Some 300 riders on horseback are taking part in an Easter weekend tradition in Iowa today as the 49th annual Pony Express Ride for Camp Sunnyside gets underway.
Tim Allen of Whittemore is president-elect of the Pony Express Riders who are all headed for the Easter Seals facility in Ankeny, just north of Des Moines. “There’s rides all over Iowa from northeast to southeast to southwest to northwest,” Allen says. “We all start off in our designated counties and we all end up at Easter Seals down at Camp Sunnyside.”
The riders are bringing with them money from dances, toll roads and other fundraising activities to present to Easter Seals. They’re all due at the camp on Saturday afternoon and that night, there will be a dance at Lake Robbins Ballroom near Woodward.
“All of the Pony Express riders are volunteers,” Allen says. “We do this out of the kindness of our hearts. None of us get any kickback out of it other than the joy from the kids and adults that benefit from what we do throughout the year at Camp Sunnyside.” In recent years, the riders have brought in a quarter-millon dollars or more to help with the camp that’s been in operation more than 80 years. The ride has been held every year since 1968.
Learn more at: www.ponyexpressridersofiowa.org.
By Pat Powers, KQWC, Webster City