Prancing Horse Undergoes Transition
One of life's cycles is that children grow up, and leave home. That's how Ronni Meltzer feels about her largest "child" -- Prancing Horse Center for Therapeutic Riding.
"When we moved here in 1984, it was like I had four kids," Meltzer said of her daughter Neri, son M.J., her husband Mort, and her passion, Prancing Horse.
"Neri and M.J. have grown up and moved out, and now it's time for Prancing Horse to find a place of its own. As for Mort, he may never grow up, but I'll keep him," Meltzer joked.
Concerned about the public perception of her upcoming retirement as Prancing Horse executive director for the last 22 years, Meltzer offered assurances that Prancing Horse is not closing its doors.
"Everyone seems to have misunderstood my retirement." Meltzer said. "Prancing Horse is just in a transition. We have a task force meeting every two weeks with three main objectives: Find a new venue, a new executive director, and solidify the board and, of course, fundraising is an ongoing concern."
The North American Handicapped Riding Association certified center has 17 horses and the tack to go with them, a $100,000 endowment, an office trailer and no debts. For two decades, Prancing Horse has operated from the Meltzer family farm in Cameron.
Topping the Prancing Horse wish list now is 50-60 acres with paddocks, 10 stalls, covered ring, parking and a location close to a volunteer base. The task force is working with the Sandhills Area Land Trust to identify possible locations.
Meltzer wants all the "Feed Bag" hot dog fans to know she will still run the horse show food stands. Her hot dogs are so famous, people come to the shows just to eat. She also still plans to be involved with the Southern Pines Horse Farm Tour, and other special projects.
"Just like your kids, they may grow up and leave home," she said, "but you still support them in a lot of ways."
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