Local nonprofit HorsePlay Inc. has crowned its new prince and princess for 2021.
HorsePlay Inc. crowned its second prince and princess, Angler Davis and Nora Parks respectively July 13 at the Sensory Trail at the organization’s pasture at 815 Westside Dr.
Alongside one of HorsePlay’s horses, Merlin, Angler, 8, and Nora, 5, were presented their sashes in a small ceremony by the 2020 prince Demarius Edmiston and Miss Alabama 2020 Amber Hailey. Hailey was presenting on behalf of the 2020 princess Amelia Anderson as she was not able to attend.
Hailey has been working with HorsePlay since the fall of 2020 as she made equine therapy her pageant platform. The platform she created is called H.O.R.S.E., which stands for Helping Others Ride in a Supportive Environment. Hailey was on hand for Horseplay’s Kid Horse Show where she helped setting up the event and presented awards to the participants.
During her time with HorsePlay, she said she’s seen that all the children love helping people.
“That’s one thing I have really been able to see is they love everyone’s help and they love to help everyone,” Hailey said.
HorsePlay volunteer Loretta Christian welcomed family and friends to the ceremony and introduced the nonprofit’s prince and princess, who will represent HorsePlay for the year.
“Angler and Nora are beautiful and perfect in every way,” Christian said. “I love each and every one of these children, they are all special, beautiful and they are awesome.”
After Angler and Nora were presented their sashes, Christian congratulated them and wished their reign well.
“The therapy benefits the children and it’s also fun for them,” she said.
Program Coordinator Holli Holder thanked everyone for coming and said she appreciated the support given by everyone.
“I appreciate all the things you do for us and sharing your children with us,” Holder said.
HorsePlay Inc. is a nonprofit organization that provides recreational horseback riding opportunities for children with mental or physical challenges. The organization’s goal is to help students build muscle strength and coordination, develop relationships with horses and people and to have fun along the way. The program is operated and certified under the guidelines of the Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship International (PATH International).
HorsePlay currently serves over 60 children with eight horses and over 70 community volunteers of all ages that include students, retirees, physical therapists and nurses.
HorsePlay’s next events will be HorsePlay Trail Ride at the Bolo Club in Sherwood on Sept. 23 through 26. The event will have a trail ride of the countryside, live auction and HorsePlay’s yearly Barn Dance. HorsePlay was also selected as one of the charities to receive donations from the American Mule Day and Bluegrass festival being held at the Calsonic Arena in Shelbyville from Sept. 13 through 18.
For more information about HorsePlay or how to volunteer, call 307-0774, go to horseplayinc.org or send a message to HorsePlay’s Facebook page.