“Time to Ride” Stables Receive Grants to Welcome Newcomers

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Twenty “Host” stables that submitted plans to produce events to attract non-horse people to the horse industry will be held from January to April 1, 2015. These hosts will receive grants from Time to Ride. This is another example of how the American horse industry’s Time to Ride marketing program supports stables, businesses and organizations in efforts to connect new enthusiasts to horses. The 20 Hosts representing 15 states submitted plans that included events at elementary schools, equine veterinary clinics, rodeo events and more. The events invite families, students, Girl Scouts, rodeos attendees and the public to connect with horses. Hosts will be awarded between $250 and $500 following the successful completion of their event.

“Stables, clubs, feed stores and vet clinics are portals to horse involvement,” stated David Foley, Marketing Alliance Member and Executive Director of the American Association of Equine Practitioners. “We have found that by providing financial incentives and marketing assistance to hard-working hosts that want to grow their businesses or organizations, the entire industry benefits from the investment.”

The grant program complements the Time to Ride Challenge in Time to Ride’s portfolio of programs offered to equine industry Hosts, and will continue in the fall of 2015. In 2014 the Marketing Alliance created the 100 Day Horse Challenge, which provided $100,000 in cash and prizes to stables, organizations and businesses that hosted events catering to beginner horse enthusiasts. More than 700 hosts signed up to deliver events in 49 states. Participating hosts provided first-time horse experiences to more than 25,000 newcomers over the 100-day period. From “princess pony parties” to stable open houses, hosts provided fun horse experiences and collected newcomers’ contact information. Newcomers received free equestrian e-books and encouragement to revisit local equine facilities.

Time to Ride programs such as the Challenge are already reaping rewards for participants. Jody Halladay, owner of 16 Acres Equine Educational Complex of Union Grove, Wisconsin, and winner of $10,000 in the 100 Day Horse Challenge small division in 2014, knows that the Challenge grew her business. “The Challenge made me look for new opportunities right in my hometown. People right in my neighborhood didn’t know we were there, so I learned how to step outside of the horse world to make new connections in my community.” Halladay applied for and received a grant for an additional newcomer event at her facility, and reports several new clients as a result of the new Time to Ride programs.

The grant program is supported by Program Partners: Absorbine, the American Paint Horse Association, Morris Media Network Equine Group, the National Cutting Horse Association, the National Reining Horse Association, and Rood and Riddle Equine Hospital. In addition to the grant program and Challenge, Time to Ride provides free marketing resources to those interested in welcoming newcomers to their business and the horse industry. To become involved or learn more, please visit www.timetoride.com or contact info@timetoride.com.

The American Horse Council’s Marketing Alliance

Time to Ride is an initiative of American horse industry leaders who joined together with the goal to connect non-horse people with horses. It is designed to encourage horse-interested consumers to enjoy the benefits of horse activities. Facilitated by the American Horse Council, the Marketing Alliance is made up of the following organizations: the American Association of Equine Practitioners, Active Interest Media, the American Quarter Horse Association, Dover Saddlery, Farnam, Merck, Merial, the National Thoroughbred Racing Association, Purina Animal Nutrition LLC, Platinum Performance, SmartPak, United States Equestrian Federation, and Zoetis.

The American Horse Council is a non-profit organization that includes all segments of the horse industry. While its primary mission is to represent the industry before Congress and the federal regulatory agencies in Washington, DC, it also undertakes national initiatives for the horse industry. Time to Ride, the AHC’s marketing alliance to connect horses and people, is such an effort. The American Horse Council hopes that Time to Ride will encourage people and businesses to participate in the industry, enjoy our horses, and support our equine activities and events. The AHC believes a healthy horse industry contributes to the health of Americans and America in many ways.