May 24 • 07:16 PM

Saddle up for memorable ride

April 21, 2010
When Carol came Saturday to "purty-up" my hair and Bob planted some hosta plants, they said Alan was rolling the lawn down at the pond. Immediately I knew (or thought I knew) what Daisy and I would be doing Sunday afternoon. I love going down there in nice weather with the Sunday papers and a good book. But, Mother Nature showed me who was boss and I settled down to look through my 1998 through July 2002 scrapbook of columns. Luckily some of my scrapbooks were on higher shelves and the flood of 2009 didn't get them. Yes, the 4-H Saddle Club produced many great memories and this one is titled, "4-H Saddle Club, the 'Bordman Road Gang.'"

"During the summer the club met every Thursday morning in our practice ring in the pasture. It always thrilled me to see those wonderful kids riding around the corner of Hough and Shoemaker Roads to our farm. The "Bordman Road Gang" was something to see...the Willings, Bristols, Teals, Blooms, Schultz. Dr. John Thompson brought a truck load from Lapeer. They came from the north and west also. And would you believe, hardly a registered horse in the bunch. Ed D'Arcy was a dealer and would go south and bring back a load. It was just plain fun.

"Ed would work with the drill team and Red worked on the show ring performance. While they were practicing, I would make chocolate chip cookies and Kool- Aid. They were all set out on a card table beside the garage by the time the kids had their horses tethered. One time I didn't get the cookies made and put out some store cookies. They all ran to the table, stopped short. Most of them just turned and walked away. I never tried that again.

"In the fall we allowed the kids to throw away all they had learned during the summer. It was time for what we called "Fun Days." Those were held Sunday afternoons with the cooperative lunch following or sometimes a hotdog roast.

"Teams were chosen with names such as Bronc Busters and Barrel Benders and events of Barrel Bending, Relay Race, Speed and Action, Bag Race, Boot Race and Egg Race. The losing team had to entertain the winning team. One year we went to the "Block and Bridle Show" in East Lansing. Another time we went to Bud Guest's evening "Guest House" program over WJR The Goodwill Station. That was March 6, 1959. Club President Lee Brooks presented Bud with an ash tray with a leather inlay tooled by Dale Marsh.

"We loved trailrides. One of the favorite trailrides was what we called our "Blossom Trailride." It was a nice way to start our season of activity. The rides were usually through the Bristol Orchards with a potluck at one of the Bordman Road Gang's home. Sometimes it was on Mother's Day.

"Sometimes we had breakfast trailrides. Carol and I were up with the birds frying bacon and sausage those Sunday mornings. Foster Jones would join us and give devotions especially prepared for his younger audience. The kids (and everyone) loved him. We didn't want to deprive anyone of their Sunday worship. Then off down the roads (no traffic then) and trails. George Juhl always had good ideas for our rides."

Yes, those are great memories and thank you for letting me share them with you. As I said last week, those were the best years of our life. Our kids, their friends, horses and cooperative parents. If you have kids, horses and their friends, try will be blessed...honest.

-Country cousin

Castle Creek
Milnes Ford
05 - 24 - 19
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