Click here to go back to the main Newsletter page

2007 ORCSA Queen Report

2007 ORCSA Queen Report

Being the ORCSA Youth Representative for 2007 has been a wonderful opportunity and an amazing learning experience for me throughout this year. I attended six county fairs, including Madison County, Ottawa, Knox, Seneca, Wayne, and Ashland Counties. The Wayne, Sandusky, and Lorain County shows were all either canceled or rescheduled due to inclement weather. I also attended two days' worth of the Ohio State Clyde/Shire halter and hitch shows, and in total covered around 745 miles. Despite all this, I feel as though I have only scratched the surface of all that Ohio Draft Horse shows have to offer.

It is an understatement to say that my eyes were opened through this duty. I learned so much about people, horses, shows, and also the general public. The Northern Ohio Draft Pony Association Queen, Jackie, attended nearly all the shows I did, and we quickly became friends. I also met the National Clydesdale Queen, Hannah, at the Governor's Cup (wow!). We all learned what it means to be a responsible representative of such an association, and we also met the Queens of other breed associations, some of which were a pretty good example of how not to act when are representing an important group. I talked to many horse owners, show persons, teamsters, ringmasters, and judges, all of which were more than happy to explain just about anything I wanted to know. Observing the different techniques and tactics of showing has got me brimming with knowledge and ideas. On a personal note, this experience turned out to be one of the best of my life, despite the work of handing up ribbons, clambering on wagons, and getting gallons of dust in my eyes.

In terms of my representation of the group, I feel that I have done a very good job, and perhaps even gone above and beyond expectations in some aspects. For starters, it is amazing what a conversation starter walking around fairgrounds in a sash and tiara is! Many times, I found myself answering all sorts of questions that the people at the shows had for me, from the breeds the association recognizes, to showing, to keeping Draft Horses in general. What was the best though were the curious people of all ages running up to me and simply asking "What is ORCSA?". After I rattled off the list, all inevitably wanted to know what the group was all about, which is exactly what being a Youth Representative is all about. I explained to the little girls who wanted to know why I was a princess that I was telling people about the big horses with the furry feet that are so special to me. I told adults that ORCSA was one of the associations in the area that was working to promote the rarely seen Clyde and Shire breeds. I even found myself talking all about our all-around magnificent horses to other horse people, many of which didn't have much of an idea about anything about those particular breeds. Going into this, I decided that if, by the end of all this, I had taught one person about what ORCSA stood for and our breeds I had done my job. I feel that I have done my job many, many times over, I most certainly would jump at the chance to partake in such a fulfilling and worthwhile opportunity again.

Nicole Mitchell