Back Country Horsemen ready to rendezvous

Not-for-profit organization's Aldergrove chapter celebrates 25th year with Maple Ridge event.

The Aldergrove Chapter of the Back Country Horsemen Society of BC is saddling up to celebrate the not-for-profit organization’s 25th anniversary.

To commemorate the milestone, they’re taking part in an upcoming three-day bash – equestrian-style of course – that is open to the public.

From May 30 to June 1, attendees from all over B.C. are expected to trot on over to the Maple Ridge Equi-Sports Center, 21973 132 Ave.,  for the Rendezvous 2014 – an annual fundraiser held in various locations across the province.

This year’s event, co-hosted by the Aldergrove and Yarrow Chapters of the Back Country Horsemen Society of BC, will offer plenty to do, according to Peter Thiessen, vice chair of the Aldergrove chapter and chair of the 2014 Rendevous.

“Whether you attend RV2014 with your horse or not, there will be lots to see and do – and eat of course,” he said of the family friendly fete that will include some big-ticket entertainment, including a live performance by Canadian Country Music Award nominee and former Aldergrove resident Aaron Pritchett, with special guests One More Girl – a CCMA winner.

For those who are camping with their horses, there will be  opportunities for trail rides.

Preston GM Sunrise Trailers Vendors Fair will be showcasing a selection of GM Trucks and a complete line of horse trailers, including equestrian vendors and educational guest speakers.

There will also be a performance by the Langley Riders Drill team, a hoof & woof contest, auditing of expert clinicians: Glenn Stewart, Sam Sunderland and Debbie Hughes, packing competitions and more.

On the Saturday night, one can giddy up over to the Super Save Stomp barn dance to kick up their hoofs… er, heels.

The evening starts with a barbecue in the Preston GM Entertainment Area with live and silent auctions and cowboy poetry.

Afterwards, Pritchett and One More Girl will  perform.

In the past, the Rendezvous has been open to members of the Back Country Horsemen – this year it’s a public event.

“This year we decided to do it differently,” said Thiessen, who joined the group  in 2005.

“We felt it was important for the public to see what it is we do in regards to the horse community and hopefully encourage others to come and join our organization, whether it’s the Aldergrove, Yarrow or one of the various other groups throughout the province.”

Back Country Horsemen of BC is a volunteer-run organization that focuses on safety for horses and riders, environmental stewardship, trail building and maintenance.

It was started in Langley in 1989 by a small group of equine enthusiasts, including founder Jim McCrae.

With the combined good efforts of that small group, Back Country Horsemen Society of British Columbia (BCHBC) received official ‘not for profit’ status on June 11, 1991.

BCHBC today provides:

an environment for equestrians who are interested in trail riding and the back country, as well as a

social, safe learning atmosphere where people of all ages and experience can enjoy trail riding and the wilderness experience.

For more information about the Back Country Horsemen, or to purchase your tickets online, for the 2014 Rendevous, visit  www.bchorsemen.org.

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