News & Media
March 27, 2008 Equine Center Ready to Welcome Guests
Contact: Aimee Yamamori, Director of Media and Public Relations, Phoenix Zoo
(602) 914-4305 or mobile (602 ) 403-1838
Date: March 27, 2008
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
PHOENIX ZOO EQUINE CENTER READY TO WELCOME GUESTS
Additional Funding Needed to Complete Facility
The Phoenix Zoo's new one-of-a-kind equine facilities will host an open house at 1:30 p.m. on Sunday, March 30, 2008. The Thunderbird Charities Equine Facility and Arena will be equipped to host a four-level Horse Hands care giving program, riding lessons for full functioning youth; riding lessons; after school programs and, in cooperation with Arizona State University's Hunkapi Horse Program-- therapeutic riding programs for youth with physical and emotional challenges.
The March 30 preview will include remarks from the Zoo, Arizona State University representatives and the Thunderbirds Charities, as well as a tour of the completed facilities and a horse demonstration with Phoenix Zoo Equine staff.
To date, an amazing amount of work has already been completed on this large equine facility, including the erection of a 32-stall horse barn, installation of three turn out and exercise pens, and a 90-foot by 138-foot covered riding arena.
This facility is one of the few very large and expensive covered arenas in the southwest, and many resources have contributed to the success of the construction so far, including the generous contribution of the Thunderbird Charities, and Arizona State University.
"Thunderbirds Charities is proud to be part of this wonderful Equine Facility at the Phoenix Zoo, " said Thunderbirds Charities President Pat McGinley. "Children and adults alike now have the opportunity to take advantage of all of the incredible equine programs the Zoo has to offer."
The Phoenix Zoo's equine facilities give the Zoo the opportunity to offer very affordable riding and horsemanship classes to Valley youths; classes that are usually only available with resources to utilize private facilities.
However, more work still needs to be done, and funding for the facility is still needed to complete other project needs including the installation of a hay barn, landscaping, restroom and office facilities. Zoo development staff estimate that at least another $800, 000 must be raised to complete the Equine center.
"The equine facility is already operating as a terrific addition to the Phoenix Zoo and more than 2, 500 children have been through the Horse Hands program since it began at the Zoo. But more work and money is necessary to truly meet its potential to serve a variety of needs, " said Bert Castro, Phoenix Zoo President and CEO. "We look forward to completing it and making it one of the finest equine facilities in the Valley."
For additional information about the Thunderbirds Charities Equine Facilities and Arena, including how to support the completion of the project, please call Lorraine Frias at (602) 914.4322.