(February 15, 2012 - Shelbyville, Tenn.) – The Unified Horse Show Development Program (UHDP), an arm of the Foundation for the Advancement and Support of the Tennessee Walking Show Horse (FAST), is pleased to announce they have awarded the Tennessee Walking Horses of Minnesota a grant to assist with the Summer Nights Walking Horse Show. The show will be held July 6-7, 2012, in Mason City, Iowa.

“We are pleased to support this show that will be held in Mason City, Iowa. It’s important that we assist in promoting the Tennessee Walking Horse in every part of the country,” said UHDP Chair Diana McMurtrey. Previously this year, UHDP announced a grant to help with a horse show in Mississippi.

The Summer Nights Walking Horse Show will be affiliated with Heart of America HIO and Tennessee Walking Horses of Minnesota. This is the second year for the Summer Nights show and it will be managed by Cindy Endres. The Summer Nights show will feature classes for all disciplines of the Tennessee Walking Show Horse.

The UHDP program was started less than one year ago and the Summer Nights show marks the fifth horse show supported by UHDP. “Horse show development and preservation is a key concern in the industry and FAST and UHDP are doing what they can to assist with this endeavor. Just as with any program such as horse show development, we need donations and fundraising to continue to help horse shows across the country,” concluded McMurtrey.

The UHDP was formed to assist new horse show development as well as help existing shows that need financial aid. The group will also seek to revitalize previous Walking Horse venues and help with walking horse events across the nation. The UHDP will focus its aid to horse shows primarily outside of the states of Tennessee and Kentucky. Horse events and shows will have to apply to the UHDP for financial aid. Applications can be found at www.fastwalkingshowhorse.org.

The program also includes a mentoring program. UHDP will offer mentoring services to groups that request help with organizing their shows and putting together events. The UHDP and FAST proudly promote all show disciplines of the Tennessee Walking Horse.