Sunday is the Day of the Horse, a free annual celebration sponsored by the Chatsworth Neighborhood Council that offers fun, lots and lots of horses, food, crafts, stick-horse making and a community-wide student art poster contest.
Festivities, which center on the theme of “Having Fun Safely with Horses,” begin at 11 a.m. and end at 3 p.m. at Stoney Point Ranch, 10862 Andora St. in Chatsworth.
Barrel and pole racing, jumping and reigning events are planned along with a bareback rider and a rider without a bridle, an extremely difficult feat.
Vendors with horse-related items are expected, along with a team that rescues horses in distress.
Sheriff George will be on site with his jail. Have someone you'd like to see thrown in the pokey? For a $1 donation, Sheriff George will serve the warrant and haul them off to the slammer. It will take another $2 to get that person out. All donations benefit the Chatsworth Historical Society.
Hundreds of visitors are expected, said Mary Kaufman, chair of the equestrian committee of the Chatsworth Neighborhood Council.
Kaufman said the Day of the Horse started eight years ago when a local politician declared the month of April as “Horse Safety” month.
“This gives the community a chance to know their equestrian neighbors,” Kaufman said.
Chatsworth is known for its horse-related heritage.
The Chatsworth Neighborhood Council continues to fight to maintain the equestrian way of life and large lots in the community.
Sponsoring the Day of the Horse is the single, largest expenditure made by the Council this fiscal year. It is a celebration of the equestrian history and lifestyle in Chatsworth.
One of the goals of Day of the Horse is to teach the youth about getting involved with horses, which can be a rewarding way to learn new skills and develop a relationship with a fascinating animal.
It is also a chance for Chatsworth to strut its stuff, one of the few communities in Los Angeles that has a sizable horse population, and at one time, the heart of the western movie industry including Stoney Point itself.
Cowboy movie star Roy Rogers owned a ranch in Chatsworth and Gene Autry and others were often filming at the Iverson Movie Ranch.
Student safety-poster contest winners will be honored at 2 p.m. with presentation of awards.
The first place overall winner receives a ribbon and perpetual trophy. Awards will be also given to the 1st through 3rd place winners in the kindergarten, elementary and middle school categories. Winning posters will be displayed.
Hundreds of entries were submitted and judged by the Chatsworth Neighborhood Council earlier this month. The contest was open to any child in grades K-8 who attends school in Chatsworth, or lives in Chatsworth, or whose parents or grandparents are Chatsworth residents.
This year’s overall winner is Sieng Ly, an 8th-grader at Lawrence Middle School. The theme of Sieng's poster was “Wrapping reins or lead rope around your hands or body is dangerous.”
Special Artistic Merit, “My Life is in your Hands,” goes to Maeve Martinez, a 7th-grade student at St. John Eudes Elementary School.
1st Place, K-2, 1st-grader Marc Francis, St. John Eudes Elementary School
2nd Place, K-2, kindergartener Trystan Sprenger, Germain Street School
3rd Place, K-2, 2nd-grader Dana Sullivan, Germain Street School
Honorable Mention, K-2, 2nd-grader Simon LaGrange, Germain Street School
Honorable Mention, K-2, 2nd-grader Santoshy Mehra, Germain Street School
1st Place, 3-5, 3rd-grader Quinn Salzberg, Germain Street School
2nd Place, 3-5, 4th-grader Trinity Huynh, Germain Street School
3rd Place, 3-5, 3rd-grader Brianna Alviz, Germain Street School
Honorable Mention, 3-5, 3rd-grader Kartlin Salzberg, Germain Street School
1st Place, 6-8, 6th-grader Cindy Costello, Lawrence Middle School
2nd Place, 6-8, 7th-grader Danna Gonzalez, Lawrence Middle School
3rd Place, 6-8, 7th-grader Chelsea George, Lawrence Middle School
Honorable Mention, 6-8, 8th-grader Yessenia Barajas, Lawrence Middle School
Honorable Mention, 6-8, 6th-grader Martin Morales, Lawrence Middle School
Honorable Mention, 6-8, 7th-grader Amy Soto, Lawrence Middle School