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American Equestrians Got Talent Raises Funds for Discover Dressage™ USEF/USDF Emerging Athlete Program

by US Equestrian Communications Department | Mar 3, 2020, 1:25 PM EST

American Equestrians Got Talent (AEGT), an exciting talent-competition fundraiser for equestrian sport, is taking place Sunday, March 15, 2020, at 6:00 p.m. at the Adequan® Global Dressage VIP Tent, 13500 South Shore Boulevard, Wellington, Florida 33414. AEGT was founded by six-time dressage Olympian Robert Dover as a way to fundraise for US Equestrian programs and highlight equestrians’ non-horsey talents. Money raised from the AEGT Gala Finale will support the Discover Dressage™ USEF/USDF Emerging Athlete Program, which provides strategic guidance and educational opportunities to dressage athletes under the age of 25 led by USEF Dressage Youth Coach George Williams.

Chip McKenney (far left) with golden ticket winners at the February 19 AEGT live audition (Courtesy of Discover Dressage)

Discover Dressage, a 501(c)(3)  was founded by Kimberly Van Kampen, who partnered with the USEF Emerging Athlete Program, which is part of the USEF/USDF Pathway Program to the Medals.

AEGT is now in its sixth year and is the largest equestrian fundraising talent show in Wellington, Fla. Live auditions were held on January 29 and February 19 at Kontiki Wine & Raw Bar in Wellington, Fla., and eight contestants were given the golden tickets by the audition judges, allowing the contestants to go straight to the AEGT Gala Finale.

Joey Niceforo, an international Canadian recording star and past AEGT judge will host the AEGT Gala Finale. The judges for the Finale will be Devon Kane of Diamante Farms, Chip McKenney of McKenney Media, Ki-Juan Minors, a past AEGT Grand Prize Winner, and Katherine Bateson-Chandler, 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games™ competitor.

Finale festivities include cocktails at 6:00 p.m., dinner at 6:30 p.m., and the Finale show at 7:00 p.m. All finalists will perform in the first round. The judges’ votes, the text votes, and the unique votes will determine the second round of finalists. The grand prize winner will be announced after the second round. To vote, text your favorite AEGT contestant’s number to 71777 for $5.00 per vote. It is sure to be an entertaining evening that will also raise money for a US Equestrian program.


Callie Jones, Ben Ebeling, Kerrigan Gluch, and Natalie Pai at the 2019 AEGT Gala Finale
(AEGT/Lily Forado)

Discover Dressage™ USEF/USDF Emerging Athlete Program aims at providing strategic guidance and educational opportunities to athletes under the age of 25. The opportunities in the program are made possible largely due to Discover Dressage since it joined as the title sponsor in 2017. Discover Dressage’s mission is to inspire and encourage American youth to discover dressage, to inspire lifelong learning and success, to promote healthy competition, and advance the accessibility of the sport of dressage to all areas of the U.S. Several up-and-coming U.S. dressage athletes, such as Kerrigan Gluch, Ben Ebeling, and Callie Jones (pictured left), have benefited from Discover Dressage’s support of the program. View the complete list of Discover Dressage USEF/USDF Emerging Athlete Program members.

Natalie Pai, a current Discover Dressage USEF/USDF Emerging Athlete Program member, spoke highly of the program and the experiences she has had. “The Discover Dressage program gives young riders the opportunity to train with some of the top trainers in the country,” Pai explained. “Being a part of the program has provided me opportunities to have select one-on-one training with George Williams and Charlotte Bredahl. Having a program like this is crucial to helping develop the up-and-coming riders who will be the future of dressage in America.”

Buy tickets to attend the AEGT Gala Finale and support the Discover Dressage USEF/USDF Emerging Athlete Program.

Find out more about the Discover Dressage USEF/USDF Emerging Athlete Program online or contact Hannah Niebielski, Director of Dressage, National Programs at [email protected].

Stay up to date on news and information about USEF’s dressage programs and teams by following USA Dressage on Facebook and Instagram.