November 16, 2006 -- Of the American Quarter Horse Association's (AQHA) 20 corporate partners, 10 sponsored the 2006 Regional Experiences, including some of the world's best-known companies and brand names.
"We've been very fortunate and pleased to be associated with that kind of strength throughout the industry--companies known to every household regardless of equestrian background," says Dee Dee Lundegreen, senior manager of corporate promotions for AQHA. "We couldn't be happier with our current team of corporate partners." Each of the 10 sponsoring companies was invited to set up a booth in the retail space of each Regional Experience event, giving them a presence at every venue.
Corporate entities partner with the AQHA because the organization is the largest equine association and the leading educational resource in the equine world, and they want to be part of that.
"AQHA's ability to reach across North America through the equine world is very strong," said Lundegreen. "Also, we're a great resource to our members and in return they give us great dedication and loyalty. We've found that all of our corporate partners are very pleased to be a part of such a great organization."
So what does such powerful sponsorship mean to attendees of the Regional Experience events? For horse show participants in 2006, it meant incredible awards through fifth place in each and every class. A Montana Silversmith belt buckle went to each class winner, a Weatherbeeta Rug Sac (set of three horse blankets) to second place, Justin boots to third place, Professional's Choice accessories to fourth place, and an American Quarter Horse Journal grooming kit to fifth place.
AQHA's team of corporate partners maximized the Regional Experience events with more than $135,000 in prizes. Beyond the very special prizes given out in each class, each Regional Experience high-point winner was treated to quite a thrill. Markel Insurance sponsored the All-Around High-Point prizes of specially designed TexTan western saddles for the novice youth, youth, novice amateur, and amateur divisions. In addition, each high point winner received 250 pounds of Nutrena horse feed.
Fabulous prizes and fun weren't limited to show riders, though. Farnam sponsored a social event at every venue, and exciting giveaways awaited any attendee who signed up for a chance to win, including Nutrena horse feed, a custom Innovator Rewards Vest from Fort Dodge, and a pair of Justin Boots. There was also the chance to win a two-day getaway to the 2006 AQHA World Championship Show, and for the trip winner, a chance to win a John Deere TS Gator during the World Show.
"The quality of the awards at these events was just astonishing," said Christine Weaver, the open all around champion from the Region 8 Experience in Tulsa, Okla. "It really helped make the show feel much like a national championship level show, but the opportunity for newcomers to take part gave everyone a chance at the fun and excitement."