Activities, Memories and Introspection
by Karen Pickering, NWHS Publisher
As I write this column I am a week away from the first expo in March. The anticipation of seeing my customers, readers, and friends brings me great purpose and excitement. I love catching up with everyone and seeing what new things people are doing. I look forward to making new friends and seeing all the wonderful things the horse world has to offer.
Spring is loaded with opportunities to enjoy our horses. Our event calendar is full of fun-filled weekends. The Northwest has so much to offer horse people. I love watching new flowers peek up through the dirt hoping to soak up a little sunshine.
The first part of this year has been a sad one for me. I lost one of my dearest friends and my oldest brother. Theresa Buck passed away on January 22. She was my first riding instructor and trail companion. We had many great rides together, like the Wagon Train for Washington’s Centennial in 1989. I lost my brother, David Bell, on Valentine’s Day. Born in 1943, he had a passion for life and always enjoyed it to the fullest.
Instead of dwelling on the sadness, I choose to celebrate their lives and remember the good times. I will miss them but always remember the best parts about them. I say this to remind us all to not put things off and to live life to the fullest. Do it, have fun, and never look back!
This month I want to celebrate a new friendship. Heidi Snider Kauffman is a Hunter/Jumper trainer and instructor I met at the Purina conference in Missouri last September. Read Heidi’s story this month on page 6. She’s a multi-talented woman with a passion for life.
I hope to have the chance to meet you someday. It’s been a privilege to work in this industry for over 21 years. I have no regrets and look forward to many more years of our ever-changing landscape in the industry. Who would have thought 21 years ago we’d be reading our magazines on a cell phone? I still prefer the printed copy but times are changing and we’re riding the wave. Have a great April and enjoy the ride!
Quote: Take control of your destiny. Believe in yourself. Ignore those who try to discourage you. Avoid negative sources, people, places, things and habits. Don’t give up and don’t give in. ~ Wanda Hope Carter, Author and Artist
Owner/Publisher Karen’s lifelong love of horses began at a very early age when she wore out a couple of rocking horses before convincing her parents to get her the real thing. That ill-tempered bay gelding, Brandy, was a challenge for the young horsewoman, but it drove her ambition to become a horse trainer. After attending Canyonview Equestrian College’s Horsemanship Program, Karen realized she needed work that was a little more lucrative than training, so she took a job with Customs Brokerage to pay the bills. There, she discovered an affinity for computers and a talent for creating informative, entertaining newsletters. The Northwest Horse Source began as such a letter in December 1995, with a distribution of 1000 copies for its 12 black and white pages. Since then, it has grown into beautiful, all-gloss magazine with the largest coverage of any free equine publication in the Northwest – a distribution of over 16,000 copies and over 600 locations monthly. Not bad for the results of one woman’s dream to work with horses!
Today, Karen remains involved with every aspect of the magazine and treasures the community of thousands who share a common passion. Somewhere in the wee hours of the early mornings and late evenings, she still finds time to care for April, her gorgeous and sweet-tempered Quarter Horse.