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2002/06/12

Equestrian Alliance Plans Extension Of Trails by Nancy Brannon The Shelby Farms Equestrian Alliance (SFEA) is planning to expand the equine trails at Shelby Farms to include one linking the area near Walnut Grove Road to Summer Avenue. Members of the Alliance discussed at their monthly meeting May 21, 2002 work details for not only maintaining and controlling erosion on the existing trails, but also an exploratory ride from Walnut Grove Road to scout a possible route for a new trail linking to Summer Avenue. The group last hosted a trail ride at Shelby Farms on May 11th, with a two-hour ride and tailgate picnic afterward. The SFEA has a regular program of trail maintenance and the next workday is June 8th at 8:00 a.m. to work on the white trail. The SFEA is also planning a July 4th trail ride with a potluck dinner afterwards. The ride will begin and end at Gate 11, which is the highest elevation in Shelby County, members said. The idea of meeting at the high point in Shelby County is to enjoy the fireworks from surrounding municipalities after the ride. Several members of SFEA will be attending the Southeastern Equestrian Trails Conference at Clemson University July 25-28, 2002 in Clemson, SC. The topic of this year's conference is "Understanding and Applying Conservation Policy" and will focus on building and maintaining equine trails that "Leave No Trace." The keynote speaker is David Brickley, Attorney at Law and Former Director of the Virginia Department of Recreation and Conservation. The use of saddle and pack stock on trails in wild lands is coming under increasing scrutiny and criticism by natural resource management agencies and non-government organizations that focus on wild land preservation. So the purpose of the Southeastern Equestrian Trails Conference (SETC) is to bring together people who are concerned about the future of the natural and cultural heritage of horseback riding on trails. SETC strives for equestrian self-evaluation, learning and the development of conservation forces that will influence responsible land use management at local, state, regional, and national levels. SFEA will host a second annual Equifair October 19-20, 2002 at the Show Place Arena. The Equifair includes a trade show, demonstration of various horse riding disciplines, breed exhibits, and an evening performance. For more information, call Jim Lovell, Expo Director at (901) 854-1727 or visit www.EQUIFAIR.com. Shelby Farms Equestrian Alliance also sponsors public riding in the covered arena at the Show Place every Tuesday evening from 7:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m. Tim and Mary Ann Self coordinate that activity. For more information on Shelby Farms Equestrian Alliance activities visit their web site at www.sfeaonline.org.

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