2013 Member Letter

Hello SJ/ODS Members,

 Happy New Year!!

Our “stateofjeffersondressage” website is being “re-vamped” at this time and is no longer active.  We hope to have it up and running soon, but until then email and the ODS website are our means of communication.  That makes it more important to check the ODS website often. The minutes of each SOJ Board of Directors meeting are posted there and until we resurrect the website that’s one of the best ways to keep up on things


We started with a Social, our annual end of the year party, at the home of Art and Sonja Biada on January 12.  The gathering was fun for all and the food was delicious as always.

 Coming up are four clinics with Jutta Schott.  These will be held at Destination’s End in Talent, OR.

March 16-17                                       August 10-11

May 18-19                                           October 5-6

Auditors are always welcome at no charge.

Contact Carol Taylor at 2taylors@dishmail.net for more information.

 Our League Show (SJD Spring Fling) will be held April 21 at Cygnet Farm in Talent, OR.  The prize list and entry forms are posted on the ODS website calendar. Or contact Elaine Thomas at selainet@gmail.com for more information.

 We are sponsoring a fully licensed DRESSAGE IN THE STATE OF JEFFERSON Dressage Competition once again on October 12-13, 2013, to kick off the 2014 dressage show season for our local riders.  The prize list and entry forms are posted on the ODS website calendar.  Our show committee is already hard at work preparing to make this our best show ever.  Contact Elaine Thomas at selaint@gmail.com or Michele Matzen at DQfrmhil@charter.net to volunteer your help.

 Once again we are hosting a special educational activity, an Adult Amateur Dressage Camp  featuring Jeremy Steinberg and Shauntel Bryant.  It will be held August 29 – September 1 at Destination’s End in Talent, OR.  Registration for riders opens to amateur chapter members only, June 21, 2013. Other amateur riders may register July 11, 2013.  Auditors are always welcome to attend at no charge.

 Alternating months are Board Meetings and Member Social Meetings.  The second Wednesday of every month has been set as a regular meeting time.  The next BOD meeting in February will be held on Wednesday the 13th, 6:00 PM at Round Table Pizza, Poplar Ave, Medford. The location is behind Fred Meyer on Crater Lake Hwy and next to JoAnn’s Fabrics.  Everyone is welcome and encouraged to attend.  THIS NOT A MEETING FOR BOARD MEMBERS ONLY!!  It is a business meeting for our chapter and all input is appreciated and welcome.

 Our next Member Social Meeting, scheduled for March, is still in the planning, but the date will be March 13th.  Put it on your calendar.  We hope we will be seeing you soon.

 Your SJ/ODS Officers and Board of Directors

  • Elaine Thomas, President
  • Michelle Woollard, Vice President
  • Michele Matzen, Secretary
  • Sherry Walker, Treasurer
  • Ellen Ahern, Board of Directors
  • Ed Miller, Board of Directors
  • Rachel Merusi, Board of Directors

Rachel Merusi


Rachel has been riding dressage since 1994 and upon graduating from OSU in 2000 became a certified riding instructor. She taught at Lake Oswego Hunt from 2000-2001. She has two horse rescue projects at home that she is currently working with and she looks forward to getting back into the show ring at some point. Her real job is an accountant with Republic Services.

Sherry Walker

doc and I at 1st showA horse crazy Navy Brat, my childhood exposure to horses was limited to Walter Farley’s Black Stallion series, an occasional summer in Montana either at my Aunt’s cattle/horse ranch or at my Grandmother’s selling nightcrawlers so I could rent a horse for the day from the local fairgrounds.

The Quarter Horse I purchased with my first “real” paycheck eventually led to acreage and ponies/horses for the whole family and after my kid’s riding instructor basically tricked me into trying dressage, I was hooked.  I had no idea what a wonderful instructor I had stumbled upon and Vicki Kelley-Wall provided me with the foundation and desire to become a better rider.

Running our own business and raising three kids kept me from any serious showing, but once we “retired” to our dream farm here in the Applegate and after a couple of years of homework, I started my small breeding operation with gentle, intelligent OTTB broodmares bred primarily to Iron Spring Farm’s WarmBlood Stallions.  My husband, Rob, also now enjoys being able to hay his own alfalfa and grass fields.  The economy has definitely had an impact on my plans, but I’ve managed to breed some fabulous fillies and geldings and to also find an extremely talented trainer in Cassi Soule to lease my barn and arena and to start my “babies” on their paths to becoming dressage stars (or at least super riding partners.)