Local equine therapy center has a special place in young boy's heart

9 months 3 weeks 12 hours ago Wednesday, October 25 2017 Oct 25, 2017 Wednesday, October 25, 2017 6:30:00 PM CDT October 25, 2017 in News
By: Dallas Parker, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - Cedar Creek Therapeutic Riding Center hosts a fundraiser each year called Ride-A-Thon to keep its equine therapy program up and running. And while it's nothing out of the ordinary for most riders, this year’s Ride-A-Thon is special for one Columbia boy.

Isaac Vandepopuliere, 13, said he has set his own fundraising goal.

“I told my mom I wanted to raise $3000 for Cedar Creek and that’s what I’ve been trying to get to,” said Vandepopuliere.

He's been working with Cedar Creek since he was eight-years-old. At that time, he had been diagnosed as being on the autism spectrum. Before that diagnosis, Isaac was also diagnosed with bipolar disorder, oppositional defiance disorder, ADHD and anxiety.

“Cedar Creek means a lot to me, it’s shown me a lot about myself. It’s helped me get through things I’ve faced in life,” Vandepopuliere said.

Karen Grindler, founder of Cedar Creek, said the riders aren’t required to raise a set amount. “We’re satisfied with any amount a rider brings in. There’s been times where I’ve had sponsors contribute so that someone could ride.”

Some of the regular riders at Cedar Creek have diagnoses like asperger's or autism, others have physical disabilities. Most riders have helpers who walk alongside the horse to ensure the rider’s safety. There are a few who ride independently, Isaac is one of them.

Vandepopuliere's mother, Stacie Pottinger, said the family was new to working with a child with special needs. They tried to get him all of the therapy and support they could get funding for. Cedar Creek had a great reputation, so they gave it a shot.

Pottinger said since her son has been riding, he’s seen amazing improvements.

“I wasn't really sure what he was going to gain from it, honestly.  When they did the registration we learned that his muscle tone was weak so it was going to be beneficial for that,” Pottinger said. “Everything that we have gained from being at Cedar Creek has been amazing.  I mean it's hard to even put it all into words.  It was our first 'home away from home'.  The first place we all felt we belonged.”

Currently, Vandepopuliere has raised more than $2,000 toward his goal. He used Facebook Live to bring in a lot of donations. But he’s also been making presentations to groups of donors.

Grindler said she couldn’t be more proud of his efforts.

“He’s always so excited and enthused about his fundraising. Each year. It warms my heart to know that he came up with this all on his own.”

Each year the program helps about 200 patients through therapy on horseback. Anyone can be a part of the program as long as they have a note from their physician that says the patient could benefit from riding.

This year’s Ride-A-Thon will be held on October 29. With donations and pledges, Ride-A-Thon allows people to come and ride on 60 acres of land. Riders can bring their own horses, and Cedar Creek’s riders can ride their normal equine partners.

More News

Grid
List
TUSCUMBIA (AP) — The trial of a 59-year-old man facing a capital murder charge in the 1984 death of a... More >>
1 hour ago Friday, August 17 2018 Aug 17, 2018 Friday, August 17, 2018 4:23:00 AM CDT August 17, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Ninety-one people have died in impaired driving accidents so far in 2018. The Missouri Coalition for... More >>
1 hour ago Friday, August 17 2018 Aug 17, 2018 Friday, August 17, 2018 4:00:00 AM CDT August 17, 2018 in News
MOBERLY - A severe thunderstorm brought half-dollar sized hail and hundreds of power outages to Randolph County Thursday evening. ... More >>
7 hours ago Thursday, August 16 2018 Aug 16, 2018 Thursday, August 16, 2018 10:05:00 PM CDT August 16, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Three Indiana men involved in the armed robbery of a Walgreens pharmacy were indicted Thursday by a... More >>
8 hours ago Thursday, August 16 2018 Aug 16, 2018 Thursday, August 16, 2018 9:32:00 PM CDT August 16, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - The Public Transit Advisory Commission (PTAC) is pushing back over proposed budget cuts to the city's public transit... More >>
10 hours ago Thursday, August 16 2018 Aug 16, 2018 Thursday, August 16, 2018 7:46:00 PM CDT August 16, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - A Missouri candidate who recently claimed a surprise victory in the Republican primary for state auditor is now... More >>
10 hours ago Thursday, August 16 2018 Aug 16, 2018 Thursday, August 16, 2018 7:21:00 PM CDT August 16, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - The Audrain County Sheriff's Office says the widely-circulated story of a dog found with taped legs... More >>
12 hours ago Thursday, August 16 2018 Aug 16, 2018 Thursday, August 16, 2018 5:21:00 PM CDT August 16, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Prosecutors charged a Columbia man with murder Thursday, two months after deputies found a woman dead in a... More >>
13 hours ago Thursday, August 16 2018 Aug 16, 2018 Thursday, August 16, 2018 4:16:00 PM CDT August 16, 2018 in News
TUSCUMBIA - A convicted murderer charged with the killing of an Eldon girl in 1984 got a change of venue... More >>
13 hours ago Thursday, August 16 2018 Aug 16, 2018 Thursday, August 16, 2018 3:57:13 PM CDT August 16, 2018 in News
SEDALIA - Gov. Mike Parson, lawmakers and agriculture experts talked to Missouri farmers at the State Fair Thursdsay, to assure... More >>
14 hours ago Thursday, August 16 2018 Aug 16, 2018 Thursday, August 16, 2018 2:54:00 PM CDT August 16, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Police are searching for the man pictured above, saying he is a suspect in a Thursday morning... More >>
14 hours ago Thursday, August 16 2018 Aug 16, 2018 Thursday, August 16, 2018 2:50:00 PM CDT August 16, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - An invasive beetle has spread to 11 new counties in Missouri. The emerald ash borer kills more than... More >>
15 hours ago Thursday, August 16 2018 Aug 16, 2018 Thursday, August 16, 2018 2:27:00 PM CDT August 16, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - The Food Bank of Central and Northeast Missouri announcement a financial windfall Thursday that will help feed hundreds... More >>
15 hours ago Thursday, August 16 2018 Aug 16, 2018 Thursday, August 16, 2018 2:20:00 PM CDT August 16, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — A Missouri candidate who recently claimed a surprise victory in the Republican primary for state... More >>
15 hours ago Thursday, August 16 2018 Aug 16, 2018 Thursday, August 16, 2018 2:05:00 PM CDT August 16, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley filed a lawsuit Thursday against a St. Louis housing complex where reported... More >>
18 hours ago Thursday, August 16 2018 Aug 16, 2018 Thursday, August 16, 2018 10:57:00 AM CDT August 16, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - St.Louis-based SSM Health confirmed Thursday it is exploring a transfer of its Jefferson City and Mexico hospitals to... More >>
19 hours ago Thursday, August 16 2018 Aug 16, 2018 Thursday, August 16, 2018 10:28:00 AM CDT August 16, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Columbia Regional Airport managers held the first All Things Airport monthly meeting on Thursday. The meeting was... More >>
20 hours ago Thursday, August 16 2018 Aug 16, 2018 Thursday, August 16, 2018 9:48:00 AM CDT August 16, 2018 in Top Stories
(CNN) - Aretha Franklin, whose gospel-rooted singing and bluesy yet expansive delivery earned her the title "the Queen of Soul,"... More >>
20 hours ago Thursday, August 16 2018 Aug 16, 2018 Thursday, August 16, 2018 9:46:00 AM CDT August 16, 2018 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 70°
6am 70°
7am 70°
8am 70°
9am 73°