A one-day pleasure show requires a manager, judge, ringmaster, announcer, recording secretary, entry-booth secretary, gate keeper and ring crew. A "floater" - someone to give others a
break or cover a no-shows - is necessary, too. "You can usually find some kids to hand out ribbons and be on the gate crew," Mullins notes.
Sit down with your group and brainstorm who should receive the prize list. "You need to build a good mailing list. Of course, the first show is the hardest. After that first one, you'll have the names and addresses of all the participants. But for the first one, form a think tank," she recommends.
Figure out what classes you'll have, the fees and the prizes.
Posting the prize list in tack shops, local gas stations and feed stores along with running a few classified ads will let people know of the upcoming show. Notify your local newspaper and appropriate equine publications.
Then, figure out the cost of producing the event. Mullins suggests starting with the hard costs, such as ribbons, ring rental and the public address system. "Get a rough idea of your expenses. Then set out about 90 days ahead of time to find class sponsors. Don't set the stakes too high."
Plan to get there early on the morning of the show; if the show starts at 9, your volunteers should be in place at 7, with the entry window opening at 8. "It's better for everyone to get there early and be ready than to be behind," Mullins advises. She rattles off a list of "must-haves" for show day, including entry forms, pencils and pens, stall cards, revised prize lists with sponsors' names, clipboards and refreshments for the volunteers.
Following the show, send the results to your local newspaper and send thank-you letters to volunteers, officials and sponsors. Update the entry lists for next year's event.