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American Paint Horse Association membership reaches new all-time high

Passion for American Paint Horses spurs continued growth for APHA

FORT WORTH, Texas-In 2002, the year during which the American Paint Horse Association (APHA) celebrated four decades of achievement, membership in the organization reached an all-time high of more than 104,000 members in 37 nations. The number represents an 8 percent increase over the previous year's membership total.

Beautiful American Paint Horses continued to grow in popularity in 2002, as APHA recorded registrations at a remarkable rate and hit an all-time high in total membership. (APHA photo)

In addition, the total number of horses registered by the association climbed to nearly 710,000, as APHA continues to register American Paint Horses at a remarkable rate. In 2002, APHA registered more than 60,000 American Paint Horses-a nearly 6 percent increase over 2001's total.

"We continue to see a membership that remains strong and committed to a breed that has come a long way in a fairly short period of time," said Jim Kelley, APHA executive secretary. "In 2002, through the cooperative effort of APHA's membership and staff, the American Paint Horse breed has received the respect it deserves around the world.

"Through their record numbers, our members have said loud and clear that APHA is the association they want to be affiliated with," Kelley continued, "and our registration numbers continue to make us one of the fastest-growing breed registries in the world."

Following are other APHA highlights for 2002:

… Legacy Of Color, a larger-than-life-size bronze statue of four Paint Horses was unveiled at APHA's headquarters in Fort Worth, Texas, to commemorate the association's 40th anniversary.
… Legendary artist Orren Mixer completed a vibrant new painting, titled The Sire, for the association.
… The APHA Breeders Trust Program reached an all-time high with more than 900 stallions subscribed to the breeding incentive program.
… At the racetrack, Paint Horses broke out of more gates in 2002 than ever before, with 641 starters competing for $4.2 million in purse money at 723 races. The number of races was up 39 percent, and the purse total was more than $1 million higher than that of the previous year.
… APHA's "Paint-Preferred" incentive money totaled approximately $100,000 in 2002, encouraging people to get out and show the world what Paints can do in the competitive arena.
… The World Championship Paint Horse Show attracted more than 1,800 horses in 2002, with more than 4,500 entries logged.

… APHA promoted Paints to a worldwide audience, with coverage around the globe. The association also launched some innovative promotional campaigns, which resulted in:
o widespread recognition of the Legacy of Color bronze sculpture, which was featured on the cover of 1 million SBC Greater Fort Worth Yellow Pages directories. It is estimated that the directories will be used 83 million times this year.
o a partnership with Six Flags Over Texas in Arlington, to produce an exciting and educational Wild West Show featuring several outstanding Paint Horses. The show was seen by 2 million people-half under the age of 18. As part of its promotional efforts with the amusement park, APHA and Paints were featured on several million McDonald's place mats.
o an honorary APHA registration certificate issued to Rain, the animated mare in the DreamWorks production of the hit movie Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron.

… The Paint Horse Journal continued to be a premier publication in the equine industry, earning the prestigious 2002 Vaquero Media Publication Award from the National Reining Horse Association and the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum. The Journal was also presented the 2002 General Excellence Award by American Horse Publications.
… More than Color, a fascinating new book by Frank Holmes about foundation Paint Horses, was made available by APHA.
… APHA hosted its first Paint Horse 101 grass-roots clinic. The attendees, who came from four U.S. states, overwhelmingly recommended the association continue it in the future.
… APHA added new corporate and World Show sponsors in 2002. They include the Kent Group, Atwood Hat Company, Pro Stepps, Stübben, Boulet Boots, Metro Golf Cars and Circle Y of Yoakum.
… APHA members made more than 3.6 million electronic visits to the APHA On-Line service, which gives them free access to the association's extensive database. Visits were up 20 percent over the previous year's. Additional pages on the association's Web site attracted more than 1.5 million visitors in 2002.
… APHA promotional material has been translated and published in Spanish, German, Italian and French as the association continues to expand its global outreach.
… APHA representatives visited and strengthened relationships with Paint Horse owners in Germany, Italy and Brazil in 2002.
… The association established procedures for a new APHA international appendix registry.
… A new show manager seminar was conduced in Europe, a new apprentice judge program is underway and an educational judges academy had a very successful debut in December. APHA offered assistance at 23 different shows in 15 U.S. states and two other nations through its show assistance program. All of these programs are designed to improve the quality of judging and shows around the world.
… APHA added a new national trail ride in Iowa in 2002 and hosted more rides than ever before. In addition, to meet the needs of recreational riders, the association published a free Guide to Recreational Riding.

… APHA capitalized on the enormous successes of Paint owners, breeders and trainers during the year by promoting the stories of:
o Macho Town Chica, the first Paint Horse to win an APHA Supreme Championship in the last 10 years.
o JR Red Diablo, a fiery Paint stallion who won the National Cutting Horse Association Super Stakes in Fort Worth, Texas, with rider Chubby Turner aboard.
o Buster Record, the 2002 Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association World Steer Roping Champion, who accomplished the feat on his Paint Horse, Annvers Easy Blue.
o Scottie Hairston and his Paint Horse, Docs Too Boots, who took first place in the Number 9 Shoot-Out at the United States Team Roping Championships National Finals in Oklahoma City last fall.

APHA continued to communicate with its members and distribute information about the association and Paint Horses at record levels. APHA's in-house mail center handled more than 1.3 million pieces of mail in 2002, up 39 percent over the previous year's total.

For more information about the American Paint Horse and APHA, visit, or call (817) 834-2742, extension 788.


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