The River Reporter
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   VOLUME XXVI  No. 42 NARROWSBURG, NY OCTOBER 19-25, 2000  
TRR photo by Tom Kane
Horse farm owner Marguerite Illing and her dog, Odie, approaching a nervous Arabian colt. (Click for larger image)
Horse farms: an important part of the agricultural scene

By TOM KANE

SULLIVAN COUNTY - Marguerite Illing takes her horses seriously. So seriously, in fact, that she breeds and shows them.

Her farm, called Twin Brooks Farm, is up in Cooley on County Road 63 near Parksville.

She and her husband Henry raise Arabian horses and show them at exhibits within a 300-mile radius all year long. Henry is a professional engineer and spends his free time helping his wife.

"We have stallions that have gotten international recognition," Illing said. "That brings in higher stud fees. These fees are where you get your money."

The Illings have been breeding Arabians for 35 years.

"We have 12 Arabian horses now," she said. "One is being bred down in Texas-a mare. The stallion is leaving for Israel in a few days, so we don't have much time."

The horses are judged on such qualities as conformation, balanced body, correct legs and breed type characteristics.

Horses are not just bred but are also trained for shows in specific types of gaits and prances. "With English style, the horse has to have its head up and more alert looking. In park style, the horse has to be highstepping and canter alertly," Illing said.

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