Showsight September 2021


The intimate atmosphere in Meadow Hall was fantastic. Between Michael’s singing and the DJ playing many of the hits of the 1980s (along with other oldies) the dance floor was active. Many in attendance danced the night away. The numerous gam- bling tables stayed full and I even saw Jessy Sutton teaching his daughter how to play “Black Jack.” (At least it will help her math skills!) As usual, the party was a great success thanks to all the effort and attention to detail in the year-long plans by Charlie and Liz. Of course, there were also five days of shows that were enjoyed by the exhibitors. Carol and I had entered the shows because we were going to DJ the event, but fate had a change of plans. Sev- eral judges had to cancel their assignments due to illness and other issues, so we (along with a few others) were brought in to cover their assignments. If you have ever been a show chair, you know how difficult this can be, but again, Charlie and Liz handled it well. When making arrangments with the site, the clubs were informed that COVID protocols would be in effect and could change at any time. When I think of all the work it took for these clubs to pull together just to provide the shows in a location that is a significant distance from their traditional homes, it showcases the hard work and dedication of these clubs to our sport. Their efforts are greatly appreciated. The 2021 edition of the Keystone Cluster is “in the books” and they were terrific shows. The facility was well-lit and air- conditioned, comfortable with decent-sized rings, and the casino night charity fundraiser was an overwhelming success. Thanks to all who made it happen, including the generous sponsors, every- one who bought event or raffle tickets and participated, those who exhibited at the shows, and all the judges and stewards, club members, and volunteers for keeping things running smoothly. Also, “Thank You” to the show chairs, John Constantine-Amo- dei, Lloyd Constantine-Amodei, Sue Ratz, Charlie Olvis, and Liz Muthard, for organizing and putting it all together under such difficult circumstances.

decades, the house and grounds changed hands numerous times. In 2003, the State of Virginia purchased The Meadow and relo- cated the State Fair there in 2009. Today, the Virginia Farm Bureau Federation owns The Mead- ow. It is now known as The Meadow Event Park where many majestic elm trees are said to be over 200 years old, and where the original boxwoods planted by Penny Chenery’s mother on the south lawn are still there. The Meadow Hall mansion plays host to weddings, parties (just like the casino night), corporate meetings, and special tours of Secretariats’ birthplace. The Meadow Hall is an absolutely beautiful facility, filled with plenty of memorabilia. Behind the mansion stand three of the remaining barns built by Mr. Chenery in 1936: The Stallion Barn, Yearling Barn, and Annex Barn. They, along with Secretariat’s foaling shed and train- ing barn in the horse show complex, are now listed on the National Register of Historic Places and the Virginia Landmarks Register. The theme for this year’s party was going to feature the 1980s through the film “Back to the Future.” However, with relocating to The Meadow Event Park, the theme became “Racing Back to the Future” in honor of Secretariat and the other great horses from Meadow Farm Stables. During the show and at the party, Darryl Vice was in full character as Christopher Lloyd’s film character, Dr. Brown. As previously mentioned, along with gambling, we always have music to go with the theme. I served as the event’s DJ and was joined this year by a very special guest singer & songwriter, Mr. Michael D’Amore. Michael is a 2020 East Coast Music Hall of Fame nominee as a male vocalist as well as a featured performer. Michael currently performs nationally as a one-man show, cover- ing everything from Frankie Valli and Andrea Bocelli to Whit- ney Houston and Patsy Cline as well as all the best of the 1960s through the 1980s. Michael is also the current lead singer of the Capris and is honored to be able to perform their hits “There’s A Moon Out Tonight” and “Morse Code of Love” to music lovers all over the country.


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