Beaking news for GHH: Copyright by Jeff Ketzler

Vol. 2, Number 2                                                                                     May 1, 2001

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GHH Hosts, Then Wins Western Challenge      

     In case you haven't heard, GHH won the Western Challenge.  The Challenge takes place every spring and is a competition between various western hunts for the best overall hunting.  Hounds, Huntsman, Whips, and overall hunt performance are all factors before the three judges.  MFHs Jeff and Sue Ketzler said, “A tremendous amount of credit for this victory goes to Kristi Wright who organized the staff and other volunteers who spent all last summer walking and pack breaking the pups.”

    Foxhunters from Kentucky, Texas, Oklahoma, Maryland, New Mexico, Kansas, Missouri, Iowa and Nebraska joined GHH huntsman Salestrom for a nearly perfect day of hunting during the GHH day of the Western Challenge, Thursday, April 5.  The hunt left from the Keasling Farm and headed East, then North into some country we had yet to explore.  Thanks to the fantastic litter of GHH pups, now full-fledged hunting hounds, the pack carried several lines and caught site of two coyotes – as did the field to a chorus of “Tally Ho.”  Since the territory was new, the field was stopped several times by fence.  Bill McGinn was taking notes of a number of ideal locations for future coops.  The group had some great runs and turned back toward Keasling's just as the thunder and lightening started in full measure.  Luckily, most got to their trailers before the rain.  Sue and Jeff and Bette and Van Ketzler hosted the group for chili and drinks afterward at the Hunt Lodge (which now has flush toilet and running water thanks to Van, Brad Pence and Wally Love who came all the way from California just to help with the plumbing – but I digress.) 

  That evening GHH members at a cocktail party/dinner at The Dehner Company joined the visitors and judges.  Our guests loved the tour of the boot factory and I understand several dropped back the next day to try on orphans. Thanks to Larry Stratman, Kim and Brad Pence, and Sue Ketzler for following the hunt with refreshments and Peggy Maness for recording the event in photographs. 

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Save These Dates
For A Summer of Fun

May 5 - Saturday
Hound Show in Kansas City
2 .m. - Derby Day Party – Salestrom's
June 9 – Saturday
Hunter Pace/ New Members Party
July 15 – Sunday
9 a.m. horse activities; 4 p.m. barbecue.
Day in the Country at Jimando Farms.
August 7-12
Summer trip to Batchelder’s Sandhills Ranch
(Call Vicki Krecek for information)
August 25 – Saturday – 6 p.m.
Landowners Party at the Kennels

Equestrinon Dictionary:

Horse Terms As Heard by Non-riders 

Bay – The lure of San Francisco
Collection –
Pass the plate
Extension – When you don’t get your taxes done on time
Dressage – Something a 16-year old boy gives his prom date.
Give tongue – Oooo-Kay

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Board Votes to Pay $15,000 on Mortgage

   Thanks to the support of our members, GHH has collected $15,620 in 2nd year pledges to the Kennel fund.  An additional $1,600 in 2nd year pledges are anticipated. As a result, the Board voted to pay $15,000 on the mortgage, bringing down the total mortgage to $50,000.  Thanks to the following donors:

Dave and Vicki Krecek, Van and Bette Ketzler, Steve and Debby Frye, Bill McGinn, Allen and Ann Mactier, Mick and Jan Moriarity, Ron and Julie Tresnak, Fred and Bev Crouter, Jane Shanahan, Kristi Wright and Patrick Strawbridge, Roger and Nancy Duhnke, Ron and Jenna Dudley, Jeff & Sue Ketzler

   In addition to donations to the Kennels Funds, we would like to thank the following people for direct donations for projects: 

Bill McGinn – Kennel Construction bills
Van Ketzler
– Hunt Lodge plumbing 
Anne Dolan –
Grass Seed
Jan & Gary Hustak –
Dehner Company –
Printing & mailing

GHH New Member Party June 9 Features Team Belgium

    Lisa and Bill Roskens, have graciously volunteered to host GHH members and new member prospects at their acreage, Saturday, June 9 at 4 p.m. (The hunter pace will take place at Ponca Hill Farm that morning)

    Membership Chairman Bill McGinn said, “The purpose is to promote new members, with an added emphasis on new social members.  GHH is a great organization for people with an interest in horses or hounds, whether or not they ever plan to ride to hounds themselves, or even have a horse.”

     Members are urged to bring a prospective social or riding member.  “We should almost require it,” McGinn said.  “Everyone knows someone who might be interest in participating in the social aspects of the hunt.”

   McGinn has lined up an exciting evening including dinner, music, and a team of Belgiums to give carriage rides.  Of course, as with nearly all GHH activities, this is a family event and children of all ages are welcome.

   In addition to a prospective member, GHH members are asked to bring food (A-L Salad M-Z Dessert). The event hosts will provide main dish and drinks.  Please RSVP to Bill McGinn.

 St. Patrick’s Day Weekend

   Fifty some riders and many spectators turned out for the Saturday St. Patrick’s Day hunt, starting in downtown Imogene.  While the fields were soft and mud sucky, the day was splendid.  Horses, Hounds and Riders all were jubilant to be mounted on a beautiful day.  The hounds set out from the beginning to make up for too many weeks of canceled hunts.  They opened on a fresh line nearly as soon as they were cast, the field struggled through the thick mud to keep up.  They struck several lines during the three-hour hunt and were still feathering their sterns during the St. Patrick’s Day parade through downtown Imogene.  Everyone enjoyed a great corned beef and cabbage dinner at the Emerald Isle before the parade.   The group gathered for dinner at the Depot Deli and the next day at the Keasling farm for a second day of hunting.  Thanks to the great support by Fort Leavenworth Hunt, North Hills Hunt and Moingona Hunt, we had a full field and a great time.

Stratman Fundraisers Earn Plenty for Kennels

    If you missed Larry’s first fund raising opportunity, the Shrine Circus – don’t fret – Larry’s got his Football Pool ready to go so we can all sell chance books between now and the start of Big Red’s premier game.  Ticket books of 10 are $10.  The football pool earns over $600 a year for the hunt and the booklets are very easy to sell.  Call Larry to let him know how many chance books you will take.

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The Best of the West – History of the Horse Continues

By Anne Dolan, Conservation/Education Chairman

       The scene shifts from Asia and Europe to North America.  It is the 1500s and the Spanish are the mighty horsemen.  As we learned several articles back the horse had vanished from the New World in pre-historic times so the post-Columbian Spaniards had to bring their own mounts.  The explorer Hernando Cortez and his officers left Cuba in 1519 with 16 horses – 11 stallions and 5 mares.  Many more horses came by the boat-load to North America and De Soto and his men brought 213 mounts into Florida.  Many died during the explorations into the New World wilderness but many escaped into the wild.  In a true example of survival of the fittest the descendants of these first Spanish horse spread across the American Southwest and Great Plains.  The Spanish jennet – a mixture of European breeds and hotbloods from the Barbary Coast and Arabia were small (15 hands), light (800 lbs.) and had endurance and agility that suited them well for the conditions of western North America.

     These sturdy horses endured the fiercest elements without the help of Man.  They were truly wild – hence the name “Mustang” the Spanish word for wild.  They lived in small herds, traveling the plains led by a mature, strong stallion with a band of mares.  The stallion protected his band with flying hoofs and flashing teeth.  This fight could often end in the death of the weaker stallion.

     Before the Spanish brought their horses to this continent the Native Americans traveled on foot.  They had never seen these majestic beasts and were terrified of the armored Spanish rider and his flashy mount.  Gradually, however, the Native Americans saw the great value of the horse.  It could lighten his load, speed up his progress across the plains, be a partner in sport and war and enhance his personal and tribal wealth.

     As the decades passed a few horses came to be owned by Apaches, Navajos and Utes.  The Spanish Crown forbade colonists to trade horses to Native Americans so not until the long abused Pueblo Indians rebelled against the Spanish were great numbers of horses freed and left behind by fleeing colonists.  These horses spread among the Indian Nations of the Great Plains and Rockies.

     By the 1680’s the Shoshones, whose land was what is now Wyoming, adapted rapidly to the horse and all it could do for them.  Those that became riders broke away from the rest of the tribe and moved south across the plains to follow the source of their new partner.  The Utes called the Shoshones “Komancia” – or “our enemies”.  These Shoshones that had moved to horse country became known as Comanches and so the horse had created a new Indian nation.

     In the next generation the Comanche became great horsemen – perhaps the greatest in history.  Their horseback feats were amazing, their skills beyond belief.  The horse became the Comanches’ mighty weapon and the western settlers began to watch the ridges for the terrifying painted horse warriors.

Shrine Circus Fun and Profitable

     Eight performances and eight workers per performance – that’s 64 four-hour shifts to the tune of lions roaring, Elephants, acrobats, human canon balls, and motorcycles which were performing inside a giant ball.  We had great fun doing it, thanks to Larry Stratman who organized all and his support team – Jeff Ketzler.  (The two of them worked every shift.)  The following people filled all the 64 approximately 4-hour shifts – the real circus stars that brought in over $1,200 for GHH.   Add it up – these folks really turned out for GHH and the hounds and treasury are VERY thankful.

Larry Stratman, Jeff & Sue Ketzler, Van & Bette Ketzler, Ron Dudley, David & Vicki Krecek, Ann Schreifels, Hank Kogel, John Meahl, Kristi Wright, Patrick Strawbridge, Kim & Brad Pence, David Krecek, Ann Marquardt, Jim & Ann Dolan, Denise Jens, Jaymes Salestrom, Don & June Nelson.

Derby Day Fund-Raiser Planned

   Bill McGinn, Jaymes, Chris & Vem Salestrom are hosting a Derby Day party for the benefit of the hounds, Saturday, May 5 at the Salestrom residence.  Derby Day activities include a silent auction and door prizes.  Mint Juleps will be at 2 p.m. with a post time of 5:04 p.m.  Derby Attire is suggested, along with a $40 donation to the hound food, vet and kennel care fund.  Your $40 check is your reservation.  RSVP by May 1.

Day at Dolan’s July 15 – Fun for Riders & Equestrinons

    We had so much fun at Dolan’s last year during the first of “Three Great Weekends,” Anne and Jim have extended the invitation to GHHers and friends to another day of riding, fishing, swimming and barbecue.

   The date is Sunday, July 15 at Jimando Farms.

   Horse fun starts at 9:00 and runs all morning.  Cross country jumping course, a lake, field riding, a fun clinic and horseplay are slated for the morning.  Swimming and fishing in the farm pond followed by an afternoon cookout are planned. 

  To raise a little money for hound food, the event fee is $30.  ($15 for non-riders who would like to just come for the party and barbecue.   Watch for a mailing on a fun summer day.

Try a Vacation in the Sandhills – August 7 – 12

   GHHers and friends are invited to the Lazy AB ranch, courtesy of Mary and Tom Bequette.  The Batchelder ranch is located about 40 miles due East of Valentine – just north of the Niobrara River and due West of Springview.  It is about a 6.5-hour haul from Omaha – Less if you don’t have a trailer.   The ranch is a working Angus cattle ranch in Pine Ridge country so the scenery is beautiful  (it is immediately north of the Nature Conservancy land which is an ecological cross-roads of the nation.)     Bring your horse for the five days or just come have fun.  There’s hiking, bird watching, swimming in the small lake, bicycling on the Nebraska Cowboy trail and the famous Niobrara canoe and tubing rentals which pass Smith Falls are located just a half-hour drive from the ranch.  And then, of course, there is fun in Valentine and larger lakes in the area.  Limited space is available in the beautiful ranch house – or you can join a number of us camping – with shower and bathroom facilities in the ranch house. Cost is $75 per person in a room or $50 per person camping.  Kids under 8 sleeping in parents’ room free.

Call or e-mail Vicki Krecek for details 

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 Standing Ovation

     Here are some big thank-yous to people who have helped and/or donated things over the past year.  If we haven't already said thank-you, please know that we appreciate all you do.

·         Jeff & Sue Ketzler, and Larry Stratman for all the drinks at parties and whoopee wagons over the past year.  This includes donating, serving, prep time, and cleaning up glasses after the fact – no small task.

·         Gary & Jan Hustak for donating and installing windows in the Hunt Lodge.

·         Van Ketzler  & Brad Pence for getting us a working bathroom.  The women thank you.

·         The GHH staff who have helped out either riding on hunt days or walking and/or working hounds.  Thanks to Ron Dudley, Kristi Wright, Steve & Deb Frye, Wayne King, John Meahl, Vicki Krecek, Peggy Manes, Sue Ketzler, Max Tresnak, Karman Antill, and OUR ultimate huntsman, Jaymes.

·         Neil & Ver Keasling for opening their home and land to our trailers on numerous hunts this year.

·         Ron and Jenna Dudley for chairing the successful Hunt Ball and to the many people who donated items for the event.  Final tally – $5,100 for GHH.

·         Jeremy Maher, our kennelman, who has gone above and beyond numerous times, to help out with sick hounds, and his wife, Jennifer, for being understanding.

·         The board of directors for having to make some tough decisions this year.

·         Vicki Krecek for putting together an outstanding St. Patrick's Day weekend.  Everyone had a great time.

·         Anne Dolan for donating the grass seed and overseeing conservation and planting at the Kennels.

·         Kristi Wright and Patrick Strawbridge for donating furniture and planting ten new Cottonless Cottonwood trees.


And Congratulations to:

·         Rob, Maureen, and Lauren Mayer who have a new baby in their household.  Morgan was born Feb. 13. We can't wait to meet her.

·         Kristi Wright and Patrick Strawbridge on their wedding April 28 in Grand Junction, Colorado.

·         Sara Lapacek and Chad Hathaway who were engaged over Christmas.  Nuptials will take place this fall.

·         Jo Fullerton who graduates from Missouri in May. 

·         Leah Pence who graduates from Blair High School in May.

MFHA introduces new membership class

The MFHA has now opened membership to all those individuals involved in Foxhunting.  The MFHA is involved in all aspects of hunting and the fight to keep it legal both here and in Europe.  It’s a bargain at $35.00, so please consider joining.

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  "Which Pack of Hounds...

 by Ron Dudley
 Honorary 1st Whipper-in

 ...shows the best sport on their given day of judging."  This is the criteria that MFH Jim Nance, and Professional Huntsmen Larry Pitts and John Gray used in judging the 12 hunts that competed in the 2001 Western Challenge.  GHH, of course won this years event, and someone else can recap the glorious day we had, but I'd like to discuss what took place many months ago to get us ready to compete in this years Western Challenge.

 Ask anyone who puts on shows or performances and they'll tell you that "pre-production planning" is the most important, fundamental step in pulling off any effort in a smooth and successful fashion.  The pack we took out on April 5th totaled 14 couple of which 4 1/2 couple were 14-month-old unentered hounds, which had only been hunting a little over three months!
We have our anchor hound in Diesel and our lead hounds in Gauntlet (the Dame of our 4 1/2 unentered couple), Gaelic, Jules, or Bevel, but the steadiness of these young hounds has led to a stable, efficient and successful hunting Pack.  This just didn't happen with the wave of a magic wand!

 I would personally like to thank all of those who hunted with us on Thursday's as we always took puppies and were able to "open them up a bit."   While this helped the young hounds, the greatest reason for their fine development is due to the relentless and consistent puppy pack breaking and hound walking conducted last summer.  For this we can thank Bev Crouter, Juli Morrow, the entire Pence family, Jaymes Salestrom, Vicki Krecek, Wayne King, Karman Antill and John Meahl, but the greatest of thanks is reserved for MFH Sue Ketzler, Peggy Maness, and Kristi Wright.  All of us in this category walked puppies at least 30 times last summer with some of us besting 50.  For a while it seemed as though we were car-pooling to our evening second jobs!

Riding staff is one of the most exciting aspects of hunting hounds. And you can be a more effective whip when you get to know the names of, and have worked with puppies and hounds.  We are getting new puppies from Red Rock, so when MFH Sue Ketzler puts out her hound/puppy walking schedule, all staff members encourage you to participate as often as possible.  It will make you better staff, but more importantly this "pre-production" work will result in an even better pack and hunting next season.

For more information just e-mail to:

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