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HITS Opts For Perfection By Postponing The Premiere Of Its Saugerties Horse Shoe Facility

SAUGERTIES, NY (April 4, 2003)—Horse Shows In The Sun (HITS), producer of five hunter/jumper horse show circuits nationwide, announced today that the projected completion of its world-class horse show facility in Saugerties, New York, will be extended to May of 2004. The much anticipated premiere of the facility was originally scheduled for early summer 2003, however, a number of uncontrollable factors have resulted in the postponement. The severe winter weather and record snowfall experienced by the Northeast region was perhaps the deciding factor in the delay of the construction project.

The postponed completion of the new site is a definite disappointment to HITS. The announcement of the new horse show facility captured the interest of those equestrians from California to Florida who participated at HITS winter horse show circuits. The Saugerties community and commercial businesses have also shown their support and their positive feedback was instrumental in the approval of the project.

"We regret having to disappoint our horse show exhibitors and our community partners," said Tom Struzzieri, president and owner of HITS. "With the onset of the winter we began to experience some difficulties that necessitated a revised timeline. Our goal is to create one of the finest horse show facilities in the country and we cannot lose sight of that goal to satisfy an earlier opening. Anything less than perfect is not an option for us and we will continue with our plans to premiere the facility in May 2004."

HITS is leasing a portion of the site for its new horse show facility from Family of Woodstock, Inc., a not-for-profit organization that provides crisis intervention services throughout Ulster County. The horse show site is just under 200 acres and is located less than a mile from downtown Saugerties, at the intersection of Washington Avenue and Mike Kraut Road.

The approved plans for the site include an amphitheatre containing a Grand Prix Ring and a feature Hunter Ring encompassed by a 10-foot earthen berm, plus 8 additional competition rings. Initially the site will have six permanent barn facilities with 500 stalls. A natural three-board fence will encircle the site, finishing at each entrance with a wrought-iron gate flanked by native stone pillars. The site will be further enhanced by a beautiful riding/walking trail that will meander around the circumference. Other features include permanent offices, permanent restrooms, and a food court positioned around a landscaped courtyard. The new facility will be designed to meet the highest standards of equestrian competition and it is expected that it will attract equestrians of all levels and abilities, from the grass roots to the sport's Olympic caliber riders.

The economic impact created by the horse show circuit on the area will be in excess of $30 million.

HITS produced its first series of horse shows—a three-week circuit in Gainesville, Florida—in 1982. Today, HITS produces five horse show circuits, a total of 31 shows, in New York, California, Florida, Arizona, and Virginia. Individually, each is a first rate horse show series; collectively, they represent the largest group of equestrian events under a single management group in the United States



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