dancing horses

dancing horses

Friday, August 14, 2020

How to Prepare to Host a Clinic

 I am sure that you all remember that I posted I was going to partner with a near by barn owner to host a clinic in June. Of course, due to all things COVID, that did not happen. But we did manage to find a weekend that worked for everyone at a later date- August 14-16. This is my first time actually organizing something like this on my own property. While it's been fairly low-key, I did learn a number of things that I'd thought I'd share. 

DO: Listen to your husband when he suggests you should take the week off before in order to prepare. Even if you think you're just humouring him and you might as well use up your vacation. There is more to do than you think. 

DON'T:  Tell him that you're humouring him unless you want the odd  remark when you're working really hard to get ready and it's over 100 degrees outside. 

DO: Decide to weed whack the ring early in the week. 

DON'T: assume that you have enough twine in the weedwhacker. You don't. But do show it to your husband who will miraculously have twine and know to re-wind it. 

Husqvarna battery weed whacker. this thing is amazing. 

DO: Brush the dog before engaging in any house cleaning. Do this outside because it's hot and you will have enough fur to actually knit yourself a new dog (if you want to spin it into yarn but you won't want to do that. Trust me). 

DON'T: Assume that brushing the dog will make a difference. It won't. As soon as said dog comes inside and scratches an itch your floor will be covered in fur again. But at least you know that you tried and that's something. 

DO: Spend the better part of a day taking everything out of your tack room and cleaning it. It will look really good and lift your spirits. 

DON'T: Walk your mare over the bridge outside your ring because she will will stung by a wasp on her fetlock and it will swell making you panic (she's fine). 

DO: Rope your husband into helping you at dusk to flip over the bridge while you spray wasp killer on everything. (normally I avoid killing any bugs around here but I just can't have them that close to the ring and taking over my bridge). 

Optional: As you are spraying all the freaking nests and egg (there must have been a dozen!) say "hello I am Teresa Alexander-Arab, you attacked my mare, prepare to die." If you do say it make sure you use a terrible spanish accent. You may also want to use your own name- that's up to you. 

I was shocked- there was one largish nest and number of
smaller egg nests. Ugh. I think they were paper wasps

DO: Make sure you bake on the hottest day of the summer. Not that you couldn't buy the blueberry muffins or chocolate cupcakes (with salted caramel frosting) but that seems like cheating. 

DON'T: Obsess over the weather forecast. You can't control it. Oh who am I kidding? Go ahead, just know it's futile. 

DO: Find a shirt that will match your saddle pad and bonnet perfectly and order it online. Be surprised that it comes on time and that it actually fits. 

That's all the advice I have for now. Oh wait, one more thing: 

DO: Get really excited because you are going to be having a ton of fun with your friends. Also remember to appreciate your husband who agreed to do all the cooking for the weekend. 

stay tuned for updates! 


  1. This is exciting!!! (Not the wasps. Well. They ARE exciting, but not in the good way.) Can't wait to hear how it all goes!

  2. i gotta be honest, i really expected more alcohol in there LOL!

    for real, tho, good for you! i've toyed with trying to organize clinics before but it always just seems like so much work and fairly high financial risk too, depending on the crowd.... also, those wasps gave me ptsd omg. they nest in the judge's booth of our dressage ring and i straight up committed war crimes and mass genocide on them the other night before a schooling show so that the poor judge and scribe wouldn't be swarmed....

    1. Oh alcohol was implied. I mean, did I even need to write that? :D

  3. Excellent advice!! ;-) Too bad about the stupid jerk wasps. I've taken down two yuuuggge paper wasp nests at the barn this summer alrady. (jerks).

    Looking forward to an update on how it all went!

    1. They are so mean. I've had great luck with hanging those fake nests to discourage them.

  4. That's a lot of work! Good for you! I Look forward to hearing all about it. I live in Washington state, which has been in some form of lock down since March, no end in sight. Nothing horsey is going on here, and any and all sports are taking place across the border in Idaho. Add to that, triple digit heat--this is my least horsey year ever. Now, they're saying we might have to go back to the original lockdown in October--our most glorious month for riding--unless we wear masks--but we are wearing masks. Our county has at least 93% compliance. I'm very frustrated, but happy to hear you, and others, are finding a way to still function.

    1. It must be so frustrating. Our province has only 4 new cases in the past two weeks and those were related to travel so we're in a good place.

  5. We hosted a couple clinics when we were at Aspen Meadows. They are A LOT of work! You must be exhausted.


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