09.25.11

World Equestrian Games Anniversary – Wonderful Memories

Posted in 2010 Games, 2026, Alltech, My Thoughts, Opening Ceremonies, Reining, World Equestrian Games at 7:45 pm by Thomas

It was one year ago today that the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games 2010, or as you know I always refer to them as, The Kentucky World Equestrian Games started.  I went back and read the posts I made from those initial days and remembered the excitement and nervousness of that first day.

The weather today was fairly similar to what it was last year, cool in the morning but warmed up nicely later in the day.  It is all still amazingly fresh in my memory now when I think back, which I hope remains the case for the rest if my life because it was certainly one of those Great Experiences in my life.

The big news of that first day was that the turnout for the Opening Ceremonies was better then had been expected, though the expectations had been tempered by the economy.  The other big news of that day was Italy taking the lead in the Reining World Championships in the first part of that competition.

It is bitter sweet in some ways to think back to the 4 1/2 years preparing for the Games, and then they were here and gone and now another year has passed.  Though some or maybe even many people will think I am off my rocker to say definitively that the Games will again return to Kentucky, maybe not in 2018 or even 2022, but by 2026 I think we have a good shot of getting them back and you know I will be there again.

In closing on thinking back on this first day, I must as I have in the past give great thanks to many people starting with Dr. Pierce Lyons of Alltech, without whom I don’t think these Games would have taken place, and then all the staff and certainly the Volunteers without whom I do not think the Games could have been the success they were.

Kentucky Colonel
Thomas Demond
KyWEGO®

09.15.11

I wanted to put out a recommendation for Cumberland Falls for anyone looking to do…

Posted in My Thoughts at 7:37 pm by Administrator

I wanted to put out a recommendation for Cumberland Falls for anyone looking to do some last minute camping. The leaves have just started to turn and they have great camping sites.

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09.12.11

Its a beautiful morning, what shall we do with it?

Posted in My Thoughts at 1:51 pm by Administrator

Its a beautiful morning, what shall we do with it?

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09.11.11

I have changed my profile picture just for today to the image of the World Trade…

Posted in My Thoughts at 2:48 pm by Administrator

I have changed my profile picture just for today to the image of the World Trade Centers, to remember what use to be and what we still have. I am just going to throw this idea out there, if you want, everyone change your profile picture just for today.
GOD Bless America.

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We Shall Never Forget!

Posted in My Thoughts at 11:50 am by Administrator

We Shall Never Forget!

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09.05.11

Labor Day!

Posted in My Thoughts at 8:01 pm by Thomas

I want to wish everyone a productive labor day, that may seem a little backwards for a day that is supposed to be a holiday from work, but in this economy, none of us can take it too easy.  I have made the point before and I will make it again that I feel we all should do some form of voluntary labor that we do not expect to gain monetarily from, many times we gain more from those efforts.

I know that is tough in this economy, most of us that still have jobs are working more hours at our “Jobs”  because of the reductions in force that have occurred.  Those of you who have become unemployed, I feel for you and wish there was more I could do, so I am going to try and not get on my soap box and say you should volunteer.  What I will say is volunteering isn’t only a good way to network it can also be good therapy because I think a lot of us equate our level of worth to what we are doing.  So when you volunteer you know you are not doing it for the money, you are doing it because its something that matters to you and you are making a difference, no amount of money can replace that feeling.

I wish everyone a Terrific Tuesday!

Kentucky Colonel
Thomas Paul Demondиконииконописikoni

08.30.11

Social Media meets the Free Market

Posted in My Thoughts at 2:29 am by Administrator

Join EmpireAvenue, use the link http://empireavenue.com/?t=1ftapy2 and earn and extra 2000 e.

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Empire Avenue | The Social Stock Market
The Social Stock Market: Grow your online social capital

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07.11.11

Air Temp: 98.6 ºF

Posted in My Thoughts at 9:35 pm by Administrator

Humidity: 60%
Heat Index: 125 ºF
Pool Temp: 89 ºF

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In album Scrapbook photos (3 photos)

Sunrise Ride

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Posted in My Thoughts at 8:56 pm by Administrator

In album Scrapbook photos (3 photos)

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03.31.11

April is the Greatest, so come to Kentucky.

Posted in Attractions, CCI****, Events of Interest, Keeneland, Kentucky Horse Park, Lexington, My Thoughts, Rolex Kentucky 3 Day Event, Thoroughbred Racing, Three-Day Eventing at 3:46 pm by Thomas

April is the kickoff of so many things horsey in Kentucky and some not so horsey that for me its the best month of the year.  The month starts out with the Kentucky Wildcats on the verge of winning a Championship, I know not a horse related event but certainly a Kentucky event.

Keeneland’s Spring Meet starts the 8th and runs through the 29th with the last major Prep Races for the both the Kentucky Derby and the Kentucky Oaks.  Keeneland is certainly one of the most beautiful Thoroughbred Race Tracks in the country and with the Kentucky Red Buds and Dog Woods in full bloom it maybe nearly Angelic.

The Kentucky Horse Park starts the month with the Kentucky Spring Arabian Show, then mid-month the Kentucky Spring Premiere kicks off the Saddlebred show season…(DRUM ROLL PLEASE) To finish the month, The Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event, the only Four-Star Three-Day on North American Soil, with all that excitement I am not sure how I will survive the month.

For more information check out,

Kentucky Horse Park Calendar.

Keeneland

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01.01.11

Happy New Year 2011!!!

Posted in My Thoughts at 1:43 am by Thomas

Happy New Year Everyone ,

So 2010 has passed and we start again in a new year, how time flies.  Its been a little more then 3 months since the start of the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games, and about 2 1/2 since they ended.  Of course I am feeling a little sentimental about the Games, for the last 5 years it has been a major part of my life so there is a bit of a let down afterwards.  I have taken a bit of a vacation the last 2 1/2 months to catch up on some things I had put on hold for the Games.

As 2010 came to a close I had some regrets, some even directly related to the Games themselves, but the positives that came out of the Games far outweigh those regrets.  Now that a new year is upon us, and I have found a new balance in my life, I will be investigating what the landscape is for Kentucky to pursue the 2018 FEI World Equestrian Games.  The interest was certainly there at the Closing Ceremonies, but enthusiasm in such a moment doesn’t always stand the test of time and something as complex as submitting a bid in probably 18 months with a Governor’s election looming might be more then I can hope for.

I am going to make one resolution specific to my efforts, they will continue and this Blog which is now more then 5 years old will continue for many years to come whether the Games return in 7 years or in 15 years.

Live Long and Prosper

Kentucky Colonel
Thomas P. Demond
KyWEGO®Икони

12.05.10

Five Years Latter! Thank You All.

Posted in My Thoughts at 9:46 pm by Thomas

Tomorrow will mark the 5 year anniversary of the official announcement that Lexington had won the 2010 FEI World Equestrian Games.  I can still remember hearing the announcement and being honestly surprised, even those involved in the submitting the bid for Lexington had downplayed our chances because there were a lot of people who felt the FEI would not take the Games out of Europe.  Of course they did decide to take a chance on us and ultimately I think most people are happy they did.  There were many who thought we would fail to deliver and they were proven wrong, though we did make our fair share of rookie mistakes but there was more then a few people who were not going to let these Games fail.

Certainly one individual who shall once more receive a thank you from me for believing in the Games is Dr. Pearse Lyons of Alltech.  The second person isn’t a single person but about 7000, all the Volunteers who gave of their time to see these Games be a success, I know I had a Great Experience as a volunteer and I hope everyone else did as well.   I would also like to send my thanks out to the many people behind the scenes who in one way or another helped to make these Games a success.

So if any of you meet me in person, please let me know that you were involved in the Games, I would love to shake your hand and say thank you in person.

Sincerely,

Kentucky Colonel
Thomas Demond
KyWEGO

10.11.10

Closing Ceremonies… My thoughts.

Posted in 2010 Games, Closing Ceremonies, My Thoughts, World Equestrian Games at 10:25 pm by Thomas

As a thank you for those of us who worked so hard as volunteers we were offered the opportunity to participate in the Closing Ceremonies of the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games 2010.  I thought this was a nice gesture to those of us that had been so passionate about these Games that we put in many days volunteering.  As with most Closing Ceremonies, they were a lot less formal then the Opening Ceremonies, the only real formality was when HRH Princess Haya Bint Al Hussein read the formal declaration that closed the Games.  I know from some of those that payed full price for the tickets, the Ceremony was a little light for what they paid, though the Lyle Lovett concert that was part of the Closing was very good, and the fact that the spectators were able to come down into the Stadium to be down right in front of the stage was a bit of a bonus.  I certainly enjoyed it though it was bitter sweet to think that it was over after 4 1/2 years of seemingly thinking about it everyday.  Now I am thinking about what it would be like if we do get it back in 8 years, which at this point I would have to say we are the odds on favorite to get it

HRH Princess Haya Bint Al Hussein

10.02.10

State of the Games: Mid-way Point!

Posted in 2010 Games, Discussion, Kentucky, Logistics, My Thoughts, My Volunteering, Position Statements, World Equestrian Games at 11:42 pm by Thomas

The attendance totals for today are over 50,000 bringing the total for the Games after 8 days to just over 234,000 which is impressive when you figure at the start of September the ticket sales were not much more then that.  This is an indication of what a lot of us thought, that because of the current economic recession(NBER be damned) that everyone is not wanting to lay down their hard earned cash until they are walking in the door.

This also shows the strength of the silent majority in Kentucky that are horse people in comparison to a very negative and vocal minority that wanted to say these Games would be a failure.  Now before I get accused of putting the cart before the horse (excuse the pun) ,  we are only at the halfway point, so I will not pronounce these Games a success from the financial point of view, that will take many months to say whether a number of the short term goals that were given in that regard were met, but from the stand point of Kentucky being able to put on these Games in a manner where everyone is having a great time, and that word is getting out, and the city is not being crippled while the Games are going on, I think we all can say these Games are going better at this point then any of us could of hoped.

Now again, before anyone says I am just focusing on the things that are going well and I am not giving the total picture,  I will say I have been out to the park 7 of the first 8 days and I have seen some situations were the planning did come up short.  In one case I ended up right smack in the middle of a 30 minute oversight.  I say 30 minute because that was the time difference between when an event was expected to end and when it really did but I can also tell you, that within an hour the negative impact caused by that had been eliminated because the staff and volunteers at the Games are a very flexible and resourceful group.  So as I have said for a very long time, there is a magic with these Games that is very real and a lot of good will come out of these Games for Kentucky for a long time to come.

Kentucky Colonel
Thomas Demond
KyWEGO

06.22.10

Why I still believe in the Games and Why you should to!

Posted in My Thoughts, Position Statements at 12:24 am by Thomas

There has been some news lately that tends to suggest that the Games will not be all that we were sold and the truth is there is some truth to that both to the negative and to the positive.  On the negative, ticket sales and hotel occupancy continue to lag indicating that the likelihood of having 400,000 visitors to the Games, the number that I believed to be a realistic ballpark figure after the Aachen Games, in serious doubt.  That of course puts the financial numbers in doubt as well which of course is going to be the final determination on whether the Games are successful or not.

I for one don’t believe that, but today was a tough day because I began to doubt myself on why I believe in these Games because of that possibility that the Games will be perceived as failure if we don’t hit some magic number of visitors.  The problem with self-doubt is that it tends to feed on itself and by the end of the day I had to wonder if I was crazy (and not in a good way) and had wasted the last 4 1/2 years trying to promote these Games and I should just cut my losses and walk away.

Truth be told, there is still a part of me that feels that way, its part of believing in something so much that you have to sometimes ask yourself that question, what if that belief is wrong and if that belief is wrong then is what I believe in myself wrong.  I have asked myself that question today and the answer is NO, I am not wrong for believing in myself in believing that the importance of these Games to Kentucky and to the people who attend these Games is something that nobody will understand until the Games have come and past.  The importance of these Games can not be measured in the dollars spent but in the human interactions that occur because of them.  The total number of people that come to the Games is not as important as how many of those people return home and tell their friends and family about the experiences they came away with and for those of us still here afterwards we will feel it to.

I am very thankful for Dr. Lyons having committed the financial resources of Alltech and his personal belief to see these Games be successful and in that I am happy to call these Games, The Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games and as a Kentuckian I am Proud to call them The Kentucky World Equestrian Games because they are our Games and on October 11th and for a long time afterwards the spirit that is Kentucky will spread around the world and much good will come from it.

One final note, my self-doubt went away when I realized that no matter what happens, when I wake up on October 11th I am still going to be a Kentuckian and there is so much to be thankful for in being a Kentuckian and so much to be thankful for in my family and friends who have been supportive in my efforts.

Kentucky Colonel
Thomas Demond
KyWEGO

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