4-H horse club wants round pen

Thirteen-year-old Rhiannon Miller's horse, Coulie, gets distracted and likes to stop in the corners of the pen.

That's one reason her 4-H group, the High On Horses Club, wants to build a round pen. Project leader Glenda Bellio encouraged the members to collect donations at Saturday's riding practice.

"We're putting the burden (to collect donations) on (the kids) so they will get out there, and say 'That's something we've done,'" Bellio said.

She and the co-leader Debbie Dunaway hope to raise $1,200 to $1,500 for a 60-foot diameter round outdoor pen at the Moffat County Fairgrounds. The 4-H group is heading up the efforts, but the leaders say it's something from which many area residents could benefit.

"If people donate to this, they'll have this to use," she said.

"What they get is a round pen to use whenever they want."

Round pens are useful for training horses and working with the youths on new skills. Instructors can work with riders without having to yell across the large rectangular pen used now. Plus, there are no corners for horses to want to stand in, Miller said.

About 60 children are involved in 4-H horse projects, but Bellio estimates this population only makes up 30 percent of those who use the facilities.

In addition to monetary donations, the club is looking for 2-foot belting, used at coal mines, to place around the bottom of the pen to keep the material in the pen and protect the horses' hooves.

They also are looking to get the project moving so the youths can have sufficient practice time before the Moffat County Fair in August.

"We'd like to get it up by the first of June," Bellio said.

For more information or to donate, call one of the group's members or Dunaway at 826-0436 or Bellio at 824-8621.

Donation also may be sent to Debbie Dunaway, P.O. Box 1580, Craig, CO 81626.

Michelle Perry can be reached at 824-7031 or mperry@craig-daily--press.com.

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