By Troy Smith
The American Endurance Ride Conference (AERC), the national governing body for endurance riding in the United States, will hold its 2008 annual convention in Reno, NV. The two-day program of seminars, informational meetings and a free trade show is set for February 29-March 1 at the Silver Legacy Resort Casino.
Leading experts in equine health care and endurance-related fields will be featured at several seminar sessions as part of the convention’s “Riding With Education” theme. Other highlights of AERC's convention will include a trade show featuring vendors from across the country. Regional awards will be presented at an evening reception on February 29, and the convention will culminate with AERC's national awards the evening of March 1.
"Endurance riders emphasize the health and well-being of their horses. That is necessary for both beginning endurance riders and national champions in the sport,” said AERC Executive Director Kathleen Henkel. "We invite people who are interested in learning more about endurance riding to come to convention, attend the seminars, and visit the trade show. They will get a wonderful education in the sport.”
Friday's seminar speakers include Susan Garlinghouse, DVM, who will discuss practical uses for recent research; Dane Frazier, DVM, will give his seminar on “There Be Dragons in Those Hills,” on being your horse’s advocate and protector during competitions; and Rob Keene, DVM, who will discuss new concepts for pain management in the equine athlete. AERC’s Education Committee will present “Moving on Up” for riders who would like to move up to longer distances.
Rallie McAllister, MD, will kick off the Saturday sessions with her “Riding for Life: A Guide to Lifetime Health and Fitness,” which is based on her “Riding for Life” book (which she will be selling and autographing at the convention as well). Dr. Frazier’s Saturday session will be on avoiding mistakes at rides; Dr. Garlinghouse will discuss the 10 things riders can do better. An “ask the experts” panel will follow, with an open Q&A session with some of the top endurance riders from around the country.
Seminar prices are $45 per day ($25 for each additional family member) if purchased before February 14; the prices go up $10 after the pre-registration period.
The trade show will be located in the Reno Events Center from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Friday and 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday. Vendors at the free trade show will display a variety of products for long-distance riders—everything from saddles to jewelry to horse trailers.
Also open to the public is the convention’s annual Friday night dance, which begins at 8 p.m. Tickets will be available at the convention for $10 per person.
Veterinarians can take part in the seven-credit continuing education program on Thursday, February 28 from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the convention.
Convention registration can be made by phone to the AERC office at (866) 271-2372. A complete convention overview and reservation forms are available online at www.aerc.org. The reservation line for the Silver Legacy is (800) 687-8733.
For information about AERC's upcoming convention or membership in AERC, visit www.aerc.org or phone toll-free (866) 271-2372.