This weekend, horseback riders have the chance to participate in what might be the largest trail ride in history.
Members of the American Competitive Trail Horse Association hope they will set a record for the largest horse trail event in history by organizing a ride in almost every state at the same time Sunday. All proceeds from the event will be donated to The Humane Society of the United States for equine protection and welfare.
Christina Schumacher, executive director of High Mountain Equine Outreach, an affiliate member of ACTHA, is in charge of Kentucky's trail ride.
Schumacher said she decided to head the event in Kentucky because she thought it was a good cause and a great sport.
The ride will take place at 10 a.m. Sunday at the Bert T. Combs Park and Equestrian Trail in Manchester, Schumacher said.
The course will be a 6-mile trail with six obstacles and a judge at each one, she said.
Riders may sign up to be a competitor in one of three divisions: junior, pleasure and open, Schumacher said. Or, participants may be a buddy rider if they just want to ride the trail and not compete.
The trail is expected to take riders about two hours and is suitable for experienced riders 8 and older, she said.
"We want to make it where anyone could do it," Schumacher said.
Keith Dane, director of equine protection for The Humane Society of the United States, will be a judge at the Kentucky ride.
ACTHA approached the Humane Society about the ride because it knows of the Humane Society's commitment and experience, Dane said.
"We both believe in giving horses a second chance and promote the idea of adoption," he said.
As of Thursday afternoon, there were 15 competitors signed up and no buddy riders, Schumacher said. In order for Kentucky's attempt to be part of the world record, 25 riders have to compete.
The deadline for riders to sign up is Friday night, Schumacher said. Registration for the event is online at ACTHA's Web site, www.actha.us.