Holiday games to play with your barn mates

It’s that time of year again; it’s cold in Philadelphia and seasonal depression is in full swing (at least mine is). The holidays can be hard for some folks and themed games at the barn can be a great escape. Of course you can do Secret Santas or White Elephants but here are a few holiday themed games to get the horses involved too. Play at your own risk.

Reindeer Run: This is a two fold event. First, you and your horse dress up (as much as the horse will allow) to look like a winter character; snowman, reindeer, Santa, the Grinch etc. The designated judge will vote on who is best dressed and that person wins a prize, like a bag of horse treats.
Next, there is a jump off (horses & riders keep their costumes on). At my barn we also dress the jump in tinsel, lights, candy canes and all things mysterious to the horses; this adds for an extra challenge and is not recommended for beginner jumpers or especially spooky horses. You all get in a line with your fearless leaders in front and start the jump at an X. Each round the jump gets higher and higher. The person who jumps the highest wins!

Egg and Silver Spoon: This one is exactly like the reindeer run except you are going to hold a spoon with an egg on it in one of your hands, making steering a challenge.  You start with a walk, trot, canter and anyone that still has the the egg in their spoon starts a jump off. The person who keeps the egg in their spoon the longest wins!

Holiday Dollar Bareback: This one is a favorite of mine. This game is also exactly like the reindeer run except you are bareback and there is money involved. Everyone participating will bring a $1 bill and place it under their thigh on the horse. You start with a walk, trot, canter and anyone that still has the dollar under their thigh starts a jump off. The person who keeps the dollar under their thigh the longest gets all the dollars at the end of the game.

Vinnie the mini in his Santa hat

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