History of GAIT
In 2015, GAIT TRC celebrated 20 years of providing services for our tristate area!
GAIT's facilities would not be possible were it not for the generosity of so many. GAIT TRC and its beneficiaries will be forever grateful to those who have made the ten-stall barn, indoor and outdoor arenas, hay barn, tack & feed room and office a reality.
On September 11, 2005 the newly renovated barn was destroyed by fire. It was a complete loss - the ten stalls, office, tack room, feed room, teaching equipment, storage room, and everything inside those facilities were totally destroyed. Thankfully, no one — two-legged or four-legged — were injured. Three of GAIT's horses, two of them our oldest and longest residents, were rescued by GAIT's neighbor and then barn manager.
The day following the fire proved to be nothing short of a miracle with support arriving in every way possible. There were members and riders with their families stopping by to offer emotional support and aid in the clean-up. The equine community both lent and donated personal riding equipment, while others went shopping and showed up with brand new tack and grooming equipment, as well as treats for the horses. A local stable lent their helmets and the center held regular classes the evening following the fire. Television stations filmed classes and interviewed both riders and parents. As a result, The English Riding Supply Company, a tack store of Scranton, PA, became a huge supporter of GAIT TRC, providing even more tack so that we were able to continue with our regular schedule. Also, many individuals, businesses and organizations donated monies in the days following the fire assisting our efforts all the more.
Some of our riders may not realize the tremendous efforts that went into maintaining their regular routines in order to continue the physical and mental growth that therapeutic riding affords them. The Board of Directors, staff, and volunteers are certainly aware of the kindness that was put forth and for that we will be eternally grateful.
Right before the winter weather set in, the stall portion of the new barn was completed with ten spacious stalls ready for the horses. The office, tack room, and feed room had to wait for the spring thaw and were completed by November of 2006.
In the fall of 2006, we were able to dedicate the Merle Chase Outdoor Arena. A long time GAIT TRC volunteer, Merle Chase was very eager and committed to GAIT's work. The many friends she made at GAIT miss her dearly. Donations to her memorial supported the refurbishing of the outdoor arena. Fencing was replaced and repaired where needed. New footing was laid, better lighting was added and some fence sections were color coded for the benefit of class activities.
In the spring of 2007, our indoor arena was completed. With protection from the elements and consistently good footing for the horses and volunteers, GAIT TRC will be able to continue sessions throughout the winter. Rainy summer days will no longer mean sloshing through the mud.
Through the hard work of many and the support of even more, our facilities allow us to provide exceptional programs for our participants and quality care for our horses. There is always more to be done, especially in our outdoor gardens and trail system.
So, please check back to see our progress and growth. Our main goal is to consistently offer the best possible opportunities for Tri-State citizens in need of our equine therapists and their human assistants.