Vicki & Al Baturay
Alcinda & Priscilla Hatfield
After a long layup Redwing was feeling his alfalfa hay by giving Kitty Newman a very sprightly ride on the grassy trails of the Farm. Teresa Young joined Al and me on our carriage and helped serve the champagne at the rest stop on a lovely shaded part of the trail. Wayne Porter was joined by Anne Watkins and Alcinda & Priscilla Hatfield followed to complete the drive.
Afterwards, we all tackled the canopy which needs one person at each leg and one person in the middle to push up the tent portion. “Easy to assemble” say the instructions, right….. After much deliberation it was finally up. We then proceeded to load up the small table with spicy and mild Popeye’s Chicken, three salads; green, fruit and pasta, cheese and bread, chocolate cake, cookies, ice teas, water, beer and wine. The conversation was lively with stories and laughs all around. We also toasted Kitty and Redwing’s come back and hope to see more of them at future drives. We had so much fun it was around 4:00 PM before we realized it. ( writen by Vicki Baturay)
Eleven Members of the PDC went to Luray Caverns in Virginia on a muggy July day…..and what did they “discover?” Well, many things….the first is that you don’t have to be sitting on a carriage to enjoy one! The Carriage/Car Museum boasts a delightful collection of antique vehicles including many carriages and many more automobiles. It was fascinating to explore the striking similarities between early carriages and early cars…..the springs, wheels, body, “boot”, “bonnet” and dash boards were much the
same in every case. This is a collection well worth the trip for anyone who loves carriages! The price of admission also included a guided tour though the world famous Luray Caverns and access to The Museum of the Luray Valley as well as a model farm and many shops, etc. from a by-gone era.
A full morning’s worth of exploration left us with a powerful hunger so we motored over to the Mimsyln Inn, another historic landmark in Luray. Who knew they’d have a HUGE seafood buffet, a lovely private dining room and a 1930’s era jazz pianist waiting for us? (Probably Vicki knew….she’d done an “advance” on the restaurant because she understands that food is an indispensable component of every PDC gathering…..) The restaurant was marvelous, a perfect ending for a very interesting and enjoyable day!
The Carriage Driving Show held on July 5 at Morven Park boasted 50 entries – that is DOUBLE the number they had in 2013! Piedmont Driving Club Members Dr. Tom Burgess, Mary Munster, Lisa Andersen and Wayne Porter took home many of the ribbons!
The following day Members of the PDC joined with other driving enthusiasts to traverse 7-8 miles of well marked carriage trails that wound through the historic estate, once home to Westmoreland Davis, a former Governor of Virginia. We were again blessed with exceptional weather. There was enough of a breeze to discourage any flies and the temperature was comfortable for horses and people alike.As we neared the Mansion we came upon a small tent that over shadowed a table. Volunteers from the
previous day’s show greeted us with Mimosa’s and plates of delectables: prosciutto-wrapped melon, smoked salmon on crackers, mini-quiche, rugula, brownies, fresh fruit and other tasty bites.
We took our rest beside the expansive lawn, happy for the opportunity to chat with each other and enjoy looking at the large variety of turn-outs. A highlight of the day was the “gaggle” of VSE’s – so many participated, and each was cute, able and special in its own way. They served as a reminder of how versatile the equine is!
The Piedmont Driving Club was again invited to display carriages in connection with the Annual Independence Day Celebration at Great Meadow. It was a time of choices, however, so with the Morven Park Carriage Show occurring on July 5 members had to choose. PDC members Dr. Tom Burgess, Mary Munster, Lisa Anderson and Wayne Porter each decided that to do both would have been a bit of a squeeze so they opted for the Saturday Show. Despite this “split”, Club members will get back together on Sunday for a Pleasure Drive (and picnic!) over the expanded carriage trails at Morven Park.
Five turn-outs went to Great Meadow and what a “show” THEY put on! PDC member Molly Savage who is the Lead Groom for Team Cox turned out the Cox wheelers (aka the “Black Boys”) to an elegant auto-topped surrey. She and groom Veronica Demarest looked sharp in blue jackets, red striped ties and black bowlers. Carl and Caroline Cox sipped Champagne in the back seat, careful not to spill it on their best “bib and tuck”. Carl is still wearing his brace but we wonder if he isn’t being spoiled a bit
with Molly handling the reins. Al and Vicki Baturay turned out their solid gold Haflingers to a custom built wagonette, further adorned by guest (and PDC member) Adrienne Brooks who looked splendid in red white and blue. Tom and Barbara Wolf were once again a picture of elegance behind “Sheba” whose black coat glistened with every powerful stride. “Maya Luv”, the pretty Haflinger mare, pulled a Bird in Hand wagonette that was festooned in patriotic splendor and displayed several American flags. Marci guided her effortlessly around the course with Keith waving to the appreciative crowd. Lastly – but hardly least – came Sam Davis and guest Cynthia Hill, both in the colors of the day. Sam drove her bay Connemara mare, “Foxglove” to a British-made (of course!) competition gig. Foxglove made the trip around the Great Meadow course before a cheering throng of thousands in an OPEN bridle. Did I mention that Sam had bred, raised and trained this pony? She was absolutely flawless despite all the unfamiliar sights and sounds.
The weather was perfect, the crowd very enthusiastic and our trip around the famous race course was spot on. “How could anything be better than this?” we thought as we loaded up our trailers for the trip home. Those of us who returned for the evening’s festivities soon learned that things would just keep getting better and better… The Great Meadow Foundation had given the Club two rail spots and numerous parking passes in appreciation for our efforts. Club member Pat McCann was unable to participate in the carriage exhibition this year so she quietly volunteered to “host” at the rail. Have you ever felt like you were “guest of honor” at your own party? This is pretty much how we felt when we joined the tailgate! Pat and friends put together the most magnificent outside dining experience one could ever imagine. The tables were beautiful, there were chairs for all (for viewing the display of fireworks to come). The food was superb – fried chicken, grilled salmon, inspired salads, fruits, sweets
& savories….plenty of wine and summer drinks. Friend of the PDC, Erika Payne, set up a lap top that continually rotated pictures of our carriages as they travelled over Great Meadow. Such fun to watch! We thank Pat for attending to every detail of the party and adding her gracious touch to a lovely day.
Oh, and by the way, the fireworks were pretty awesome as well!