The WHTA Pacers beat the TWHBEA Smooth Riders 22-16 in a softball game that raised over $2,600 for the Great Strides Therapeutic Riding Program.

The second annual game was held June 27 at the H.V. Griffin Park in Shelbyville, Tenn. The Challenge Trophy will reside in the WHTA office along with a winning team photo. The Smooth Riders team consisted of members of the TWHBEA youth program.

The TWHBEA Youth Board had chosen Great Strides Therapeutic Riding Program for a service project. The youth look forward to playing the game but they also collect items for the Silent Auction, help set up prior to the game, and clean up all the trash after the game.

“We want to extend a special thank-you to the trainers who took time out of their busy lives on a Sunday afternoon to play this game. It is important to recognize the trainers’ commitment to this project and to the youth in our industry. Members of the WHTA Pacers donated an unbelievable $850 to the Great Strides Program, and it is absolutely wonderful to see them interact with the kids,” said Joni Jenne’, TWHBEA youth and performance show horse coordinator.

With the help of Kay Dennis and Regan Mercer, Great Strides participant Buck Griffy demonstrated the riding skills he had acquired while attending the Great Strides Program for the past 11 years. His parents quickly tell everyone that Great Strides has made a big difference in Griffy’s life, and is one of the positive influences that helped him graduate from Shelbyville Central High School in 2004!

Volunteers make this event possible, and we want to thank all of them. Lynne Williams, Suzanne Stokes and Janice Plyler handled the Silent Auction. Sharon and Fletcher Griffin prepared all the food and delivered it to the ball field. Cathy Simpson, Bonnie Brown, Pam Galeski, and Suzanne Hicks worked the concession stand, and Dee Dee Sale helped with photography.

Jeremy Wilhelm was umpire again this year, and Woody Woodruff handled the announcer’s booth with the help of Randy Sadler. Kyle Insell kept the scoreboard.

Playing for the WHTA Pacers were Joel Weaver, coach; Knox Blackburn, Jamie Bradshaw, Greg Brewer, Bill Callaway, John Alan Callaway, Nicole Carswell, Sammy Day, Justin Jenne’, Carl Johnson, Chris Pickle, Tim Wheelon, Chad Way, Chad Williams, Jeff Willis, Zack Wilson, and Anton Bowen.

The TWHBEA Smooth Riders were Brad East, coach; Blake Cammack, assistant coach; Mac Benham, MiKenzie Brown, Luke Carswell, Jamie Daly, Seth Day, Erica Derickson, Maria Derickson, Blake Everett, Rachel Galeski, Steven Hartlein, Courtney Hicks, Cody Liggett, Matt McMurtrey, Catherine Simpson, Summar Shamma, Hali Stokes, and Mary Jo Williams.

A huge thank you to the following whose Silent Auction donations helped to make The Challenge 2004 a huge success: Antique Mall Billy Ray Cyrus Bio Plastics, Inc. Corner Cleaners Dancy’s Decker Manufacturing EQ Rider, Inc. Frito Lay Heritage Jewelers Jeff and Suzanne Hicks Jack Greene Kroger Larry McLaughlin Marsey Manufacturing Thom Meek National Bridle Shop Kathy Potter Robinhoods Dee Dee Sale Sand Creek Sales Tim Stokes Family TWHBEA UGO Walking Horse Chat Walking Horse Report Waterfall Farm Lynne and Mary Jo Williams

The TWHBEA Youth Board officers are Catherine Simpson, president; Kathryn Ramsbottom, vice president; MiKenzie Brown, secretary; and Joel Johnson, parliamentarian.

Great Strides is a non-profit organization and contributions are tax deductible. Donations can be made to Great Strides, c/o TWHBEA Youtb Board, P.O. Box 286, Lewisburg, TN 37091.