Tuckahoe’s Trail Ambassadors, continued...

maintaining a trails system that is safe for all riders and horses to enjoy.

The Trails

Stacy Frank (riding Finn) and Al Martinez (riding Rocky) are helping to expand Tucka- hoe State Park’s trail system and make im- provements to current trails.

Virginia, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and New York mainly,” Al explained. “It took us two and a half years to find just the right place.” Te couple bought the land for their “Coun-

try Dream Farm” in 2001 and began planning the layout. “What drew us to this property was that it was right across from a park with a mas- sive trail system,” he said, adding, “It really is a horse lover’s dream. Tat’s why we are here.” It was not until 2015 that the couple built on their land and moved to Maryland, but even before the official move, they became involved in the Tuckahoe Equestrian Center. Tey first joined the club in order to meet other horse people and become active in the local horse community. Once they settled into retired life, their involvement skyrocketed with the goal of

Soon after moving to Maryland, Al began attending MHIB board meetings where he shares new developments at TEC and reports back to the horse community on the Eastern Shore. It was at the April 2019 MHIB meet- ing that he was introduced to Secretary of Ag- riculture Joseph Bartenfelder as well as MHIB Executive Director Ross Peddicord. It was at this meeting that Al explained that the trail system at Tuckahoe State Park was failing and many trails had been closed. He was looking for help and advice on how to get the trail sys- tem back up to standards. “It really was luck that I was at that meet- ing with so many people that could help our trails,” Al stated. According to Al, when he finished speaking, Secretary Bartenfelder told Peddicord to follow up and get it done! “I think they all knew it was a good community cause for our area and the state,” Al added. Al had presented a plan for the addition of three bridges to help connect trails in marsh-

land areas. What he did not know at the time was that DNR had an approved proposal on file that included eight bridges, the cutting of a new trail to replace the one that had to be closed and other improvements to the trail system. In addition, it was discovered that there was

an old DNR requirement that farmers leasing lands along the edges of the park for crops had to keep a buffer specifically for multi-use trails. “With DNR now enforcing that requirement, we are opening up 30 miles of trails,” Stacy said. “Tis will bring the total trail system within the park up to 48 miles!” Al added. Although the full scope of the project is still in

the works, many improvements have already hap- pened. “It’s exciting that we’ve been able to get it done after all this time,” Al said, adding, “Tucka- hoe should be a destination for people to keep coming back with so many options to explore.” “It is amazing how well everyone has come

together to work on this project,” Stacy added. “And everyone who uses these trails are re- spectful of each other, from the people pushing kids in strollers to the bike riders and those on horseback.” Both Stacy and Al sit on TEC’s board and are committed to seeing the future of the club and the park flour- ish. “I have a few more ideas in my head of things I want to see happen but I’ll just keep those to myself for the moment,” Al said with a smile. “So many of the volunteers who

TEC has a large youth membership making up the club’s Hoffpicks youth group.

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got this club going are getting too old, like me!” laughed Royce, who added, “but we have this younger group coming in and they have really rejuvenated the organization. It has been great!”

Plan Your Season at Full Moon Farm!

•• Check Website for Updates Due to COVID-19 ••

June 14: FMF Farm Family Horse Show #2 July 19: FMF Aloha HT

July 20 - 24: FMF 1/4 * Long Format 3-Day Event & Clinics! Starter thru Training Our starter event & unrecognized 3-Day Event offer something for everyone. Our educational courses are designed so that you and your horse have a confidence-boosting experience.

July 26: FMF Farm Family Horse Show #3 August 9: FMF Farm Family Horse Show #4 September 6: FMF Farm Family Horse Show #5

September 27: FMF September to Remember HT (Rescheduled from April 19)

November 8: FMF Fall HT Dianna L. Stafford (443) 277-5308

Summer Camp at Full Moon: July 6-10 • July 27-31 • August 17-21 • See for more information •

Karen & Stephen Fulton • 4326 Louisville Road, Finksburg, MD 21048 410-795-8371 • •

800-244-9580 |

Katherine O. Rizzo


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