Standing Ovation by Ovation Riding: Equest’s Boots & Salutes Week

Every week Horse Nation teams up with Ovation Riding to recognize those doing good in the horse world. Today we recognize Boots & Salutes Week, benefitting Equest’s Hooves for Heroes program, which helps veterans and their families transition from military to civilian life.

Auction items at last year’s patriotic Boots & Salutes benefiting Equest’s Hooves for Heroes veterans program. Photo by Bob Manzano.

Ten-hut! Equest’s annual backyard, picnic-style fundraiser, Boots & Salutes, will instead be a week-long virtual affair, July 12-18. The 4th Annual Boots & Salutes Week, hosted by Chairs Harley Cozewith and Blane Balch, will feature an online auction, stellar raffle items, a virtual Wall of Honor, video messages from the Equest team and clients, and a few exciting digital cameos. Activities will end on Saturday, July 18 at 6PM with a Facebook video event announcing winners.

Equest’s Mini Ambassadors greeted guests at last year’s patriotic Boots & Salutes benefiting Equest’s Hooves for Heroes veterans program. Photo by Bob Manzano.

Boots & Salutes supports Equest’s Hooves for Heroes program which promotes the well-being and mental health of military members, veterans and their immediate families through equestrian therapies and counseling at no charge. Boots & Salutes Week is free to participate and can be found at www.equest.org/boots.

The Patriotic Horseshoe Wreath is available to purchase for $100 at www.equest.org/boots with 100% proceeds benefiting Equest’s Hooves for Heroes veterans program. Photo courtesy of Equest.

Launching on Sunday, July 12th at 5PM, the online auction will feature not-to-miss items like two tickets to The Ellen Show with hotel, a vintage WWII “Forget-Me-Not” bracelet, an Italian wine basket and doggy daycare at Pet Resort. Raffle tickets, available for $25 each or five for $100, include stellar activities like a $2,500 shopping experience to Eiseman Jewels, six private dancing lessons at Arthur Murray for a couple or individual, a four-night stay in Angel Fire, New Mexico, and more!

Wellness Reporter Sonia Azad served as the emcee for last year’s patriotic Boots & Salutes benefiting Equest’s Hooves for Heroes veterans program. Photo by Bob Manzano.

Boots & Salutes Week continues to pay tribute to the men and women who have served our country with the virtual Wall of Honor. Providing a variety of recognition options, from a Roll Call listing ($50 donation) to a full-sized tribute with a photo and message ($1,200 donation), the Wall of Honor will commemorate our veterans and fallen military members.

A vintage “Forget-Me-Not” bracelet worn by the mother of a WWII soldier will be just one of many auction items available for bidding online at www.equest.org/boots. Photo courtesy of Equest.

Throughout the week, guests can visit Equest’s Facebook page to hear from veteran clients and the Equest staff, as well as cameo video appearances from local personalities, including: Carry the Load Founder Clint Bruce, Para Equestrian and TikTok Sensation Alyssa Cleland, Designer and Lifestyle Expert Kathy Fielder, Philanthropist Cornelia Guest, Skincare CEO and Real Housewives of Dallas Cast Member D’Andra Simmons Lock, The Kidd Kraddick Morning Show Co-Host Kellie Rasberry, and WFAA Good Morning Texas Co-Host Alanna Sarabia, among others.

Equest Mini Ambassadors will be making a virtual cameo appearance at this year’s Virtual Boots & Salutes Week benefiting Equest’s Hooves for Heroes veterans program. Photo by Bob Manzano.

Boots & Salutes Week will end with a Facebook video event on Saturday, July 18th at 6PM at @Equest1981. Equest staff and friends will provide a few words, recognize sponsors, and announce raffle and online auction winners.

Sponsorship opportunities are still available.

About Equest
Founded in 1981, Equest provides equine assisted learning, therapies and counseling to children and adults with physical, cognitive, sensory, coping and learning disabilities and veterans with adjustment challenges. The services provided include physical and occupational therapy, equine facilitated counseling and equine assisted learning, therapeutic carriage driving, therapeutic horsemanship and competition. With the help of 30 therapy horses, eight instructors, four therapists, three counselors, and 700 volunteers, lives are changed for more than 2,000 served annually. Equest was the first PATH International Premier Accredited Center in Texas and remains one of the largest in the country. Equest offers an engaging volunteer program that provides 30,000 hours of direct program service opportunities each year. www.equest.org

About Equest Hooves for Heroes
Through equine-assisted activities and therapies, Equest’s Hooves for Heroes program helps veterans and their families transition from military to civilian life and excel as community members, neighbors and civic leaders. The individually tailored programs include mental health counseling, physical and occupational therapy, therapeutic horsemanship, carriage driving and more. Since its founding in 2012, Hooves for Heroes has helped more than 1,500 veterans and military family members at no cost, thanks to generous grant funding, charitable donations, and underwriting. www.equest.org/veterans

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.