MANSFIELD — The Central Ohio Draft Horse Association met at the Richland County Fairgrounds on Saturday for a Draft Horse/Draft Pony Fun Show. The show started at 9 a.m., even though there was a threat of thundershowers. All proceeds go to the American Cancer Society Relay for Life.
There were driving, riding and non-horse games. Each participant paid $5 to compete in the show. An auction took place at 1 p.m. All of the items, mostly horse-related, and baked goods were donated.
Bill Reed and Posey Frazier, both Knox County residents, started the Central Ohio Draft Horse Association about 35 years ago. Today, Joe Reed, Bill’s son, is president of the organization, with Ron Skinner serving as vice-president. Not only is Reed passionately involved with draft horses, but his wife, Sally, is an accomplished driver as well.
The obstacle course was the first competition. The drivers had to maneuver a team of two horses over boards, place their front feet in a large ring, simulate entering a barn, back, weave around cones, and do a figure 8 around the cones. Each driver gently persuaded the team to carryout the tasks at hand. When all had completed the course, the judges, Justin Hale and Jeff Hopkins, announced Sally Reed as the winner.
The log skid competition followed. This time the horse had to pull a log behind it as if it was pulling a downed tree through a forest. Again, Sally Reed’s team of dapple-gray Percherons (Mike and Slick) were the winners.
The competition was stopped for lunch and resumed around 12:30 p.m. The stick horse competition had participants riding sticks with stuffed-horse heads as well as rakes serving as horse heads. Emily Roberts won the junior division. Sally Reed and Chris Pompas tied for first place in the senior competition.
At the auction, the item bringing the highest bid was a lemon pudding cake dedicated in memory of Joe Royer. Larry and Robin Schell, owners of Lewis Appliance Center, placed the highest bid and took home a delicious-looking dessert.
The second-highest item sold was a chocolate dessert, purchased by Levi Myers. After the auction, the group gathered for the tug of war.
After three rounds of tugging, the adults won two rounds, but the youths earned bragging rights on one round. At the end of the tug of war, the storms rolled in and the riding competition was canceled.
Approximately $500 was received to present to the American Cancer Society Relay for Life.