I started out at Equest many years ago as a volunteer and fell in love with the world of therapeutic horsemanship. I became an Advanced Riding Instructor and Carriage Driving Instructor before returning to Equest as Program Director.
After a couple of sessions as the Program Director at Equest, I have had the opportunity to observe and thoughtfully consider improvements to the programs we offer our riders and families. I hope that you will understand that although most of the changes to Programs are bound to be welcomed by our families, sometimes making progress also requires some difficult decisions. There have been some changes in personnel and horses that have not been the popular choice. Please know that not only is my door is always open, but I welcome getting to know each of you.
As is typical, Summer of 2014 has a class schedule that is significantly less than our fall and spring schedules. We are hosting 6 instructor training candidates and 1 auditor from the US and 3 other countries. These students will be teaching during the summer session to acquire their required teaching hours. Each lesson will be directly supervised by a PATH International Instructor. Shelby Nicoletti, Naomi Heller, Susannah Denney, Christa Collum, Tami Ginn, Lizzie Ball, Lauren Woodcock and Leilani Warrick and I will continue to be a part of lesson planning and execution and volunteer training. We welcome the opportunity to help these folks become the best that they can be.
Volunteers: During the months of July and August, we will be offering some additional volunteer training. Please look for a chance to sharpen your leader skills, learn to be part of the carriage driving team, get involved with Hippotherapy or even take volunteer riding lessons. More details on these opportunities to come.
I'm thrilled to announce that on Sunday, August 24th, we will be having a Family Appreciation Party. This will be held at Hyatt Place Dallas Garland and will offer food and entertainment. Fall 2014 schedules will be available and you will be able to meet your classmates and instructors, and make new friends! The Fall 2014 schedule will be available for you in July to begin making your class choices so we can have them confirmed by the Party. We will also encourage you to schedule a planning/goal meeting with your instructor and myself before the session begins. Not only will this be a fun event for your entire family, it is an opportunity for us to show you how much you mean to us and to share more of our vision for the future.
Finally, Equest is a growing family, with our second location at Texas Horse Park opening in a matter of months. Beginning in the Fall of 2014 we will expand our Equest Hooves for Heroes program because of the proximity to the Dallas VA. That being said, we will also continue to operate the Equest Hooves for Heroes program in Wylie.
Beginning January of 2015, we will be adding Children's programming to the Texas Horse Park location that will include outreach to local school districts. Additional staff including horses will be added to accommodate this growth. Although some of the current Equest Horses will be reassigned to the Texas Horse Park, you should not feel any other significant effects at our Wylie location.
If you are concerned that the THP location will get all the best resources, you won't have to worry long! We are so pleased to announce that we will be building a new Equest on 238 acres just around the corner from our existing Wylie location. We are really excited to let you know that Ridefest 2014-Blazing New Trails Together will be riding at this new location on October 25th. We are going to share all of the details at the Family Appreciation Party, but know that this new facility will allow us to serve our families at a superior level that we have only dreamed about. Again, don't miss the party on August 24th to hear all of the exciting details!
Thank You for your continued support of Equest. Please come see me anytime so that I can hear your vision for our future. I am so proud to again be a part of the Equest Family.