by: Susan Cole
Director of Development
On Saturday, October 19th, over 400 of people attended the 12thAnnual Triple B ~ Boots, Band & BBQ and grossed over $200,000 to benefit the clients, horses and programs of Riding To The Top Therapeutic Riding Center (RTT).
This year’s events paid homage to the many “RTT Superheroes” - riders, horses, volunteers, long time supporters and the evening’s guests and sponsors. Superheroes like Denny of DennyMike’s BBQ who served another delicious and abundant barbeque to the hungry crowd. This was his 10th year and many said the food was the “best ever”! Other superheroes of the night included popular local band Under The Covers, auctioneer Elizabeth Holmstrom (dressed in a wonder woman costume) and emcee Michelle Taylor of 99.9 The Wolf, all who donated their time, talent and superpowers to the evening.
However, the crowd soon learned the most powerful superheroes at RTT are the courageous clients and the horses they team up with at the center. Scott Wentzell, parent of a longtime RTT rider shared his family’s story and the role RTT horses have provided in their son’s journey. Wentzell noted, “It’s about a connection to these amazing horses. A connection is that based in science, but also seems to have equal parts spiritual and emotional thrown in as well. It’s a connection that is so easy to see, even if it is hard to really understand”.
Sarah Bronson, RTT Executive Director thanked the many sponsors and volunteers that make the event such a success sharing that “This event is all about community – we receive tremendous support from start to finish, but especially in the days immediately surrounding the event, to transform the riding arena for this “party with a purpose.” This year IDEXX and Martin’s Point Health Care employees joined RTT volunteers to help with set up and then again with post event “take-down.” During the event, the Volunteers in Police Services of Gorham helped direct traffic and park cars while the Saint Joseph’s College baseball team members (40 of them!) helped with food service, the auction and recycling efforts. In total, 115 volunteers contributed nearly 1,000 hours in the various stages of the event (pre-event planning, set up, night of and cleanup days post event).
The TripleB is RTT’s largest and most important fundraiser of the year, funding over a third of annual program expenses. To date the event has raised over $1.2 million dollars and introduced the healing power of horses to thousands of community members.
About Riding to the Top
Founded in 1993, Riding To The Top Therapeutic Riding Center’s (RTT) mission is enhancing health and wellness through equine assisted activities and therapies. RTT is a PATH Intl. Premier Accredited Center (Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship International). Located just west of Portland in Windham, Maine, RTT is the state’s only year round PATH Intl. Premier Accredited Center solely dedicated to serving people with disabilities through equine assisted activities and therapies. More than 250 clients visit annually, assisted by certified instructors, over 160 volunteers, and a herd of 18 horses, all specially trained to assist with therapeutic riding, carriage driving, equine assisted learning and hippotherapy. RTT is a community-based nonprofit, receives no federal or state funding and provides scholarships to over 60% of its clients. For more information about client services, volunteering, or making a gift, please visit us at www.ridingtothetop.org or call 892-2813.
“Changing lives through the healing power of horses”
Director of Development
Riding To The Top
Therapeutic Riding Center
14 Lilac Drive
Windham, ME 04062