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Urban Trail Ride

May 1, 2016 – Hidden Falls Park, St. Paul, Minnesota (Click on images to enlagre)

On Sunday May 1, 2016, the St. Paul Mounted Police Foundation and the SPPD Mounted Unit held an Urban Trail Ride with 49 participants. The participants brought their horses to Hidden Falls Park located on the Mississippi River south of the location of the former Ford Plant and northwest of the Highway 5 Bridge crossing the river.

The Route:

Hidden Falls Park, St. Paul, Minnesota

The riders parked their horse trailers in the spots normally used for boat trailers.
The riders parked their horse trailers in the spots normally used for boat trailers.
The riders parked their horse trailers in the spots normally used for boat trailers.
Riders sharing horse trailers certainly assisted in getting everyone into the parking spaces available in the park.
The riders parked their horse trailers in the spots normally used for boat trailers.
Riders sharing horse trailers certainly assisted in getting everyone into the parking spaces available in the park.

 

Unfortunately, the SPPD horses were not able to attend the event.  They were subject to quarantine due to illness of another of the horses boarded at the stable with the SPPD horses.  The officers were assigned to fuel-injected horsepower to assist in the ride and we had assistance from two Police Reserve Officers.

Squad cars trailed the riders with two motorcycles – ridden by Sergeant Chris Byrnes and Chris Hoyt (Officer Hoyt was assigned to motors prior to his current assignment to the Mounted Unit) assisting in the safe passage of the riders by cars on the route.
SPPD Reserve Officers James Lajerski and Chris Wa helped with the uncontrolled crossing of the busy Ford Parkway.
The route included Davern Street crossing of Ford Parkway with the traffic on the Parkway having the right of way. The Reserve Officers used their extensive traffic management experience to safely get the riders across.
Officer Handwerk returning from staffing the Cleveland Avenue crossing on the Highland Parkway
Squad cars trailed the riders with two motorcycles – ridden by Sergeant Chris Byrnes and Chris Hoyt (Officer Hoyt was assigned to “motors” prior to his current assignment to the Mounted Unit) assisting in the safe passage of the riders by cars on the route.
SPPD Reserve Officers James Lajerski and Chris Wa helped with the uncontrolled crossing of the busy Ford Parkway.
The route included Davern Street crossing of Ford Parkway with the traffic on the Parkway having the right of way. The Reserve Officers used their extensive traffic management experience to safely get the riders across.
Officer Handwerk returning from staffing the Cleveland Avenue crossing on the Highland Parkway

Officer Hoyt passing Group #5 on Davern Street on his “iron horse.”
Senior Commander Anderson remaining behind the Group #5 during the ride.
Mounted Officer Handwerk, Cory Richter (Foundation Secretary and Board Member and the event coordinator) and Mounted Officer Jones before the ride.
Officer Hoyt passing Group #5 on Davern Street on his “iron horse.”
Senior Commander Anderson remaining behind the Group #5 during the ride.
Mounted Officer Handwerk, Cory Richter (Foundation Secretary and Board Member and the event coordinator) and Mounted Officer Jones before the ride.

 

Members of several of the Sheriff's Posse’s in Minnesota stepped forward and agreed to act as leaders of the groups. They were joined by the Saint Paul Mounted Police Unit veterinarian.

Annetta Williams-Novak on Sarge and Mary Beth Jallen on Kate the Great, off duty from Scott County Sheriffs Posse, led Group # 1
Karen Leistico on Bullet, from Hennepin County Sheriff’s Posse and assisted by other posse members, led Group # 2
Laura Domagala on Houston and Bonnie Reyers on Divine Trace, off duty from Washington County Sheriffs Posse, led Group # 3
Becky Scott on Gypsy and Jean Fredlund on Sinclair, off duty from the Carver County Sherriff’s Posse, led group #4
Annetta Williams-Novak on Sarge and Mary Beth Jallen on Kate the Great, off duty from Scott County Sheriff’s Posse, led Group # 1
Karen Leistico on Bullet, from Hennepin County Sheriff’s Posse and assisted by other posse members, led Group # 2
Laura Domagala on Houston and Bonnie Reyers on Divine Trace, off duty from Washington County Sheriff’s Posse, led Group # 3
Becky Scott on Gypsy and Jean Fredlund on Sinclair, off duty from the Carver County Sherriff’s Posse, led group #4

Dr. Donna Rued (who provides veterinary services to the SPPD Mounted Unit and is a member of the St. Paul Mounted Police Foundation Board) rode Orion and led Group # 5.
Group Leaders wore “Group Leader” signage.
Group Leaders wore “Group Leader” signage.
Group Leaders wore “Group Leader” signage.
Dr. Donna Rued (who provides veterinary services to the SPPD Mounted Unit and is a member of the St. Paul Mounted Police Foundation Board) rode Orion and led Group # 5.

Group Leaders wore “Group Leader” signage.

Group Leaders wore “Group Leader” signage.
Group Leaders wore “Group Leader” signage.

 

Volunteers staffed crossing points to assist riders in safe crossings at intersections.

At Davern and Edgcumbe, volunteer Lance Oelke assures approaching vehicles are aware of the temporary “horse crossing.”
Laura Tunison acting as traffic controller on Mississippi River Boulevard near the crossing under the Ford Bridge as Group #1 passes by.
Laura Tunison and Nicole Coty assisted the riders as they crossed the bridge over Highway 5 and with crossing under the Ford Parkway Bridge.
At Davern and Edgcumbe, volunteer Lance Oelke assures approaching vehicles are aware of the temporary “horse crossing.”
Laura Tunison acting as traffic controller on Mississippi River Boulevard near the crossing under the Ford Bridge as Group #1 passes by.
Laura Tunison and Nicole Coty assisted the riders as they crossed the bridge over Highway 5 and with crossing under the Ford Parkway Bridge.

 

After parking their trailers and getting their horses settled, riders checked in at the registration table and enjoyed a cup of coffee in the chilly part of the day before the sun warmed things nicely. The riders also picked up their souvenir t-shirts which we hope will be worn proudly.

The riders were called for a briefing fifteen minutes before the first group went out. The five groups went off in waves of approximately ten riders each separated by approximately five minutes. Cory Richter was the primary organizer of the event and issued the instructions.
The riders were called for a briefing fifteen minutes before the first group went out. The five groups went off in waves of approximately ten riders each separated by approximately five minutes. Cory Richter was the primary organizer of the event and issued the instructions.

Riders were issued numbers to wear to indicate the group they were assigned to.
Father Eckert, one of the riders, did a blessing of the horses.
Sr. Commander Anderson, the last member of the original Mounted Unit currently serving as an SPPD officer, thanked those in attendance. He also followed the last group riders in his vehicle to assure they were visible.
The route started up the hill from Hidden Falls Park to Mississippi River Boulevard where the riders headed south on the Boulevard. This picture is of Group 1 heading out
Riders were issued numbers to wear to indicate the group they were assigned to.

 

Father Eckert, one of the riders, did a blessing of the horses.
Sr. Commander Anderson, the last member of the original Mounted Unit currently serving as an SPPD officer, thanked those in attendance. He also followed the last group riders in his vehicle to assure they were visible.
The route started up the hill from Hidden Falls Park to Mississippi River Boulevard where the riders headed south on the Boulevard. This picture is of Group 1 heading out

Group #3 heading out.
Group #3 heading out.

The riders proceeded south on Mississippi River Boulevard for 1.25 miles to the bridge crossing Minnesota Highway 5.
The riders traveled on Davern Street for nearly two miles from Shepard Road to Highland Parkway. The route took them across West 7th Street (also known as Fort Road)
Another group crossing West 7th.
After crossing West Seventh, the riders proceeded up a long hill.
The riders proceeded south on Mississippi River Boulevard for 1.25 miles to the bridge crossing Minnesota Highway 5.

 

The riders traveled on Davern Street for nearly two miles from Shepard Road to Highland Parkway. The route took them across West 7th Street (also known as Fort Road)
Another group crossing West 7th.
After crossing West Seventh, the riders proceeded up a long hill.

View down the Davern Street hill.
The streets were open to traffic.
The riders passed through a variety of Highland Park neighborhoods.
There was plenty of time for conversation.
View down the Davern Street hill.
The streets were open to traffic.
The riders passed through a variety of Highland Park neighborhoods.
There was plenty of time for conversation.

The 1.3 miles on the Highland Parkway from Davern Street west to the Mississippi River Boulevard was one of the favorite sections of the ride for many. Numerous residents from the neighborhood came to watch the parade.
From the Highland Parkway it was about one mile back to the entrance to Hidden Falls Park.
The Route involved going under the Ford Parkway Bridge.
Dismounted motorcycle officer controlled the intersection at the Highland Parkway and Mississippi River Boulevard.
The 1.3 miles on the Highland Parkway from Davern Street west to the Mississippi River Boulevard was one of the favorite sections of the ride for many. Numerous residents from the neighborhood came to watch the “parade.”
From the Highland Parkway it was about one mile back to the entrance to Hidden Falls Park.
The Route involved going under the Ford Parkway Bridge.
Dismounted motorcycle officer controlled the intersection at the Highland Parkway and Mississippi River Boulevard.

Groups #3 & #4 consolidated on the trail. They are heading back to Hidden Falls Park on Mississippi River Boulevard accompanied by one of the motorcycle escorts.
The Tot Boss food truck arrived to serve riders some delicious tater tots.
After the ride, tots and beverages were enjoyed. Some established the ride through lane at the Tot Boss Food Truck
Many using the path adjacent to Mississippi River Boulevard stopped to enjoy the riders going by and engage in conversation.
Groups #3 & #4 consolidated on the trail. They are heading back to Hidden Falls Park on Mississippi River Boulevard accompanied by one of the motorcycle escorts.

If the smiles said anything, the riders were having a great time on the ride.

The Tot Boss food truck arrived to serve riders some delicious tater tots.
After the ride, tots and beverages were enjoyed. Some established the “ride through lane” at the Tot Boss Food Truck

Our volunteer photographers took pictures of riders and their horses on the bank of the Mississippi River.
Meanwhile, out on the route, the clean-up crew was busy.
After the ride, some of the riders allowed their horses to get their feet wet in the Mississippi River.
Our volunteer photographers took pictures of riders and their horses on the bank of the Mississippi River.
Meanwhile, out on the route, the clean-up crew was busy.

 

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