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Published: Wednesday, 10/5/2005

Oregon: Therapeutic horseback-riding program ends

A therapeutic horseback-riding program in Oregon will no longer be offered to the about 75 handicapped adults and children who once used its services.

Vail Meadows Therapeutic Riding Center, 6118 Cedar Point Rd., stopped offering its therapeutic riding program at the beginning of September because of a lack of funding, said Joy Vail, an owner of Vail Meadows Properties and a board member for the non-profit therapeutic riding program.

"The board of directors felt it was their fiduciary responsibility to close because they couldn't meet the expenses," she said.

She said it cost just under $300,000 a year to run the program, and clients paid $30 a lesson. Because they already have the horses, clientele, instructors, and the building, she said she's hoping a sponsor will step in to cover the $180,000 shortfall.

Children as young as 2 years old and adults up to 80 years old with physical, mental, emotional, or social problems have taken advantage of the program in the past seven years.

The facility will remain open for boarding horses, riding lessons, and other events.

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