MONTGOMERY COUNTY KENNEL CLUB
THE ‘BEST’ OF MONTGOMERY: A LOOK BACK WITH THE BIS JUDGES
“In my own breed, I have been delighted to see the impact made by the Brisline Airedale as a brood bitch. She has influence in both the UK and Australia, and probably elsewhere.”
in itself is an Airedale Museum. The morning after Montgomery is often a special breakfast, lots of hugs and goodbyes. For some of us living so far away, those goodbyes may well be the last. In my case, friends may leave for Ireland, UK, Sweden, Finland (indeed everywhere). Montgomery opens doors to lifelong friendships. BIO Keith was, at first, an
I enjoy looking at pictures of these dogs, even today, 10 years later. In my own breed, I have been delighted to see the impact made by the Brisline Airedale as a brood bitch. She has influence in both the UK and Australia, and probably elsewhere. Is there a particular “Montgomery Memory” (or two) that you can share that best exemplifies the spirit of this iconic dog show? In 1986, when I was to judge the Airedales, it was pretty clear to me that I was expected to miss the many events that a visitor might normally expect to enjoy. My wife, Trish, got to go to the Hatboro Shows. A wonderful Airedale man and friend, the late Ben McCar- thy, took our daughters, Belinda and Louise, into Philadelphia to see the Liberty Bell and every other thing he deemed important, and on the Devon day, he drove us all on a tour of the local Amish areas. Wonderful! However, the following memory may best exemplify Montgomery. As we entered the hotel, we noted an elderly lady alone in the lobby. We waved hello and, from her response, assumed that she was British. After settling in the room, and upon tripping down to the lobby, I noticed that she was still there. After introductions and ascertaining that she was tired and would love a cup of tea while she waited for whomever it was that she was sharing a room with, Trish made (and we all enjoyed) not just the tea, but also the company. As it turned out, we were going on to the UK after Montgomery, as we were travelling around the world. She invited us to visit, which we did. After accept- ing her advice (read: instruction) that her Airedale was an outstanding specimen and we should say nothing other than just that, we settled in. Millie Tarplee asked my daughters what they would like for din- ner, and roast lamb it was. The next night, fish and chips and mushy peas purchased by Walter who took me along for the ride. A lifelong relationship was born. I can actually think of several others where the story is similar, but where my Irish friends are concerned, Bush Mills Whisky replaced the tea. I am sure that all breed clubs do the week in similar ways. My experience has been mostly with Airedale and Welsh Terrier Clubs. The week is the memory and the memory is the week. It includes visiting Peddler’s Village during the Hatboro shows, and if it is a good year, Morris and Essex too. By visiting all four or five shows, one is able to get to see most Terrier breeds and put the whole day of Mont- gomery County into your own breed. During the week, the Airedale Club events center on “The Host Hotel” where friendships are made and rekindled. One also gets a chance to get up close and personal with some dogs that have only been names on pedigrees and pictures in adverts. Then there’s the organized events such as the breed sweep- stakes, barn hunts, obedience and agility, the annual meeting, board meeting, breed seminar, and the continuous hospitality suite. One very special night is set-aside for the dinner and auction. That night is amazing and certainly must not be missed. The items auctioned are often quite remarkable. After the Devon Show, the home of Adele Abbe, Birchrun, all of my visits have included an open house luncheon. So generous! That home
Airedale Terrier Specialist, and although he now judges over 100 breeds, he remains a Terrier Man. His judging experience foundations include breeding Champion Airedales, Irish, Welsh, and Smooth Fox Terriers. Keith has always groomed and handled his own dogs
(supported by his wife, Patricia). He has also owned and handled Rottweilers.
In over 50 years, the Lovell’s Tjuringa Kennel has made well over 100 Champions in the Terrier breeds mentioned. These include Australian, New Zealand, American, Swedish, and International champions. They have imported dogs or semen from the US, New Zealand, Estonia, Sweden, UK, and Romania. Keith has a very international understanding of Terriers, and in Australia, ranks among the more notable Terrier identities. Keith has judged many times in the US. His more significant appointments have been the Hawaiian Kennel Club centenary year Best in Show; and several times each at the Kennel Club of Beverly Hills, Hatboro, and Great Western Terrier. He has judged other Bests in Show, including Catonsville and Springfield. One of the more special events for Keith was in Sweden where he judged Kerry Blue, Australian, and Bedlington Terriers at The WORLD TERRIER SHOW. It is also worth mentioning the countries where Keith has judged (in most cases more than a few times): Australia, New Zealand, Philippines, Thailand, Japan, Romania, Hungary, Croatia, Slovenia, Italy, Portugal, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Finland, Poland, England, Ireland, US, South Africa, and Argentina. As an exhibitor, Keith states that his best excitement came when his homebred, presented, and handled CH Tjuringa Firecracker (BANG) became the first Airedale ever in Australia to win Best in Show at any State Capital City Royal Show. Keith regards much of his motivation to have come from the Terrier People around him. Some whom most American Terrier folk may know of include Peter Green, Wood Wornall, Marjorie Hanson, Margaret Young, Bruce Schwartz, Dan Erickson (Sweden), Hans Lehtinen (Finland), Carl and Ingrid Borchorst (Denmark), Andras Kovacs (Hungary), Zsolt Lokadi (Romania), and Pia Lundberg (Sweden). There are others, of course, in Australia and elsewhere, but here Keith was thinking of names that the American readers of SHOWSIGHT MAGAZINE may be familiar with.
172 | SHOWSIGHT MAGAZINE, SEPTEMBER 2021
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