October 2015 ~ President's Message
Thursday, October 15, 2015
Posted by: Tammy Paparella
NEDA Fall Festival 2015 is in the history books, and I think it was the best ever.
Many of you were there competing, volunteering or supporting, so you can each form your own opinion. But here’s mine.
1. The weather was SPECTACULAR! That always sets the tone for the weekend. A little warm at the start, a bit windy at the end, but hey! I'm not complaining.
2. Starting the weekend in panic mode with a shortage of volunteers, it seems that competitors and their friends came to the rescue and filled vacancies, so that the show seemed to run smoothly throughout. Hats off to Helen Van Der Voort and her team for the great job they did, and to the entire dressage community for rolling up their sleeves to make this show successful. I spoke to many volunteers throughout the show who plan their vacation time from work to include this entire show, because they have so much fun. We take good care of them, and they feel appreciated. They see friends they make at the show year after year. It turns into a week of both hard work and serious fun. If you haven’t joined the fun yet, put it on your calendar for next year.
3. In the volunteer department, I have to single out Alexandra Dane and the entire awards team for their work. Throughout the show they kept the flow of test sheets moving with efficiency and good cheer. In addition, Alexandra did a masterful job, as she always does, of organizing and pinning the winners so that they are ready to enter the awards ceremonies on time and in proper order. The awards ceremonies would fall apart without the expert supervision of Robert Higgins, but without the beribboned winners, they would not happen at all.
4. We had tons of vendors. They offered everything you could want for your horse (saddles, tack, high tech wraps and healing techniques), your riding (apparel, show coats and helmets, whips, boots, jackets and more) and your leisure time (jewelry, sweaters, scarves, hats, apparel, coats and more). Shopping was great and well located. Our vendors love this show! I spoke to each one of them during the show, and each one said how wonderfully they are treated in the VIP pavilion. There is no place else they go where they are fed and supported the way we do.
5. Speaking of the VIP Pavilion, Karin Swanfeldt and her team deserve high praise indeed for running a high class restaurant that is open for business for 12 hours a day minimum, keeping it stocked with exactly what their clients want and need from silver (looking) utensils and jumbo shrimp to granola bars and to-go boxes. I overheard (I did a lot of eavesdropping during the weekend) a group obviously new to the VIP Pavilion congratulating each other for deciding to spring for it, saying it was definitely worth the investment - good food all day long, shade (if needed), rain protection (If needed) and great viewing of the CDI ring and two main championship rings. And everyone there is on a first name basis with Karin, who attends to their every need with charm and enthusiasm.
~ Kathy McHugh