Rising Stars Youth Dressage was established in 2004 as an all youth Dressage and Hack Show at Heritage Park in Chilliwack, BC. The vision of the Rising Stars committee was to encourage more youth participation in Dressage. Its mission is to provide youth riders, 21 years and under, the opportunity to participate in a dressage competition that is exclusively their own, in an environment that provides a fair playing field for youth riders of different age groups to compete against their peer group at all levels of skill, from beginners to advanced.
The Rising Stars Youth Dressage Show quickly became much more than a competition: sportsmanship, education, sponsorship, camaraderie, fair play, and fun activities had come to be the hallmark of the Rising Stars experience.
One of the innovations of the Rising Stars committee was the development of the all new Rising Stars Equitation program in 2015. This program was created to help address the need for skill development in youth dressage riders with a focus on rider equitation. The RS Equitation program was piloted at the Rising Stars show in 2016 and 2017 and at the Ottawa Dressage Festival in 2018. This program is now recognized as a Dressage youth development program by Equestrian Canada starting in 2019.
In 2018 the Rising Stars committee made changes in order to make Rising Stars more accessible. Instead of our annual show in 2018, the committee worked on bringing Rising Stars to competitions around our province. Seven shows around British Columbia offered the Rising Stars Equitation program.
What’s next? Rising Stars is coming to your province and to a show near you! Please visit the Rising Stars website for updates and for a full History of Rising Stars Youth Dressage, the 2018 Rising Stars road trip report, Rising Stars Equitation program including score sheets, sample prize lists and programs.
Shows can offer the Rising Stars Youth Dressage Equitation division on its own, or they can choose to offer a Rising Stars Youth Dressage division, which would offer more youth Dressage classes including the equitation division. Resources available for show organizers at the Rising Stars website include the Rising Stars Youth Dressage Handbook, Rising Stars Equitation Score Sheet, USEF Guidelines for Judging Equitation, Rising Stars Youth Dressage sample show prize list, and sample show program.