Going to our first show!

Scot123

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Hi! I was considering putting this in the Competition forum, but that is far too grand a name for what we're thinking of doing!

We have a wee shetland pony and this summer would like to try and go to a show. We've never been before (we only got our first pony a couple of years ago). The kids are desperate to take him along but we are clueless...

We think he's gorgeous but he's probably not the most handsome shetland (and he's not registered) so I think in-hand would be out.

The kids would love to try a leadrein class. Do you think that's the most suitable? My daughter's 8 and only been riding a few months so I'm worried she'd be surrounded by tiny tots. Would that matter? Should we try and get her able to tooter round by herself and go into a first-ridden and leave the lead rein my 4 year old?

Also - I presume the kids have to have the fancy jackets etc, but what about the person (ie me!) leading them round!

I am scared of turning up as the clueless poor relation and us looking like a bunch of hobos - please help!!
 

Scot123

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Yes, would love to. It's just that any shows are a very long way from where we live and I work most weekends so hoping to get a few insiders tips instead!!
 

Woolly Hat n Wellies

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A lot of local level riding club shows have fun classes for smaller children. Just looking at a schedule for one near me now, I see bonny pony, child handler, fancy dress, pony with the cuddliest bottom, family friend, lead rein handy pony and lead rein gymkhanas as well as the usual first ridden, lead rein equitation, m&m small breeds, veteran pony (depending on how old yours is) and things like that. The fun classes also don't require full show dress, just a hat, suitable footwear and long sleeves. Riding club show schedules are usually online, so you could have a look at what the ones near you offer, and go along to do some fun classes and have the experience before worrying about all the kit. A lot of the fun classes give kids a go at handling the pony themselves, but no one minds too much if mum helps out, whereas that wouldn't be ok in, say, child handler.
 

Scot123

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Hi - thank you! That sounds just our sort of show!! I'm busy trying to find any within feasible distance for us. Hopefully will come up with something and we'll go along and see what happens. Thanks!
 

Peregrine Falcon

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Whereabouts are you? We are very lucky that we have a number of local shows near us that have suitable classes for kids. You can pick up second hand stuff from ebay, I've got my son's jackets and jods from there. School shirts are perfect and again ties you can get from ebay or local tack shops.

You see all standards of riding in the lead rein here, the professional outfits and the happy kids having fun on their hairy ponies. It really doesn't matter at the end of the daywhat happens if the child has fun and enjoys themselves isn't that what it is all about?

At local level I've also been in the ring in the child handler class when my son was 4 as ponies can be unpredictable and it wasn't his pony I was concerned about but others in the ring. I've been told not to go in now as he can do it all on his own!
 

Scot123

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Hi - sorry for the delay in thanking you for your reply - my computer locked me out for a few days... we're over in Cowal so nothing that I can find close by that doesn't at least involve a ferry trip. You're so lucky! I really wish we were somewhere with a pony club-type scene, it would be such fun. Yes, I thought ebay might be a good starting point, pick up a few bits without spending a fortune to get us going. Thanks. x
 
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