National Non-Profit Marks Flag Day with Free Horseback Rides During Pinto World Championship Show

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Horses4Heroes, one of the most successful national non-profit equestrian service organizations, will be giving free horseback rides to Tulsa service members, First Responders, veterans and their families on Flag Day, June 14, during the Pinto World Championship Show.

Operation Free Ride Pinto will be held in The Pavilion at Expo Square from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. A Parade of Heroes, featuring Free Ride participants and Pinto exhibitors with military ties, will follow at 6 pm in the Ford Truck Livestock Arena. Expo Square is located at 4145 East 21st Street. Parking and admission is free. This is the fifth year that Flag Day has been Horses4Heroes Day at the Pinto World Show.

Horses for Operation Free Ride Pinto will be provided by Tulsa 4H Club members. Rides are open to all ages, and a 200-pound weight limit will be strictly enforced. Riders 16 and under will be required to wear a helmet. Participants will be invited to learn about horses, horse care and horsemanship, including the opportunity to groom horses.

Operation Free Ride Pinto is one of Horses4Heroes' Time To Ride events this summer, as the organization seeks to repeat as 100-Day Challenge National Champion.

Operation Free Ride is an unprecedented collaboration between facility owners, breed associations and equestrian organizations, united for one important mission: to give returning combat veterans, Wounded Warriors and their families the opportunity to ride a horse for free.

Launched in 2012, more than 10,000 service members, veterans, survivors and their families have ridden a horse for free, either by appointment at Horses4Heroes affiliates throughout the country or at equestrian events including the Pinto World Show, Cheyenne Frontier Days, River City Rodeo on Omaha and the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo on Las Vegas. Wrangler National Patriot, C-A-L Ranch, South Point Hotel & Casino and Hollywood Charity Horse Show are sponsors of Operation Free Ride 2015.

"This program is opening the wonderful world of horses to these men, women and their children who have sacrificed so much on our behalf," said Sydney Knott, founder of Horses4Heroes. "Since its inception three years ago, 'Free Riders' have participated in cattle drives and Civil War Re-enactments, taken trail rides through wooded forests and enjoyed arena lessons. One mother and her three daughters drove three hours to take their free ride at our host center in Indiana."

Founded in 2006 and based in Las Vegas, Horses4Heroes is introducing horses and horseback riding to service members, Veterans, First Responders and their families. Through its growing national network of 300 affiliates in 45 states plus Canada, the organization provides affordable recreational, instructional equestrian programs for all ages, all riding levels and in all disciplines and free life skills workshops for veterans with PTS/MST/TBI, victims of domestic abuse and violence, at-risk youth and foster children and teens. These programs, including Back in the Saddle, 8.9.10: Ride to Win, H4H Pony Express, Unfinished Business, and Ride2Recover need donations in order to keep them free.

For more information, visit www.horses4heroes.org or call Horses4Heroes headquarters at 702-645-8446 or 702-885-1943.