With a mission of providing education and resources to youth and adults through immersive community engagement programs, the University of Tennessee’s Williamson County Extension Office is introducing two new opportunities for equestrians this October: an Equine Round Table Night and Youth Equine Management Certification.
On Thursday, Oct. 14, all horse-loving adults are invited to engage in informative discussions and Q&A with a panel of experts at the Equine Round Table Night at Battle Mountain Farm in College Grove. The panel includes Tennessee Commissioner of Agriculture Charlie Hatcher, Tennessee Equine Commission Chairman Monty McInturff, University of Tennessee equine specialist Jennie Ivey and Williamson County Extension Agent Matt Horsman, among others.
“Williamson County is horse country, and we recognize the need for proper education on equine management — both for beginners and longtime equestrians,” Horsman said. “Many individuals are moving from across the nation and are first-time horse owners; we want to help equip them to successfully care for their animals through connections in the Middle Tennessee equine community.”
As part of the event, Nashville Realty Group will be providing free hors d’oeuvres and cocktails for all attendees to enjoy. The event begins at 6 p.m., and tickets can be purchased for $25 by going here.
The Extension Office is also offering a brand-new Youth Equine Management Certification to students in third through 12th grades. With the first course beginning Monday, Oct. 18, the six-week program will teach students of all equine knowledge levels how to be responsible horse owners.
Covering a wide array of topics, from budgeting expenses to breed and temperament selection, routine care and more, the program will be taught by some of the best equine experts in Tennessee. Upon completion of the certification, students will be recognized by the United Farm & Co-Op, Bonnie’s Barnyard and Tennessee Equine Hospital when they are in need of local services.
“Taking care of a horse does not fall solely on the horse owner, but it is their responsibility to cultivate relationships with proper caregivers. These connections provide resources not only for food and supplies, but also for farriers, dentists, veterinarians and more that horses need,” said Christy Beattie, program coordinator. “The primary goal for this program is to equip students with the skills and resources to care for and budget for horse ownership.”
The certification program is $50, which covers the cost of all planning tools needed, as well as other items and discounts for students. Click here to register and learn more.
The Williamson County Extension Office offers a broad range of additional programming for equestrians, including the popular Tennessee Master Horse Program, clinics and workshops, farm visits, and more. Visit here to see the full list of equine services and opportunities provided by the UT Extension Office.