Fox Hunting Life with Horse and Hound

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Caroline Hunt

caroline

Milford, Virginia, Caroline County.

Website: 


ferrer.mt vernon.cropFor several years Bob Ferrer, MFH, and Caroline Hunt members gave foxhunting demonstrations at Mount Vernon—another excellent venue for outreach that attracts visitors from around the country and the world.

One stop on Virginia’s Fredericksburg-area Historic Garden Week Tour this spring was at Chase’s End, the home and farm of Bob and Elizabeth Ferrer, Joint-MFHs of the Caroline Hunt. It’s quite a commitment to invite the world into your home and property, but the week-long tour has been a popular tradition in Virginia since 1927 when the Club decided to raise funds to save trees planted by Thomas Jefferson on the lawns of Monticello.

Today, funds raised during Garden Week are still used to restore and maintain Virginia’s historic gardens and to provide graduate level research fellowships. On Tuesday, April 30, 2019—the day scheduled for the tour at Chase’s End—the Ferrers hosted nearly 800 guests and staged a unique scene rarely experienced on Garden Club stops. Mounted Caroline Hunt members and staff rode out with foxhounds at 11:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. to demonstrate our sport to the uninitiated. What nicer way to introduce and promote foxhunting?

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tny cleopatraCanadian Grand Champion of Show is Toronto and North York Cleopatra 2012 / Mary Raphael photo

Two Toronto and North York littermates have dominated the Grand Champion and Reserve awards at the Canadian Foxhound Show for two years running. The only difference this year was that the dog hound graciously swapped places with his litter sister. On June 6, 2015, in a reversal of fortune, Toronto and North York Cleopatra 2012, last year’s Reserve Grand Champion, was crowned Grand Champion of Show, while her litter brother Clarence, last year’s Grand Champion, settled for Reserve.

The show judges were Major Tim Easby, Director, Masters of Foxhounds Association (UK) and ex-MFH and huntsman of the Middleton and West Yore Foxhounds and Lt. Col. Robert Ferrer, USMC-Retired and MFH, Caroline Hunt (VA).

Cleopatra's sire is Blue Ridge Barnfield 2010 by Duke of Beaufort's Bailey 2003. If Bailey sounds familiar, have a look at the article about this year’s Bryn Mawr Grand Champion, New Market-Middleton Valley Widget, crowned just one week earlier. Widget’s sire was Green Spring Valley Bailey by Duke of Beaufort’s Bailey. That makes two Grand Champions in two weeks whose grand sire is Duke of Beaufort’s Bailey!

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oatlands.ohiggins jones wallace sharp haightVirginia Foxhound Show, Oatlands, 1986: Huntsman Shelly O'Higgins receives trophy from Joan Jones (now President, Virginia Foxhound Club). Judges are (l-r) Captain R.E. Wallace, MFH, Exmoor Foxhounds (UK); Bun Sharp, MB, Nantucket-Treweryn Beagles; Sherman Haight, MFH, Mr. Haight's Litchfield County Hounds.

The venerable Virginia Foxhound Club—the team that brings you the Virginia Foxhound Show each year—is celebrating its sixtieth anniversary. It seems timely to look back, evaluate the importance of hound shows in the overall scheme of foxhunting, and convince those with a passion for the sport that their membership in the Virginia Foxhound Club, no matter where in North America they hunt the fox or the coyote, is an investment that will benefit all fox hunters and their hunts.

The Virginia Foxhound Show, the largest hound show in the world, brings foxhounds of all types and all strains to the flags for viewing, comparing, and judging. Whether a Master or huntsman is seeking certain bloodlines, or an outcross to introduce hybrid vigor to the gene pool within his kennels, he sees such hounds at Virginia. And he has the opportunity to socialize and chat, in a magnificent setting, about the merits and traits of the canine objects of his desire. With your support, the best matings may continue to be made in Heaven, but they’ll be arranged in Virginia!

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liveoakhannibalGrand Champion Live Oak Hannibal 2009 (Live Oak Hasty '06--Their Asset '03)   /  Jim Meads photoThe sixth annual Southern Hound Show, held on April 28, 2012 at Live Oak Plantation, Monticello, Florida was once again blessed with perfect weather. Ten packs from as far away as Tennessee and Palm Beach competed under the watchful eyes of Richard Sumner, MFH of the Heythrop Hunt in England and Dennis Foster, Executive Director of the MFHA. Robert Ferrer, MFH of the Caroline Hunt was apprentice judge.

English, American, Crossbred, and Penn-Marydels all show in one ring against each other. As there are two Crossbred rings at the Virginia Foxhound Show (based on number of hounds in kennel), this is the only occasion that Fox River Valley, Live Oak, Midland, and Mooreland go head to head in every class.

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