2019 FAQ

2019 Show Season Updates, Changes, and Answers

We’re getting ready to kick off our 2019 season and have a few exciting changes we’d like to share. We also have addressed some questions we’ve gotten from several members. Please let us know if there’s anything we missed that you’d like answered!

Thanks for being a part of Gem State Stock Horse Association and we’re looking forward to seeing you at our 2019 shows.

– Your GSSHA Board of Directors

2019 Youth Scholarship

As in years past, Gem State is offering a $500-$1000 scholarship to one youth participant to be awarded at our Year End Banquet. Scholarship eligibility will still be determined by the quality of the written application (available in October).

For 2019, we’re adding a volunteer requirement. Students must volunteer at at least two of our four shows. The amount of time they spend is up to them. Their performance will be assessed by the board and taken into account when determining the winner. Our hope is that adding a performance-based requirement will reward students for hard work and real-world experience.

Gem State is a non-profit, so this volunteer work may help fulfill community service/volunteer requirements for school or other scholarships.

More information about the scholarship will be available soon. To sign up to volunteer, please email gemstatestockhorse@gmail.com.

Year-End Award Eligibility

We’re adding a requirement to qualify for year-end awards. In addition to attending at least three club shows, for 2019 you must get a score in at least 60% of your runs. 

Here’s a couple examples:

If you show in a horse show class at three shows, that’s 6 runs (3x rein work and 3x cow work). To qualify for a year-end award, you must get a score of 60 or greater in at least four runs.

If you show in the derby at four shows, that’s 12 runs (4x herd work, 4x rein work, and 4x cow work). You must score 60 or greater in at least 8 of those runs.

If 60% of your runs is not a whole number, we’ll round down to the nearest whole. For example, if you show in the Four Event Bridle Spectacular at all four shows, that’s 16 runs. You must get a score in at least 10 of them to qualify for the saddle.

This decision was based on feedback from several members and will help the board keep entry fees down by eliminating year-end awards for riders attending our shows to school. While we welcome and encourage using Gem State as a valuable and affordable schooling opportunity, we want to make sure to support our entry-level and grassroots competitors by awarding outstanding prizes!

Long Shows

We’ve had many inquiries about the length of our shows this year. While we are currently planning to keep our three club shows as single day events, we’re aware that adding the Bridle Spectacular series may make the days a little long.

As a board, we couldn’t justify the significant entry fee increase that adding a second day would necessitate as this is the first year with these new classes. After much discussion and careful consideration of each and every question from our membership about the length of the days, we’ve come up with a plan to help our shows run as efficiently as possible.

1: Show Manager. Heather Linder has stepped in as show manager. Heather has been active on the board as well as showing with Gem State for the last several years. Her career as a nurse makes her well-suited for running an efficient, fast-paced horse show. She’ll be available to field questions, solve problems, and keep an eye on everything at all of our shows. Please make sure to thank her for her hard work!

2: Earlier (and on time!) Start. All our shows will start at 7 AM this year. To facilitate this, we’ll be having cattle delivered the night before. This will make sure we can start promptly without having to wait on cattle delivery.

3: No more Rider’s Meeting. Rider’s meetings are generally under-attended. Please familiarize yourself with the NRCHA and Gem State rulebook and listen to the announcer for any show-specific changes. Heather and the rest of the board are available to answer any questions.

4: Getting really strict. We’re going to be strictly enforcing a two call and you’re out rule. If the announcer has to call for you more than twice at the gate, we’ll move on to the next draw. You’ll lose your turn and will be marked a zero. Your entry fee will not be refunded. Please understand that this means you must be riding in the arena. If you’re standing at the gate adjusting tack or otherwise not ready to show, we will not wait.

We understand this sounds unnecessarily hard line, but please understand that if 100 runs each take an extra 30 seconds, that adds 50 minutes to the whole show! Also, please remember that NRCHA rule says “Failure to work in the proper order or proper adjusted order will result in a score of 0.”

Our announcer is aware of this and we’ve given her the power to make sure that the show keeps running! Thanks for understanding.

5: Short Patterns.  We’ve chosen to use two circle patterns for all classes, including horse shows.

How You Can Help!

1: Volunteer! Board members are volunteers, so we understand from personal experience that it can be tough to make time to pitch in. We’d love to have your help, even if it’s just ten minutes of stapling up draw sheets, giving the gate person a bathroom break, or throwing trash away for a couple minutes at the end of the show.

2: Get paid to help. We believe you get what you pay for, so several of our gate positions are now paid positions. Send us an email at gemstatestockhorse@gmail.com for details and sign up.

3: Know the schedule. Check the draw and order of events ahead of time so you know when you’re up.

4: Be ready. As mentioned above, we’re going to be strict about not waiting on anyone at the gate. Do your part by being ready to go before the previous rider is finished with their run. You should be waiting at the gate mounted with your chaps on and tack properly adjusted.

You can lope in and begin your run before the previous rider fully exits.

5: Clear the arena. During warm-ups and breaks, please make sure to listen to the announcer when she says time is up and clear the arena promptly.

After your run, you don’t need to trot out the gate if it’s not the right thing for your horse, but please be respectful of everyone else’s time and exit the arena as quickly as you can.

Assisting the cattle help by bumping your cow in the direction of the out gate is always appreciated and can really help speed things up.

Scheduling Our Shows

Many people have reached out to us about scheduling conflicts this season. We understand that overlapping dates with other organizations can be very frustrating. Because so many of you have reached out about this, we thought it would be helpful to share the process involved in selecting our dates.

1st priority: Facility Availability. We start confirming dates with facilities in November and December. Facility availability is our starting point!

2nd priority: Other cowhorse shows. Usually, we only have a couple weekends to pick from at our facilities. We then compare those with the dates published by other Reined Cowhorse organizations. The schedule for the following year is almost never available that early for other clubs, so we work around previous dates as best as possible.

3rd priority: Other disciplines’ shows. If we still have multiple weekends to pick from after working around other cowhorse shows, we look at cutting and reining shows in the Treasure Valley. Unfortunately, we almost never have the freedom to work around those shows.

A great example is our June show. We released our dates in January and were originally scheduled for 6/22 in New Plymouth. When the dates for the Winnemucca Stock Horse Derby & Challenge were posted, we saw there was a conflict and decided to move our show to the 18th in hopes of attracting people hoping to school ahead of this bigger show and to allow members wanting to show at both cowhorse shows the opportunity to do so. Unfortunately, this caused an overlap with the Boise Valley Cutting.

We hope that understanding the decision making process sheds some light on how hard our board works to fit a lot of moving parts into making an excellent series of horse shows.

Your feedback is always welcome and we’re glad so many of you felt comfortable enough to bring this to our attention. Feel free to reach out if you have other suggestions or things you think we should prioritize when we start planning our 2020 dates. We’ll begin booking with facilities in November and December, so keep us posted on which dates are an absolute no-go for you!

Updated Class List

As you may have heard, we’ve added an Open Four Event Bridle Spectacular as well as Three Event Non Pro and Non Pro Limited Bridle Spectaculars! All four of our shows will have these classes and each one has a year-end saddle. Thanks so much to Ryan Thomas Horsemanship and Mill Iron 7 Performance Horses for sponsoring the Non Pro and Non Pro Limited saddles.
We’ve also added Non Pro Limited divisions for the Futurity and the Derby. We’re excited to offer this opportunity for boxers to show LAE horses!
Unfortunately, we’ve had to make the decision to eliminate the Buckaroo classes from our roster in order to make room for these new classes. We apologize for any disappointment this may cause, but hope that our expanded offerings offer something for everyone!