ACTHA Offers Two Great Destination Rides for the Entire Family
As family vacations have evolved over the years, the opportunities and options have become quite extensive. We all know the benefits of having a vacation; family bonding time, rest and relaxation, adventure, making new memories and possibly learning a new skill. Regardless, family fun comes in many forms. If you are looking for an opportunity to have an adventurous horse weekend with your non horse family, the American Competitive Trail Horse Association (ACTHA) has two outstanding family oriented destination rides scheduled in the month of October. In fact, you don’t even have to be an ACTHA member to join the ride; you can ride as a buddy.
The Stables at Lanier Islands, located on the shores of Lake Sidney Lanier, forty minutes northeast of Atlanta, Georgia will play host to ACTHA’s first destination ride scheduled for the fall, on October 4, 2015. Lanier Islands Equestrian Center manager and ACTHA ride host Beth Pedaggi will host two separate events that day, a 6 mile Competitive Trail Challenge (CTC) and an Arena Obstacle Challenge (AOC), giving riders the option to compete in either events or both, all for charity. A portion of rider fees are donated directly to charity at all ACTHA events. The Lanier Islands events will benefit Save the Horses (www.savethehorse.org), a local Georgia nonprofit, committed to saving unwanted horses.
Surrounded by the beauty of scenic Lake Sidney Lanier the Competitive Trail Challenge will wind through the woods and along the shore of the lake. If you are looking for an opportunity to swim with your horse, then this is the destination ride for you.
This 1,500 acre resort is packed full of amenities for the whole family. Sleeping accommodations vary from deluxe to lakeside villas to camping and include some that are pet friendly. Dining destinations are also plentiful, from beachside bistros to fine dining. Other things to do at Lanier Islands include boating, kayaking, paddle boarding, hiking and walking trails, horseback riding, zip lines, a spa, beach volleyball, lakeside mini golf, and a Legacy Kids program.
The Stables at Lanier Islands not only offers horseback riding for its guests, but also summer camp for young equestrians. In addition The Stables offers overnight stabling for your horse whether you are bringing your horse with you for a vacation or are in need of overnight stabling while traveling to another destination.
ACTHA ride host Beth Moran and Westgate River Ranch Resort and Rodeo in River Ranch, Florida will play host to three ACTHA events, an AOC and two CTC’s, on October 10-11, 2015. The River Ranch, the largest dude ranch east of the Mississippi River, sits on 1,700 acres overlooking the scenic Kissimmee River and boasts miles of trails, including the surrounding Kicco Wildlife Management Area.
The River Ranch rides will help support the Nonprofit Parelli Foundation (www.parellifoundation.org ), an organization that benefits the natural horsemanship community focusing on education. They offer youth education, therapeutic horsemanship, equine welfare and scholarships. By riding in the ACTHA events at River Ranch you will be helping the Nonprofit Parelli Foundation help horses while having a great time.
In addition to the events, 2 Star Parelli trainer and 2014 ACTHA Open National Champion Nancy Slater will be hosting an obstacle clinic on Friday, October 9, 2015. Riders have the option of signing up to participate in the clinic or auditing.
The River Ranch Resort and Rodeo has endless activities for the whole family, starting with the weekly Saturday night rodeo. This premier destination getaway offers horseback riding, pony rides, airboat rides, an archery range, a trap and skeet range, basketball courts, tennis courts, bungee jumping, rock climbing, boat rentals, fishing, a full service marina, a nine hole golf course, miniature golf and a zip line just to name a few. Sleeping accommodations too vary, from deluxe, to cabins and cottages to camping. Dining at the River Ranch is its own adventure. Guests can choose from the Westgate Smokehouse Grill to the Deli at the Country Store, or a dinner hayride complete with a singing cowboy, or the River Ranch Saloon where guests can experience live county and western entertainment and line dancing on Friday and Saturday nights.
So, why not take your family away for a great weekend getaway. While they enjoy the amenities of the Lanier Islands or the River Ranch you can spend your time trail riding for a worthy cause. For more information on ACTHA please visit www.actha.us. For information on the events and to register for a ride please visit
www.actha.us/events and click on each day you would like to attend. Contact information for each ride host is also posted on their event page along with information on special pricing at the resorts. For more information on Lanier Islands please visit http://www.lanierislands.com/. For information on River Ranch Resort and Rodeo please visit https://www.westgatedestinations.com/florida/lake-wales/westgate-river-ranch.