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Category: County News & Alerts

Harford County Agricultural Center Opens!

(First published in June 2018 issue of The Equiery) After 20 years of ideas and talks, the Harford County Agricultural Center finally opened its doors on May 7 in Street. County Executive Barry Glassman was at the ribbon cutting and said (as reported in the Baltimore Sun), “For as many as 20 years, we always talked about having an ag center where we could consolidate all our ag services and Preserve Harford County’s agricultural heritage.” The new Ag Center occupies the former Glen Echo Furniture store at the crossroads of Routes 1 and 136. The county purchased the property in March of this year for $950,000. Current Ag Center tenants include the Harford County Farm Bureau, Harford County Soil Conservation District, the University of Maryland Extension’s Harford office (including its 4-H program), and the Maryland Department of Forest Pest Management. Additional space is available for federal agriculture...

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HoCo Volunteer Mounted Patrol at N.American Police Equestrian Council Champs

The Howard County Police Volunteer Mounted Patrol had 4 members compete at the recent North American Police Equestrian Council (NAPEC) Championship held at the grounds of the Devon Horse Show and Country Fair on October 12 to 15. The team consisted of Christie Davis, Michael Gafney, Kate Colburn Leary and Linda Reed. Three other members of the Patrol attended to assist NAPEC with the smooth operation of the event. They were Brian Davis, Therese Rodrique and Barb Thelen. The competition included over 65 horses in police equestrian units from the U.S. and Canada. Some of the teams included those...

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Worcester plans to include Bridle Trails in Ilia Fehrer Natural Preserve

The 437-acre Ilia Fehrer Nature Preserve, just outside of Berlin, was acquired by Worcester County in 2011 with the assistance of state and federal partners as well as from The Trust for Public Land. The property is located within the 4,000-acre Holly Grove Swamp area and contains the largest section of unprotected forestland in the county, and the county is in the process of creating a stewardship plan, a plan which is to include passive recreational use – such as trail riding. A draft of the plan will be presented to the Worcester County Commissioners in March. After the...

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Maryland Horse Council to “Go Big”

As president Steuart Pittman has quipped, the time has come for the Maryland Horse Council to “go big or go home,” and so, in order to “go big,” MHC is looking to “go pro” by partnering with a professional association management firm. MHC was founded 30 years ago specifically for the purpose of influencing legislators to create a horse park; that horse park is the Prince George’s Equestrian Center. By the time it was five years old, MHC had shifted to a statewide mission: to represent the diverse horse industry at the state level on legislative and regulatory matters. Since the mid-90s, membership and activities have skyrocketed, and as current president Jane Seigler explains, “We’ve kind of become a victim of our own success.” Until 10 years ago, MHC was managed completely by volunteers (disclaimer: for about 15 years, The Equiery actually provided the management services for MHC, and is an ongoing sponsor of MHC). By 2006, MHC had outgrown The Equiery’s ability to manage it as a “volunteer” (i.e., donating our labor and our resources), and so MHC hired its first association manager, Vanessa Finney, who also worked part time for several other associations. Soon one of those associations snapped her up full time. MHC lobbyist Nancy Hill helped bridge the gap until Mythic Landing Enterprises was hired to provide administrative services. This was during the presidency of Steuart Pittman, and...

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Kudos for the WSSC

The Equiery has run editorials critical of WSSC (the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission, which 6,000 acres around the Patuxent watershed), so – in the spirit of the holiday season, we thought it appropriate to run kudos to WSSC! Below, longtime Equiery reader Debby Poole expresses her appreciation to the employees of the WSSC. I wanted to thank the WSSC watershed manager, Eddie Franceschi for another fantastic year of riding the beautiful equestrian trails on the WSSC. I moved to Burtonsville, Maryland onto Belle Cote Drive when I was 15 years old. I got my first horse when I turned...

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Anne Arundel seeks to change its rep to “horse friendly”

The Power of the Press!  In November on and in the December print edition, The Equiery wondered whether Anne Arundel County was becoming “anti-horse” because of various rules and regs that are definitely “horse unfriendly.” Apparently, people within Anne Arundel County government listened! The County Council passed Bill 75-16, which would allow manure composting in rural-ag zoning. Meanwhile, Anne Arundel County Recreation and Parks has modified the infamous “bun bag” rule.  According to Cathy Hall, of the Pasadena Horse & Pony Club: The bun-bag rule has been mostly fixed. The new rule is: “Bun bags/manure catchers are only required while riding on or along paved trails.” [My contact within Anne Arundel County government] said the paved trails (B&A and BWI) have become frequently crowded with walkers, bikers, skaters, strollers, wheelchairs, etc.  Apparently the rangers have asked that riders dismount and kick poop off the trail, but it wasn’t always done and pedestrians complained.  I think this fix addresses most of the riders. At least I’ve only heard from people who use the natural trails. Thank you again for posting the new rules on your Facebook page and in the December issue.  That was tremendously helpful with our fight for resolve this!    ...

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