Monday, May 20, 2013

ARENA Clean Up - Getting Ready for the Hay Trailer

Members gathered at the LARA arena on May 18th to clean up the grounds and trim some trees. One of the membership perks is we have a hay co-op... current members are given the opportunity to participate in the program. A local hay grower delivers 600 bales of hay each month to fill member's pre-orders. We get the hay at a discount price and have a good supply as long as the weather cooperates. Its hard to believe that we can use that much hay in a month!

Presently the list is full and we cannot add any new customers. If you want to be on the waiting list, please contact Lisa Buchanan.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

4th Annual Poker Ride was Chilly Fun

Nearly 60 riders participated in the 4th annual Poker Ride at the Jacksonville Equestrian Center! WOW! Members and friends showed up in droves on the cold breezy Saturday morning to ride the 6.5 mile trail and try their luck to win the $100 prize. Much of the trail wound through the piney woods and there were some ditches and creek crossings to navigate. The adventuresome riders opted for the "Danger Trail" which included some steep hills and a narrow winding path. All in all the route was fun and different from the normal "EC Trails."

When the last of the riders were coming back from the ride, the bad weather rolled in. Winds whipped to 30 mph and the temperatures dropped. While the wind was blowing our lunch plates away and the raffle prized were going everywhere, a light rain began to fall to add icing to the cake! Despite ALL this, most everyone stuck around to find out who won the poker hand and who would go home with the many great raffle prizes. Denise Umphress was the big winner and walked away with $100 cash. The beautiful baskets donated by a generous member werre won by Claire Kenyon and Traci Woodard.  Other prizes included gift certificates, candles, tack, books, T-shirts and so many other goodies that it is hard to name them all!!! Thank you SO much to the business sponsors and to the members who donated services, time and good will to make this ride a memorable event.

Our next BIG event will be the fall obstacle challenge... between now and then there will be many more fun weekends with LARA! Stay in touch to find out what we have on the agenda!

Tuesday, January 22, 2013


LARA's fourth annual Poker Ride is almost here! Make plans to join us on February 16th at the Jacksonville Equestrian Center for fun, food and prizes. Entry fee is $20 for non-members and $15 for members. Riders will enjoy the trails behind the equestrian center while searching for five buckets placed along the trail. After visitng all five buckets the riders will be dealt a hand of cards and some lucky person will win $100 for the best hand. There will be raffle prizes, lunch will be available and we will have lots of fun. For more info, email

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Fall Obstacle Challenge !

Katrina & Simon show 'em how its done!

Slight mis-communication!

There was a nice turn out for the fall obstacle challenge. Two judges helped speed the day along and riders enjoyed some new and exciting obstacles. Thank you to the Kenyon's for allowing us to use their beautiful ranch and thank you to the people who worked to make this a success.

We had several photographers there and we appreciate them donating their time and services so that we can have pictures of the event. John Smith's photos will be available only thru Nov 17th.. so be sure to view and use the ones you want FOR FREE! Randy Harris's pictures will be posted at and will be free to access and download.  Click HERE for pictures of the winners!

Here are the pictures that Randy took.

and here are the pictures that John took!

Friday, October 26, 2012

LARA shares a day of horses with Keystone Heights Elementary 4th Graders!

Several LARA members spent the morning of October 24th with the fourth graders of Keystone Heights Elementary. As part of the Black Stallion Literacy Program, Lisa Buchanan & Jewel, Lyndel Hale & Ralph, Suzy Forbes & Tiny, Karen Bridges & Taj and Mike Woodard & Rusty shared interesting facts about their horse and breed with the easger kids. Smiling faces and interesting questions made the event so worthwhile. Some of the kids got to get their picture taken on Rusty, and the other horses put their best hoof forward to show off their talents.

Thanks to Ernie Thomas for helping transport horses and Jill York for taking pictures. And a big thank you to all the kids and staff at KHE that made our club feel welcome! Click here to see the pictures from this event!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012


This is one of the favorite events for both the club and participants. Please make plans to join us at Kenyon Ranch in Middleburg on November 3rd for our fall obstacle challenge. Lots have things have changed since the spring challenge.  There will be two courses - one for in-hand and one for riders. Each course will have separate judges to speed things along. Pre-entry has its benefits, as you will get to pick the time you want to compete.  Also - if you pre-pay you get a free lunch! Now how can you beat that deal?

Also different this time - we will have awards for SIX places in all divisions. Everyone always works so hard and we want to recognize your efforts beyond first and second place. New obstacles too! Bubbles, water, bridges, yabba dabba do... it's all fun and we want you to join us!

Of course there will be good food and give-aways plus a raffle drawing for a very nice hand-made saddle rack, compliments of Bill Muller.

The LARA arena is set up with a nice assortment of obstacles. Current paid members are welcome to come and practice any time. We have lights so you can come after work and ride til bedtime! For those of you who want an intense practice session, the Woodard's will have a course set up on Oct 28th from noon until 4PM. Cost is $20 per person to practice ($10 for kids!). Contact Traci Woodard to sign up (limited to 20 participants.) (


We are happy to learn that SJRWM has decided NOT to declare the Ravines as "surplus" land to be disposed of. Thanks to everyone who contacted local officials to let them know that we dont want to lose this valuable asset used by the local equestrian community! Get out therre and enjoy our natural resources!