Events at Totara Park RDA

New coach Viv Gosbee (left) introduced on February 2018 VT Day

40th Anniversary Celebration Works a Treat

An incredible amount of work went into the 18 November 40th Anniversary Afternoon Tea. Just look at Helen Warfield’s beautiful table arrangements and the fantastic display boards put together by Cilla Bell and Anne Chamberlin. Sally Champion did an ace job meeting and greeting the 75 attendees at the door as well as deciding on a great menu for the Howick Bowling Club Caterers to deliver.

It was such an extraordinary mix of past and present RDA supporters, sponsors riders and volunteers. The laughter and talk flowed way past quitting time. It was so nice catching up, pouring over the photo albums doing the rounds, recalling riders, events and different personalities of horses long gone. One RDA person remarked,” I’m not so good on the people, but I remember the horses’ names, every time!”. Acting President Anne Chamberlin started the ball rolling giving an entertaining rundown on how RDA got started back in 1977 at the Whitford Pony Club. Those Whitford locals had terrific drive and a lot of fun, making it all happen for the first handful of local disabled kids. Cilla Bell came next explaining the shift to Totara Park at the current Totara Park Equestrian Centre which we share with the Pony Club and Adult Riders Club. Ray Chamberlin did an excellent job with the data show slides put together by another RDA volunteer, Doug Humby.

Special guests included the Chair of NZRDA, Sarah Haydon, and the Area One NZRDA representative on the Board, Fiona Wilson. Sarah’s address was followed by a presentation of a very welcome cheque by Colin Salt President of the Howick Lions Club.

Next came the cutting of the cake by our 2017 Rider of the Year, Destiny Shelford. Five years ago Destiny could only walk with the aid of a special walking frame but for the very first time this year showed how she was able to walk independently. This is a real testimony to the power of RDA working in tandem with her medical support people to achieve this wonderful new-found mobility. She looked cuteness itself, cutting the cake with Sally. After the formalities were over there was a mountain of catching up with old friends.

Coach Cilla and Hana Hosking, one of our ex RDA Coaches have lots to talk about.

Past volunteers, Linda Agnew and Elizabeth Roberts chat to ex rider Gaylene Mackereth.

Helen Warfield and Kylie with Waren Warfield's basket of goodies for arena project work.

The man behind many of our very best RDA session action shots, Doug Humby chats to ex volunteer.

Carole Sanders and Loraine Grant Pony Team volunteers, chat with Jill Groenstein.