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Draft Horse Field Day

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Stumbling on things is what autumn rambles are all about.  Rolling through Adams County, Ohio, Tricia and I stumbled on the 9th Annual Old Fashion (their spelling) Draft Horse, Mule and Pony Field Days six miles south of Peebles, Ohio. It was October 2, so figure it's held each year around then. For information, you can call Dale Grooms 937-544-3123 or 937-587-3293.

On this magical Saturday, already overloading on fancy pumpkins and searing blue skies, the addition of muscular draft animals and antique harness and machinery was almost too much for us.

I would imagine that if you did one of those word profiles of this blog, the word "love" would come up an awful lot. I wish there were other good words. I adore draft animals, their shapes and heads and bottoms; their hooves and noses. So stumbling on this event was like rolling in catnip for me.

There were sweet little girls and their miniature pony and donkey. The brunette reminded me of Ramona the Pest, in a good way. She climbed fearlessly atop a gentle Percheron.

His mane was shaved, so she had nothing at all to hang onto, but I knew she wouldn't be dumped by this sweet giant.

Off they went, much to the consternation of their other horse friends.

Obviously, the other member of the black Percheron team had to go along or he'd be very unhappy. That's one of the things that charms me about horses. We can make them in any shape we want, but they're still herd animals at heart, and are happiest in a crowd.

Left behind, two draft ponies from the same farm (the black perhaps a cross between a pony and a Percheron)  set up a nickering, then full-blown whinnying from the chestnut. I believe it's a Haflinger, judging from its conformation and coloring.

You can see the Arab blood in its beautiful head. The Haflinger is an Austrian mountain breed, developed in 1874 by crossing the stocky native Tyrol pony with a half-Arab stallion. This gave a taller, finer look to the offspring, and the lovely head with the inward-pointing eartips and slightly dished face speaks of its hot Arab blood. Sorry, sweetie, you'll just have to wait until your friends come back. You'll be OK.

No, I won't!


Oh boy, I can't imagine a better festival to stumble upon! Was this and the magic pumpkin patch all on the same day? What a lovely pair the Percheron and Halflinger make. I love seeing the musculature when their manes are roached (it's interesting in a "so-that's -how-that-works" kind of way), but there's nothing like a big thick horsey mane to run your fingers through. Say, how many Percherons do you think your 80 acres would support, anyway? ;)

Now, that's my kind of festival! Loved the pictures. I like draft horses, too.

One of the loveliest horses I know is a Percheron/thoroughbred cross. Just gorgeous.

Horses can be so jealous. And vocal!

In Greenfield Village, we have some enormous percherons for plowing, and pulling the omnibus, and some absolutely gorgeous morgans that are ridden by presenters. I love to visit Firestone Farm to see the draft horses! You should visit! Then you could stop at the Environmental Interpretive Center on the UM-Dearborn campus and talk to the bird-banders at the Rouge River Bird Observatory.

This post reminds me of my childhood. What fun. You captured the thoughts and expressions of these animals perfectly.

I saw mule teams harvesting on Amish farms over the weekend in PA. Would have loved to photograph them.

My mom used to tell me her memories of running out to the fields when she was about 5 or 6, to tell her dad that supper was ready. He would then unhitch the two draft horses, put my mom up on one and they would go galloping to the barn. No saddle and she would just hold onto the mane. She said the horses were so wide both her legs stuck straight out to the sides.

There is just something about big animals. They have nothing to prove so I guess they can afford to be gentle and even tempered. My vet even mentioned that my cats were all the biggest he'd ever seen and they all have gentle dispositions.

What a beautiful post! I have two draft horse mares (paints, out of a Belgian mare) and they are just delightful. Thanks for sharing your discovery.

I've always loved draft horses.
Love gentle giants.

Fun! I love the big horses. I used to drive a carriage in downtown Seattle once, 'Slim' was a Percheron cross. very cool calm and smart horse. Rest his soul, wherever he is.
- The Equestrian Vagabond

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