Horseback Therapy Ranch Gets Some Puppy Love
Carousel Ranch – a place of horses, hearts and hope for kids with special needs – covered a big chunk of its annual budget Saturday evening as it hosted its 23rd annual Heart of the West fundraising dinner at its property in Mint Canyon.
Show stealers were 4-year-olds Bodhi Grable, Preston Philippi and Mallory Reagan and 16-year-old Kylee Postel. Each accompanied by four trainers, they demonstrated a variety of equestrian therapy techniques.
Tailored to fit individual needs, the program uses the sport of vaulting – gymnastics on a moving horse – as well as English and Western riding to build motor skills, improve balance and muscle control, ease pain, boost confidence and social interaction, and more, depending on the medical condition of the client. The equestrian therapy program served more than 100 students last year.
And for the past three years, Carousel Ranch has offered services to young adults who “age out” of the regular program with “ready-to-work” vocational training and placement in partner businesses.
Carousel Ranch relies heavily on community support, which was in no short supply Saturday.
Jessi, a 6-1/2 week-old yellow Labrador retriever, was the star of the live auction. She found a new home with a $5,000 bid from the head table. A $6,000 Princess cruise hammered down for $7,000, and the “Fund A Need” portion of the auction saw multiple individual donations of $10,000.
Live music, dancing and casino games lasted well into the night.