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POAC Magazine Cover Story

Gracie Holden

June 2013
Gracie Holden

Gracie began riding at the age of 5 at a hunter jumper barn and at the time she wasn't really interested in leaving the ground. Her 1st grade teacher recommended we go look at "the little tan barn on Waterloo", she knew a family of sisters from school that rode there and they spoke very highly of it. Little did we know that her one recommendation would introduce us to a world of family fun and friendly competition. The "little tan barn on Waterloo" is Stoneridge Acres owned by Kathy McKenzie. Gracie moved her Welch Cobb pony to Kathy in April of 2011 and hasn't ridden him since. Gracie was immediately immersed in all things POA ... from the monthly magazine to the shows across the country. In June of 2011 , Kathy invited Gracie to the Mid-west regional and very graciously offered HMH Super Sox for her to ride in the English classes. Gracie and her dad were "hooked". Now it was time to reel them in...

That September Gracie became the proud owner of her first, but certainly not her last, POA Campbell's Dream Maker "Dreamer". Unfortunately, a barn accident that nearly tore Dreamers' hoof off on top of a previous hoof condition caused him to be lame for several months. Dreamer and Gracie tried to start the following show season, but unfortunately, it wasn't going to be a "good-fit". Kathy recommended we go look at M&N's a Tailor Made Rhett, "Junior". The Cowan family in Texas was selling him and he was "gonna go quick". Gracie immediately fell in love with "Junior". He came home with us in early April of 2012. That same week we loaded up the trailer and headed west. Gracie started the 2012 show season at the Southwest Regional in Scottsdale, AZ. and ended it in Greenville, VA. There were several stops in-between, where we were introduced to many wonderful people. As many have said before and many will say after, the POA people are some of the best "in the horse show world". Prior to the 2012 Congress, Gracie made a move to Silver Wind Stables, operated by Ashley McKenzie. After Congress, Gracie leased RBR Bunskipable, "Amigo", from the Kenzie McFeely. If you're going to show one pony, how much more work can two be, right? Gracie, Junior and Amigo showed very well together throughout the year. Junior ended the show season 2nd in the top ten and Amigo finished a respectable 11th. Junior was awarded his Supreme Champion for his effort throughout the season. Since our first introduction to "the little tan barn on Waterloo", we have accumulated 9 broodmares from across the country and several yearlings, along with one very special Stallion. Gracie looks forward to many show seasons ahead with one, two or maybe even three ponies in-tow.

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