Former Steeler all-star gives horse demonstration

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UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – Former Pittsburgh Steelers all-star defensive back Mel Blount will give a cutting horse demonstration Aug. 17 at Penn State’s Ag Progress Days.
Blount, who will perform at the Ag Progress Days Equine Experience, owns a ranch in Washington County, Pa., and uses a equine program there to reach at-risk youth.
Several of his students will assist him in his demonstration.
“He will ride a horse that was bred with cattle sense and bred to work cattle in addition to being well trained,” said Ann Swinker, associate professor of equine science, extension horse specialist and coordinator of the Equine Experience.
Other events. Other demonstrations and seminars will be held throughout the three-day event.
Can horses really teach people?
Find out at the Equine Experience at Penn State’s Ag Progress Days, Aug. 16-18 in Rock Springs, Pa., where GaWaNi Pony Boy will demonstrate his unique and unorthodox methods of horse training.
GaWaNi Pony Boy is known worldwide for his “Horses Teaching People” courses and “relationship training.”
He has written 10 books since 1998, with Horse, Follow Closely being his No. 1 seller.
“GaWaNi’s horse-training methods are safe, sound and easily followed by all horse owners,” said Ann Swinker, Penn State extension horse specialist.
GaWaNi Pony Boy will give demonstrations in the Large Horse Arena 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Tuesday, 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. Wednesday, and 11:15 a.m. Thursday.
Other events. Horse enthusiasts who visit the Equine Experience will also be entertained by a variety of performances and will learn about horse ownership, breeding, and training.
New this year is a Kids’ Corner that will feature horse-related activities and educational material.
Tuesday events will include workshops on Clicker Training and “Leave-No-Trace Trail Stewardship.”
Demonstrations will showcase the Keystone Dressage and Combined Training Drill Team and the Pennsylvania State Police Mounted Patrol.
There also will be seminars on horse ownership, training, and shelter, and a quarter horse test ride open to all visitors.
Youth will test their skills and knowledge in the 4-H Equine Skillathon 10 a.m. Thursday.
The event includes a judging contest, a written test and identification stations. Members of 4-H from across Pennsylvania will compete for savings bonds and ribbons in this event.
A variety of breed clinics – including miniature horses – will take place daily, and Rodger and Linda Thomas of “Ro-lin on Clydes” will show their six-Clydesdale hitch each day.

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