The recent and tragic death of cherished young eventer, Zara Buren, has touched so many lives, especially those who knew her and rode with her at events in Ontario. She was a well-liked and respected competitor, and a talented rider with a bright equestrian future ahead. There was little doubt that she could one day represent our province and our country in the sport: she would have represented us well. Zara was also known as wise beyond her years, with an unbridled passion and work ethic for eventing, and an exceptional sense of horsemanship, always putting her horses’ needs before her own.

The Buren Family, with the Ontario Eventing Association, is honored to announce a new award in Zara’s memory: The Zara Buren Memorial Award will be conferred annually to an Ontario rider, preferably 15 years of age or under, who has competed at the Training Level or below, and who exhibits a passion for eventing as well as commitment to their horse. The recipient will demonstrate horsemanship and sportsmanship and will show a desire to train in the YRU25 development program. While full details of the criteria will be released shortly, this award will be the highest single value award offered by the OEA, and will include an embroidered cooler in burgundy, Zara’s competition colour.

If you would like to donate to this award, please send an e-transfer to and please note Zara Buren Memorial Award in the comments.