Chukkers in the Burbs

Rain for two days. COVID stir crazy. Friday night in the Burbs. What to do? Polo.

Franklin Polo Academy (FPA) sold out 24 cabanas for their first arena Polo event in over a year. The “bring your own blanket” seats were “socially distanced” crowded, too. Welcome to an August night under the moon in a suburb of Nashville, TN. The spectators arrived early to cheer for Hap and Harry’s International Polo Cup Mexico vs USA. Cocktail in one hand, asiago chicken hot dog in the other, Polo – a blissful Friday night.

USA vs. Mexico. Photo by Candace Wade.

USA vs Mexico, fighting for the ball. Photo by Candace Wade.

The Pre-game matches are my favs. The younger FPA student riders hunkered down on their ponies with goals in their laser sights. The Junior Match was elementary school age. One young man, around eight years old, with a steely focus, drove his pony like a seasoned pro. He reappeared in the Interscholastic Match (high school age). His team jersey was a bit swimmy for his slight frame, but he matched this groups’ advanced muscle, hand-eye coordination and speed. The delighted spectators hooted and applauded both teams.

Mid-class in action. Photo by Candace Wade.

Mid-class, wrestling for the ball. Photo by Candace Wade.

Kids in action. Photo by Candace Wade.

Kids in action. Photo by Candace Wade.

National flags winged from horseback. National anthems filled the arena. Team USA challenged team Mexico under the full moon. A minute before the end of the last chukker the two teams were tied. Team USA pulled it out before the final horn blared.

Polo Friday night in the Burbs doesn’t get much better.