It is with deep regret and disappointment that we must announce the cancellation of the 2017 Hickory Knoll CDE.
We received over a foot of rain in a week, rain that fell on already saturated soil. Poorly maintained city ditches caused over a foot of water to flow over our farm. We were inundated with around one hundred and fifty acre feet of water, that's about five million gallons. We not only are flooded, but debris swept in and has damaged facilities, clogged fields and left a mess that will take a month to clean up.
This has been a financial setback as well for our charity, which counts on two successful fund raisers to allow support for the various charities that request it. The Polo fundraiser scheduled for July 16, is also cancelled.
We will be issuing an email in the next few days regarding refunds of stall and entry fees. Many checks have not been cashed and will be returned or shredded. Where they have been deposited, we will be sending you refund checks.
We have contacted the City of Fitchburg regarding the lack of maintenance of the ditches in the area and will price some quite expensive infrastructure improvements to see if we can better insulate ourselves from flooding.
We had filled all available competitor spots this year with a record number of Intermediate drivers, four in-hands and a great revival of VSE driving. Drivers were coming from Oklahoma, Texas, Pennsylvania and all neighboring and near-by states. We had newspaper and magazine coverage and expected large crowds of spectators. In other words, the best event ever.
We may still apply for the Preliminary National Championship. The committee is looking at July 21 and 22 for 2018 or if we hold a championship, July 20-22, a three day event.
We will miss you all greatly the third weekend of July, miss seeing our friends and their horses, but we will push forward, knowing we have your support for the future of our shared event.
John and Betsy Freiburger
Jeff and Judi Raymond
Fred and Sarah McGibbon