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River Hills Foxhounds Bring Cheer to Local Seniors

River Hills Foxhounds (PA) members in full hunt livery - with seasonal accessories - visited Quarryville Presbyterian Home earlier this month to share hounds, equines, and Christmas carols with the senior residents there. The festive group included Maybeline the mule, Dominic the burro, a tiny cur lap dog and plenty of foot followers of all ages to greet and perform for the delighted senior citizens.

Breed the Best to the Best and Hope for the Best

Last summer, we highlighted the pedigree and performance record of Hillsboro Brighton '12. With the season underway, we touch base again with huntsman John Gray, who shares some insights into hound evaluation and his breeding decisions for this bloodline: His recent Hark Forward Performance Trials Champion, Hillsboro Salty '15, has been bred to one of Brighton's sons. Here are his thoughts on various performance trials winners in that pedigree.

Maybeline the Mule Stands Out in the Field

Editor's Note: Reviewing photos to share on MFHA social media, we noticed a perfectly-turned out, long-eared equine in the galleries from River Hills Foxhounds (PA). We inquired and learned that Maybeline the mule is owned by Helen Stapleton, who shares some of her experiences with this unusual - but capable - field hunter: When I start talking about my mules, I don’t know where to start - or end. We currently have five mules.

The Rider's Delight

With a clipped horse and a whip in hand,
We ride across the open land,
Riding behind the blue tick hound,
Time for the fox to be found.
The huntsman's horn blows and we hear the hound’s cry,
Crushing the leaves under their feet, as they pass by.

Venerable Kennels, New Huntsman: Meet Norfolk's Alyse Phipps

Founded in 1895, Norfolk Hunt (MA) was one of the first recognized packs and its kennels are among the oldest in continuous use in the country. The club's early leaders helped found and foster the MFHA over 100 years ago, and despite intense pressure from suburban growth, its drag lines are laid along trails protected by members for generations. Alyse Phipps, in her first season as a huntsman, picks up the horn to lead this storied institution with enthusiasm, commitment, and gratitude.

Smithtown Hunt's Wittenborn and Socrates Win Field Hunter Championships

Following a drag line just a couple hours' drive from Manhattan and within reach of the salty spray of Long Island Sound might seem a world away from the northern Virginia mecca of traditional foxhunting, but the Smithtown Hunt - the last remaining pack on Long Island - prides itself on offering keen sport behind its Crossbred hounds. Member John Wittenborn proved his preparation was as good as anyone's when he and his Clydesdale-Thoroughbred, Socrates, earned top honors at the Theodora A. Randolph North American Field Hunter Championships.

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