Fox Hunting Life with Horse and Hound

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Eyes and Ears

NormanCurrent news from around the hunting world is something Foxhunting Life readers appreciate, and we want to ramp up this part of our content by having more eyes and ears in place. Would you like to be a Regional Correspondent for FHL? Don’t say yes unless you know you’ll have a lot of fun doing it!

If you have your finger on the pulse of events among the hunts in your territory, we’d like to hear from you. We’re not asking you to write the news reports (although we’d be pleased if you would like to do that). Just give us the facts by phone or e-mail, and we’ll write the story.

Regional correspondents will earn a free subscription to Foxhunting Life for their efforts, along with the occasional gift of a book, CD, or DVD from our Bookstore. They will be listed on the site as the go-to person for news in their region and will have their byline on the story, if published.

Good News and Sad News with Personal Connections

DSC_0478Foxcliffe Hickory Wind greets her admirers with regal dignity.Two news items recently posted on the Home Page touch me somewhat personally—one joyous, one sad: the Scottish deerhound that won Best of Show at Westminster and the destruction by fire of William Frazer’s custom tailor shop in Ireland. What follows in this blog are just sidebars to the stories below. Scroll down to see them.

Foxcliffe Hickory Wind

As every dog person knows, Best of Show at Westminster is huge. Even so, foxhunting veterinarian Scott Dove was completely unprepared for the widespread exuberance, the congratulations, and the excitement of friends and strangers over his Scottish deerhound being anointed with that honor.

Scott is a long-time foxhunter and honorary whipper-in to the Old Dominion Hounds. My wife has been a client of his for her field trial Labrador retrievers. I wanted to meet Hickory and my first opportunity was a party at a local restaurant/pub in Flint Hill, Virginia.

Does Your Hunt Have a Song?

belvedere_houndsBelvedere Hounds drawn by D.T. CarlisleContinuing with our musical theme—songs of foxhunting—does your hunt have a song? Mine does. Yours could, too.

Somewhere around fifty years ago, the late Alexander Mackay-Smith, MFH found himself confined to the hospital with a broken leg from a hunting accident. With time on his hands, he set about composing a hunting song for his hunt. He took the music and theme of a popular hunting song, “Reynard the Fox,” and rewrote the lyrics using well-known places, features, and people from the Blue Ridge Hunt.

Plagiarism? Of course not! Virtually all the traditional hunting songs we know are retreads of even more ancient English and Irish nursery songs or folk tunes with hunting lyrics set to them.

If you have a poet in your hunt, give him or her our new CD, Songs of Foxhunting, and download the hunting songs—music and lyrics—from the website. Ask your lyricist to choose one of the tunes and rewrite the lyrics to memorialize a great hunt, to honor a special member, or to sing the praises of a revered Master.

MFHA Annual Meeting in NYC

kelly.ed.jim_duggan Ed Kelly is elected president of the MFHA.
Jim Duggan photo

The Annual Meeting of the MFHA was held Friday, January 28, 2011 at the Union Club in New York. A foot of snow had fallen on the city Wednesday night, yet when I arrived at Pennsylvania Station on Thursday, the north-south avenues were completely cleared. To be sure, the east-west streets were plowed only one lane wide with cars totally buried under snow on both sides, but the taxicabs were out doing "business as usual" and commerce carried on!

Edward Kelly, MFH of the Golden’s Bridge Hounds (NY), was elected president of the Association and commences a three-year term. Kelly succeeds outgoing president G. Marvin Beeman, MFH of the Arapahoe Hunt (CO). Jack van Nagell, MFH of the Iroquois Hunt (KY), was elected First Vice President and thus stands in line to become president after Kelly completes his term of office. Tony Leahy, MFH and huntsman of the Fox River Valley Hunt (IL) and the Cornwall Hounds (IL), was elected second vice-president thereby stepping into the line of succession to the presidency in six more years.

More Subscriber Benefits in 2011

norm_on_smasherFoxhunting Life loves its subscribers! To show our appreciation and to give you more value for your annual subscription, all FHL subscribers now receive an automatic ten percent discount off the list price on all items in the Bookstore: books, calendars, videos, and CDs. This new policy goes into effect immediately.

(And don’t forget, subscribers can post ads free of charge in our Classified Ad section as well.)

Thank you all for your enthusiastic reception of Foxhunting Life in 2010, our maiden year. We have more exciting offerings planned for 2011!

Where Do the Articles Go?

NormanReaders will notice, we hope, that FHL’s Home Page is continually being updated with new articles. As new articles are posted, the older material is pushed lower on the Home Page until it disappears. Or does it? No, it doesn’t! Not completely, anyway.

Note that each article on the Home Page has a category heading in red type, whether it be Art, Literature, Hunt Reports, People, my Blog, whatever. These articles can always be recovered under their appropriate headings under the Horse and Hound drop-down menu above, whether they are still on the Home Page or long since gone.

So, anytime you wish to see articles on a particular subject, or want to go back to an old article you remember seeing on the Home Page, just find the appropriate category in the drop-down menus and click!

A Gift Subscription to Foxhunting Life

NormanIf you’re scratching your head for another gift for your favorite foxhunter, how about a year’s subscription to Foxhunting Life? Your lucky recipient will enjoy total access to the next twelve months of constantly changing articles; news; book reviews; sporting artist profiles; hunt breakfast recipes; access to our Panel of Experts; calls on the horn video; songs of foxhunting; hunt reports from North America, Ireland, and England; photo galleries; bookstore; guides to correct hunt attire, hunting etiquette, glossary of hunting terms; travel directories for lodging, stabling, and hirelings.

Why there’s hardly an aspect of foxhunting for which FHL doesn’t provide entertaining or useful information! And we’re always coming up with wacky and fun new ideas, like downloading hunting horn calls for your cell phone ring tones and MP-3 files of your favorite hunting songs.

Here's How

1. If you are a subscriber, you must first logout by going to the "Login/Subscribe" drop-down menu at the upper right.
2. Click on the "Click Here to Subscribe" button at the top of the right-hand column.
3. Fill in the required information, choosing a username and password. (They will be able to change those easily, once they logon.)
4. Near the bottom of that screen there is a box labeled "Explain." Here you can type, "Gift subscription from (your name)" or any other message you would like us to forward to the recipient.
5. Complete the subscription process and you will have presented someone with total access to all the articles, news, and resources on Foxhunting Life as well as our bi-monthly e-letter sent to their email address.

Foxhunting Life wishes all our subscribers a very Merry Christmas, and we thank you sincerely for your enthusiasm over our new website as our first year draws to a close.