Appreciating a morning with Heroes on Horseback

I had an opportunity to visit and experience a local organization run by an enthusiastic group of volunteers. Just a few miles from where we live, Heroes on Horseback has been in existence for many years, and is, to directly quote their website: a Premier Accredited Center of PATH International focused on providing safe, professional and ethical equine assisted therapeutic activities for individuals in the Lowcountry with physical, mental or emotional disabilities.

Checking out the location and center in advance to ensure we were aware of any potential issues, concerns and approvals for photography, we made our visit on a warm Saturday morning. The center was extremely well run, well manned with plenty of smiling, helping and knowledgeable volunteers.

The morning was broken into 3 one hours sessions, to ensure that the volunteers could fully support 4 riders per session. Moving around the paddock/arena, to minimally disrupt any of the planned activities, I managed to get some good photographs of the engagement of helpers and riders. It was really nice and amazing to see the engagement and interaction of the children and the horses. The concentration, enthusiasm, smiling faces, verbal and physical commands and control was fantastic to see and watch. Having only been on a horse myself a few times before, many, many decades ago, the understanding and the skill of the riders was amazing. As the photos may show, there was a range in ages, and speaking to the volunteers, some of their riders had been coming on a regular basis for many years. Also it was evident that a structured program was in place, for the sessions, which put both riders and horses through many exercises and an obstacle course. The riders had to perform several exercises and watching them maneuver in the saddle was really quite a sight. They even had them rotate to face the rear as part of the exercise! No hands!! Brought back memories of those old westerns!

Wine Tasting to the extreme

Wednesday evening saw the meeting of the Hampton Lake Wine Club. With nearly 400 members of the community club, the events have to be limited to the number of members per monthly evening. This months meeting had a great turnout….obviously Hampton Lake enjoys its wine!

A variety of Reds and Whites were on for the tasting and enjoyment of the participants, plus what looked like a good variety of cheeses and snacks to accompany the tasting sessions. Unfortunately I didn’t get the opportunity to participate with the cheeses! But the 76 participants seemed to be well into the group reviews. Again always great to try and capture some good moments of Hampton Lakers enjoying the social activities. Every table seemed to be having a good time, when I left…..I’m sure the evening progressed even further with additional wines to taste!

The Hampton Lake, BWB’s staff seemed well up for the event, serving wine with a smile (I’m sure they didn’t try the wines themselves though!) and delivering good service as usual, and ensuring the wine flow freely.

The full set of photos can be found under the work portfolio under People….obvious category of HL Wine Club!

Please check out some of the candid shots around the room. Many great characters within the HL community, and they definitely enjoy their wine club evenings!

Hi Ho, Hi Ho, its off to work we go

Like owning any vehicle or machine, preventative maintenance on a boat is always a good idea, to keep everything ship shape! Even in our Hampton Lake environment, inspection and cleaning of our Duffy’s hull should be a routine event to help keep the boat running smoothly, and reducing the friction within the water, which can be due to a build up of algae etc.

Tuesday saw Joe, Sam, Wim and myself get together to pool our resources and help each other pull our 18 foot Duffys out of the lake and inspect, pressure wash and clean the hulls of our 4 boats. It was great to work with our friends and neighbors to take the time and efforts to each ensure the boats were in good shape below the water line. Thanks and appreciation should go to Joe for not only initiating the sourcing of the boat trailer but also using his vehicle to pull the boats from the lake.

Although another hot morning here in South Carolina, I think we all enjoyed the few hours knowing our time was well spent. As the photos show, we all at some stage ended up wading down the slipway to assist. Obviously I didn’t manage to get any photos of myself, so you’ll have to take my word that I actually did help with the cleaning of our boats!!

Again, full photo set under the Gallery/Work/People category.


Enthusiastic Lemonade stands raising more money for the charity CURE

Labor Day saw the sun come out to shine on the various, enthusiastic volunteers who set up and worked the lemonade stands for about 3 hours Monday morning. Following on from the Saturday work to make the gold mailbox bows, Sunday’s successful lemonade and bow donations in rather wet conditions, Monday saw even more enthusiasm from the children of HL to help encourage donations to the CURE charity! Again it was great to see the support in memory of Michael, and the desire of the community to honor his wishes to the charity he wanted to support. Michael’s mother and brother attended in support of all three days, which under the circumstances must have been very difficult. But hopefully they saw the immense support from the community over these 3 days, which I am sure will continue whenever they may need any further help or support in the times ahead.

Local news channels also came out to HL over the last 2 days to record some special reports for the evening and late night news broadcasts. Yesterday saw a visit from WSAV’s Andrew Davis, who produced a very nice segment on the activity and support of CURE.

Below are a few photos from the day’s activities, with further photos on my portfolio webpage.

Another Day….. Another cup of Lemonade!

After a very busy day yesterday making bows in support of the charity Cure for Childhood Cancer, this morning, a small group of girls and boys set up some lemonade stands around the Hampton Lake neighborhood. Sunday’s weather was not great, with scattered showers, but this did not deter the groups from proceeding with the event. Various Mums and Dads, helped support the youngsters, who seemed very enthusiastic about delivering the cups of lemonade to all who stopped by. All proceeds from the lemonade and ribbon sales go to the Cure Charity.

It was great to see the children all serving customers with a big smile……shame the same can’t be said for many commercial outlets! Nice to be greeted with a smile sometimes!

The groups plan to be out again tomorrow, Labor Day, selling the lemonade for donations to the charity.

A few photos captured today, with others in my main portfolio of the event.

HL Volunteers working enthusiastically in support of “CURE For Childhood Cancer”

HL lost one of its young residents to a very aggressive childhood cancer this week. Young Michael had been bravely, and courageously battling this disease for nearly a year. All our thoughts are with his family at this very tragic time. In a way to honor Michael’s memory, the initiative was taken by some very thoughtful HL residents to look to attaching Bows to the mail boxes during the month of September. The proceeds of this charitable event are to go to Michael’s wishes and choice of charity, “CURE For Childhood Cancer”. Under the leadership and organizer of one of the family friends, Anna K., volunteers came forward to make the bows, deliver to all those who requested to participate, fix them to the mail boxes and obviously work to collect the donations. This was a very well organized event and credit should go to Anna and all of those who willingly and graciously offered their support.

I thought it a nice idea to try and capture the activity on the day, and WOW, what a turn out by the ladies of HL! Absolutely brilliant their enthusiasm, and commitment to aiding the success in support of the demand for the bows. I believe that this surpassed what the organizers had originally thought, but it demonstrated the thoughtfulness, and compassionate nature of this HL community. My small part, very small, was to capture some candid and slightly formal, images on the day. The patience and understanding nature of the very committed and busy ladies was appreciated, as I moved around the congested room, taking the various images. The diversity of the people present and helping included many young girls, who all played their role in supporting the bow making.

We must not forget all those volunteers out in the streets of HL attaching the bows. Great efforts by all, and a few photos taken to capture these hard working volunteers, outside in this very hot summer heat.

There are a few more days in support of the memory of Michael, where many of his friends and school colleagues will be working lemonade stands around HL. I will be sure to capture some of theses very special individuals.

A very sad time, but one where the Hampton Lake community came together this week to help offer their support to a family within our community.

Please visit my main site, under work/gallery/people/CURE For Childhood Cancer for additional images from the day.