This year I will be celebrating my 10th year at the Horses Helping Horses Beach Ride!
It's one of my favorite events each year; aside from the sheer beauty of seeing up to 150 horses enjoying a ride along the beach, it warms my heart to know that so many people care passionately about horses in need. People who want to help badly enough that they will wake up before dawn to trailer their horse across New England to join us. People who put themselves out there to fundraise amongst family and friends for the benefit of homeless horses and farm animals. People who will endure any type of weather to spend a few hours with like-minded people, sharing stories of their own horses and listening to our success stories.
But perhaps my favorite part of the event each year is getting to work the entrance. From my post at the gate to the beach, I can see trailers rolling in from the distance. I greet old friends and new - human and equine! We have a quick chat, and then it's on to the next trailer. After check-in, I'm able to roam the parking lot. I've usually loaded my pockets with peppermints - the surest way to a horse's heart - and I spend time catching up with folks before they head out on the beach.
And then we walk! My shoes fill with sand, my calves are burning, and if it's a sunny day I'll certainly get a sunburn. But it is all worth it to see horses and riders on the beach and in the water for miles. The best moments are when we see an alumni horse - one who came in thin and weak, now thriving. I've shed a tear or two in those moments, for sure. And I'm so proud of our Equine & Farm Animal staff and volunteers, knowing how hard they've worked for each and every animal who comes to us needing help. Help that is only made possible because of kind and generous people like you!
So this year, when I head to the gate to welcome friends and supporters, I hope that you'll be one of those that I greet. And if you can't join us on the 21st, perhaps you'll consider making a donation to my fundraising efforts - even $5 can make a difference!