Denim & Diamonds (September 8th, 2007)
Every other year since 2003—when we celebrated the completion of our training barn with a “barn warming” for our neighbors—we have an evening party, Denim & Diamonds, at Quarry Hill Farm to show our friends what we’ve been up to since the last gathering. This year, over 165 people joined us for cocktails, dinner under the tent, and a presentation of our horses under lights.
This year, we decided to tape the event and made a four-minute video montage of that magical evening. Featured are our mares with their 2007 foals—
Mabachette—bay mare with her bay filly QH Mariposa by Afire Bey V
Bint Balesselle V—grey mare with her bay colt QH Barcelona by *Jullyen el Jamaal
Determination—half-Arabian bay mare with her colt QH Domino by On The Mark
Especialley—grey mare with her chestnut-turning-grey filly QH Eloise by On The Mark
Plus, up-and-coming junior stallions—
QH Manoleté—chestnut yearling stud colt
Morocco GA—black 2-year-old with 4 white socks
QH Baccarah—dark bay 3-year-old with 2 hind white sock
Plus, our grey, pure Polish foundation stallion On The Mark
Hope you enjoy the video as much as we enjoyed entertaining our friends and neighbors!
2006 Open House (September 17th, 2006)
Sunday, September 17th, dawned a lovely, early fall day, perfect for our third annual Open House. More than 175 people turned out—a record number to date—to attend the Driving Clinic and to see Quarry Hill mares, foals and stallions.
The crowd was greeted by owners Marshall & Rae Paige Schwarz who started things rolling with the Driving Clinic—From Long Lines to Show Ring—with our trainer, who covered such essential training techniques as how to prepare the young horse for the harness and the actual sequence for hooking the horse properly; and the correct position of the driver when in a turn—an often seen mistake. Featured in the demonstration was six-year old JADE, a lovely Half-Arabian bay filly.
After the driving presentation, lunch was served. Then the real fun began—the presentation of Quarry Hill Farm horses!
First introduced were the 2006 foals with their dams:
• QH BETHESDA, 2006 bay filly by *Jullyen el Jamaal out of Bint Balesselle V by Hucks Premier by Huckleberry Bey;
• QH MANOLETÉ, 2006 chestnut colt by ON THE MARK out of MATEMIRA by Zodiac Matador by *Bask; and
• QH SAMBUCA, 2006 grey colt by ON THE MARK out of MY LOVE SONG by Allience by *Aladdinn.
Then came the presentation of one of the farm’s most prized mares —ESPECIALLEY by Tempter by Cognac out of Elegant Crystal by *Aladdinn. She is the full sister of multi-National Champion mare Ericca and is currently in foal to ON THE MARK for 2007
Following ESPECIALLEY, came ON THE MARK, himself—shown in hand by Rae. And to everyone’s delight, out of the crowd entered Val Della Pello of Val Delor Farm, the owner of ON THE MARK’s famous sire, *El Ghazi. Like all good breeders, he wanted to see the get of his stud and in our case, his grand-get, as well. Rae gave ON THE MARK’s shank to Val who took him in hand and stood him up for the crowd. A great surprise; a great moment!
CJ DREAM DANCER, a six-year old gelding by ON THE MARK was shown under saddle by our trainer and Rae. (For more information about ON THE MARK, click on “Standing at Stud.”)
Our trainer then presented in hand future breeding stallion—two-year old QH BACCARAH (*Jullyen el Jamaal by *Ali Jamaal X Bint Balesselle V).
The program ended with a Liberty Performance with AHMEER FEYDREEN and our trainer who invited volunteers to participate—youngsters as well as adults. Ahmeer is the most wonderful ambassador for the Arabian horse as he is beautiful, athletic and people-oriented, a real crowd-pleaser.
The day ended with people touring the barns and having that one last brownie before setting off for home. A fine time was had by all.
Expansion of Facilities (July 2005)
The Quarry Hill Farm team spent the winter and spring working horses to the tune of excavators, shovels, bulldozers, table saws, drills and nail guns—a cacophony of heavy construction. The noise was about building two additions to the training barn/arena facility—a four-stall continuation of the main aisle and a separate five-stall addition on the north side of the building. With many young horses and more on the way, more stalls were needed.
The construction took almost four months to the day with only landscaping yet to do. Most importantly, peace has essentially returned—at last. There’s nothing like trying to get ready for the Buckeye Sweepstakes show with a bulldozer operating 50 feet away.
But the pain of construction was worth it. There are now 19 stalls in the training barn—all 12’ X 12’ with doors, windows and skylights that provide plenty of light and air circulation. And, the five-stall northern addition includes a quarantine area where outside mares in for breeding can be housed away from the rest of the farm’s horses for the health of all concerned.
The first residents of the aisle extension seem to be pleased with their new digs. They are, to put it mildly, two very energetic yearling colts—QH SHOWBOAT (AA Apollo Bey X Determination) and QH BACCARAH (*Jullyen el Jamaal X Bint Balesselle V by Hucks Premier). They are more than full of themselves and want everyone to know it. Now they have their own private wing aka the rumpus room. Perfect.
While the heavy stuff was going on above, the Mare & Foal Barn down below was being worked on as well. A new breeding shed was added as we thought our prize stallion ON THE MARK (*El Ghazi X *Ava by *Bandos) deserved his very own space, so to speak—for privacy, of course, and for proximity to the new equine reproduction laboratory being built at the same time.
Dr. Winslow B. Stevens, DVM, of the Millbrook Equine Veterinary Clinic in Millbrook, New York, is our trusted advisor in regard to reproductive services for the farm. He has an MA in Equine Reproduction Physiology from Colorado State University in Fort Collins, Colorado, in addition to his DVM from Auburn University. He has advised us in all aspects of our breeding operation and has been invaluable in getting our lab set up correctly with the equipment we need. Hence, we now have a fully equipped lab able to handle all aspects of collection, analysis and preparation of cooled semen for shipment. All breeding activity is now centralized in one place making for a more streamlined operation.
And, ON THE MARK—being the intelligent fellow that he is—knows full-well that when the chain goes over his nose, and our trainer takes him for a stroll down to the Mare & Foal Barn, he has a job to do. It’s a job he does very well.
Courses at Colorado State University (February 2005)
Quarry Hill Farm owner Rae Paige Schwarz recently attended a four-day "Short Course in Equine Reproduction & Artificial Insemination" and a one-day "Techniques for Handling and Utilizing Transported Cooled Equine Spermatozoa” course at Colorado State University (CSU) in Fort Collins, Colorado.
"It was a fabulous experience!"
Seventy-five people were enrolled from all over the United States--California, Texas, Idaho, New Mexico--plus representatives from Canada, Mexico and Israel. There were a good number of Arabian breeders there, but we were outnumbered by the Quarter Horse folks. Hanoverian, Friesen, Andalusian and Miniature Horse breeders also participated.
The course was taught by a top-flight team of veterinarians and PhD’s from CSU: Edward L. Squires, PhD Professor, Department of Biomedical Science, Animal Reproduction & Biotechnology Laboratory; Patrick M. McCue, DVM, PhD Diplomate ACT Associate Professor, Department of Clinical Sciences; Elaine M. Carnevale, DVM, PhD Assistant Professor, Department of Biomedical Science; and J. K. Graham, PhD Associate Professor, Department of Biomedical Science.
The group was separated into two sections—one spending the morning in lectures and the afternoon in labs; the other doing the reverse. We were warned on the first day that we were to receive in five days what veterinary graduate students learn over 12 weeks—and they weren’t kidding!
The lectures were detailed, technical and fascinating; the labs were all hands-on. We collected stallions—some with more difficulty than others—built AV's, analyzed semen, inseminated mares, and learned how to package and cool semen for shipment. Intense.
At the end of each day was an informal get-together back at the hotel with food and drink and a chance to socialize with fellow participants. The talk, needless-to-say, was of horses, horses and more horses—stallions, mares, foals... Heaven.
CSU began its Equine Short Courses in 1970, serving thousands of horse owners and breeders over the past 35 years. What a tremendous resource for the horse breeding industry! CSU also offers a variety of Equine Reproductive Services for horse owners and breeders which can be found on their website as well.
For more information on the Short Courses, go to www.cvmbs.colostate.edu and click on Continuing Education Equine. For information on their Commercial Services, go to www.cvmbs.colostate.edu and click on Veterinary Service Centers. If you have questions, you can contact Rae Paige Schwarz at 860-435-2571. Or, e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org.