Safety is my NUMBER ONE concern when doing these parties. I could look my horse, my house, and my whole life if something goes wrong. That's why I make each child wear a helmet and that's why I have an insurance policy. I hope that my insurance is the BIGGEST waste of money I will ever spend. I hope to never use it, but I have it just in case.
Reading through the rules these people have in place made me think about how cold they make themselves out to be. I understand that they put them in place for their own safety and the safety of their animals, but kids are kids. Face facts people!!!
I always go over general rules before the event starts. Don't stand behind the horse. Don't make loud noises. I always let the kids know that it is because they don't want to scare the horse and make them sad. I would never say "OUR HORSE WILL GET SCARED AND KICK YOUR MOM!!!". That just seems mean.
Also, the person hosting the party signs my contract that states that there are risks involved and I do have my PA State Law sign as well. But the other day, I saw someone doing pony rides at a certain Fall Festival at a certain Mountain and they had all sorts of "RIDE AT YOUR OWN RISK" signs. I understand that riding a horse can be dangerous, but these kids came to have fun. You basically scared the crap out of their parents and made them not want to ride the pony!
The other one that broke my heart was the one party place that said there is a weight limit on their ponies and if they think that your child is too heavy they will bring a scale and weigh them right there!!! HOW MEAN!!! :( I understand that ponies (and horses) shouldn't carry weight that is unsafe, but to make a child so embarrassed by weighing them in front of everyone, I would just cry!!! Please keep in mind that I won't put an adult on my horse that I think is too heavy but that is only because it is hard to get them off if there is a problem. But adults understand and so far everyone has been in a safe enough weight range.
Please let me be clear. When it comes to my parties, I will do EVERYTHING I can to make it safe for everyone. But I really want your kids to have fun! I want you to relax and I want your family to thank you for such a neat idea!!!
Now to this weekend! Good luck to the Scranton Royal Riders!!! We have an IHSA horse show at Birchtown on Sunday! I can't wait!!! Vinnie is pumped!!! We also have a Party tomorrow!!! Happy Birthday to Brittney!!!
Everyone out there, enjoy the cold weather!!! Burrrrrr!!! :)