The Smith County Saddle Club has found a new home at the Ole Red Arena, located at 75 Sleepy Hollow Lane in Hartsville.
The decision to move the saddle club from Carthage to Hartsville came when the president of the club passed away, and the club’s vice president, Tracey Langford, became the new president.
“The fellow who was the president passed away last year,” said Langford. “Since I was vice president, they made me the president of the club. But the president of a saddle club is pretty much somebody with a tractor. And I said, ‘I don’t want to be hauling my tractor everywhere.’
“We were having problems with the dates up there at the park (in Carthage) where the saddle club was. If we got rained out, it was hard to get caught back up, because they would already have something else scheduled for the arena. But I told them I would do the club only if I could move it right across from my house. So, I sold my cows, bought some panels, did a lot of work, put up some lighting, and spent a bunch of money.”
Although the Smith County Saddle Club moved out of Smith County, the name will remain the same until this year’s competition season ends as the charter prevents a name change during the season.
“The Smith County Saddle Club was, of course, in Smith County,” said Langford’s wife, Angie. “But with the rules, it takes a while to change the name. So, it will be changed next year.”
Langford added, “Its name will probably go from being the Smith County Saddle Club to the Trousdale County Saddle Club at the Ole Red Arena. But I can’t change it until the end of the season this year. But that’s my plan.”
Saddle clubs throughout the state hold regularly-scheduled events so that members can qualify for the state show, which is held on Labor Day in Lebanon.
“People show their horses to qualify for the state show,” said Angie Langford. “It’s a big show for the Tennessee State Saddle Club Association (TSSCA).
“There are different classes. There are game races like barrel races, pole bending, flag races, and speed races. They (competitors) pay a membership (fee) and earn points at the show. They have to qualify at the county saddle clubs to go to state saddle club.”
However, members of the saddle club are not the only ones invited to the events, with the Smith County Saddle Club being open to spectators.
“There is no admission, so people like to come watch,” said Angie Langford. “You can get your chairs out of your car and watch the show. Plus, we have concessions. It’s very kicked-back. It’s really family-oriented.
“We have scheduled shows, usually, every other week, two a month. They’re on Friday nights during April, May, June and July. We have our scheduled shows posted on our Facebook page.”
For those hoping to attend a Smith County Saddle Club event at the Ole Red Arena, visit The Ole Red Arena, LLC on Facebook.
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