Seniors came from as far away as 100 Mile House for a buggy ride with draft horses in Williams Lake on Monday—an annual event that has been delighting the community for 30 years.
(Art Schoenknecht, 92 years old, loved his ride behind the draft horse team.)
The Cariboo Draft Horse Club provided two teams of horses and two buggies, including one with a hydraulic lift for wheelchairs. There was a barbeque lunch and live music at the event, which was held at the Seniors Village.
Residents of the Village, seniors from the community and from Carefree Manor in 100 Mile House came to enjoy the food, the company, and most of all, the opportunity to interact with some of the most beautiful horses in the Cariboo.
One visitor who came to the draft horse ride/picnic was Art Schoenknecht from 100 Mile House. He said that it was his first time behind a horse in many years, and that he was thoroughly delighted for this opportunity.
For 50 years Art lived and ranched in the Lac La Hache area, after moving to BC from Alberta. “We used horses in ranching and farming and I used to drive teams of horses just like these,” he said. “I drove one team of black draft horses that was so well matched, a stranger couldn’t tell them apart, and in a pasture even I couldn’t tell them apart.”
He said that one job he had in the late 1940s was working on a ‘dude’ ranch in the Cache Creek/Savona area, taking people out on day-trip horse rides. “Some of those people had never been on a horse before, and they got pretty saddle sore,” he continued.
“It was so different back then. Our lives were based around horses. When I was young there were only two cars in our whole town—everybody rode horses.”
He said that he thoroughly enjoyed the draft horse ride. “I took two of them,” he laughed. “It brought back good memories for me when I was a kid.
“Everybody enjoyed it—it was a wonderful day.”
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