Equifest Program 2023
LEGENDARY KANSAS HORSEMEN
KAREN RUSSELL Karen Russell is a resident of Hutchinson, Kansas. She graduated from Hutchinson Community College with an Associate of Arts degree to teach school, a Bachelor of Arts Education from University of Colorado Boulder, and a Master of Special Education from Wichita State University. Horses have been a part of her life beginning at 3 years old. Her grandfather gave her a pony. Education kept her reaching for her goals and teaching for 24 years. Karen began competing at Kansas Western Horse Shows.She was high point woman for 4 years. American Quarter Horse Association shows would be her next competition. She used her teaching skills to train students and their horses to compete successfully. Karen conducted clinics throughout the United States, Canada, Israel, and Switzerland. Karen applied for an AQHA judging card. She continued judging shows and offering clinics for 40 years. She sold her 50-year training stables 2 years ago and moved to town. Karen continues to give lessons today. Karen had two children: Amy, now deceased, and Burke, an athlete. Amy was successful as a high point KQHA youth, Youth Champion, reserve high point at the Congress show and earning awards for com peting and achieving points in several categories. Amy was able to help with clinics and horse shows, training horses and riders. Throughout the years, Karen has collected pic tures of family, friends, and students. Her basement (35' x 65') has photos and pictures on all walls plus three circle stands with awards and pictures. Karen's gallery is almost finished. Karen's new goal is to write and share her new book, As the Walker Turns ----many stories many stories.
BULL PARKER Although Bull was born in Oklahoma City, he has been a Kansan since his young childhood. His greatest influence in his life was his maternal grandfather. "Pa" still farmed with horses and was always breaking in a colt for either driving or riding. Pa would hitch the colt to an older finished horse and then throw Bull up on the colt thinking that the colt really wasn't going to go anywhere. They broke in and trained many horses together. When Bull moved to the farm, he was always around horses, coon dogs, and coon hunting at night. There was no TV in Pa's house, so Bull spent his time playing in the barn, riding horses, and hunting. After graduating high school, Bull became a Marine. After his service, he became a Union Ironworker. He team roped in his spare time, com peting in the Kan-Rope Association. In 1986, he met his future wife Sandy Bryant. Sandy was the Fine Arts Specialist for the city of Topeka and showed American Quarter Horses in her spare time. They had both sold saddles and tack and discovered that they shared a love for fancy handmade bits. Their business, Bits and Blankets, soon turned into a full time job for Sandy. For several years they bought and resold bits handmade by renowned bit makers. One day, Jerry Cates told Bull that he should enter the bit making trade and
proceeded to teach Bull. About that time, he met Don Rogers, who took Bull under his wing and taught him more tricks of the trade. After that, things just progressed until Bull was a full time bit maker, with Sandy hand sawing all the silver for the bits and spurs. Ten years ago, they added a full-time associate, Hilario Reyes. The three of them work full time making bits and spurs that are balanced correctly and work correctly. They still make time to "horse around," and Bull participates in trap shooting as well. Bull’s only regret is that he didn't start building bits and spurs 30 years earlier.
BRAD LUND Brad Lund lives in LaCygne, KS with wife Amy and son, Garrett, where they own and operate Lund Performance Horses. Brad specializes in working cow horse and roping. Brad is a 17-time American Quarter Horse Association World Champion and has won the American Quarter Horse Association Super Horse three times. Brad has a lifetime earnings of $960,000.
Dr. Stan O’Neil, Facilitator
22 v 2023 EquiFest of Kansas Official Program
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