint Ice and Virginia Counts proved the footing was not a problem for this duo as they claimed the win in the Three-Year-Old Amateur class under the direction of Mike Maack. Generator’s Magic Dancer and Kris York were second for Kris and Kay York. Curt Caldwell and A Mark’s Dynamite received the high mark in the Three-Year-Old Open class for McKnight and Majors. Jerry Manes and Major Production were reserve for Gene Goff.

JFK’s Fancy Lady Leslie and Jay Laughlin earned their first of two blues in the Park Pleasure Two-Gait class for 4-J Land & Cattle Co. This flashy gray mare has proven herself as a dominant force in Park Pleasure classes under Laughlin’s direction. Gen’s Lady Fair and Betty Laughlin didn’t make it easy for her son to win by riding hard for the reserve spot, also for 4-J Land & Cattle Co.

It certainly is good to see Darlene Swaringim back in the saddle following a riding accident earlier in the show season. Swaringim has fallen right back into the groove of blue ribbon rides. Power of the Dark and Swaringim earned the blue in the Amateur Show Pleasure Specialty class under the direction of Don Bills. Favorite’s Sassy Sunday and Lisa McWilliams were reserve for Matt & Lisa McWilliams under the Caldwell Stables training. Another powerful team under Caldwell’s direction is Ace’s Zorro and Kelsi York. York and Zorro earned the crowd’s approval as well as the judges to win the Juvenile Specialty 17 and Under class. A large fan club from Crocker was on hand to cheer York to the win, none louder however than Mom and Dad, Kris and Kay York. Coin’s Smooth Operator and Brad Nichols rode to the reserve spot for Mrs. Glen Campbell.

JFK’s Fancy Lady Leslie and Laughlin earned their second blue in the Three-Year-Old and Under Park Pleasure class, this time inching out brother Jim Laughlin and Silver Dollar Exclusive, both owned by 4-J Land & Cattle Co. Mike Maack and Severe Storm Warning walked their way to the winners circle in the Open Specialty class for Jack Buddemeyer. The natural ability of big black stallion couldn’t be disguised by the conditions of the track. Generator’s Lot of Push and Jim Huffman were reserve for Sarah Mitch.

Patty Ayers made the win in the Country Pleasure class look effortless with her ride on American Revolution. I don’t know if Ayer’s was more excited about her win or her granddaughter, Cheyenne Jones’s second-place ribbon on She’s High Tech in the largest class of the night. Both entries are owned by Stephen Ayers.

With dampness, fog and very brisk temperatures setting in, the Amateur Specialty class entered the ring to get everybody to the rail and moving to warm up. Matt McWilliams and Georgia’s Gray Sky added another credit to their resume with the win in this class. This duo is prepared by Caldwell. Doc’s Heartbeat and Carroll Counts made the reserve ride for Carroll and Virginia Counts, under the direction of Mike Maack Stables.

Diamonds & Cash and Richard Mitch walked away with the blue in the Open Amateur class for Richard and Sarah Mitch. This duo has continued to get stronger all season long under the direction of Jim Huffman. Spirited Rendezvous and Bill Branham made the good show to receive the reserve tie. Due to the condition of the track, the judge waived the canter in this class. JFK’s Royal Dreamer and Lynn Womack earned the blue in the Lite-shod Two-Gait class for 4-J Land & Cattle Co. Magic Bomb H. and Jerry Manes were reserve for Charles Hightower.

The gate call was for the Open Class and once again Curt Caldwell and Jubilee’s Image delivered a flawless performance for Matt and Lisa McWilliams. This was the third consecutive win for this duo, retiring the Wither’s Memorial Challenge trophy. Shadow of Skywatch and Mike Maack were reserve for Steve Skopec.

The threat of rain held off and members of the Dixon Saddle Club were very relieved to get this show completed without any further delays.