Standing Ovation of the Week, Presented by Ovation Riding

This week’s honoree: Horse Tales Literacy Project.

Each Friday Horse Nation teams up with Ovation Riding to spotlight an individual or organization that is doing good work in the horse world. This week we salute Horse Tales Literacy Project, a a non-profit 501(c)3 that helps foster a lifelong love of reading using classic Walter Farley books supplemented by immersive experiences like field trips to stables and visits by horses to schools.

Presented by:

ovationWhat is Horse Tales Literacy Project?

Horse Tales Literacy Project (formerly The Black Stallion Literacy Foundation) is an innovative partnership of educators, businesses, volunteers, educational foundations, and staff members focused on promoting literacy through the winning combination of live horses and classic horse literature.


Horse Tales Literacy Project in Arapahoe County, Colorado.

How did it get started?

The project originally was conceived in 1999. Tim Farley, the son of the author of THE BLACK STALLION books, Walter Farley, and Mark Miller, creator and owner of the Arabian Nights Dinner Attraction (brought to a close in 2013 after 26 successful years of entertaining thousands), were friends for more than 30 years and shared a common interest in encouraging children to read. Tim knew the influence his father’s books have had on millions of children and Mark grew up (and remains) in the company of horses, so together they were (and are) a winning combination for a program designed to motivate children to read. Since The Black Stallion Literacy Foundation (BSLF) began serving children in 2000, more than 650,000 children across the United States have participated in the reading programs.


Reading to Little Black, who is listening intently!

How does it work?

Horse Tales Literacy Project is presently composed of school-based programs where activities are developed around Walter Farley’s classic books and other horse literature. Programs consist of curriculum-based literacy for 1st and 4th and 5th grades. All of the HTLP literacy programs are age-appropriate and aligned with both state and national standards in reading and other curriculum areas.


Max Ryan and Little Black meet the children in Arkansas.

How can we help?

With budget cuts and many Title 1 schools unable to participate, your donation helps to bring these programs to the children. We are looking to raise $40,000 to include new schools as well as schools that can no longer afford to participate in our literacy programs. Check out the Horse Tales Literacy Project IndiGoGo campaign here.

Would you like to become involved in other ways? Horse Tales Literacy Project is always looking for volunteers to promote our programs, speak at our events and have fun assisting children in our quest for literacy.

Visit our website at for more information on our programs and how you can help!

Go Riding!

Photos via the Horse Tales Literacy Project Facebook page.

Many thanks thanks to Ovation Riding for their support of both Horse Nation and individuals and organizations that are doing good work in the horse world. If you know someone who deserves a Standing Ovation, we would love to recognize them in a future post. Email the name of the person or organization along with a message about the good work they do to [email protected]. Photos/videos are always welcome, and include a link to their website if applicable.



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