Oct 18, 2017

USEA Convention Track Preview: Events

By Jessica Duffy - USEA Staff
USEA Senior Director of Competitions, Sharon Gallagher, leading a previous Event Calendar Planning Workshop. USEA/Shelby Allen Photo.

The 2017 United States Eventing Association (USEA) Annual Meeting and Convention at the Westin Long Beach Hotel in Long Beach, Calif., December 6-10, is less than two months away, and we could not be more excited about all the different topics and speakers that are lined up to present.

The focus of this year’s convention is on event organizers, but our schedule will offer three different tracks that attendees can choose from: “Events,” Eventers,” and “Equine.” Each track will feature a variety of presentations and forums focused around a common theme to educate and engage members.

The “Events” track will cater to event organizers, competitors, and volunteers – essentially, anyone who attends or works at events! Speakers will be presenting on numerous different topics pertaining to events, including volunteers, event funding, online entries, and more. There are also open forums specifically created for the USEA Classic Series, organizers, course designers and builders, amateur and adult riders, and eventing affiliates. Read on to learn more about the different presentations:

Event Calendar Planning Workshop
Thursday, December 7, 12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m.

Have you ever wondered how the eventing calendar is constructed each year? If so, you won't want to miss the Event Calendar Planning Workshop! All are welcome to sit in on this dynamic planning session.

Get FREE Tax Money for your Event!
Thursday, December 7, 3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Speaker: Rob Burk

Throughout the United States, many states, counties, and municipalities offer funding to promote and grow business in their community. Notably, they like to attract sporting events both large and small. Eventing competitions attract out-of-area visitors to hotels, restaurants, shops, gas stations, etc. which in turn keeps funds flowing into local economies. Most elected leaders know this. Rob Burk will present information about several programs that eventing competitions have tapped into to obtain free money. For example, have you heard about Hotel and Occupancy Taxes (aka HOT funds)? How about obtaining bonds for public facilities? There may be funds available for your private or public facility that you aren’t aware of. Attendees will also be invited to present their own experiences and help fellow organizers and competition sites flourish.

Volunteer Incentive Program
Friday, December 8, 10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
Speakers: Gena Cindric & Nick Hinze

Maryland Horse Trials Volunteer Coordinator Gena Cindric and developer of EventingVolunteers.com Nick Hinze will provide an update on all the accomplishments of the Volunteer Incentive Program in 2017 and talk about the goals for 2018. Topics will include new features added to EventingVolunteers.com in 2017 and proposed new features for 2018. The committee will also talk about the ongoing volunteer training video project and new ways to provide more incentives for volunteers. This forum will also provide the opportunity for the audience to provide feedback on the various projects to help guide their development.

Classic Three-Day Open Forum
Friday, December 8, 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Moderator: Gretchen Butts

Come to the Classic Three-Day Open Forum, hosted by Waredaca’s Event Organizer and chair of the USEA Classic Three-Day Task Force, Gretchen Butts, to hear why this popular 'educational' competition is so successful and find out why a classic three-day should be on your 2018 event schedule!

Taking Eventing to the Next Level
Friday, December 8, 12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m.
Speakers: Mary Coldren & Jonathan Elliott

Description coming soon!

Plans for the Fair Hill CCI4*
Friday, December 8, 1:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Speaker: Ann Haller

Description coming soon!

ABCs of Entering a Horse Trial and Your First FEI Event
Friday, December 8, 2:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Speakers: Mary Coldren & Christina Gray

Learn from event secretaries, Mary Coldren and Christina Gray, about entering events. Topics in this open forum-type session will include how you become entered in an event, what the closing date means, how to select the correct division preference, what make an entry complete, how to make a change to an entry, how to get a refund, and what you need to enter your first FEI event?

Organizers’ Open Forum
Friday, December 8, 3:30 p.m. – 4:30 pm.
Moderator: Jonathan Elliott

Jonathan Elliott of Aspen Farms Horse Trials in Yelm, Washington and the Chair of the USEA Organizers' Committee, will host the Organizers’ Open Forum to inform and discuss all issues big and small facing organizers.

Course Designers/Builders Open Forum
Friday, December 8, 5:00 pm. – 6:00 p.m.
Speakers: Tremaine Cooper & Morgan Rowsell

Bring all of your course designing and building questions to the Course Designers/Builders Open Forum to have them answered by the top professionals currently designing and building courses. This seminar will focus on recent developments in frangible technology as well as other key factors relating to the design and building of cross-country courses. Discussion will be led by co-chairs of the Course Designers/Builders Committee, Tremaine Cooper and Morgan Rowsell.

Amateur & Adult Rider Open Forum
Saturday, December 9, 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
Moderators: Dawn Robbins & Donna Bottner

Adult Rider Committee Co-Chairs Dawn Robbins and Donna Bottner will host the Amateur & Adult Rider Open Forum. This open forum will be much like last year's Town Hall Forum, except focusing on amateur issues. Several Adult Rider coordinators will be discussing their current activities and ideas for improving the sport for the adult rider and the amateur. For the first hour, speakers will touch on amateur issues, each presenting a topic for 5-10 minutes, including topics such as having more amateur divisions, cross-country courses and difficulty, getting new amateurs into the sport, the definition of amateur, and keeping down the costs of eventing. Then we will open the floor to discussion for the second hour. We will try to come up with action items out of this forum. Please attend, bring your questions, concerns, and solutions. We want to hear from you!

Eventing Affiliates Open Forum
Saturday, December 9, 10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
Moderator: Janet Gunn

The USEA Affiliates (Combined Training Associations, Eventing Associations, etc.) are the grass roots of eventing – it is where we find the people who are just starting eventing and who compete at the unrecognized level, as well riders who have been competing at USEA recognized events for decades. Come to the Eventing Affiliates Open Forum and share ideas about how to attract and retain members, provide fun and educational activities, and safely introduce people to eventing. Also, share your ideas about how USEA can provide useful benefits to the Affiliates.

Organizers & Secretaries: Best Practices
Saturday, December 9, 4:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Speaker: Dawn Benson

Dawn Benson will cover best practices for organizers and secretaries on a number of topics ranging from managing show costs, using Xentry, handling late entries, cutting travel for officials, equipment contracts, and maintenance and volunteer coordination.

The full Convention schedule including presentations for all tracks can be viewed here.

Click here for more information about Convention highlights that you won’t want to miss.

Convention Registration is now open and available to active USEA members. To register, log into your Online Services account or fill out the registration form. The cutoff date for registration is November 15, so be sure to register soon!

Book your hotel room at the Westin Long Beach Hotel using the USEA room block rate through this link or by calling (888)-627-8403.

Click here for things to do in Long Beach. You can also check out places to dine, see, and shop at a discount with your USEA Convention badge by clicking here.

About the USEA Annual Meeting and Convention

The USEA Annual Meeting and Convention takes place each December and brings together a large group of dedicated USEA members and supporters to discuss, learn, and enjoy being surrounded by eventing enthusiasts. The 2017 Annual Meeting and Convention will take place at the Westin Long Beach Hotel in Long Beach, Calif. December 6-10, 2017.

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