There are so many pockets of movers and shakers in San Marcos – people who give huge amounts of time and effort to make our community an awesome place to live.
Maybe you know some of them. They are the people who see a problem or an opportunity and then get out there, roll up their sleeves and relentlessly give their time, energy and resources to make an impact and get stuff done. Not only do they show up at every major event – but in many cases, they are the ones who work tirelessly behind-the-scenes to bring these events and causes to life.
Even more powerful is when you see a bunch of these community catalysts come together. And, the Horse Heritage Festival that takes place on Sunday, October 19 is a phenomenal example.
One of the characteristics that makes San Marcos so special is that you can still very easily touch base with our rural roots. A quick drive up Twin Oaks Valley Rd. toward Walnut Grove Park is a great way to get a taste of rural life here in San Marcos. It’s amazing that we don’t have to drive to some other city or hours away. From any point in our city, you are only minutes away from farmland, rolling hills and horses.
In a city that has grown so fast in the last 20 years, it’s amazing that we have somehow managed to protect this asset of our community. It’s not an easy thing to do these days. One of biggest struggles in any community is figuring out where to draw the line between growth and preservation. And, it doesn’t happen without effort. It takes a lot of work and dedication on the part of active citizens and community catalysts.
And, no matter which side of the fence you’re sitting on in any given debate, you’re bound to win some, lose some – and ultimately, find some common ground and creative ways to manage compromise.
The Horse Heritage Festival is a fantastic example of what is being done to preserve one of our most fantastic community assets – Walnut Grove Park.
Did you realize that Walnut Grove Park here in San Marcos is THE ONLY public equestrian park in all of San Diego County! The ONLY ONE! Isn’t that amazing? (And, kinda cool, right?) Even if you’re not into horses, to live in a city that offers the only public equestrian park in the County is something to be proud of.
And, it’s not something to take for granted because it requires continuous active participation and involvement from us as residents to keep it going. Fortunately, we have an active and very diverse equestrian community here in San Marcos. And, if you’d like to witness the dedication they put into serving our community, the place to do that is at the Horse Heritage Festival on Sunday, October 19.
Yes, it’s a fun family day and a celebration of horses – with pony rides, petting zoo, BBQ and all that fun family stuff. But, it’s so much more than that. The Horse Heritage Festival celebrates our rural roots and brings together so many different aspects of our community.
The Twin Oaks Valley Equestrian Association coordinates this annual event in partnership with the City of San Marcos, San Marcos Historical Society, TERI Inc, San Marcos Future Farmers of America and local youth and horse groups.
And, if you live in San Marcos, it is THE place to be on October 19. (Heck, even if you don’t live in San Marcos you’re going to want to be there!)
Horse Heritage Festival takes place at Walnut Grove Park. The day begins with the 8th Annual Poker Ride & Stride. Just saddle up your horse, leash up your pooch or lace up your sneakers and enjoy a wonderful walk or ride along a 3-mile course that will take you along Twin Oaks Valley’s quiet and horse-friendly trail system.
Check-in begins at 8:30AM and the ride and stride will start at 9AM and proceeds from the Poker Ride will go to improve the public horse show grounds at Walnut Grove Park. Equestrian Trainers ride in the Poker Ride & Stride to raise funds for the TERI Therapeutic Riding Program. You’ll also have the chance to win great prizes.
But that’s just the day begins. From 10AM to 3PM, the fun continues with pony rides, a petting coral, frontier games, horsemanship demonstrations, Heritage Park activities and museum, pumpkin patch, crafts, BBQ, food, music and much more.
Heritage Park will also present the kick-off of the San Marcos Arts Council’s “Chickens on Parade” live auction. Each of the artist-adorned chickens that have been on display this summer all around San Marcos, will be showcased and will be auctioned off to raise funds for the San Marcos Arts Council. All sales will come to a close on October 23 at the San Marcos Chamber’s monthly mixer, which will be at Heritage Park.
Over 1200 people participated in the Horse Heritage Festival last year. And, it is definitely an event your entire family will enjoy. At the same time, it gives us all a chance to promote the rich cultural history of San Marcos and the importance of preserving a rural and equestrian presence within the community. Bring your family and friends for a great day of celebrating.
For more information, visit www.HelpTheHorsePark.com.