Publicist Mason Phelps Reportedly Resigns WEPA Account
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WELLINGTON, Florida, Jan. 11–Mason Phelps, the high profile equestrian publicist, is reported to have resigned the account of the Wellington Equestrian Preservation Alliance, the third prominent equestrian to quit the group that opposess commercial aspects of the newly created Global Dressage Festival grounds that are part of the Palm Beach Internaional Equestrian Centter.
Mason Phelps, who founded and operates Phelps Media Group, replied “no comment” to questions about his involvement with the group.
However, he said that henceforth all media questions are being referred to WEPA Executive Director Mat Forrest.
Jane Clark, a prominent owner of high performance jumper, dressage and driving horses, was a founding sponsor of the group but also resigned though she is still listed on WEPA’s Internet site as a director.
Her replacement, Margaret Duprey, a rider and also an owner of high performance dressage horses, is also reported to have resigned as a director.
The group’s characterization of development of a resort condominium hotel and retail plaza as part of the GDF complex as likely to increase crime, traffic and noise in the community of about 55,000 people inland from Palm Beach offended many involved in dressage.
The project has cleared two major hurdles with approval from a formal equestrian committee and the Village of Wellington Planning and Zoning Board before going before the full village council for a crucial vote later this month.
WEPA is headed up by Lou Jacobs, a member of the family that owns Delaware North Companies, one of the largest privately held corporations in the word with extensive food service, hospitality, gambling and dog and Thorougbred track interests on three continents. The family owns a large estate in Wellington, home of the Winter Equestrian Festival, the largest and longest running horse show in the world that kicks off its 12 weeks of competitions Wednesday.
While not commenting on WEPA, Mason Phelps said his company would continue its association with the Jacobs family equestrian and philanthropic pursuits.