Road to the Horse celebrated 10 years of the World Championship of Colt Starting with a Ram Truck Tailgate Party at the Alltech Arena in the Kentucky Horse Park March 16th. Event Producer, Tootie Bland, invited past and present competitors and special guests to celebrate 10 years of competition, among them were three-time champion Chris Cox, two-time champion Clinton Anderson, 2006 champion Stacy Westfall, 2009 champion Richard Winters, Mike Kevil, Martin Black, Tommy Garland, Glenn Stewart, Jonathan Field and Ken McNabb. The 2013 competitors Guy McLean, Dan James, Obbie Schlom and Sarah Winters made their appearances. Special guest appearances were made by international clinicians Tomonori Miyata of Japan, Jesus “Chewy” Jaureui of Mexico, Shlomik Raziel of Israel and Maco Cook of Argentina.
Live and silent action donations to the benefit auction were made by past and present competitors and special guests, Road to the Horse sponsors and Bland. The auction plus wristbands sold to the public raised $97,000 to be donated to Central Kentucky Riding for Hope’s Equine Services for Heroes Program.
“I could not be more proud of the Road to the Horse family, everyone pitched in to support the Equine Services for Heroes Program, I was blown away by the generosity,” said Bland. “Helping people connect with horses is what we’re all about.”
Central Kentucky Riding for Hope (CKRH) was established in 1981 to improve the quality of health in children and adults with special needs through therapeutic equine activities. The non-profit organization has since opened their doors to military families. They currently offer therapeutic riding for veterans, therapeutic riding for special needs children, equine facilitated workshops and equine facilitate education.
“The funding from Road to the Horse will allow us to grow and expand our services,” said CKRH Program Director Denise Spittler, who oversees the military program. “We will be able to offer more services and activities during Military Appreciation Day at the Kentucky Horse Park on May 18th. We will also be able to expand our riding program for military service members.”
Bland threw a friendly competition into the auction; the donor with the highest selling item would choose the charity that the proceeds would be donated to. Cox donated two one-day private clinics for two people each raising just over $12,000 to be donated to Western Wishes.
“Thank you, thank you for this donation, because it means that RTTH and Chris Cox will be responsible for turning dreams into lasting memories for many, many of our Western Wishes kids,” said Western Wishes President and Founder Donnalyn Quintana.
Beginning in 1994, Western Wishes have helped countless children suffering from severe spinal cord and head injuries, survivors of cancer, muscular dystrophy, cerebral palsy and heart afflictions.