Avery County 4-H Saddle Club Wins Honors

— Written By Bobbie Willard and last updated by Arizona Gragg
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The Avery County 4-H Saddle Club brings home regional and state honors at the 2022 West District Horse Bowl Competition and the State 4-H Horse Bowl Competition.

After weeks of diligent studying and practice sessions, members of the newly formed Avery County 4-H Saddle Club traveled to the beautiful Tryon Equine Center located in Mill Spring, NC in February to compete in a regional 4-H Horse Bowl Competition. A Horse Bowl is very much like a ‘Quiz Bowl’ that test the participants knowledge on a wide range of topics related to horse matters… from diet, diseases, training techniques, breeds, etc. This competition included teams from approximately 19 different counties in NC. The Avery County 4-H Saddle Club finished 2nd overall with Ms. Avery Arnold also placing 2nd in Individual High Score. The team’s hard work paid off and qualified them to move on to compete in the State Horse Bowl Competition in Raleigh on March 12, 2022 at North Carolina State University. 

The State 4-H Horse Bowl was a double-elimination event and included a total of 33 teams from across the state. After a very long and tense competition, the Avery County 4-H Saddle Club youth earned 2nd place/Reserve Champion with Ms. Chloe Oaks taking the Individual High Score in the Junior Division.

The Avery County 4-H Saddle Club is a ‘branch-off’ of the Avery Feathers & Fur 4-H Livestock Club. Current Saddle Club members include: Annslee Arnold, Avery Arnold, (daughters of Rhonda and Danny Arnold of Elk Park), Betsy Daniels, (daughter of Jimessa & Perry Daniels of Newland), and Chloe Oaks, (daughter of Amy & Nathan Oaks of Newland). 

Ms. Michelle South, Extension Agent-Livestock for Avery and Mitchell Counties is the acting coach for the team. The Avery County 4-H Saddle Club now have their sights set on the upcoming 4-H Qualifying Horse Show that will take place the end of April in Fletcher, NC.

If horses or livestock in general are your passion or you would like to learn more about local 4-H programming in Avery County, please contact the Avery County Cooperative Extension Center at (828)733-8270.