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Posted: May 14, 2013 9:00 p.m.

Triple Play to aid Special Olympics

The American Competitive Trail Horse Association (ACTHA) will host the Triple Play at Hard Labor Creek - a two-day trail competition - June 22-23 at Hard Labor Creek State Park.

Proceeds will benefit the Newton County Special Olympics Equestrian team, which also is seeking donations prior to the event.

The ride will consist of six obstacles in 6 miles for each competitive trail event and eight obstacles in an arena for each ACTHA obstacle competition.

The weekend will begin Friday evening with a free dinner. Trail competitions will take place on Saturday morning and Sunday, as well as one ACTHA obstacle competition on Saturday afternoon. Participants are welcome to enter one, two, or all three events.

Throughout the weekend, there will be door-prize giveaways, silent auctions, and more.

Breakfast and lunch will be available for purchase on Saturday and Sunday.

Newton County’s Special Olympics Equestrian Team consists of 16 athletes with various special needs.

Equestrian training helps team members develop gross and fine-motor skills, balance and confidence.

The team practices for months in preparation for the Georgia Special Olympics State Horse Show, held annually in October in Gainesville.

The team has several volunteers who offer their horses, facilities, supplies and time to work with the members, and this can be costly.

This is why ACTHA has agreed to help the team raise funds through the Triple Play weekend.

The Newton County Special Olympics Equestrian Team is also seeking donations in advance of the event, including food for concessions, door-prize items, monetary donations and more.

Donations are tax-deductible.

Riders do not need to be ACTHA members to compete.

However, all participants must register online in advance.

To register or obtain more information, visit www.actha.us, or contact Donna Smith at pasollano@yahoo.com or (706) 818-0772.

For more information about making donations for the event, contact Cindy Conrad at lucindaconrad@bellsouth.net or call (678) 625-2515.

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