Pennsylvania Championship Stockdog Trial
The 2013 Pennsylvania Championship will be held June 14, 15, 16, 17, & 18
Two one day open trials with be held on June 14, 15 & 16.
Two one day novice trials will be held on June 17 & 18.
The open classes will start on Friday and continue on Saturday and Sunday the novice classes will follow on Monday and Tuesday.
Hop Bottom, Pennsylvania is a quiet little town boasting about 300 residents in the Endless Mountains of Pennsylvania. However, each year on Father's Day weekend in June, the town comes alive with handlers from many states and Canada with their dogs ready to run in the Pennsylvania State Championship SDT.
The Pa. State Championship Stock Dog Trial was first held at
Sheepy Hollow Farm in June of 1982 and has been held continuously since then. These trials are qualifying trials for the United States Border Collie Handlers Association and The Northeast Border Collie Association. The trial is recognized for "its prestige, grounds, organization, and geographical location."
Sheepdog trialing and herding in general is one of the fastest growing sports in the dog world today. Trials are springing up all over the country with more and more people competing. The sport can be equally enjoyed by the old or young, man or women, from any walk of life whatever their profession..
ďA trial is
designed to test all of the skills a good ranch or farm dog needs to perform its
daily work. To reach the level of training and skill required to successfully
compete in a trial takes years of work on the part of the dog and the handler.
The team effort is demonstrated as the partners (handlers and dogs) not only
understand each other perfectly but outguess and out think unfamiliar sheep as
they entice them through the obstacle course."
Each year over 320 runs during the four days of competition represent at least fourteen states from Maine to Illinois and the provinces of Quebec and Ontario. Many of the dogs and handlers are among the top ten percent in the entire U.S. Some of the dogs competing were imported from Scotland, Wales, and England.
The festive nature of the trial each year brings more and more spectators. The field is expertly groomed; a tent and bleachers are provided for the spectators. Various shoppes are set up on the grounds. The handlers and spectators are housed in the same areas to allow communication between them and programs with the order of running and an explanation of the course are provided for ease of following the action. The church prepares a concession stand on Saturday and Sunday to add to the pleasure of the day.