Last year’s flooding ran through Bratner Gulch and crested over, washing out two main arenas in the Adams County Regional Park that were utilized for 4-H riding events.
“The arenas have a subgrade, base and top layer; all with different types of sand and it washed all that away,” Vince Hamilton, vice chair of Adams County Horse Committee said. “In the horse world when competing, it’s better for a horse to walk on something like sand, rather than dirt that gets compacted and re-compacted. Safety is a condition with needing to have the sand.”
Hamilton said everything in the arenas was washed out, and even large amounts of debris, including a huge TV was amid the mess.
“We had to decide how to fix the arenas,” he said. “We figured we could possibly utilize Federal Emergency Management Agency money, but we had to wait. Our first ride was coming up April 12, and we didn’t want the kids to not be able to ride in the first event, called the Summer Series. Our committee opted to start contacting lots of companies and individuals for donations.”
Ames Construction, and Varra were among the biggest contributors to the project with $56,000. Varra supplied all the sand, while Ames Construction donated all the transportation, labor, fuel, as well as all the regrading and compacting of the two arenas. Ames also donated all the fencing in one of the arenas. Sand and Gravel, High Plain Cattle Supply (replaced posts and fencing all at cost), Fastenal and many other local companies contributed toward the project.
More than 50 volunteers who were 4H participants, parents and members of the community helped with the tearing down and re-building of the arenas.
The teardown happened in November, with the rebuild happening over the past two weekends to allow for the April 12 riding event.
“It took a lot to get that much work done,” Hamilton said. “It’s a logistic nightmare trying to incorporate with several companies concentrating on their own business to take time out to donate their own time and money to support the 4-H kids.
“It was an extreme sense of satisfaction to know that all the parents were willing to work that hard for all the 4-H kids to have a place to ride this summer in preparation for Adams County Fair.”
The 110th Anniversary of the Adams County Fair will be July 30 to Aug. 3.