History of the Irish Setter Club Of Pacific
In 1945 several Irish Setter fanciers, breeders and exhibitors decided that it was time that an Irish Setter Breed Club was formed in the Bay Area because as of that time the only Irish Setter Breed Club in the state was located in Los Angeles. So it was that a small group of twenty or so gathered to form what was to become the Irish Setter Club of the Pacific(S.F.). Chief among the ‘founding fathers’ were John and Vera Ashton, Doris and Henry Frank, Jake and Sally Huizenga, Martha Heyde, Helen and Rollie Mann, Bob and Alice Blair and Clint Metzler. There were amongst those who founded the club a broad experience in conformation showing, field trialing and obedience leading to a balanced interest in all three facets of dogdom in those days, a feature of this Club which persists to this day.
Starting out, the Club always looked for outstanding breeders to judge their Specialties and many renowned judges officiated at them, Ted Eldredge, Robert Waters, Laura Delano Hollis Wilson and Anton Korbel (noted as the owner of the well known Winery ) to name a few.
The Club held just one independent Specialty a year through 1972 augmenting occasionally by hosting an Irish Setter Club of America Regional Specialty. The arrival of the National Specialty that year precluded any more Regionals and so the Club decided to hold two Independent Specialties a year, carrying on that practice to this day. Most recently, they have joined with the two other Northern California Irish Setter Clubs for a gala three show weekend in the late spring as well as continuing their regular Specialty in the fall. Entries have been a high as 490 and as low as 45, but generally speaking exceed 100. Obedience has always been offered with these specialties.
In 1988 the Club hosted the Irish Setter Club of America’s National Specialty with an entry of 444 gracing the lovely green grass of the San Leandro Marina.
Most years, two field trials have been held each year since the Club’s founding, only occasionally succumbing to the vagaries of the weather.
An outstanding event towards encouraging everyone to participate in all phases of the setter’s life is the Annual Fun-a-Fair, begun in 1976 as the brain-child of Pearl Koch, Bob Althaus and Gerry Roberts. This all-day affair features competition and training in Field work, Obedience and Conformation all in one day.
The Club has always been a leader in the Rescue of Irish Setters from unwanted situations and annually features a Parade of rescued dogs at their fall Specialty Show.