Horses are like people for Brandy Von Holten. So much so that she writes stories through the voice of a horse – in fact, several horses. Von Holten graduated in biology, criminal justice and education. On his ranch, in his stories and through his riding lessons, Von Holten talks about overcoming obstacles.
Von Holten brought mounted archery to the Kansas State Fair this year – the first time the event has been offered at the fair – and they are said to be bringing it back next year.
âI’m the only horse archery instructor in Kansas or Missouri,â said Von Holten. “The fair was looking for something different.”
The other two competitors were allowed to use Von Holten’s horses.
âWe prefer them to use theirs, but we also allow them to use ours,â said Von Holten.
This competition was part of the Horse Archery Association of the Americas. The scores of this competition will be entered into the national organization.
Although the number of competitors is small, more than 10 people have already registered to compete next year.
A passion for horses
Von Holten was born in Texas and raised in Arkansas. When she was 5, Von Holten spent time in the pasture with her first horse, Blackie. After Blackie, no horse was a foreigner.
After teaching science to children for over a decade, she decided to pursue her passion: horses. The couple transformed David’s cattle farm, which had been in his family since 1906, into an equine ranch. They rent out cabins and RV pitches, as well as a large indoor arena, covered stands, and elaborate trails.
In addition, Von Holten learns and trains horses. These horses have become his family.
Make the difference
She has learned that each horse teaches the others a lesson. And by putting those lessons into her new children’s books, she’s teaching again.
His book on KTM, a half Quarter Horse and half Painted Horse named after her husband’s favorite motorcycle, tells the story of how he became someone who could make a difference. This book, “Adventures at Von Holten Ranch: KTM” is told through the eyes of the horse.
In her upcoming book, her mule named JoJo discusses how no matter what you look like on the outside, you can look good on the inside.
âDon’t judge me on my outward appearance,â Von Holten said. “It’s an important lesson.”
His third book is about Peppercorn, an appaloosa leopard.
âHaving a bad childhood doesn’t mean you can’t become a productive adult,â said Von Holten. âIt (the book) also explains how bullies need love the most. Many children do not understand that they have anger displacement.
His fourth book will be on Glamor. In this story, she deals with the subject of the weight that makes someone feel ostracized.
âIt doesn’t matter how tall you are to achieve your goals,â said Von Holten.
These tales of character development and character education are close to Von Holten’s heart. She observed how her horses, including Chalkboard, which you can chalk write on, made a difference in children’s lives.
âI want to do professional development for businesses and schools,â said Von Holten. âIt’s important to accept your failures because it makes you who you are. “
Von Holten’s books are available for purchase at www.vonholtenranch.com.