• 2021 Ranch Country Horse Sale

      The 16th annual Production & Broke Saddle Horse Sale held September 11, 2021 at the Rodeo Grounds of Maple Creek, SK, was another resounding success! This year the event was run by the Jack Auction Group and it once again featured weanlings, yearlings and broke horses. 2021 SALES RESULTS: Foal Average $1,965.00Yearling Average $2,530.00Top 10… [Continue Reading]

      2021 Ranch Country Horse Sale
    • Equestrian Halloween

      This edition of Western Foodie isn’t so much of a “dish” per se, as it is an event. However, the pièce de résistance charcuterie board prepared by Chef Edgar, does take centre stage! As Halloween is fast approaching, we thought it would be fun to focus on a spooky, equestrian-style party for kids and parents… [Continue Reading]

      Equestrian Halloween
    • ANOTHER LIFE

      Layne MacGillivray is a third generation chuckwagon driver from Halkirk, AB. He is one of many in the wagon racing community who was thrilled to see the return of the sport in 2021. Layne and his wife Loreena recently offered WHR a glance behind-the-scenes of their operation, while they were on a leg of their… [Continue Reading]

      ANOTHER LIFE
    • Back to School

      Whether you’re preparing to send the kids back to school, or headed to back to work, or simply looking to update your wardrobe with the latest fall fashions, we have some ideas for you! Starting out with our list of favorites is an outfit from Cody & Sioux in Calgary, AB. Here, the model is… [Continue Reading]

      Back to School
    • S is for STAMPEDE

      Have you seen our new book yet?? S is for STAMPEDE follows the alphabet and beautifully positions artwork with explanatory dialogue to describe the events, people, animals and history of the Calgary Stampede. Topics include the Stampede’s famous founders, legendary rodeo stock and the one-of-a-kind experience visitors can only gain from a trip to the… [Continue Reading]

      S is for STAMPEDE
    • Birria Tacos

      Not your average “Taco Tuesday” evening dinner. By MIKE EDGAR, Photos by TWISTED TREE PHOTOGRAPHY Birria tacos are becoming all the rage and after one bite, you’ll want them for supper every night too. Birria is traditionally a Mexican dish consisting of a meat stew made from goat meat, and occasionally beef or mutton (but… [Continue Reading]

      Birria Tacos
    • KEEPING IT 100

      This model slash influencer, slash broker and barrel racer has an impressive list of credentials on his resume. His positive attitude and continued conversation around inclusivity in barrel racing makes him a game-changer for the ages. By Aleesha Harris Charles McKay of Vancouver, BC, recalls with a laugh, the transaction that garnered him his first… [Continue Reading]

      KEEPING IT 100
    • Fireside Trout

      By Chef Mike Edgar This Rainbow Trout dish is best enjoyed next to the fire with your favourite people and a setting sun. Fireside Trout Pouches go amazingly well with Fennel Roast Baby Potatoes and Bannock on a Stick. Make these recipes over the campfire on your next trail ride and it’s a trip no… [Continue Reading]

      Fireside Trout

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2021 Ranch Country Horse Sale

ABOVE: Ron and Fran Bird, of Claresholm, AB, received a handmade saddle pad, made by Rachelle Sunderland of Maple Creek, for purchasing the High Selling Saddle Horse from consignor, Jesse Dyck of Faulkner, MB. Purchase price was $22,000.00. Photo by Shelley Drever

The 16th annual Production & Broke Saddle Horse Sale held September 11, 2021 at the Rodeo Grounds of Maple Creek, SK, was another resounding success! This year the event was run by the Jack Auction Group and it once again featured weanlings, yearlings and broke horses.

2021 SALES RESULTS:

Foal Average $1,965.00
Yearling Average $2,530.00
Top 10 Saddle Horse
Average $12,465.00

Janice Ludwig of Lampman, SK, was the winner of the $500 Bonus Consignor
Draw at the 2021 Ranch Country Horse Sale held in Maple Creek on Sept 11.
Photo by Shelley Drever
2021 High Selling Foal at the 2021 Ranch Country Horse Sale was purchased by Terry & Rachelle Sunderland of Sunderland Ranch, Maple Creek for $3,600. Consignors were Roger & Lou Parsonage, Maple Creek. L – R: Lou Parsonage, Terry Sunderland, Roger Parsonage. Photo by Shelley Drever

Equestrian Halloween

A spooky charcuterie. Because the only thing better than a night of candy, eats, ghosts and goblin fun – is doing it all in the barn! Photo by Twisted Tree Photography

This edition of Western Foodie isn’t so much of a “dish” per se, as it is an event. However, the pièce de résistance charcuterie board prepared by Chef Edgar, does take centre stage! As Halloween is fast approaching, we thought it would be fun to focus on a spooky, equestrian-style party for kids and parents alike. With the ample space that an indoor arena offers and the concept of trick-or-treating through the barn, this party can be as socially-distanced or together as you’d like. Plus, it gives the little ones a chance at Halloween candy within your bubble, if you’re still not comfortable with the idea of going door-to-door.

Trick-or-treating in the barn.

SPOOKY CHARCUTERIE
All parties need a charcuterie board, but one with a Halloween twist might just be a little more exciting than a traditional meat and cheese tray. Featuring foods of specific colour hues (like orange, white, burgundy or olive), this charcuterie board prepared by Chef Edgar is a frightful (but fun!) treat to snack on. Since there are no hard and fast rules to creating these grazing appetizers, charcuterie boards can either be sweet or savoury. However, the key to a truly fascinating one is a spread that presents a range of colours and textures – and it must be served on an interesting platter. Plus, when each of the food items seems to fit within the “haunted” theme, this board will appeal to both children and their parents.

It’s true that Chef Edgar is an artist when it comes to comes to arranging a charcuterie feast, but there’s really no right or wrong way to assemble one. Opting for a large, circular wood plank (which is convenient when it comes to using knives,) Edgar choose seven different types of cheeses for our Halloween platter. The cheese was placed strategically around the wood board first and most of it was kept whole, allowing guests the option to slice it themselves with individual cheese cutters provided to each adult.

Next, some of the signature inedible, decor was positioned into the dish. This included a small white pumpkin, a skull head (complete with soft white cheese and olive eyeballs), a meat cleaver and a unicorn skull figurine.

Then, four different types of meat were stationed on the board. Unlike the cheeses, meat should be pre-sliced. Edgar fashioned some of the thinner, circular meats (like prosciutto or Fennel Salami) into rosettes and spread other types like the cured sausages in heaps throughout.

He finished off the board filling up empty spaces with specialities like raisins on-the-vine, figs, dragonfruit, cape gooseberries, olives, figs, grapes and fresh honey comb. The result was astounding and a haunting display everyone could enjoy!

FRIGHT NIGHT GAMES
A Halloween party isn’t complete without some festive games. Classics like the egg-and-spoon race are always good for a chuckle when everyone is racing in your arena in full-on costume – but here’s a suggestion, don’t use real eggs or you might have a mess in your arena dirt. Opt for the cardboard egg versions instead.

Spider web game created with streamers and jump standards. Photo by Bar XP PHOTO.

We used trick or treat bags for a take on the “potato sac” race, and a Jack-O-Lantern with its mouth cut-out along with some skull head balls served well for a target toss game.

The favourite of the youngsters however, was our “Spider Web.” In this game we used some jump standards, duct tape and paper streamers to create a web. The kids then had to crawl, bounce or maneuver their way through the web without breaking or touching a streamer. It was a total hit! Then we amped up the contests with some fun prizes for the kiddos – did someone say full-size chocolate bars..?

A pumpkin craft table. Photo by Bar XP PHOTO.

BARN TRICK-OR-TREATING
There’s something about the idea of trick-or-treating with horses that is exceptionally special for youngsters. We placed a treat in front of each stall in the barn and had the stall windows open, so the horses could stick their heads out to watch. Then each child was given a candy sac, instructed not to run (so as not to spook the horses) and turned loose. By the end of the barn alleyway, each child had a full trick-or-treat bag and it all happened within our social bubble.

The concept of having the horses hand out treats was a real hit. Photo by Bar XP PHOTO.

Treats like individual candy bags made from surgical gloves, graveyard puddings, hand sanitizer, Halloween headbands, chip bags, reusable pumpkin cups, spooky socks, toothbrushes and a medley of other items were “handed out” by the horses to each child.

Photo by Bar XP PHOTO.

PHOTOBOOTH
Because, is it really a party if no pictures were taken? The dollar store is a great place for items like spider webs or balloons to help you with a spooky backdrop. Add a fog machine for a truly, haunting vibe!

ANOTHER LIFE

Photo by Shellie Scott Photography.

Layne MacGillivray is a third generation chuckwagon driver from Halkirk, AB. He is one of many in the wagon racing community who was thrilled to see the return of the sport in 2021. Layne and his wife Loreena recently offered WHR a glance behind-the-scenes of their operation, while they were on a leg of their summer tour for the Strathmore Stampede. At the time of writing, MacGillivray was sitting first in the standings of the World Professional Chuckwagon Racing Association, having just come off a spectacular run in High River, AB.

MacGillivray gave us the chance to ask some tough questions about his sport and his lifestyle. Here’s what he had to say:

WHR – Why do you love wagon racing?

LM – “It’s a combination of a few things. Being around horses is number one. The thrill of the competition, friendships you make and the lifestyle. You get addicted to it, basically. It’s been good to us. We’ve had our ups and downs for sure, but overall it’s been good.”

WHR – What’s your schedule like this summer?

LM – We’ll go home for a few days after Strathmore. Then we leave Wednesday for Bonnyville, AB. After that it’s Dawson Creek, BC, Rocky Mountain House, AB, then Ponoka, AB, and after that, we turn the horses out and go back to work.

(MacGillivray works for League Projects as a truck driver in the off-season.)

WHR – So, you have another career in the winter?

LM – Yes, it gives me some stability to the year. Chuckwagon racing can sustain itself but you can’t do it and then just live for the other months. The horses pay for themselves. But as far as going home and kicking your feet up after the season – that don’t happen.

WHR – Are you excited to see the chucks go back to Stampede next year?

LM – Yeah definitely. It has been a tough two years not having it. I’ve been fortunate to be a part of it for many years and it’s definitely something we all want to get back to. The chuckwagons have been a very big part of the Stampede over the years and we as competitors don’t want to see that end.

WHR – Is there anything that can be done to make wagon racing safer?

LM – I truly believe we’ve done almost everything we can to make it safer. It’s tough. Unfortunately, accidents can happen. But I’ll tell you, when an accident does happen it tears a hole in everybody’s campsites [referring to the community of wagon drivers camped around any wagon racing event]. It’s not like it doesn’t go unnoticed. Everyone here hurts when something happens.

WHR – So what if the races were just a little slower, but still had a dramatic finish at the end?

LM – We’ll it’s tough to rate the horses and it’s not really the speed that gets anyone in trouble. An equipment failure can cause an accident but everyone has safeties on their equipment now to help avoid a potential accident from an equipment failure, so that has been a big change. For us as drivers, we thrive on the competition but we also feel that the fans who come out to watch the sport do as well – so we want to keep the competition there. On the other hand, we don’t thrive on it so much that we want to hurt a horse or another person just to win.

I have been part of racing indoors down in Houston and Ft. Worth Texas where we had to set races up some nights. It’s not easy to do and almost makes it more unsafe than just competing.

WHR -Do you ever have animal activists actually bother you?

LM – Not really but back in 2002 in Calgary, I had trouble with a horse the first night. A guy come to my barn three days later. He wanted to know the condition of the horses, how they were being cared for, etc. He’d heard lots of stuff about the way we treat our horses and how we care for them. When he walked into my barn, he was impressed with the condition of the horses, they all had feed in front of them, the barn was cleaned, etc. He was convinced. He left that day, happy.

WHR – Do you think that’s part of the answer then, in dealing with activists?

LM – We’ve invited activists down, to follow our routine. We do everything for these horses. They eat before we do. They do a lot of things before us. What some people don’t understand is, we get these horses off the track anywhere from age four to eight. For many of them they’re at the end of their racing career, they don’t fit into the jumping or dressage world. It’s true that some don’t want to run any longer, so you have to find another job for them. Some can be turned into good outrider horses. But if not, then you find another riding home for them. And that’s part of our job too – rehoming them if need be. One way or another, we give them another life.

Then, we also retire the ones who’ve run for us after a certain point – I don’t like to run them past age 18. They’ve done it long enough. I’ve had horses in the pasture until they’re 25-26. We take care of them until the end.

The reason we buy them off the track is because we as drivers, have so much into our horses by age four for instance, that it’s more economical to just buy off the track. We don’t breed any horses and most of the ones you’ll see wagon racing are geldings.

I’ve got 21 horses here on the road with me that I feel, if I didn’t have them – I don’t know where they’d be. I’ve got eight more at home. That’s the biggest thing. We feel like we give them another life.

  • Interview by Jenn Webster

Back to School

Whether you’re preparing to send the kids back to school, or headed to back to work, or simply looking to update your wardrobe with the latest fall fashions, we have some ideas for you! Starting out with our list of favorites is an outfit from Cody & Sioux in Calgary, AB. Here, the model is […]

[Continue reading…]

S is for STAMPEDE

Have you seen our new book yet?? S is for STAMPEDE follows the alphabet and beautifully positions artwork with explanatory dialogue to describe the events, people, animals and history of the Calgary Stampede. Topics include the Stampede’s famous founders, legendary rodeo stock and the one-of-a-kind experience visitors can only gain from a trip to the […]

[Continue reading…]

Birria Tacos

Not your average “Taco Tuesday” evening dinner. By MIKE EDGAR, Photos by TWISTED TREE PHOTOGRAPHY Birria tacos are becoming all the rage and after one bite, you’ll want them for supper every night too. Birria is traditionally a Mexican dish consisting of a meat stew made from goat meat, and occasionally beef or mutton (but […]

[Continue reading…]

KEEPING IT 100

This model slash influencer, slash broker and barrel racer has an impressive list of credentials on his resume. His positive attitude and continued conversation around inclusivity in barrel racing makes him a game-changer for the ages. By Aleesha Harris Charles McKay of Vancouver, BC, recalls with a laugh, the transaction that garnered him his first […]

[Continue reading…]

Fireside Trout

By Chef Mike Edgar This Rainbow Trout dish is best enjoyed next to the fire with your favourite people and a setting sun. Fireside Trout Pouches go amazingly well with Fennel Roast Baby Potatoes and Bannock on a Stick. Make these recipes over the campfire on your next trail ride and it’s a trip no […]

[Continue reading…]

Mental Wellness Pt. II

This blog is a continuation from our Embracing Mental Health blog. If you’re struggling with mental health, you’re not alone. The pressures added to society due to Covid-19 are two-fold. Here, we get some meaningful advice from Psychologist Vanessa Goodchild, for navigating the world we currently live in. THE ELEPHANT IN THE ROOMDepression looks different […]

[Continue reading…]