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Event Report: Keystone Agility Club's Presidents' Day Trial

Helen McNenley shares the details from this successful trial.

Keystone Agility Club hosted their annual Presidents' Day weekend USDAA trial on February 16-18 with no snow! It was c-o-l-d on Sunday, but we were in the warm metal building at Orchard Hills Training Center in Barto, Pennsylvania.

Martha Bell's Lindy raced through the chute in the warmth of the Orchard Hills Training Center. Photo courtesy of Linda Rose.

We held all Starters/P1 classes plus three Advanced/P2 classes on Saturday. The remaining two Advanced/P2 classes as well as two Masters/P3/Vet classes and Grand Prix/Performance Grand Prix were on Sunday. Monday saw the remaining three Masters/P3/Vet classes plus Masters Challenge Standard.

Kayla and Kimmy pose with their PDCH ribbon. Photo by Katherine Dattoma. 

While there were many impressive accomplishments at this event, one stands out. Kayla Dattoma is a junior handler that had been waiting for two years to get that last P3 Pairs leg for her Performance Dog Champion title. This weekend she qualified with mom, Katherine Dattoma, and her dog Ginger! Katherine says, "Two years is a long time to wait for anything. To a child growing up in this digital age of instant access, two years can seem an eternity. My daughter, Kayla, and her little black dog Kimmy had all the requirements for their PDCH except for one elusive pairs relay Q. It was difficult to find partners for an 8" Performance dog, and every opportunity ended with the dreaded E. When the rules changed to allow mixed height pairs, Kayla was ecstatic to be able to partner with me and my big girl, Ginger, known as the Q machine in a different venue. Much to my shame, we E'd! That was a year ago, and Kayla's last try until the Keystone trial. A shocking diagnosis for me and subsequent medical treatments kept us closer to home over the course of this past year. Most of the USDAA trials were simply too far for me to consider attending. After my last failure to hold up my end of the relay, I was surprised that Kayla wanted to partner with me again. But because two years is a long time in a child's life, Kayla had matured from a child upset at any mistake into a young lady who just loves to run agility with her dog. Partnership has become more important than ribbons, and Kimmy's renewed joy in running with Kayla is evidence of this change. The beautiful ribbon supplied by Keystone is a very special one, attained only after lessons in patience, partnership, and forgiveness."

Thank you to judges Elliot Kaplan and Tami McClung for some truly fun courses this weekend! Subscribers can check out some of the courses from the event later this week.

Kelly Muller's Envy on course (above) and with her new Snooker Master ribbon (at right). Congratulations to Kelly and Envy! Photo courtesy of Kelly Muller.

Lynn Schroeder and Ketchum earned their Advanced Performance Dog title in the PII Standard class. Photo courtesy of Linda Rose.

New titles earned this weekend:

Bodi & Tony Luzynski - Starters Gambler, Starters Snooker
Kash & Terry Elison - Starters Performance Snooker
Willow & Fietta Jones - Starters Performance Standard, Performance Dog
Emma & Kathi Dunlap - Performance Dog
Sweep & Judy Kolva - Starters Relay, Starters Snooker
Sunny & Sally Bieak - Starters Performance Relay, Starters Performance Snooker
Prize & Nadine Kern - Starters Jumper
Caolila & Ruth Bryden - Starters Jumper
Ascher & Marybeth Powers - Starters Performance Jumper
Niven & Joyce Smuda - Agility Dog

Barty & Sandy Neiman - Advanced Performance Relay
Phoenix & Tara White - Advanced Performance Relay, Advanced Performance Jumper
Wedgie & Lisa Topol - Advanced Relay, Advanced Snooker
Teddy & Lyn Shaffer - Advanced Jumper
Tucker & Jen Kurian - Advanced Performance Jumper
Chaos & Joyce Brook - Advanced Standard Agility, Advanced Agility Dog
Tia & Debby Bell - Advanced Jumper
Ketchum & Lynne Schroeder - Advanced Performance Standard, Advanced Performance Dog
Dylan & Nelci O'Brien - Advanced Performance Dog
Cash & Donna Widdowson - Advanced Gambler
Gemma & Michelle Mamaradlo - Advanced Agility Dog

Envy & Kelly Muller - Snooker Master
Clash & Kathy Hunter - Jumper Master
Sizzle & Frank Heffelfinger - Standard Agility Master
Kimmy & Kayla Dattoma - Performance Dog Champion

Blaze & Helen McNenly - Snooker Champion-Bronze
Dandy & Linda Husson - Lifetime Achievement Award-Bronze
Opal & Judy Kolva - Gamblers Champion-Silver
Skye & Michele Cardone - Performance Tournament Master-Silver
Maizy & Mary Ellen Barry - Standard Agility Champion-Gold
E-Z & Mary Ellen Barry - Gamblers Champion-Platinum

Congratulations to all!

Helen McNenly has been involved in agility since November 1997 when she started lessons at Keystone Agility Club with her seven-and-a-half-year-old mixed breed dog, Princess. Her 13-year-old rescue Border Collie, Luce, who earned her PCDH in May of 2009, is now enjoying retirement and comes out to trials to visit with her friends and mooch treats. She currently competes with Blaze, a six-year-old rescue Border Collie mix who earned his ADCH in October of 2012. Helen started as a USDAA trial secretary in February 2006 and now represents a number of clubs in the Mid Atlantic area. She was the trial secretary for the 2011 and 2012 Cynosport World Games. Her website is


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