Dear Members,

Finally Covid seems to be lifting, things are opening, Spring has sprung, and shows are really happening!

In this issue find out why the April 4/16-4-18 GSVRHA show is now the Running T Ranch Roundup and meet the new “Boss Mare.” Read about the recent Youth Schooling Show and enjoy pictures of the competitors. Also, learn about the new WSVRHA rules and the new look for the Intermediate Division. Read about changes on the GS board; two members are retiring, two new joining. GS members have well represented our club in several AQHA VRH events, including the recent QHEAC show, and there are pictures to prove it.

Discover what you can do to change the current Class A licensing requirements. And what would the newsletter be without a “Quote of the Month.”

This newsletter is for you; please send your comments, ideas, pictures, etc. to

Let’s go show our horses!

Dawn Poston, Editor

Youth Schooling Show a Big Success!

Joint GSVRHA and CVT&SC Event

Twenty-six youth and 25 volunteers gathered at the Carmel Valley Trail Saddle Club March 27 for a day full of VRH classes and competition. Only two of the riders had previously shown. That means 24 youth got a true horse show experience for the first time. Every effort was made to make the Schooling Show run like a sanctioned Versatility Show-from the Rider’s Meeting in the morning to the Award’s Ceremony at the end of the day.

Joy Aldrich, Harper & Claire Stephens

Danielle Garneri

Elizabeth Landoli

Christian Scanlan

Kendall Petit

Those who volunteered witnessed the kiddos learning, growing, and experiencing sheer joy.. The whole day can be summed up in the words of one little girl who very shyly told a volunteer, “this was the very best day of my whole life.” Youth are the future of our sport and the volunteers provided encouragement and opportunity to a great group of young people in pursuit of our sport. If you’d like to be a part of the next youth event, please contact a board member. We’d love to have you and guarantee you’ll have a good time.

New WSVRHA Rules

The 2021 Rule Book is Published!

The 2021 WSVRHA Rule Book and Score Sheets are updated and published! Go to and click on “Resources.” Anything underlined is a new rule. Here is a summary:

  • New eligibility statements for Novice and Intermediate
  • New “disturbing the herd” penalty for cutting
  • New description and the formal beginning of Limited Open (see article later in newsletter for full description)
  • New equipment rules for Novice (older horses may be ridden two handed with a snaffle or hackamore)

Board Changes

Change is Difficult/Change is Good

Jennifer Harden and Kim Schnittger have both served GSVRHA as board members for many years with distinction and dedication. After much thought, they have decided to retire from the board and, in their words, “make room for new blood.” Their hard work and insight will be deeply missed. Words cannot express our appreciation for their contributions to our amazing club. When you see Jennifer (on her great horse JoJo) and Kim (who is between horses currently) at the shows, please thank them for their years of service.

Kim Schnittger and Utah

Jennifer Harden and Sanjo Lights (aka JoJo)

Marty and Whiskeys Smartshine (aka Shine)

Vanessa Lawrence and Step To The Light (aka Ryker)

We are very happy to announce that Marty Raynor of Woodside and Vanessa Lawrence of Paso Robles will be joining the board this month. Both are skilled horsewomen, have strong organizational skills, and possess a love for Versatility. Marty shows her great little horse Whiskeys Smartshiner (Shine) and is Barn and Facilities Manager at the National Center for Equine Facilitated Therapy in Woodside. Vanessa while working full time as a Sales Specialist for Cool-Pak, also owns/operates Paso Robles Pastures, is hostess to one of our GS shows, and breeds wonderful horses by her fabulous stallion “Step To The Light.” Oh, and she is also a fierce cow horse/VRH competitor. When you see them at that shows be sure to welcome them to the board.

Running T Round Up

Welcome Stephanie Lewis

Same time, same venue, same wonderful show-now under new management. What was the Sparrowk Livestock Show is now the Running T Round Up. Meet Jennifer Lewis the new producer of that popular show, and her horse Missin My Cowboy (aka Kali). Besides being a show manager, Stephanie and her husband Tim run cattle, have a cattle livestock transportation business and are the parents of James, Jack and Victoria.

Entries are open ( under “Calendar and Show Info”) and will likely fill quickly. Don’t miss out on the fun, enter now!

Stephanie and her horse Missin My Cowboy (aka Kali) at the recent QHEAC Show in Corning


Golden State Well Represented

The popular AQHA show in Corning had a good turnout for the VRH. The weather went from wet, to gorgeous, to cold, to gorgeous. Despite the iffy days, it was a good show and everyone had a great time. If you haven’t attended one of the QHEAC shows, most participants would recommend that you give them a try.

Bev Sparrowk, Amy Dore and Stretchy

Mary Nelson and Eddy, Chris Bugenig and Thai

Ella Young, Amy Dore, Anne Griffin, Gwen Parsons, Carol Kurtz, Jennifer Ray and Todd Miller from Rocking JP Performance Horses

Maria Fonseca Cole (missing from the photo is the incomparable Marsha)

Barbara Ditmore holding Genuine Code Red and her granddaughter Kensley Hennesy aboard CD Blue Hale

Golden State President Kathy Torres and "Rip"

Understanding Division Eligibility Rules

Not Experienced in Western Performance, But Technically an Open Rider?

Good news for those who make money with horses but aren’t experienced western performance riders. Read on.

Limited Open Subdivision Eligibility: This division will be offered in 2021 as a subdivision of the Open for individuals with moderate to no showing experience who have taken money for starting colts; been paid to ride the ranch horses not owned by them; given basic riding lessons or local clinics for pay; or by other circumstances that make them ineligible for Amateur or Non Pro status, but are not experienced professional trainers in western performance disciplines. Any age horse may be ridden, and there are no horse ownership restrictions.

Samantha Scanlan, a professional hunter/jumper trainer, new to western performance, riding Suzanne Dorrance's lovely Witch Is It Chic, winner of the Limited Open in Las Vegas.

Restrictions for Limited Open: To be eligible for this division, upon entering the first competition, the exhibitor must not have earned any total all-around points in any ranch horse versatility competitions involving cattle. Riders that have combined earnings of $5,000 in any of the following or similar organizations: WSVRHA, NCHA, NRCHA, NRHA, RHAA, AQHA, APHA, SHTX, ASHA, etc. in any western performance discipline (western pleasure, working cow horse, reining, cutting, barrel racing, trail, etc.), are not eligible for this division. Upon entering the first Limited Open competition, a member may only compete in this subdivision for one calendar year. If a member loses Limited Open eligibility through competition, he or she may finish that year as a Limited Open rider. Thereafter, the member is eligible for the Open Division only.

Class Format: The Limited Open division will be run concurrently with the Open division, but a high point within the subdivision can be offered at competition’s end, at the show manager’s discretion. The Limited Open is offered only for all-around competitors entering all classes. Limited Open competitors have the same competitive requirements as Open competitors.

Provisional Class Status: The Limited Open will be offered on a provisional basis as a subdivision of the Open to provide a place for these competitors to compete against their peers. As such, there will be no expectation of added money to the jackpot, awards at the shows or year-end awards in the Limited Open. However, by entering both Limited Open and Open, competitors would be eligible for Open awards.

Class A Licensing

Current law says that if our trailers/LQ’s are 10,000-15,000# GVWR, we have to have a Class A License. Proposed SB 287 will change that. Please support its passage by doing the following:

  1. Call members of the Senate Transportation Committee now asking for support of SB287, particularly the Senator from your region. Committee members & numbers at
  2. Go to, scroll down page, click on red button “Submit Position Letter”, say is “I am a recreational equestrian enthusiast, please approve SB 287,” or words to that effect.
  3. Join CA Horse Owners: Support SB287
  4. April 12, the night before hearing, go to for the number to call the next day. On 4/13, 10:00 a.m. call in and ask that they pass SB 287. Even if this doesn’t affect you, please help your fellow riders who are affected.

Quote of the Month

Mary Anne Radmacher: Consultant, Author, Artist and Professional Speaker

“Courage doesn’t always roar. Sometimes courage is the little voice at the end of the day that says: I’ll try again tomorrow.”

Unscheduled Dismount