Equestrian Partners Recognized at Blackwater River State Forest – Coldwater Recreation Area

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Equestrian Partners & FFS Staff

FFS staff joining equestrian partners (L to R):  Chris Ennis (Forestry Supervisor), Faye Minahan (Park Ranger), Brenda Foreman (FFSF Board of Directors), Wendy Allen (Five Flags Arabian Horse Association), Mike Hudson (Center Manager), Gail Jones (Florida Quarter Horse Association), Keri Sims (Escambia and Santa Rosa Counties Sheriff's Posses), Medora Mullins (The Happy Hoofers), David Creamer (Forest Resource Administrator), and Doug Ott, Friends of Florida State Forests Program Coordinator.

On May 22, equestrian partners were recognized for their time and contributions over the years to the Coldwater Recreation (Equestrian) Area @ Blackwater River State Forest.  Our Director and Friends President, Jim Karels along with our D1 Center Manager, Mike Hudson were very supportive and thankful for their contributions.  David Creamer, Forest Resource Administrator has worked with these partners over the years and assisted the planning of this event , along with Medora Mullins, our former FFSF board member, and remains active in her support.  Brenda Foreman, current Friends Board member represented our board at this event.  We are grateful for all these partners and their  efforts making a difference over the years for the public to enjoy these equestrian facilities.  We look forward to our partnership for years to come!

Brief History/Coldwater Recreation Area
The history of this site dates back to a former D1 Center Manager (John Webster) forming the Blackwater Helping Hands group (BHH), a precursor to our Friends program, then the Blackwater Citizens’ Liaison panel was formed, where Mr. Earl Peterson even oversaw some of these meetings.  Director Peterson assisting to the formation of our Friends of Florida State Forests program. Electrical hookups were first provided by the FL Quarter Horse Association, then roofs were added for the paddocks with benefit rides, called the “Mega Ride.”  Organized by the Happy Hoofers, Escambia County Sheriff’s Posse, and Five Flags Arabian Horse Association.  Subsequent rides followed organized and donationsreceived by the Santa Rosa Posse and Five Flags Arabian Horse Association, which helped fund the paddock roof seen below. A few years ago, funds donated by the Five Flags Arabian Horse Association helped divide a large pasture Area into three turn-out pastures pictured below, and Five Flags continues to support improvements needed for the Coldwater Recreation Area. 

Equestrian Groups Representatives

(L to R): Brenda Foreman (FFSF Board of Directors), Wendy Allen (Five Flags Arabian Horse Association), Gail Jones (Florida Quarter Horse Association), Keri Sims (Escambia and Santa Rosa Counties Sheriff's Posses), Medora Mullins (for The Happy Hoofers).