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Draper at the 2012 Devon Horse Show

Hunter riders taking part in the showing at the Devon Horse Show and Country Fair as spectators look on.

This year marked the 116th year that the Devon Horse Show and Country Fair has been taking place in Devon, PA.  Surrounded by the suburbs of Philadelphia and the shopping mecca of King of Prussia, the fair and horse show are somewhat out of place, but can’t be pictured elsewhere once you’ve experienced it.  Offering a vastly unique experience to be enjoyed by horse enthusiasts, socialites and children alike, the Devon Horse Show is an event not to be missed.

Kat Wojtylak (left) and friend at the Devon Horse Show enjoying the refreshing Lemon Sticks

This was Draper’s second year sponsoring the event and despite the record high temperatures, it was an absolutely fun and memorable event. To get an accurate picture of what the Devon Horse Show has to offer, the week and a half horse show features old time favorites like carriage driving and side saddle, to the ever exciting grand prix show jumping. Spectators can not only walk through the barns and see some of the most gorgeous animals, but they can watch them competing so close that you can almost touch them. Then you have the fantastic food that serves everything from the comforts of your favorite fair food to tea sandwiches and the ever refreshing lemon sticks. There is also endless shops with high end offerings, to rides and prizes for the kids.

Draper’s part in all this having taking on the task of handing out our Best Foot Forward

A cute puppy taking up a spot in the shade at the Devon Horse Show.

Awards. I scope out riders, trainers and/or grooms who exhibit a positive and infectious (in a good way) attitude. So in a way, I sit down and take in all the sights, letting true colors show. One of my favorite places to watch are the warmup rings when the spotlight isn’t shining. Can that individual shine despite maybe less than favorable conditions or going about business as usual? If a competitor has a bad trip in the ring, how does the rider or trainer behave afterwards?

Anyone can essentially pick out potential candidates, and that’s why I usually invite my friends along to come and help me. We sit around watching the amazing talents coming across our path. They think it’s all fun and games, but when you’re not looking at the show and really looking for the deeper side of things, it’s pretty hard. You see a lot of things that shock you, awe you and even make you giggle, like cute puppies who want so badly to chase the horses. At the end of the day though, it’s about inspiration, sometimes which comes immediately or takes a bit longer to find and reward. Regardless it’s work to find the right individuals who represent positivity, inspiration and good old fashioned fun.

Lizzie Traband being awarded the Draper Best Foot Forward Award by Kat Wojtylak at the 2012 Devon Horse Show

For a full recap on all things Devon, feel free to listen to my conversation via Horses in the Morning-Episode 413 live from the Devon Horse Show and Country Fair. Or check out all of the Draper Best Foot Forward Award Winners, please visit our Winner’s Circle.

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