Teachers use horseback to welcome students
by Hawkins Teague
Aug 08, 2007 | 0 0 comments | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print
For the second year, Trigg County teachers and administrators went out to several students’ homes to welcome them back to school in a series of what former Assistant Superintendent Mary Ann Lander calls “Success Journeys.” For a few Trigg County Middle School students, this meant climbing onto horses and getting their principal and teachers.

This year’s theme at the middle school is “Best in the West.” Although that title is meant to conjure up goals in student heads about becoming the best middle school in Western Kentucky, P.E. teacher and avid equestrian Tina Davis thought it would be fun to bring that theme to life by riding up to houses on horses as if they were from the old West. Principal James Mangels liked the idea, which led to several hours of trotting down the roads of Cerulean while sweating and trying to avoid being burnt to a crisp by the unrelenting sun. Luckily, the breeze created by riding the horses made the heat a bit more tolerable.

Teachers and administrators from all three Trigg County schools met at the elementary school parking lot at 8:30 on the morning of July 31. After Lander talked to everyone briefly, they sorted out bags of goods for the children and went on their way. Mangels got into his vehicle and started making the drive to Davis’ Cerulean farm, where he and his wife, Lisa, have been keeping their horses while waiting to move out to a place in the country.

Mangels drove up the gravel driveway and found Lisa grooming the horses. After making a few calls, Mangels contacted Davis and he and Lisa galloped down the road to meet her, math teacher Judy Sidebottom Davis’ husband, Jackie, and her friend, Garnett Hayes. Davis asked Hayes, a neighbor, if he could help her out with the home visits, and so he asked a man at the local horse supply store if he could borrow a carriage. Hayes said he removed anything modern on it, such as the light and battery, so that it would look more authentically Western.

After discussing the kinds of horseshoes they were using, the group departed with Hayes driving the wagon, aided by his horse, Rusty, while Davis and Sidebottom rode in the back for a fairly comfortable, if lengthy, two-mile ride. James and Lisa Mangels kept up behind them, trotting along the side of the road. James rode Houston, whom Lisa said was a Mother’s Day gift to her this year, while she rode their horse Shaggy. Davis commented several times that she thought Mangels might not be prepared for such a long trip and that his thighs might be reminding of it for some time.

For the rest of this story, read this week's Cadiz Record.
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