Meeting November 16th, 2011
Board Meets: 6:30 p.m.
General Meeting: 7:30 p.m.

Montana Horse Welfare Council

Barb Thomas and Joanna Dove will be speaking to the club. This group focuses on improving equine welfare in the state of Montana. Consists of groups and individuals who have come together in alliance for the purpose of helping equines in need, advocating equine welfare and improving overall conditions for equines through education of owners, support of law enforcement, and coordination of veterinary assistance, hay bank, and foster care placement.

Thank you to everyone who attended the Fall BBQ. It was such a good time and Eileen Taylor did an excellent job coordinating the games and activities. As you can see by the picture below, we were entertained in fine style after a wonderful dinner. Member Peggy Rossberg also joined in with her guitar and great voice. I think everyone enjoyed the scavenger hunt as much as I did. I saw things I can’t put into words!

But most importantly, the club took this time to recognize Bob and Jan Braico for their tireless efforts in keeping the clubhouse and outbuildings maintained and in better shape than they have been in years! They were presented with a certificate of appreciation because sometimes ‘thank you’ just doesn’t express how much we do appreciate their dedication to the club. In addition, a big thank you goes to Sonny and Beverly Stiger for so graciously offering the use of their home.

To see more pictures go to our website (pictures of BBQ), there are some real mysteries… Braico in a twig necklace? You kind of had to be there.


Unless something breaks, there is not much to report this month. The Clubhouse area was mowed and trimmed for the last time this year on October 25th. Occasionally, there are minor repairs needed at the West Arena such as a down rail or two. More importantly, however, the West Arena is looking pretty tired and early next year we should consider discussing what we may want to do, perhaps beginning with an investigative committee. In that regard, I met briefly and casually with both Keith Hatch and Jack McCoy (Fairgrounds Mgmt) as they happened to be passing by the Clubhouse in late October.

I commented about the about the general condition of the West Arena and remarked that the club most likely should meet with them in the future to obtain their input. They agreed and also complimented HTR on the extra effort that the Club has been putting into improving the overall appearance of the Fairgrounds.

The Fairgrounds staff is not interested in the old windows removed from the Clubhouse in 2010 and 2010. So, if anybody has a use for them (the glass is good and frames are sound), here’s your chance for some free barn windows. They will need to be scraped, re-glazed, and re-painted. Because they are old and have many layers of paint the presence of lead-based paint should be assumed. So, use appropriate personal protection gear. Just a reminder, if the Clubhouse is going to be used for any non-HTR activities, prior contact must be made with Keith Hatch, Fairgrounds Manager and his approval obtained.


The last project for this season was on the Continental Divide between Stemple and Flesher Passes. HTR members did not participate on this project. However, I cannot provide any information on what was accomplished as there have been no meetings or reports so far this fall (as of 11/03/11). I expect activity to resume after the rut (hunting season) is over.


If anyone has pictures they have taken of club events or rides, please have them printed out and mail to me at: Cheryl Schmidt, 7092 Applegate Drive, Helena, MT 59602. Thank you for getting the pictures to me as soon as possible so they can be included in the 2011 photo album.

Hutterite colony pleads guilty in horse poisoning deaths - October 27, 2011 Independent Record

A Hutterite Colony near Cut Bank and two of its members have pleaded guilty to federal charges filed after two horses belonging to neighboring ranchers died of strychnine poisoning in April.

The Seville Colony, Inc., along with farm boss Thomas J. Wipf pleaded guilty Tuesday to misapplication of pesticides after two horses ate strychnine-laced oats the colony was using to kill gophers.

Colony secretary Edward G. Walder pleaded guilty to false statements for lying to an Environmental Protection Agency inspector about the pesticide use. Sentencing is set for Jan. 30.

Wipf told EPA inspectors he put the poisoned oats down individual gopher holes. An EPA cleanup found about 300 acres of illegally applied pesticide.

The plea agreement recommends that the colony pay restitution to the EPA.

Brand holders need to reapply by Dec. 31 October 26, 2011, Independent Record

Time is running out for more than 23,000 holders of Montana brands who have not yet rerecorded their brands.

Those who fail to meet the Dec. 31 deadline will lose their brands, said John Grainger, Brands Division administrator for the Montana Department of Livestock. “We don’t want to see anyone lose their brand, and we’re encouraging brand holders to rerecord their brands as soon as possible,” Grainger said.

In previous years, brand holders who failed to rerecord their brands by the deadline were given a 90-day grace period to get the brands rerecorded. That grace period has been eliminated, Grainger said. “There’s no grace period anymore,” he said. “Brand holders who don’t meet the deadline will have to reapply for the brand, and there are no guarantees they’ll get their old brand back.”

The simplest way to avoid any potential problems is to get the brand rerecorded now. Grainger said it takes about 10 minutes, is good for 10 years and can be done online at

Overall, 32,000 of the state’s 55,000 recorded brands have been rerecorded, Grainger said, with nearly 60 percent of those having been done online.

Bits and Pieces

For information or to submit pictures or comments, please contact Cheryl Bryant – Please submit pictures ONE AT A TIME.

If you have anything you would like to post in the Pony Tales, please contact Cheryl Schmidt at 458-3913 or email your request to Please have this information to me before the 10th of the month.

Upcoming Events:

November 11th - Fall Art Walk: 5-9 p.m. downtown Helena.

November 11th – Montana High Divide Trails Volunteer Appreciation party. 6-9 p.m. Pioneer Cabin at Reeder’s Alley.

November 12th – Christmas Craft Show: 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Helena Civic Center.

November 20th – Country X-Mas Bazaar: Noon to 4 p.m. Community Center in Avon. 492-7091

For Sale: Washing machine: 2002 Whirlpool top loading, large washing basket, 3 load sizes, 6 cycles, 3 speeds. Very good condition. $150.00. Call Cheryl Bryant at 458-6165 or email at

Westerns Novels Do you have a stack of cowboy books that you’ve read and are now piling up? The Lewis and Clark Library is looking for western novels for libraries in our outlaying communities.

Check out your western books and if they’re of good quality, are clean, and don’t have much wear, take them up to the library. You can also drop them in the book deposit box after hours. Thanks! Andrea Ayers

Did You Know?

Three thousand years ago, the Etruscans built some of the first horse bits. The Etruscans, who lived in what is now Tuscany, Italy, from 900 B.C. until 264 B.C., were master metalworkers. They fashioned horse bits and breastplates from bronze. As soldiers needed greater control over their war horses, the studded and spiked bits came into creation. But they also created features that are still in use today, such as jointed mouth pieces and rollers for the tongue to play with and keep the mouth moist.

I know this is terrible, but I couldn’t resist due to the snow that is sure to come… This joke was sent to me by Jennie Trimble.

Senior Snow Plow


In Closing…

Next month is our annual Christmas Party and I will be sending out details in the December newsletter. Please remember that we will not have a regular meeting in December and that elections are done in January. Please try to attend this month’s meeting as there are going to be some changes presented to the membership that need your input and support. I will keep you updated on what these changes might be but it would be better if you attended the meeting and were able to be part of the discussions. Our club needs to grow with the times and we need everyone’s input! Thanks, Cheryl Schmidt

“Money will buy a fine dog – but only kindness will make him wag his tail.”
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