2020 National Specialty Show - RESCHEDULED

March 20, 2020

Update on the 2020 National Specialty Events :

As the situation regarding the Coronavirus continues to unfold, it has become increasingly apparent that holding our National Specialty Show in May is becoming less likely with each day. As I have stated in my previous messages, the National Specialty Show Executive Committee (NSSEC) has been monitoring the situation on an ongoing basis. A decision to cancel and/or postpone must be given careful consideration based on the disruption for participants and the financial obligations for the GSPCA.

Over the past several days Jane Handschumaker, Becky Feigh and the committee have made numerous phone calls to our hotel venue, our superintendent, judges, photography and other concerned parties. They were really left with just three choices: 

  • Cancel the event and the GSPCA would suffer a HUGE financial hit
  • Maintain the current date, hope for the best and risk having to cancel closer to the event after other options may have become unavailable
  • Reschedule to a future date that would work for the venue, our superintendent, judges and photographer preventing a financial loss.

The NSSEC held a meeting on Tuesday evening March 17th to review the three options and decide how to proceed. Weighing the pros and cons the Committee drafted a recommendation to the board to reschedule the National Specialty Show from the current dates in May to Sunday, November 1 through Friday, November 6, 2020. The Board of Directors held a special meeting last night and approved all of the NSSEC’s recommendations.

We will be able to retain the same venue – The Embassy Suites by Hilton Hotel and Convention Center in East Peoria, IL. These new dates work for BaRay, our superintendent, all of our judges and the photography!

I understand this is a great disappointment for all of us but with what is going on it is the best option and hopefully brings the certainty that we will be able to hold a National Specialty Show this year.

Of course there are a LOT of details that have to be worked out and we will all have questions but please have patience! The NSSEC will keep you updated via e-mail blasts and the club website.

Here are the answers to a few immediate questions.

  • The Futurity dogs and bitches will still be shown in the same class they were nominated for as of the second forfeiture.
  • An 18 - 24 month class will be added to Sweeps to accommodate dogs that would have otherwise aged out. 
  • You can cancel your entry since it is not past the original closing date of April 8 and get a full refund or if you want to let your entry ride and BaRay will transfer it to the new dates.
  • The Premium List will be reposted later after the new paperwork has been completed.  
  • We will still have:
    • the Regional Specialty
    • three days of Rally
    • three days of Obedience
    • we are investigating Agility
    • and of course all of our Regular/Non Regular classes
  • We will still have the Top Twenty Five.
  • We will still hold the Awards Dinner.
  • The Annual Meeting will be held in conjunction with the National Field Trial in October.


  • Cancel your current room! - The reservations will not carry over.

  • PLEASE DO NOT ATTEMPT TO MAKE NEW RESERVATIONS AT THIS TIME. The NSSEC will advise when reservations are open with our group rate.  It is anticipated to be around mid-August.

I know there will be a lot of other questions to answer and many details to work out but again I ask for your patience during this very trying time for all of us. Like the rest of the World we need to come together and support each other. My heart is breaking having to make this announcement and all I can think of is how Jane, her committee, David Nauer, the GSPC of WI, the Health and Welfare Committee and all of the volunteers associated with this event must be feeling right now. This is the FOURTH time they have had to make new plans for this event.

Again watch for e-mail and website updates. As always, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me.

Please be safe, take care of yourselves, wash your hands often and hug your GSP’s!

Sharon Fitzpatrick
GSPCA President