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Horseback Riding Precision Group

Photo Credit: Lorrie Gray

The Westernaires Annual Show was held from October 29-30, 2016 at the Denver National Western Events Center. The Westernaires is a group of young, Jefferson County, horse riders ages 9-19. The annual show is one of the highlights of the year where they showcase their training in horse riding and related skills.

I interviewed Lorrie Gray who is 16 years old and goes to Dakota Ridge High School. She has two dogs. She used to do acting and plays the flute. In the Westernaires her level is the red division. The red division is the top level, and they get to perform in shows. She has a few parts in the show. Her horse is named Mona.

Lorrie joined the Westernaires in 2009 and has had her horse since that time. Lorrie has a great personality and is very descriptive and passionate when talking about the Westernaires. She practices once a week on Saturdays.

The show I attended was called “Horsecapades” and included themes around the calvary, the Native Americans, and the pioneers.

The Westernaires have different groups of riders in the program, all of whom are from Jefferson County. Some of the groups that we saw in the show and the pre-show included:  Crimson Rangers (Lorrie is part of this group), the Royal Rangers, the Freedom Riders, the Calvary, and the White Division Cavalcade (which did pyramid formations on top of the horses!).

There was a pre-show which included hoedowners, fire batons, pioneers, and Indian dancers. The show itself was kicked off with a grand entry (where the stadium was filled with tons of horses and flags and colors). We also got to see chariots, bullwhip cracking, rope twirling (including one girl that twirled a 60 foot rope!), riders going through and over fire, and a show on how the West was won. Towards the end they brought on the alumni which was also cool to see.

The show was very fun. As always, when working with live animals, things don’t always go as expected, like when a rider was riding standing up on two horses and going through a fire hoop, and one of the horses got skiddish and stopped while the other went through. This caused the rider to fall, but thankfully, he did not get hurt! However, I was impressed at how well all of the horses were participating and doing what they should. The announcer was also very funny and used a lot of puns.

I recommend this show for all ages as it is intriguing and fun to watch. I look forward to attending next year.

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