Colorful Appaloosas earn green through Color Incentive Fund

What’s an Appaloosa’s favorite color? Green—and Appaloosas across the nation are earning plenty of money with the Appaloosa Horse Club’s (ApHC’s) Performance Permit Color Incentive Fund. More than $45,000 was awarded to owners and breeders of 78 Appaloosas that competed in 2008.

Performance Permit Color Incentive Fund payout is divided into 20 divisions; the first 19 divisions, one for each ApHC zone, are for regional show competitors, and the final division is split between ApHC racing and distance programs.

Want to get in on the action? The only requirement is to show a regularly (#) registered Appaloosa in ApHC-approved shows, and watch as the points and dollars add up!
The Performance Permit Color Incentive Fund is a direct benefit of the Performance Permit program, which allows non-characteristic Appaloosas to compete in ApHC-approved and sponsored events. The permit remains effective for the life of the horse once it is issued, regardless of ownership changes.

Appaloosas must be parentage verified through DNA analysis by an ApHC-approved laboratory before a Performance Permit is issued. The original certificate of registration, current photographs of the horse, and applicable fees must be submitted to the ApHC along with the permit application, which are available through the ApHC and its official Web site An updated certificate of registration will be returned to the horse owner once the permit is issued.

For all of the of the details regarding the Color Incentive Fund and Performance Permits, visit or call the ApHC Performance Department at 208-882-5578 ext. 400.

ApHC Youth Halter Winners to Earn Bonus of Scholarships

small web bannerBeginning with the 2014 Appaloosa Youth World Championship Show in Fort Worth, Texas, youth halter class awards will feature the addition of scholarship money. Winners of Junior and Senior Mares and the Junior and Senior Geldings classes will each receive a $500 scholarship, as will the winner of the Youth Most Colorful class. The ongoing program is being launched through the generous support of Judy Ford, Whitesboro, Texas, and David and Stephani Beck of Lodi, California.

The Appaloosa Horse Club and the Appaloosa Youth Foundation have a long history of promoting the virtues of equine activities for young people. In fact, the ApHC organized the first nationwide youth organization among stock horse breed registries.

“We are excited and pleased to have the commitment of these individuals to help our Appaloosa community maintain its focus on the future,” states Diane Rushing, ApHC President. “We always say that youth programs are a priority, and this type of support gives us the opportunity to put words into action.”

The Appaloosa Youth World will be Saturday, June 28th through Saturday, July5th in Fort Worth, at the Will Rogers Equestrian Center. Visit for a complete schedule of the Youth World and 67th National Appaloosa Show.

Look at the Appaloosa Museum Raffle Horse Now – Winner!

IMG_8074Ochocho Nikki (aka Nik), the 2011 ApHC Museum Raffle Horse, now has a Silver Buckle to his name and represents the Appaloosa breed in many good ways. Nik and his owner, Debbie Herzman, won the Indian Division in the San Juan Capistrano Swallows Day Parade held this past weekend (Saturday, March 23, 2013) in their first time out as a parade duo. Parade organizers reported it was the largest equestrian turnout in its 55 year history with over 600 horses in various divisions overall.

In 2011, Nik was donated as a 2 year old to the Museum for their annual raffle by Rafter DS Ranch in Fossil, Oregon and the rest is very happy history! He went to a new home with Debbie in Southern California and there began a slow but steady riding career. Nik has a calm, cool temperament and his colorful coat pattern attracts people wherever he goes. Fall of 2012 was his show debut with positive results and now in 2013 he is in full swing on the Appaloosa circuit, open shows (signed up for ACAAP) and parades. Nik is 97% Foundation bred and looks fantastic in Native American Indian regalia. The pair will join in Calizona’s future parade efforts too!

Submitted by Leslie Foxvog

Commemorative Appaloosa stamp

Many of you will remember the U.S. Postal Service commemorative Appaloosa stamp, released in 1985. The ApHC produced special envelopes that were postmarked Moscow, Idaho. We’re offering these limited edition stamps for sale as keepsakes and/or gifts.

The text in the lower left corner reads: “Yesterday the Appaloosa earned a coveted place in western history with its colorful heritage. Today the horse is proving its versatility as a champion in many arenas.”

Order from the ApHC by phone (208) 882-5578 or email The price is $14.95, which includes standard shipping and handling.

Time to buy your raffle ticket

Categories: Museum

In case you forgot, this is your friendly reminder that the Appaloosa Museum colt raffle drawing is October 11th. This year’s colorful star is an April weanling by Secret Admirer. He was donated by Rocky Top Appaloosas of New Salem, North Dakota.

Tickets are $5 each or 5 tickets for $20. You can order online at or by calling 208.882.5578 ext. 279.

This recent photo proves that he’s growing and looking good.

Idaho Horse Expo

I made it “down” to Nampa for the Idaho Horse Expo this past weekend. Crowds were almost as good as the weather and there was definitely something for every interest level. It’s always entertaining to watch the activity surrounding the private treaty sale, training clinics, ranch horse events and the trade show.

A real crowd pleaser was the Supreme Cowboy Race, which is basically timed, extreme trail. One of our own, Talea Morgan-Metivier, from Chewelah, Washington, competed with the best of them on two great looking Appaloosas. The picture is of Talea and her four-year-old mare Smart Little Cayenne, by Smart Little Sign (also a star of the event), who is by High Sign Nugget. Thanks Talea for showing of with colorful Appaloosas!

Thanks also to George and Lise Jumper, long-time ApHC folks from Emmett, Idaho, who came by to help at the Appaloosa table.

More photos are in the album (see left hand menu).

Horse Nation Exhibition Premieres Nov. 14 in New York City

Publication1The enduring relationship between Native people and the horse will be illustrated through vivid personal accounts and a spectacular array of objects in A Song for the Horse Nation, opening Saturday, Nov. 14, at the Smithsonians National Museum of the American Indian in New York, the George Gustav Heye Center. Starting with the return of the horse to the Americas in 15th century, the exhibition traces how Native people adapted the horse into their cultural and spiritual lives and integrated it into their geographic expansion, warfare and defense. A Song for the Horse Nation will present 95 works, including elaborate horse trappings, clothing and photographs and will close March 7, 2011. The exhibition will then continue at the National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, D.C., from June 2011 through January 2013. Afterward, the exhibition is expected to tour nationally through the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service program (SITES).

Originally native to the American continent, horses became extinct but were reintroduced by the Spanish, and later by the French, English and Dutchbeginning with Columbus second voyage in 1493. Native people soon adopted the horse and became some of the worlds best horsemen. Horses were used to enhance trade, expand territory, facilitate hunting and wage war. Included in the exhibition will be a Lakota winter count (ca. 1902) by Long Soldier (Hunkpapa Lakota) that depicts when horses were first sighted by the community.

Paired with the introduction of the gun, the mounted Plains warrior was a formidable fighter, upsetting old alliances among the tribes and frustrating European advances. Young men proved their valor through the horse raid, where they captured horses from enemy camps.

Horses also became integrated in Native American cultural and spiritual life, representing the primary virtues of agility, grace and beauty. The exhibition includes a graceful dance stick (ca. 1890) by No Two Horns (Hunkpapa Lakota), created to honor his horse that died at the Battle of Big Horn.

Later, the rise of reservations, the U.S. Armys calculated destruction of American Indian ponies and government policies that forced Native people to adopt farming eroded the day-to-day relationship of Native people and horses. Despite these changes, the horses place in Native culture and memory remains strong. The Crow Nation has actively maintained its horse traditions, and others, like the Nez Perce, are engaged in rebuilding their horse breeds and revitalizing their equestrian way of life. The Future Generations Ride that involves Native youth has evolved from The Big Foot Memorial Ride, held as a healing ride to honor those massacred at Wounded Knee in South Dakota.

Even though the pinnacle of the horse lasted only a century, this exhibition details how Native people rapidly integrated the horse into their lifeways, quickly becoming among the best mounted soldiers in the world, said Kevin Gover (Pawnee/Comanche), director of the National Museum of the American Indian.

This exhibition, which traces the accomplishments and identity of Native people and the horse, perfectly complements our previous exhibition about Native womens dresses, Identity by Design, said John Haworth (Cherokee), director of the Heye Center. We are so proud to be premiering this exhibition, which will travel the country, here in New York.

A Song for the Horse Nation includes many examples of elaborate horse trappings, including a dazzling horse crupper adorned with exceptionally fine quillwork (Cree or Red River Metis, ca. 1850) and clothing adorned with images of the horse, such as a colorful Lakota baby bonnet (South Dakota or North Dakota, ca. 1900). New work has also been commissioned for the exhibition. A dazzling horse mask, with yellow, blue-gray and dark-red quillwork and trimmed with fresh-cut feathers, was created by Juanita Growing Thunder (Assiniboine/Sioux). The work is based on a 19th-century Northern Cheyenne quilled horse mask, also included in the exhibition.

A Song for the Horse Nation was curated by museum curator Emil Her Many Horses (Oglala Lakota). An accompanying publication edited by Her Many Horses and the scholar George P. Horse Capture (Aaninin) is available at the museums shops and the museums Web site.

The Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian in New York, the George Gustav Heye Center is located at One Bowling Green in New York City, across from Battery Park. The museum is free and open every day from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Thursdays until 8 p.m. For information, call (212) 514-3700 or visit the museums Web site at

Youth reiner scores in NRHA competition

Canada09 005While at the recent Canadian National Appaloosa Show in Brandon, Manitoba, I had the good fortune to meet Melia Blakely. She’s a 17-year-old AYA member from Coldwater, Ontario, and she’s a delightful ambassador for our breed. More accurately, she and her colorful mare Neon Cola Sign are a public relations team for Appaloosas.

The six-year-old leopard mare is sired by High Sign Nugget and out of Candy Cola, a daughter of Me Gold Two. Melia and Cola have not only been a fixture at Appaloosa shows, they have been highly competitive among the National Reining Horse Association ranks. In fact, the real reason for this writing is to brag about the fact that they finished the 2008 season ranked fifth overall in the 14-18 division of NRHA. That’s a huge accomplishment made so much better for all of us because Cola is such a colorful, pretty horse.

“I started riding horses at age seven and decided to try reining by the time I was 13,” Melia says. “One of the trainers in the barn where I rode was into reining and it looked like fun.” After gaining some experience and connecting with ApHC trainer and judge Harvey Stevens, the search was on for a “good” reining horse. The one they found “just happened to be an Appaloosa.”

“I love Cola,” a smiling Melia explains. “She’s gorgeous and so sweet, plus she’s laid back – like me. Harvey decided she was the horse for me, so we purchased Cola from Wilburn Archer.”

Another highlight of the Melia-Cola resume is qualifying for the provincial young rider team chosen to participate in the FEI North American Junior and Young Rider Championships in Kentucky. Melia says it was awesome to qualify, but she opted for the ApHCC show to try for a Canadian championship. Turns out she did that. At the Canadian National Show she and Cola won the youth reining.

Where to from here? Melia says one of her goals is to make the Top Ten at the Quarter Horse Congress show. She’ll also be focusing on her 12th grade year in school and making plans for college.

In the meantime, we tip our hat to a young lady with personality-plus who happens to be providing invaluable promotion for the Appaloosa breed with her colorful partner, Cola. Nice to meet you both.

Mary Lou in her element

Categories: National Show

100_1264At the ApHC information booth at the National Show, things aren’t really ready until Mary Lou Minic arrives and takes control. She has been a friend of the breed – well, forever – and she is a mainstay at both the National and World shows. Besides greeting old friends and newcomers with the same warm smile, she helps with all sorts of service duties throughout the events.

In the photo, she’s apparently telling a great story and entertaining visitors, including Dawna Harwell, at right.

The Most Colorful at Halter class is sponsored by friends of the late George Minic, Appaloosa showman deluxe. It’s a very special time for Mary Lou, who presents the awards. Thanks ML for being part of the family!

Day one from Jackson

Categories: Miscellaneous

mostcolorfulThe 62nd National Appaloosa Show is underway. This scene is of exhibitors heading back to the barns after Non-Pro Most Colorful class. We can’t help mentioning that the temp reached 100 today, just one degree shy of the very old record. ApHC folks seem to be coping fairly well. Hydration is the buzzword for the week!

Appaloosa in “Fit to Boom” Subway promotion

No, it’s not the underground train, it’s the sandwich chain of restaurants. The marketing folks at Subway have apparently been listening to the research and reminding themselves that Baby Boomers are still a fairly active and very large segment of consumers. Nothing says “be healthy” like an appeal to lifestyle choices involving physical fitness and some mental restoration/alignment (think about where we’ve been and the culture we grew up with). I guess a good sandwich can help.

The “Fit to Boom” campaign invites us to share our stories about later-in-life revelations and enter a “Refresh Your Life” contest. We like the fact that a spotted horse is part of the equation.

The point of this post is to direct your attention to a video on the Subway website. You’ll eventually see the subject enjoying the great outdoors on a colorful Appaloosa. That’s our version of “finding yourself” and being centered in the complex universe.

Thanks to ApHC member Pam Hargesheimer for sharing the information. Take a look.

Star of the expo

Just three weeks old and this little guy is already a celebrity. He and his equally colorful mother are stalled next to the ApHC booth at the Idaho Horse Expo in Nampa this weekend. Kids can’t resist and the adults use him as an excuse to come closer for a chat. Long-time Appaloosa breeder Gene Winchester is providing the horses and helping with the exhibit. The Saturday weather is supposed to be perfect for folks who want to get out and enjoy the event.

Update: The colt does have an official name – Owyhee Thunder. The dam is Betsy Ross, a granddaughter of Cowboy Justice. The sire is No Pretense, a grandson of ApHC Reserve World Champion Pretentious Me.

In addition to a trade show and other exhibits, the expo includes seminars, a silent auction horse sale, stallion avenue and lots of activities for the kids. The Idaho Horse Council is the official host.

Market test, Appaloosa Heritage Collection

Many of you will remember the U.S. Postal Service commemorative Appaloosa stamp, released in 1985. The ApHC produced special envelopes that were postmarked Moscow, Idaho.

Working with Precision Engraving, a local awards/trophy business, we have created a souvenir plaque as part of what we’re calling the “Appaloosa Heritage Collection.” Now we need to know if you think ApHC members would be interested in the opportunity to purchase either the envelope or the custom plaque.

The envelope by itself would be offered at $9.95. The plaque is available for $29.95. If you tell us there is a market for these one-of-a-kind keepsakes, we’ll include them on our menu of merchandise.

The text in the lower left corner reads: Yesterday the Appaloosa earned a coveted place in western history with its colorful heritage. Today the horse is proving its versatility as a champion in many arenas.

Breed exposure in Horse Illustrated

I almost forgot to talk about the April issue of Horse Illustrated, which has a colorful Appaloosa on the cover and a nice breed profile article by Audrey Pavia. Her emphasis in the story is the versatility of our horses. She offers several examples of Appaloosa excellence in a wide range of disciplines and activities. There’s even a fold-out photo!

Audrey also provides information about the APEX program, Saddle Log and ACAAP. Good news and positive media coverage are really nice to see.

Danny Lopez Extreme Sr Cowboy Duels It Out In Pomona

Story by: Patti Ansuini © 2009 ~ All photos courtesy of Charles Hilton Images ~

Dan Lopez admits he’d heard about Craig Cameron’s Extreme Cowboy Race and had even seen the number one rated RFD TV show a time or two. It was fun to watch, but adds that it had never occurred to him that he might one day become a seriously Extreme contender.

At 74, Dan is semi-retired but still trains and shows a few horses for long time clients. The past few years he has geared down his operation and enjoys some free time riding his favorite mount, a colorful 12 year old Appaloosa stallion known as Badger Lee. The pair help friends out at cattle round ups and of course he wouldn’t miss a spring branding with his friends and neighbors.

During the holiday season several of Dan’s friends had stopped by and talked up Craig Cameron’s Extreme Cowboy Race. They asked his opinion on how he felt about entering the fast paced event that was scheduled for a run during the upcoming Equine Affair in Pomona, California. Several of his clients had asked that if he weren’t interested in taking a shot at the title himself perhaps he’d consider training them.

Dan reflected on the idea for a short time and gave them the answer most had hoped for. He didn’t feel he could honestly train someone to do something he’d never done himself so all bets were now on Dan. Family and friends alike reasoned, ‘wouldn’t it be something for that old Reinsman to show those youngsters how it’s really done’.

To read the rest of the excellent article about Dan Lopez, complete with additional photos, click here: extreme-cowboy-race

« More Past Entries