June 2000 Newsletter

By Fred Thompson


Joe & Ann Bell

Pictured left: Joe and Ann Bell at Longaberger Carriage Classic 1999.  Ponies Kate and Julie hitched to a wicker cutunder carriage. Pictured right: Grandson Nathan Strasbaugh giving Grandpa Joe and Sister Marie a ride in homemade sleigh.

  Hello everyone and welcome to the wonderful month of June.  If you area pessimist you might be saying " June, big deal, that just means the year is half over. " and you would be correct.  Ok this is where the optimists jumps in and helps me out.  June is the month of the summer solstice.  This means that the sun is at its highest elevation in the sky giving us the maximum amount of daylight and the strongest sunrays. June 20th is the beginning of summer and the longest day of the year.  I think most of you will have to agree that we have the best part of the
year ahead of us.  So let's get out there and enjoy it.  Just remember nothing makes a cold glass of lemonade taste better than a hot summer day. (Please feel free to substitute your favorite beverage in place of
the lemonade.)
  Ok, let's slide back to the first of May for a little bit.  May 7th to be exact.  The place is Spencerville, Ind., the location of the first drive of the season, which was hosted by the Fairchilds.  Thirty plus people showed up to enjoy the potluck dinner and once again Doris Fairchild made her famous chicken.  Everything I have heard about this chicken, it's next to none.  I knew I should have sent a doggy bag with someone.  That's what I get for missing the Spencerville drive.  I also received information from a good source that Annabelle Bible's rhubarb pie was a taste treat that couldn't be beat.  I have to wonder just how much moaning and groaning went on as everyone waddled out to hitch up for the drive.  The weather tried to dampen things a little for the drive but everyone just thumbed their noses at the clouds.  No one was going to let a little rain damped their spirits for the first drive. Everyone hitched their horses and ponies up to the seven turnouts and headed out for a wonderful afternoon of driving.
  The only drive for the month of June is at the Kentucky Horse Park. Again I want to remind everyone that is taking a horse or pony down, have those health papers with you and make sure it includes the Coggins test.

  We have some of our member that are under the weather at this writing and we wish them all a speedy recovery.
  Mike and Joyce Cook are still recuperating from the kidney operation. Mike was the donor and Joyce was the recipient.
  Becky zumFelde is suffering from a blood clot in her leg that has her laid up.
  Our thoughts and prayer are with the three of you.

A sign outside a riding stable:
 "We have big horses for big people, small horses for small people.
   Fast horses for people who like to ride fast, slow horsed for people
who like to ride slow.
   And for people who have never ridden before we have horses that have
never been ridden before!"

Member Profile: Joe and Ann Bell

Hello! We are Ann & Joe Bell. We live near Arlington, OH on a small plot of land. We grew up on farms where livestock was the normal activity. I, Joe, had ponies from about 5 years old until I was too old for to ride them.  I always wanted a cart or buggy but never had one. As I grew older I became interested in horses. Always wanted a team of draft horses, Dad said no! We are going to farm with tractors. When I was a senior in high school, girls became more important than horses. Enter a gal named Ann. I thought she was attractive! She
wouldn't have anything to do with me! I graduated, went to work, saved some money and bought a new "57 Chevy. She would now go out with me! We were married in 58 and started to farm. 8 years and 3 children,
Patti, Barbara and David later we quit farming and I started driving truck. This lasted 15 years when I went into management of a truck terminal, which I have been doing for the last 19 years. Ann has worked in a bank for the last 20 years. Starting at the Citizens Bank in Mt. Blanchard, then to the Arlington, OH branch and it is now
the Ohio Bank.

Our oldest daughter Patti is married and has 3 kids, Maggie, Nathan and Marie, BSDC members know one of them, Nathan well. Barbara is married and has 2 kids, Taylor and Lane, more drivers coming on. We bought the kids, HA!HA! a pony in 1960. Then I bought a pair of Chocolate dapple Shetland pony mares that were 2 & 3 from my great uncle in 1969. When I got them home Ann had a fit! I told her we would break them & sell them and make a lot of money. Henry zumFelde is driving one of them and we had to bury the other one last spring. I guess they never became broke!

In 1984 Henry zumFelde talked to us at the Henry County Fair about a driving club and we had forgot about it until "88 when Henry sent out a letter about starting a driving club. We attended the meeting and Ann & I are charter members. We operated a 6-pony hitch from '78 through '85, advertising at fairs and parades for 3 Pepsi Cola bottling companies. At one time we had 18 head of Chocolate Dapple ponies on our little patch of land.
We now have 5 ponies in our barn, all home raised, and are offspring of the 2 mares purchased from my uncle.
Ann & I now have the 5th wheel hitch wagon, a doctor's buggy, and a wicker cutunder by Brown Carriage Co, 2 carts and a bobsled and a sleigh we built.

We really enjoy driving with the Black Swamp group in addition to just pleasure driving with the grandkids. We now pleasure drive and show at the Hancock County Fair. Besides belonging to the Black Swamp Driving club, Ann is very active in the Lutheran Church and Joe is a director of the Hancock County Agriculture Society and is draft horse superintendent at the fair.


June 5 Roger Higgins Sr.
June 11 Nathan Strasbaugh
June 12 Sue Thompson
June 13 Pat Burghardt
July 6 Henry zum Felde
July 9 Connie Gillfillan
July 12 Dave Kuhlman
July 14 Doris Fairchild
July 18 Darlene Higgins
July 26 Joyce Cook

*June 2-4.. Drive at Kentucky Horse Park
  June 15-17. Topeka, Ind. Carriage Auction
*August 27..  Drive at Sandy Young
*September 10. Drive at Oak Opening hosted by Mike Cook
  September 24-24  Longaberger Carriage Classic, Dresden, Oh.
  October 5-7. Topeka, Ind. Carriage Auction
*October 7-8.Heritage Days, Kenton, Oh. Hosted by the Gillfillans
  October 11.. Mt. Hope Carriage Auction
*October 14-15 Corn Huskers hosted by the John and Sara Hunter
  October 18-20 World Singles Champion at Gladstone, N.J.
*October 29... Drive at Mark and Marla Newman 
*Denotes a BSDC sponsored activity