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Gonzales to teach horse classes

A West Coast horseman, Raye Lochert of Raye Lochert Horsemanship, based in Santa Rosa, Calif., will conduct equestrian clinics in Grovetown and Aiken on Sept. 25-28.

His wife, Sharon, said that his motto is, "Training for Respect with Respect," and that the clinics will focus on confidence and horsemanship.

"Raye would like both horses' and people's confidence to be raised," she said. "When people have more confidence, their horse has more confidence. And then it allows the time with their horse to be more enjoyable."

The meet and greet session on Thursday will be a question-and-answer session in which equestrians can ask Raye Lochert about training issues.

Although space for the Friday clinic will be limited to eight 4-H youth from McDuffie and Aiken counties, Sharon Lochert said, "Anyone who wants to come and watch is welcome."

There will be no charge to observe the clinic, she said.

Raye Lochert will conduct a problem-solving seminar Saturday at Canterbury Trails Equestrian Center and Riding Stables in Grovetown with Dearing trainer Gilbert Gonzales.

The two trainers will alternate every hour to demonstrate problem-solving techniques with horses.

Mr. Gonzales said the demonstrations will include how to stop a horse from biting, how to get a horse's head down to accept a bridle and how to load a horse calmly and correctly into a trailer.

He said he would like for the participants to learn how to be gentle and patient with a horse.

"Horses have people problems. People don't have horse problems," said Mr. Gonzales. "Nine times out of 10, if there's something going on with a horse, it's a problem that we as humans have given them."

Anyone who signs up online to observe the Saturday clinic can bring a friend for free.

The final clinic, Confidence in Horsemanship, on Sunday will be open to all breeds of horses and all levels of riders.

"Children are welcome to participate if they have the ability and attention span to work from 10 to 4," Sharon Lochert said.

The 4-H youth from McDuffie and Aiken counties will sell morning refreshments and lunch at the Saturday and Sunday events as a fundraiser for their organizations.

Sharon Lochert also said they will remain in the area Monday and Tuesday to conduct additional horsemanship classes.

"We just want to see what people are interested in, and Raye is available for private or group lessons," she said.

Horsemanship clinic schedule

6-7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 25 - Meet and Greet; Boots, Bridles and Britches, 325 W. Robinson Ave., Grovetown - No charge

5-8 p.m. Friday, Sept. 26 - 4-H Horsemanship Clinic; Boots, Bridles and Britches, 1310 E. Pine Log Road, Aiken - (Limited to eight 4-H youth from McDuffie and Aiken counties) $10 per participant with a horse; no charge for observers

9 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 27 - Problem-Solving Seminar; Canterbury Trails Equestrian Center and Riding Stables, 5581 Wrightsboro Road, Grovetown - $25 per person for observers; $75 fee to work with a horse

10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 28 - Confidence in Horsemanship; Canterbury Trails Equestrian Center and Riding Stables, 5581 Wrightsboro Road, Grovetown - $175 per person with a horse; $15 observer fee

Participants can register for all events online at or by contacting Katie Ard at

(803) 439-4040.

Web posted on Thursday, September 18, 2008

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