Delaware 4-H Horse of the Year!

And the Winner Is… Delaware 4-H Horse of the Year!

The Delaware 4-H Program is excited to announce the first winner of the Delaware 4-H Horse/Pony of the Year contest.  Jointly sponsored by the Delaware 4-H Horse Advisory Committee and the Peter Stone Model Horse Company, the contest offers 4-H members the opportunity to nominate a horse or pony as the Delaware 4-H Horse of the Year.  Participants were required to submit an essay of 500-1000 words on the topic of “My Horse or Pony has Made My Life or the Life of Others Better By…” along with 4 photographs of the nominated horse or pony.    Essays were scored based on the ability to answer the topic, the emotional and sentimental impact and meeting the essay requirements by a panel of 6 judges with equine backgrounds and experience as 4-H volunteers and educators.  Nominators were not required to own the horses or ponies entered.

The 2013 winner of the Delaware 4-H Horse of the Year is Ms. Christie Little, age 14 of Harrington, Delaware who nominated her 16 year old Hackney cross pony Missy.  In her winning essay titled “Horse of the Year? No, Horse of a Lifetime,” Little recounted the challenges she faced as a new, young rider with her first pony and how they translated to challenges she faced in the classroom at school.

“… I continued to take lessons on Missy.  Our relationship was as strong as always but she was beginning to respect me more.  In fact, I was beginning to respect me more.  I became the leader of our partnership and my confidence began to grow, not just in the ring, but also in the classroom.  I got over my shyness and became more outgoing.  My entire self-image did a 180 because of one special pony.  I no longer had trouble raising my hand in class or reading aloud.  It is amazing how my teacher from the barn helped with my teacher in the school…..She taught me so much, not just about riding and horses, but about being a confident leader, no matter where I am or the obstacles in my way.”

Christie will be presented with a custom made and custom painted model of her pony Missy at the Kent County 4-H Achievement banquet in October, generously created and donated by Peter Stone Model Horses.  For more information on the Peter Stone Model Horse Company please visit

The announcement and essay guidelines for the 2014 Delaware 4-H Horse of the Year contest will be available in October with an entry deadline of November 15, 2013.  For more information on how to enter, please visit the Delaware 4-H Animal Science web page