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Exciting Events, Music, Food, Shopping Opportunities and Concert Make the Laurels at Landhope Autumn Celebration A Great Family Outing!

West Grove, PA—July 28, 2003—The Laurels at Landhope will hold its annual Autumn Celebration Weekend with the National AKC Tail Blazer’s Fall Dog Agility Trials, performances by the highly-popular Barbone Street Jazz Band, unique shopping opportunities and world-class equestrian driving competition.

The Laurels at Landhope, September 5-7 in West Grove, PA, hosts international competitors from Canada, Mexico, and the United States, all of whom are competing for the Federation Equestre Internationale (FEI) North American Top Driver Award. Important national and international competitions including the 2003 USA Equestrian Pony Championships, the Martin Auctioneer/Kuhnle Carriage North American Single Horse Challenge, and the FEI North American Single Driving Challenge. The Laurels is also a United States Equestrian Team (USET) Selection Trial for World Championship teams.

New to the Laurels at Landhope Autumn Celebration Weekend this year is the National AKC Tail Blazer’s Fall Dog Agility Trials. The Dog Trials is an exciting event in which dogs and their handlers must rely on hard training and good communication skills to perform feats of speed and agility.

The popular Barbone Street Jazz Band will perform on Sunday afternoon in a concert that will be broadcast live by Chester County Radio Station WCOJ. The band, under the direction of Steve Barbone, includes Glenn Dodson, formerly the principal trombone player with the Philadelphia Orchestra, guitarist Sonny Troy who performed with Peggy Lee and is the music director for Bobby Rydel’s Atlantic city performances and Ace Tesone on bass. Tesone played and recorded with legends in jazz including Clifford Brown, Mel Torme and Billie Holiday. The band has appeared at the Kimmel Center, the Berks Jazz Festival, West Chester University Jazz Festival and in June of this year, opened for the Preservation Hall Jazz Band at the prestigious Clifford Brown Jazz Festival in Wilmington.

“We are really excited about this year’s venue,” said event director Jamie O’Rourke. “With our exciting driving competition, dog agility, the Barbone Street Jazz Band and great shopping, we offer something for everyone.”

The Trade Fair will offer unique antiques, jewelry, apparel, collectibles, picnic and carriage appointments and farm and garden items from a large array of vendors. Polo shirts and caps in trendy colors embroidered with the Laurels at Landhope logo as well as the 2002 Highlight CD and maps of the Cheshire Hunt Country will be for sale.

A combined driving event involves three separate carriage-driving phases: dressage, marathon, and cones. The dressage phase, held on Friday, is a test of precision, elegance, and obedience that the driver demonstrates with his/her team of horses. The team of horses must demonstrate freedom of movement, harmony, and impulsion.

The marathon, held on Saturday, tests the stamina and fitness of the horses and the judgment of pace and horsemanship of the driver. The marathon presents a 22-kilometer obstacle course that each team must negotiate at high speeds. The course is divided into sections that test speed, agility, and negotiation of obstacles. Horses and drivers face such obstacles as water crossings, tight twists through trees, and fences with narrow openings. The marathon is a breathtaking challenge that thrills longtime fans of the sport as well as first time viewers.

Cones is an exciting phase that tests the driving teams’ ability to negotiate an intricate course of cones. With only six inches of clearance between the cones and the carriages, this part of the combined driving event requires skill and accuracy. Narrowly spaced pairs of traffic cones, right angles or U-turns made of raised rails, and a wooden bridge that rumbles as the carriages go across are all part of the challenge on a cones course.

The Laurels at Landhope benefits the Brandywine Conservancy, the Cheshire Hunt Conservancy, the Large Animal Protection Society and the University of Pennsylvania New Bolton Center.

The Laurels at Landhope is conveniently located on Wood View Road in West Grove only one-mile from Rt. 1 and Rt. 41. Parking is $10 per car per day or $15 for three days. Admission is free.

For further information, please call Mrs. James F. O’Rourke, Jr. at 610-486-0710 or visit


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