IEA Launches Dear Marguerite National Essay Contest presented by Lettie Teague

The Interscholastic Equestrian Association (IEA) launches the Dear Marguerite National Essay Contest presented by Lettie Teague. This IEA initiative is a partnership with author and Wall Street Journalist, Lettie Teague along with Trafalgar Square Books to offer a unique opportunity for youth members in grades 4-12 to engage in creative writing.

The contest pays tribute to the legacy of Marguerite Henry, encouraging participants to explore various themes related to equestrian life, horse welfare, and historical horse figures as a celebration of Teague’s new biography of Henry. Dear Readers and Riders: The Beloved Books, Faithful Fans, and Hidden Private Life of Marguerite Henry will be published by Trafalgar Square Books in the spring of 2024. “IEA riders are exactly the readers for whom Marguerite wrote her books: equestrians dedicated to the love and care of the horse,” says Teague.

A winner will be awarded to both Middle School and Upper School participants, along with Honorable Mentions. Winners of the contest will receive attractive prizes, including cash prizes of $500.00 for Middle School and $1,000.00 for Upper School, an autographed advanced copy of Dear Readers and Riders: The Beloved Books, Faithful Fans, and Hidden Private Life of Marguerite Henry, and a Breyer Misty Gift Set. Additionally, their essays will be published in the 2024 IEA Hunt Seat National Finals program celebrating their creative efforts.

“Lettie’s support of IEA programming through her Hunt Seat Supplemental Grant, as well as her commitment to young rider development is invaluable,” says Kathryn Dando, IEA Resource Development Director. “IEA is so excited to see our students’ creativity blossom!” The Dear Marguerite National Essay contest aims to inspire a new generation of equestrian writers and enthusiasts.

For more information about the contest and how to participate, visit:

The Interscholastic Equestrian Association (IEA) is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization dedicated to promoting lifelong involvement in equestrian athletics by offering a unique draw-based competition format for young riders in grades 4-12, allowing them to compete without owning a horse or riding equipment, providing greater affordability and access to the sport. IEA has over 14,900 members across the United States participating in Hunt Seat, Western and Dressage disciplines. For more information, visit

Lettie Teague has been the wine columnist of The Wall Street Journal since 2010. Before joining the Journal, Teague was the executive wine editor and columnist for Food & Wine magazine. She is the author of two books, Wine in Words and Educating Peter, and co-author and illustrator of Fear of Wine. She has won three James Beard Awards, including the M.F.K. Fisher Distinguished Writing Award. More importantly, Teague’s equestrian life began when she was nine, the same year she read her first Marguerite Henry book (Born to Trot). Like Henry, she grew up in the Midwest and aspired to be a writer.

 Teague is based in New Jersey, which has one of the highest horse populations in U.S. As Teague notes, it may be called the “Garden State,” but it (really) should be titled “The Horsiest State.”

Trafalgar Square Books, and its online bookstore, is a small business based on a farm in rural Vermont. We published our first horse book, Centered Riding by Sally Swift, in 1985, and since then have continued to strive to produce high-quality equestrian books and videos “for the good of the horse.”

Media Contact:
Kimber Whanger
Director of Marketing & Communications  | 614.542.9415

Kathy Dando
Resource Development Director