Articles: Press Release
City Slickers Youths to Compete at The 2003 Winter Equestrian Festival
Mason Phelps, Jr. or Beverly Lake Wilkes at (561) 753-3389
Wellington, Florida <96> January 13, 2003 -- The combination
children from the rough and tough, inner cities of Connecticut competing
at the most prestigious horse show venue in the United States sounds
like the stuff of a Hollywood movie. But that<92>s what<92>s going to h
when seven youngsters and five horses from the City Slickers Equestrian
Program arrive at The 2003 Winter Equestrian Festival in Wellington for
the month of February.
City Slickers is a non-profit organization which provides
inner- city children in Connecticut, ages 11 to 17, with
horse- and farm-related experiences. Careers within the horse
are offered for the older participants. According to Ruth
director of City Slickers, many of these children would be
of school, having babies, doing drugs and joining gangs<94> if
it were no
for this program. City Slickers attempts to take these children
a world mired in hopelessness by showing them the horse world,
environment rich in love, caring and personal responsibility.
Children become eligible to join City Slickers in the sixth
grade. Selection is based upon an essay written by each child,
permission and the number of openings. Once a child begins with
program, he or she usually remains for three or four years.
In addition to teaching how to ride and take care of horses,
City Slickers builds upon academics taught in the classroom.
regular, required essay assignments and math exercises, such as
determining the perimeter of a riding ring. The participants
develop interpersonal and teamwork skills and learn anger
Through the generosity of Eugene R. Mische, President of
Stadium Jumping, Inc., The Festival's producer, the five City
horses will be provided with complimentary stabling, feed, hay
bedding, with the seven riders receiving free entry to any of
competition classes. But the elbow grease will be provided by
Slickers riders themselves -- they will be responsible for the
feeding, riding and grooming. Jet Blue will furnish the airline
The City Slickers horses and riders will be seen competing
in the junior jumper, hunter and equitation classes against some
top junior horses and riders in the U. S. Their participation
only enhance the level of performance, but will enrich and
overall spirit of The Festival.
For more information, please contact Mason Phelps, Jr. or
Beverly Lake Wilkes at (561) 753-3389.