Sperryville column for April 25

The hallowed Hunter Pace

Susannah McNear Barnes on Clydesdale/thoroughbred mare  Fredericka clears the final jump and heads for the finish line Sunday at Greenwood Farm in the Rappahannock Hunt’s Hunter Pace. Photo by Marie Koestens.
Susannah McNear Barnes on Clydesdale/thoroughbred mare Fredericka clears the final jump and heads for the finish line Sunday at Greenwood Farm in the Rappahannock Hunt’s Hunter Pace. Photo by Marie Koestens.

Surely Gid Brown himself was looking down from above, smiling and enjoying the Rappannock Hunt’s Hunter Pace at the McNears’ Greenwood Farm last Sunday, a celebration of horse and rider spread out over his softly swelling land, hillsides lush with spring’s new grass and thick with clover.

The turnout was exceptional, and the day was filled with smiling children, young riders astride their hunt ponies and proud parents accompanying them and/or dashing to various jumps to capture the moment in photos to be shared with friends and family. The day was also filled with the athletic veteran hunt riders who enjoyed the more relaxed pace and engaging route at the McNear farm.

The Hunter Pace, also known as the pairs race, is an event derived from foxhunting intended to simulate riding conditions encountered during a hunt. Before the event, a team sets out to determine the pace, the time it would take during a typical fox hunt to complete the course – on the flat, meaning without jumps, and with jumps. Typically a hunt entails riding various gaits, through all terrain, woods and open fields, following hounds as they put fox to ground. The team that, on the day of the event,  completes the course at closest to the ideal time places first. Congratulations to all the entrants!

Nancy Weitz (left) and Jeanie McNear at the Rappahannock Hunt’s Hunter Pace races Sunday at Greenwood Farm in Gid Brown Hollow. Photo by Chris Doxzen.
Nancy Weitz (left) and Jeanie McNear at the Rappahannock Hunt’s Hunter Pace races Sunday at Greenwood Farm in Gid Brown Hollow. Photo by Chris Doxzen.

As of this writing (for final results, visit centralentryoffice.com), the division results included:

Fast time: 1. Patricia Rieff, Katherine B. Gray; 2. Tom Ackerly, Jerry Brown.

Optimum junior/adult over fences: 1. Allegra Solari, Pamela White; 2. Russell Moore, Preston Moore; 3. Nicole Stetson, Justin Haefner; 4. Caitlin Shalon, Kathy Rubin.

Optimum adult over fences: 1. David Massie, Kristi Wellington; 2. Pann Drunagel, Mary Ann Ghadban; 3 Suzanna McNear, Alison Howard Humes; 4. Alex James, Jen Grier.

Optimum flat: 1. Luke Haefner, Holland Driskill; 2. Cynthia Dailey, Jennifer Taylor; 3. Sharon Church, Nathan Church; 4. Margarete Stevens, Pann Drunagel.

Moo doings  

Most every weekend, I get what I like to call a Merry Moo fix. I like nothing better than to stop by Gail Reardon’s shop in Flint Hill, maybe just for crackers, perhaps a taste of wine or a coveted Dartagnan product for a special dinner, and always I enjoy a nice chat with her. It’s been fun to watch the progress of her tasteful shop. Sparingly furnished and stocked when she first opened, her store now has added a back room filled with gifts, art and more.

The shelves are brimming with delicious treats, chocolates, spices and oils, fine wines, fresh fish and local meats, with freezers filled with wild game, rabbit and boar, pheasant and more. Local products come from Rucker’s Farm for grass-fed ground rose veal, Thistle Hill grass fed ground beef, Barefoot Farm grass-fed pork and Trickling Spring Creamery’s organic milk, butter, ice cream, yogurt and pastured eggs.

Gail welcomes special orders and her weekly seafood specials are posted each Wednesday for Friday deliveries. Good luck to you, Gail, and best wishes for your continued success.

Thrifty at Samantha’s

As an aficionado of flea markets, thrift stores and all things consignment, I was thrilled to discover Samantha’s Thrift Store in Flint Hill just this past weekend. Patricia Calloway is no stranger to thrift stores, having owned one previously in Remington. This one is named after her daughter, Samantha. (The one in Remington was named after her other daughter, Kaylea Jenkins.)

Patricia’s brother, living behind the packing shed that once housed Ginger Hill Antiques, told her of a vacancy and so she moved on in. Her store is filled with children’s clothes, shoes and toys, furniture, knick knacks and much more. She has plans to open up her front parking lot to vendors and I’m sure will create a wonderful place for all to stop and peruse. We wish you the best in your new enterprise, Pat!

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Chris Green
About Chris Green 130 Articles
Chris Green (formerly Chris Doxzen) is an an executive recruiter by profession who enjoys exploring and writing about all things Rappahannock. Friends and neighbors with potential stories for her Sperryville column should email her at chrisdoxzen@gmail.com.