Posts Tagged ‘horseback riding’

Orrie’s Wish Comes True!

Thursday, April 27th, 2017

OrrieFor as long as Orrie could remember, he wanted to learn to horseback ride.

He heard about other children with physical disabilities riding horses, but he had never visited a program where children who used wheelchairs learned to ride well enough that they eventually could ride horses on their own.

Orrie’s mom and dad had spoken to Orrie’s doctor who felt that the motion of the pony as it walked and trotted would be good exercise for Orrie’s legs. As the doctor put it, “Riding would be very therapeutic for you, Orrie.”  Great, thought Orrie, the doctor is all for it. Now I have to find a Therapeutic Horseback Riding Program I can get to and my parents can afford.

There were no Therapeutic Horseback Riding Programs on or near “Can Do” Street. So, Orrie got on the Internet and found a program about 50 miles away. When his birthday rolled around in May, he asked Grandpa John to take him to see the program as his birthday present. The two of them set off one Saturday morning. Before they knew it they were there!

The Unicorn Therapeutic Riding Program rents space at a beautiful riding center with an indoor and an outdoor riding area. The program accepts children as young as three. The Unicorn Program has ponies for the little kids and horses for older kids and adults.

OrrieThere are 3 certified riding instructors leading classes, a physical therapist and an occupational therapist on-site whenever the program is in session. There are also three volunteers for every rider; one leads the pony or horse around and the other two serve as side-walkers to make sure the rider was safe at all times. Orrie watched as a little boy took a lesson .

One of the instructors let Orrie sit on Oatmeal, the pony, and go for a brief walk around the ring with a leader and two side walkers. He was in heaven!

Driving back to “Can Do” Street, all Orrie could think about was how could he get to the Unicorn Program and take lessons?”

The lessons are free. They are supported by donations from generous people.  Orrie kept thinking that there had to be a way to get there.

Grandpa John knew what he was thinking and said,”Orrie, we need to think about how you can get to the Unicorn Program. I don’t think I can take you every week. Grandma and I have the store to take care of. Your dad works weekends and your mom has three other kids to take care of and get to activities.

Orrie shared his wish and his visit to the Unicorn Program with Miss Pat and the class the following Monday. A few days later, Mr. Markle, the manager of “Can Do” Street Bank visited the class. After he greeted Miss Pat and the class he announced,” I’m here to present a cash award to the student of the year.”

Well, the class got quiet, very quiet. Then Mr. Markle announced,”The award goes to Orrie for not only being the best prepared for his lessons and getting the highest marks on his tests, but for always being willing to help other students with their studies.”

A cheer went up for Orrie and Mr. Markle handed him a check for 300 dollars.

Everyone wanted to know what he would do with the money. “That’s easy,” said Orrie,”I can pay someone to drive me to and from the riding program when my family can’t do it.”

Orrie turned to Mr. Markle and said, “Thanks for making my wish come true.” Mr. Markle smiled and said, “No Orrie, you did that by working hard. You earned that cash award. The bank is just recognizing your hard work.”

Orrie couldn’t wait to get home and tell his family that wishes can come true!

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Spring=Sports

Friday, April 11th, 2014

The “Can Do” kids agreed that they all had enough of winter. There were just so many snow forts and snowmen they enjoyed making and snowball throwing that was fun. It was time for spring and sports.

springDuring the cold weather, Hector practiced his skateboarding in the basement of his house; he was getting ready for the skateboard race during spring break camp at the recreation center. The problem was…his basement just wasn’t that big. Before he could get up any speed, he would be up against a wall.

The cold weather found Kathy practicing her jump rope in her basement. She had her problems too. The floor was slanted and made jumping a real challenge.

For Yundi, the cold weather forced him to practice for the bike race in his driveway. He had a hard time balancing himself with all the clothes his mom made him wear while riding. Also, thespring driveway wasn’t long enough to get any speed or practice sharp turns.

Annie was lucky; the cold weather didn’t stop her from keeping her basketball skills up. She just practiced indoors at the recreation center and she has a hoop in her garage. She was ready for the outdoor hoops tournament at spring camp.

Jay, like Annie, would be ready for his tournament at spring camp. He had been playing table tennis and winning all winter long!

The same was true for Orrie, who had been keeping up his horseback riding skills all winter at the indoor riding ring at the local riding stable. On the last day of spring camp, in the afternoon, a bus would take Orrie and the other “Can Do” kids to the riding stable where Orrie would participate in a riding event. All the other campers would be there to cheer him on.

Willie, Bobby, Arthur J, Nellie, and Wendy had been practicing their ball throwing and catching in the recreation center gym. However, they didn’t really have space to practice their running or hitting skills. They really needed to get on an outdoor playing field!

The warmer weather couldn’t come soon enough for the “Can Dos” . They couldn’t get outside soon enough to get ready for the spring tournaments.

How about you, boys and girls? Are you ready for spring and sports? Do you need to get outside and practice to be able to compete?

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