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Belgian Hitch to Participate in Virginia Parade

MORRISVILLE, N.Y.—Morrisville’s six-horse Belgian hitch will be traveling to Middleburg, Virginia, to participate in their annual Christmas parade Dec. 3.

This is the second year the college has been invited to participate in the Christmas in Middleburg Parade which attracts thousands of enthusiastic spectators gearing up for the holiday season. The festive event also includes a tree lighting and concerts.

The hitch and show wagon will be driven by Scott Seymour, Morrisville State College equine manager, accompanied by Sheila Johnson, Morrisville College Foundation Benefactor of the Year for 2005.

Four students will be assisting Seymour at the event:
Barbara Richardson, of Fawn Grove, Pennsylvania, an equine science bachelor degree major
Lisa Jones, of Delta, Pennsylvania, an equine science and management major
Kaitlin Smith, of Canastota, New York, an equine science and management major
Dustin Bezek, of Castorland, New York, an equine science and management major

Students will be involved with braiding horses’ manes and tails, polishing hooves, grooming, harnessing, and preparing the hitch.

The Morrisville College Foundation’s distinguished six-horse hitch was invited earlier this year to be on exhibition at the Walnut Hill Carriage Driving Competition, in Pittsford, New York, the largest carriage show in the United States. Teams also participated in competitions that included county fairs, the Indiana State Fair and The New York State Fair.

The team competes in various events from a single horse and cart, to four-, six-, and eight-horse hitches. Morrisville is the only college in North America to compete with a six-horse hitch.

In honor of Johnson, who is also co-founder of Black Entertainment Television, the college created the Sheila Johnson Institute, which supports diversity and character-building initiatives at the college. The college’s new indoor riding arena was recently named after her.

Morrisville State College offers a bachelor of technology degree in equine science and two associate degrees in equine racing management and equine science and management. Facilities include a draft barn with a covered round pen and runouts and a 34,000 square-foot breeding and hunter jumper facility. This state-of-the-art facility includes a breeding and foaling barn, a hunter jumper barn, five-stall stallion barn, a complete breeding laboratory, collection area, laptop classroom and two indoor riding arenas.

A western and racing facility has two indoor riding arenas with a heated classroom, a one-half mile racing track, four hot walkers, three round pens and two outdoor riding arenas, paddocks and riding trails.

Morrisville State College offers 12 bachelor degrees and a wide variety of associate degrees and options. Considered to be one of the most technologically advanced colleges in the nation for its ThinkPad University program and wireless technology initiative, the college recently became the first in the nation to comprehensively replace landlines in residence halls with individual cellular phones. Morrisville State College was also chosen as one of the top five colleges in the nation for campus activities by Campus Activities magazine. The Morrisville State College Norwich Campus also offers programs in business, technologies, liberal arts/education transfer, and nursing to Chenango County area residents and employers.