Ardeth Obenauf
Shelbyville, TN


There were the chunky blonde ponies cantering and trotting in both English and Western tack, jumping, being driven and ground driven, and I was enthralled! It was that first glimpse of Norwegian Fjord Horses at Equitana that got me hooked. A year later when I had a chance to buy my first fjord, NFH Jayne, I went for it and I’ve never been sorry. Since then, I’ve added three more, all the offspring of Jayne.

These fjord horses have taken me to many fun places and introduced me to a lot of wonderful people. For the most part, I drive my ponies, but we ride them, too. I compete in CDE’s several times each year, go to pleasure driving shows, pleasure drives and trail rides, and I hold events here at our farm. As part of the Middle Tennessee Carriage Club, we host the One Day Event, which is based on the format of a CDE, but all combined into one day. We also bring in clinicians from all over the country a couple of times a year. I have taken part in several NFHR Evaluations and look forward to doing more of those in the future.

My husband Ron and I are “retired” and live on the 600 acre Lazy AO Farm near Shelbyville, TN which gives us many opportunities to enjoy our 4 fjords and 6 quarter horses. Completing the picture are 3 Labrador retrievers and a couple of cats. As my husband is a cancer survivor, the two of us have been heavily involved as Research Advocates with Vanderbilt Ingram Cancer Center on a local and national level. This has been very rewarding and allowed us to give back and show our thanks for his survival. I am also treasurer of the Middle Tennessee Carriage Club. We both participate in mission trips to an impoverished area of Brazil. Our church is a huge part of our lives; even the fjords go from time to time to give pony rides.

In the past couple of years, I have served on two committees of the NFHR: the membership committee (working to maintain and expand the membership) and the education committee (helping put together the Resource Guide for Fjord Owners.

From my first contact with Mike May, I have enjoyed being a member of the NFHR. I would like to help the NFHR grow while maintaining the accessibility that was so appealing to me after dealing with other mammoth breed organizations. I feel very strongly about maintaining the purity of the breed, representing members in my part of the country and providing educational support for the membership. I also support and believe firmly in the goals of the NFHR Foundation and would like to see it expand its projects. As a Board Member, I look forward to having a more involved role in the NFHR and to give back to an organization that has given so much support to me as a fjord owner.