Pony Tales Refuge & Rehab, Inc. is the "brainchild" of it's co-founder, Cindy. In 2013, Cindy was attending law school with aspirations of a long career as an attorney. Life, however, had other plans for her. Shortly before taking the baby bar exam, Cindy dislocated her left knee cap on the eve of picking up a one-eyed Arabian now named Kirby. The next morning, crutches, leg immobilizer and all, Cindy set off to bring him home anyway. A couple months later, she got the results of the baby bar exam and she had passed with flying colors! Then five days later she received word from her doctor: breast cancer. She was just 41 years old.
Cindy spent the next year and a half battling cancer and the devastating side effects of chemotherapy and radiation. Her life, as well as her family's, was turned completely upside down. She spent countless days barely able to get out of bed, thinking, dreaming, crying, and misplacing her anger on those caring for her. When all of a sudden, everything made sense. Something or someone was telling her that she was on the wrong path. Her heart had always been with horses. And suddenly she knew what she was meant to do.
In 2014, Pony Tales was officially born, she finished treatment, and the rest as they say, is history.
Executive Director/ Co-Founder
Nate is the co-founder of Pony Tales along with his wife Cindy. There by her side through the best and worst times of her life. Nate is not a "horsey" person. In fact, until the two of them moved into the country, he had never even really been around a horse. For a wedding present, Cindy gave Nate a pair of donkeys. Which soon led to a horse, and then another, and then another.....Little did he know at the time how big a part of his life that horses would become. A mechanic and tow truck operator by trade, Nate is a very busy guy with a heart of gold. He loves his work and being able to help others in a time of need the best way he knows how.
However, when Cindy began treating, Nate suddenly had to learn a new skill by crash course. She was, for the most part, unable to care for the equines they owned. She could give him instructions and pointers, but there was little more she could do to help. Between his successful career as a mechanic and tow truck operator, Nate's free time was always very limited. He spent many nights in sub-zero temps taking out hay and caring for the horses in between 24/7 tow calls and repair work. All the while caring for Cindy as well.
Nate has been by her side through the best and worst times of her life. It is of little wonder how supportive he is of Pony Tales and her dreams.
Wade has been a close friend to Nate for many years and is always there to lend a helping hand. Wade grew up with horses and has spent his entire life around them. He is an honest, hard-working man who does not have time for nonsense, so to speak. If there is something that needs to be done, he will get it done. Wade helped Nate out on countless occasions when Nate was tending to the horses and chores in Cindy's absence. As you can imagine, it can be rather difficult for a husband to say no to his wife, as is the case with Nate and Cindy at times. He wants her to be happy, but lines need to be drawn when running a non-profit organization.
That is where Wade steps in. Wade has no problem whatsoever saying no and that is something that Cindy needs to hear. She greatly respects and appreciates his opinions and does not get offended by his bluntness. Wade is an invaluable asset to the organization in many respects and helps keep emotions and relationships out of the business aspect of things. It is difficult for an organization to be successful and stay on course when emotions get in the way of logic. Wade, quite simply, keeps things on track.
With Wade on board, Pony Tales had a solid start to get off the ground and on the right foot from the get go. We could not do it without him.
Pat has always been a part of Cindy's love for horses. Helping her daughter any way she could. Even today, she helps every week with chores: cleaning, watering, and feeding all the wonderful rescues here at Pony Tales. She even volunteers to pull the poop cart in the parade!
Pat loves to organize our yearly garage sale and she always makes food for our fundraisers. Whether it's cooking or cleaning, we know we can count on Pat to be there. We dont know what we would do with out all her help!
Marisa, daughter of Cindy and Nate, volunteers for Pony Tales as often as she is needed. She attends all of our fundraisers and helps out where ever she can. Her daughter, Gabby, even gave her own bottle to help one of the foals. Marisa often does cleaning, feeding, and watering for the beautiful souls here at Pony Tales.
Tess, a good friend of the family, comes to visit often. She loves to help out with the horses by doing chores, grooming, and even working with the younger horses. Tess would love to have her own horse, but it's not in the cards someday. She comes to almost every fundraising event and is so helpful where ever she is needed. We love our volunteers!
Bryanna first came out to Pony Tales in November 2016. She had read about the 1-Day Open Door Shelter event we had just hosted and she had recently suffered a tragedy at home. She proved her knowledge and experience with horses and quickly moved up the ladder to evaluating, working, and riding the horses.
Since that time, Bryanna has become as much a part of the Crew as possible without officially being a crew member. She has come with us to pick up abandoned horses. She will take a horse who just needs a refresher or some time under the saddle home and work with them, get them spruced up and ultimately ready for adoption. She helps organize fundraisers and seeks out donations on our behalf. She has fostered, worked with, and helped rehome the orphan foals we take in each spring. A Registered Nurse by day, Bryanna has proven to be dependable, trustworthy, hard-working, focused, driven, and passionate about the horses and what we do here.
Her efforts have helped every horse she has worked with to find their new home: Xena, Rocko, Al, Sandy, Legz, Bullet, Ace, and even little Carlie. She was even nominated as Great Mat's Trainer of the Year, and Bryanna ended up in 3rd place. Way to go!!