Seminar presentations have long been a part of Horse Progress Days. Increasing knowledge and improving life is a quest upon which humans have been on since the very first ones set foot on this good earth. In communities where basic needs are met, there is time and incentive for learning new ways and in some cases, re-examining old ways that may have relevance for the present day. The local and national planners of Horse Progress Days are determined to keep learning in the forefront and entertainment out back.
Be sure to check the flyer you receive when you enter the grounds of Horse Progress Days to see how many other seminars have been added to the event.
Steve Fender of Fender’s Fish Hatchery
Do you have a farm pond? If so, how do you manage it? Wouldn’t it be great to walk out the back door in the evening after all the work is done and sit down to fish for a little while? You might catch enough fish to have a nice dinner. Imagine; fresh fish from your own pond! Steve Fender’s parents started their fish business in 1956 on a bit of a whim, it seems. The company has grown to where it owns over 200 acres of ponds in various locations. A variety of fish are sold: bass, sunfish, blue gill, minnows, perch, catfish, amurs, Japanese koi, goldfish, Tilapia, and rainbow trout.
Take this seminar to learn about the amur fish and how they can help to keep pond vegetation under control. From pond aeration to checking the chemical makeup of the water to monitoring water temperature, this guy wrote the book, literally. It’s called Pond Management, The Common Sense Guide, author: Steve Fender. Economic times challenge us to take advantage of as many options for feeding ourselves and our families as we can. Come and learn from this native Ohioan.
Sheep Panel Led by Leroy Kuhns
The face of farming is continually changing. Conventional wisdom in the early to mid 1900s was to be diversified: eggs, pork, milk cows, a few sheep, a beef animal or two. And then came mono-cultural farming which led to specialization: a dairy farm, a chicken farm, a pig farm. So far, sheep and goats have stayed viable only around the edges of modern farming. This seems to be changing and Leroy Kuhns, the leader of this panel, is in the forefront of shepherding/sheep production. On his 86 acre farm raising Dorset sheep, he has learned a thing or two. In the meantime, like all successful ventures, he has inspired others to consider and undertake sheep farming. His questions to others sitting on this panel, peppered with their responses, and his own personal experiences, could give you food for thought as you consider how to use your own productive acres, especially if you have been involved in milk production, but are no longer. Leroy is a fairy regular contributor to Farming Magazine published by Ohio’s David Kline.
David Kline Talks About the Role of Horses in Amish Communities
David will be speaking on the role that the horse, both draft and carriage, played in the development and preservation of Amish communities throughout America. Because farmers chose to stay with the draft horse for field traction, the scale of farm size was effectively determined. And the carriage horse determined distance of travel. As we look over the Amish community in Holmes County, Ohio and in other places throughout North America, we see small towns and villages thriving, primarily because of the decision made 100 years ago. Henry Ford’s flivver was becoming more affordable and was bringing changes to rural communities that threatened Amish Gemienshaft and its pastoral way of life.
Going further back in history, David will also speak on the origins of Amish agriculture that developed in the Alsace region of Germany in the late 1600s and into the 1700s, after the move from Switzerland to Germany because of religious persecution. David sees today’s horse farming as a blending of older traditional methods with newer technologies in a manner that enriches rather than hinders a farm’s biodiversity, while at the same time adding to the land’s profitability and the preservation of community. David and Elsie have five children. All are married and all are involved with organic dairy farming. They also publish the quarterly Farming Magazine (Mt. Hope, Ohio) supporting small scale farming. The magazine began as a voice of hope to small scale farmers across the nation to foster a strong connection between farm families and urban-dwelling families who desire wholesome food. It celebrates the joys of farming well and living well on an ecologically conscious scale.
Corbly Orndorff Talks Draft Horses
Next year, 2021, it will be 100 years since Charles Orndorff, grandfather of our presenter, hauled his first registered Belgian stallion to his farm in Waynesburg, PA. Breeding top Belgians sort of jumped over Charlie’s son Clark, a machinery dealer, to land on Corbly and his sister Christina. They took it up enthusiastically and built it into one of the top breeding programs in the country. This pair has had much success in the production and promotion of the Belgian breed. For them, success has come mostly in the halter classes of major shows in the US and Canada, although others have had success in hitch classes with their horses too. Halter classes are heavily
focused on excellent confirmation.
While Corbly and Christina have had much success with horses born and raised on the farm, one of the most memorable and significant of their successes is in finding, procuring, and showing the Belgian stallion Korry’s Captain to five-time All-American honors for five successive years. This is the stallion, now 26 years old, standing at the Crystal Springs Stables in Millersburg, Ohio. If you want to learn more about the kind of frame/confirmation that gives a horse long life, more about collecting and shipping equine semen, or any number of other things that come to the mind of this enthusiastic and experienced breeder as he talks, here is your chance.
United Equine Center – Raymond Troyer and Andy Beachy
There’s a new partnership in place in Dalton Ohio. It’s the team of Raymond Troyer and Andy Beachy. These two talented horsemen have brought together their years of experience with horses to form an enterprise that offers health and comfort to the horses that come under their care and who get their attention. For the past 18 years Raymond has been learning all he can from numerous specialists in the fields of horse massage, dental care, and corrective shoeing, and educating himself on the overall health of the horse.
Andy Beachy is no stranger to folks who have been involved with Belgian draft horses, having stood stallions, successfully fitted horses for his family’s Spring Hill Farm, and raised young animals for the marketplace. These two, from a new barn in Dalton, Ohio are offering corrective therapeutic treatments that include the use of Magna Wave, Bemer, cold water spa, Thera-plate, treadmill, Shock-wave, and laser treatments. Take this seminar to learn how to take the horses in your care to a new and better level. Join the movement to better horse care, no matter the kinds of horses you are accustomed to using.
John Miller Jr. “Why do we grow produce and how did we get started?”
In the year 2010 John Miller Jr. and his wife Ruth found a weed farm in the hills of Coshocton County, Ohio. Since then they have turned it into an organic produce farm. Come sit with them to learn what is behind their statement “the challenges have been many, but so have the triumphs.”
Noontime International Meeting with Dale Stoltzfus
The planners of the 2020 Horse Progress Days are anticipating that a sizable group of international guests will be present at the event. Since 2013 a gathering has been taking place each year at noon at a designated location where time is taken to interact with international guests as a way to show hospitality. Anyone who is interested is invited to attend to hear a bit about what brought them to the event and how they use horses in their home countries. This is also a time to exchange greetings from our country to theirs.
An added bonus this year, if the proper travel documents can be obtained, will be the presence of two very special people from the country of Tanzania, Harold and Rogathe Msanya. The plan is for them to spend eight weeks in a pilot exchange program coordinated by Horse Progress Days and the Mennonite Central Committee in Lancaster County, PA. Harold, a professionally trained and experienced agricultural engineer, will be interacting with animal traction farm equipment manufacturers. Rogathe, a teacher of elementary aged children, will be spending time in kitchens and gardens and with fellow school teachers in the community that hosts her and Harold. Be sure to attend the noon international meeting if you want to learn more and if you want to consider expanding your world.