Aug 13, 2019

Harkin Family to Continue the MeadowCreek Park Legacy

By Jessica Duffy - USEA Staff
Cosmo Flores-Kinney/Horse Show Paparazzi Photo.

The MeadowCreek Park Horse Trials was founded on 100 acres outside of Kosse, Texas by Sam and Jodye Lindsey in 1991. With the help of prominent Area V eventer Alyce Hinkle, the Lindseys turned MeadowCreek Park into a premiere eventing venue and hosted their first horse trials at the park in 1992. After 20 successful years of running the MeadowCreek Park Horse Trials, they passed the baton to Robbie and Brad Peterson.

Robbie Peterson rechristened the MeadowCreek Park Horse Trials as “The Spring Social Event” and “The Fall Social Event” to encompass on the social aspects of the eventing community, and the event continued to run successfully under her organization. After seven years, the Petersons are passing the torch to Angelique, Shawn, and their daughter Kaitlyn Harkin, who will continue the legacy of MeadowCreek Park.

“My husband and I had been talking about wanting to get land again,” explained Angelique. “I mentioned it to a trainer friend of mine who said that Robbie was looking to transition out. Our family had become familiar with MeadowCreek Park while Kailtyn was on the Texas A&M Eventing Team. We started talking, I convinced my husband – I didn’t think he would go for it. He was excited about the opportunity to have the land and not have to run cows, so we started the process.”

“When you find people who approach you because they want to do it, are passionate about it, and they understand the sport well enough to know what they’re getting into, it would have been silly for me to not take advantage of an opportunity that seemed like such a perfect situation,” said Robbie. “[The Harkins and I] have been working behind the scenes for a long time just because we both felt like it was such a perfect fit and we were going to do whatever it took to make it happen. There was a lot of team effort with myself and the Harkins all pulling on the same end of the rope to get to a place where everything kept lining up for success. We were all very committed to finding a way to make it work.”

Robbie and the Harkins are continuing that team effort to ensure a smooth transition. “Nobody wants to take over running a venue cold turkey, so I’m staying on staff as show manager and co-organizer for the September Horse Trials,” Robbie explained. “I want to give them every opportunity to pick up in 2020 feeling like they’ve had all the training they can possibly get and jump in head first and go for it. They’re really enthusiastic and energetic about it and I really think they’re going make some great changes and do some good things with it.”

Angelique explained that she and Shawn have already begun working on improvements since closing on the property on June 1. “It needs a little TLC but we’re up to the challenge. Luckily, my husband knows how to build things! He’s already resurfaced five of the cross-country jumps and we’re in the process of putting some bridges on the property. We’re just really excited to have the opportunity.”

“We absolutely want to continue the USEA horse trials, so we’re in the process of doing the transition paperwork now to transfer those over to us so we keep the dates, keep the numbers, and keep the history because It will be 30 years of running programs at MeadowCreek in the next couple of years,” Angelique continued. “In addition, we’re working with Carsten Meyer on the cross-country course, on the footing, and upgrading the jumps so we’re able to change something and not always have it be the same course for the riders. We also have plans for improvements to the dressage and jumping arenas – fencing them in and focusing on the footing."

Angelique is also enthusiastic about plans for new programs at MeadowCreek. One such plan in the works is “Jumps and Brunch,” where, on certain open schooling weekends, they will bring in a course designer to set a show jumping course and host a brunch on Sunday. “We’re also looking to bring in clinicians once or twice a year, because I know there’s definitely a need for that in Central Texas.”

“It’s important for people to know that we’re looking to continue MeadowCreek’s history and the love of the sport,” she said. “To continue to offer a safe, nice, secure place for people to come. Our family is big on collaboration and feedback, so we’re open to suggestions, feedback, and great ideas. My philosophy is that it doesn’t matter whose idea it is as long as it’s the best idea. We want people to know that we have an open-door policy and we want the feedback and to know your ideas and if there are improvements to be made or things we can do differently or better. That’s the stuff we need to know because that’s the only way we’re going to continue to improve and raise the bar.”

MeadowCreek Park is accepting entries for The Fall Social Event, taking place September 7-8, 2019, until August 20. Please note that, due to an outbreak of Vesicular Stomatitis in the area, health certificates will be required for all horses attending The Fall Social Event.

May 13, 2021 Sponsor

FITS Returns to Sponsor AEC, ATC, Intercollegiate, and Classic Series

The United States Eventing Association (USEA) is thrilled to welcome back longtime sponsor, FITS Riding, Ltd. for 2021. They are returning as a Bronze Level Sponsor of the 2021 USEA American Eventing Championships presented by Nutrena Feeds, a Contributing Level Sponsor of the 2021 USEA Adult Team Championships, a Contributing Level Sponsor of the 2021 USEA Classic Series, and a Contributing Level Sponsor of the 2021 USEA Intercollegiate Eventing Championships. As a sponsor of these USEA programs, FITS Riding will generously provide gift certificates as prizes for the Intercollegiate championship competitors, AEC and ATC competitors, and Classic Series winners.

May 13, 2021 Classic Series

Memories from the Vet Box with Kerry Millikin

“I wouldn’t trade it for anything, it was an amazing experience.” Twenty-five years ago, Kerry Millikin and her off-the-track Thoroughbred gelding, Out and About (who was only 8 years old at the time) won the individual Olympic bronze medal at the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games, making her one of five females to have earned an individual Olympic medal for the U.S.

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Maryland 5 Star at Fair Hill Announces $300,000 Prize Money for Inaugural Event

The Fair Hill Organizing Committee (FHOC), an affiliate of the Sport and Entertainment Corporation of Maryland (The Sport Corp.), today announced athletes and horses in the inaugural Maryland 5 Star at Fair Hill (CCI5*-L) will be competing for $300,000 in prize money. Additionally, the US Equestrian Federation (USEF) Eventing National Championship (CCI3*-L), running in conjunction with the 5 Star, will award $25,000 in prize money. Both events, as well as the United States Eventing Association (USEA) Young Event Horse East Coast Championships, will take place this October 14-17 at the new Fair Hill Special Event Zone in Cecil County, Maryland.

May 12, 2021 Education

Pre-Purchase Examination 101: With Dr. Shauna Spurlock

You’ve seen a horse you like. You’ve ridden it; you love it. The money’s right; you’ve agreed to buy it. What happens next?

Pre-purchase veterinary examinations are one of those topics that a roomful of horsey people could discuss - and argue amongst themselves about - for hours. For the amateur rider, that can be confusing and slightly alarming.

So, let’s simplify it. What is a pre-purchase examination, why are they done, and what should you expect?

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