Nancy McKnight and Pony Club
Kelly McKnight emailed me to say his mother, Nancy, would be a delightful guest on the podcast. Nancy McKnight is 89 years old and spent much of her adult life helping children learn horses and horsemanship through her affiliation with the US Pony Club. The mission statement of the Pony Club is:
The United States Pony Clubs, Inc. is an educational organization which builds the foundations of teamwork and sportsmanship through riding, mounted sports, care of horses and ponies, while developing and enhancing leadership, confidence, responsibility, and a sense of community in its youth and adult members.
Nancy’s father was a dealer in farm machinery. Farmers were trading in their horses for modern implements. Nancy’s father would take the horses in trade, give them to Nancy and her sister to work with a while, then sell them. When Nancy had children of her own, she wanted them to share her love of horses. To fill in her horsemanship knowledge, Nancy turned to the United States Pony Club and its teachings. She began a chapter of the organization in Northern California. Later, when she moved to Willamette, Oregon, she began a chapter there.
Nancy taught countless children about horses. She has wonderful memories and stories to tell about her experiences teaching children through Pony Club.
Thanks to Kelly of McKnight Farms for contacting me about his mother. She is a very special woman.
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Kaaren Klingel says
Loved hearing this. I knew Nancy before she was involved with Pony Club back when I lived in Hebron, IL. I saw the horses she & her sister had back then. The farm machinery business their father had was across the street from where we last lived in Hebron. I once went out to their farm when I was in second grade. They had a donkey then, too, & brought it part way into the dining room when I was there. That really impressed me! Nancy was going to Beloit College about that time.
I especially like the comment she made in this interview about asking a child what she fed her horse & the child’s delightful response.