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Halloween Jackpot hosts 100 riders in Stoughton

This event was open to all ages with the youngest rider being under the age of three.
Brooke Hodgson came from Milestone to participate in the jackpot with her 18-year-old appaloosa mare Lola

STOUGHTON - The Stoughton rodeo grounds came alive on Oct. 8, with its first Halloween 4D barrel jackpot. 

Trucks and horse trailers began to arrive around 10:30 a.m., and by 1 p.m., the grounds were packed with 100 horses and riders to turn and burn on the barrels. 

The Stoughton New Hope Horse Club (NHHC) put on the event with April Breault holding the reins, but it could not have been done without the help of Kim Hagen, Hannah Heaton, Janet Hall and Sarah Wright. They all worked endlessly to make this event the success it was. 

Breault is a barrel racer herself and with so many of the club’s riders taking part in jackpots all over the southeast corner, and the club leaning more towards gymkhanas, it made sense to host one in Stoughton. 

The NHHC had just participated in a Saskatchewan Riding Clubs Association event a few weeks ago, where most of the club’s riders took part in the gymkhana.  

Stoughton has beautiful facilities, according to Breault, and she decided on the Halloween theme when a friend of hers took part in a Saskatoon jackpot, which was also a Halloween theme and found it to be a great deal of fun. 

Although Stoughton has a nice arena, the entrance was on the side, which would cause the riders to come in on an angle, and that is not ideal when barrel racing. So, they opened the one end and placed sand for a much easier run in. 

Many riders came in costume which created a fun atmosphere, and prizes were awarded to the best dressed. For those that choose not to wear a costume, they required a western outfit. 

This event was open to all ages with the youngest rider being under the age of three. 

Great grandparents, grandparents, parents and friends came to cheer on their special person and with the weather being exceptionally nice, lawn chairs were placed around the arena. Several spectators were in their 90s and loved the cheerful atmosphere. 

Approximately 50 riders were entered in the open jackpot, along with 45 riders in the youth, 50 for pole bending and 20 in peewee. These numbers grew, as registration remained open until 15 minutes before the event started. 

It takes many volunteers and weeks of preparation to make an event like this come together. 

Due to the overwhelming success, Breault feels they will have several more next year. The response from sponsors and the donations received made this event what it was.  

Most jackpots like this are held over a two-day period, but the one-day event brought riders from two hours away. As this is one of the last events, and with the number of riders, it lasted into the evening.