California Equestrian Park & Event Center
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Excerpts of Letters from Local Residents

Lorna Drake, Retired School Teacher:
I am familiar with the value that a recreation and educational facility like CEPEC can bring to Sonoma County and its young people. Most children's priorities are: having fun, being with their friends, and recreating. Having a facility where all these needs could be met at one location with supervision would be a wonderful thing. CEPEC could additionally allow access to horses and equine programs for all the children of the county, not just those who have horses boarded at local stables. It could also provide educational and intramural competition opportunities for children from multiple schools at the same time, thus helping better integrate the many cultures that exist in the county. Lastly, CEPEC would provide an opportunity to get children out in the fresh air rather than being glued to the TV, video games, or the computer. I am very please that a project like CEPEC has been created and look forward to seeing our young people being able to take advantage of its many offerings.

Cecelia Brown, Horse Ranch Owner and CEPEC Board Member:
CEPEC will result in much needed employment opportunities and increased tax revenue for the county. CEPEC is slated to be the finest equestrian complex in the state and possibly the nation. It's all "green" facility and comprehensive services will make it the first of its kind anywhere in the world. Through this endeavor Sonoma County will be able to showcase and leverage its support for its equine industry. The building and maintenance of CEPEC will provide a huge boost to our struggling construction industry as well as provide many permanent jobs. This project truly represents a win-win situation for the county, its residents, and the equestrian world in general. It will be a tax revenue generator, a source of jobs, provide a safe and monitored recreational environment for our children, preserve and maintain open space, and house historical artifacts of the county's equine heritage in the proposed museum. This is a great opportunity for Sonoma County to show its support for an industry which is vital for the health of our local economy. I believe that CEPEC will be the jewel of the west coast equine industry. Its construction will put Sonoma County in the forefront of innovative integration of ecologically sound practices with revenue generating, state of the art facilities.

Shirley Johnson Folle, Para Equestrian:
I ride even though I am paralyzed and cannot walk. CEPEC will be a great advantage for riders like me. We need to have a world-class equestrian event center than can accommodate riders with disabilities. Mounting ramps, ADA changing rooms, and being part of the planning process from the ground up, could benefit many Para Equestrians.

Joel Bartlett, Retired TV Announcer & Past President of Marin Horse Council:
I do a lot of trail riding as well as occasional arena riding in Sonoma County. This is also true of many Marin equestrians. I feel confident that I can speak for all of us in saying that we are excited about the prospects of an equestrian complex in Sonoma County. In essence, it would actually be a "Bay Area" complex located in Sonoma County. This is a win-win situation, a multi-disciplinary facility for the equestrian community that would support economic vitality in Sonoma County.

Dr. Ted Stashak, Professor Emeritus of Equine Surgery, Colorado State University, School of Veterinary Medicine:
It almost goes without saying that a state of the art Equine Hospital would be required to support the mission described for CEPEC. The estimated number and importantly the value of horses being used for competition would require such a facility. Besides providing 24 hour emergency, diagnostic, medical, and surgical services, the [equine] hospital would also have an isolation unit to house horses that may develop a communicable disease. To my knowledge, the only other facility with such capabilities that is close is at [Davis] University of CA, School of Veterinary Medicine - which is approximately 2 hours away. This is simply too far to send a horse exhibiting signs of severe colic caused by a twisted intestine - the sooner this horse is taken to surgery the better the prognosis. Additionally this hospital could serve as a referral center for local practitioners. This would provide a great service to the local equine industry.

Dr. Richard Perce, Equine Veterinarian:
I am very excited about the equestrian facility. Those of us associated with the equine industry know the financial impact horses have on our area. We have long needed a referral hospital facility in the immediate area. In emergency situations, UC Davis is just too far away and repeated trips for chronic cases are costly and time consuming. The price of equipment makes it impossible for private practices to provide their patients with available technology at reasonable prices.

Dr. Grant Miller, Equine Veterinarian, and Founder of CHANGE Horse Rescue:
The development of a local equestrian complex would aid the county and the local horse population by providing a facility for horses to be housed during rehabilitation. Serving also as the emergency services and large animal disaster veterinarian for Sonoma County, I feel that the purchase of land for an equestrian complex is vital.

Jacqueline Sahud, Race Horse Breeder:
Not only is [CEPEC] a much needed competition facility, but would represent a service to those of us who breed, train, and race thoroughbreds. Further, a facility could promote the training, certification, and employment of horse handlers, groomers, and trainers thereby enhancing the opportunities for the under employed and unemployed ... To have a recognized facility that could be used in an emergency such as fire or flood with concomitant veterinary staffing is needed.

Dr. Lucinda Romero, Surgeon and Karen Young, Graphics Designer:
We are specifically excited about the [CEPEC] opportunity for 3-Day Eventing. There are only a handful of horse parks in California able to hold US Equestrian Federation sanctioned events. The addition of CEPEC could be an opportunity for a strong draw of competitor and dollars to the area. We also applaud the opportunity for increased safe and rider friendly equestrian trails in Sonoma County. We utilize many of the county's parks with horse access, but often must drive outside the County for trails with parking access because horse trailer parking is often not available during weekends and holidays. We would welcome trail access from parking lots designed with trailer parking in mind. As residents near the proposed CEPEC site, we truly appreciate how CEPEC could preserve the natural character of the surrounding area.

Ann Gilbert, Dunham School Board Member:
I/we are very excited to watch the project take shape and be able to have the kids at Dunham be involved as much as possible, taking advantage of the great gift of horses right in their backyard!!!.

Keli Hendricks, Horse Trainer:
This area is a prime location to hold world class equine events, which in turn would bring millions of dollars into our economy. Sonoma County is in the unique position of having the land, infrastructure, climate, and tourism opportunities that would not only support a complex such as [CEPEC], but make it a huge financial success. Not only would this facility draw from the large equestrian communities in adjacent counties, but it would attract top horse show events from across the nation and even the world. Events such as these would make [CEPEC] a tourist destination in its own right, while preserving the land for public recreation and improving the quality of life for all who live and visit here.

Barbara Molland, Former President American Saddlebred Association and Breeder of American Saddlebreds:
A Sonoma equine complex would provide the corner stone for official recognition of the past rich history of equestrian activity in Sonoma County as well as guarantee its future, so that our own beautiful region may become the western counterpart to activities of this kind. Without an appropriate venue for such showcasing, we will miss our opportunity to become the West Coast equestrian jewel. it is well within our grasp to become.

Melissa Zanetti, Trainer and Representative to AQHA(American Quarter Horse Association):
There is a real need for a world class event center in Sonoma County. Hosting AQHA sanctioned events in Northern California at a facility of this caliber would breathe new life in to the Quarter Horse industry in this area and draw competitors and their families from out of state to experience all that Sonoma County has to offer.

Occidental Equestriennes Club:
With [CEPEC], we can not only preserve our equine heritage, but bring in more business to Sonoma County through keeping events local, drawing in more tourism, and increasing the opportunities to local horse owners & businesses. [CEPEC] is a win-win for horse owners, businesses, public and the environment.
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