Horses and Pueblo are pretty synonymous with one another and the banana belt weather that we get helps us enjoy horses more days throughout a year than most places.
In 1995, The Pueblo West Horsemen’s Association was formed and has now given horse lovers the opportunity to meet and spend time with other horseman.
The association was formed when neighbors Lew Clayton and Bob Jones were both new to the area and looking for people to ride with.
While riding the equestrian trails, they saw a lot of backyard horses, so they contacted the owners to form a social riding group.
The club was then formed and registered as The Pueblo West Horsemen’s Association.
Offices were soon assigned and Lew Clayton was the first president.
Bob Jones’ wife, Lois, was appointed treasurer and Jill Montgomery and Sue Simonson were the first officers.
The club held monthly meetings, just as they do today and rides throughout Pueblo West and also participates in local parades.
Today, there are 52 registered families and five business memberships.
There is no age limit to join the club, you can be someone who is just getting into horses or someone who is as old as dirt!
“We have members from age 6 to age 85, and we all ride. You can own paint horses, quarter horses, minis, mules, gaited horses, anything equine,” said Laurie Cozzetto, secretary of the Association.
The purpose of The Pueblo West Horsemen’s Association is to promote horsemanship, provide enjoyable equine activities for its members, and promote community interest in equestrian activities.
“We also want to preserve, protect and be a voice for equestrian interests of Pueblo West community and keep it the way it was intended,” Cozzetto said.
“We develop social relationships between Pueblo West Horsemen’s Association members, horse owners, businesses and the community that foster wholesome equine enjoyment and activities. The last thing we do is broaden equine knowledge and care through education programs for both adults and children.”
The club does not put on competitions other than friendly riding obstacles during their Spring Horse Shakedown which is an obstacle course used to help prepare horses and riders for the upcoming trail riding season.
“We hold monthly trail rides in various places throughout the area and the trail rides are held on the third Saturday of every month,” she said.
“Sometimes we have an extra ride held on the last Sunday of the month.
“The first Friday of the month, Happy Hour Rendezvous is held at Pueblo West VFW where we gather at 5:00 p.m. to share stories and laughter and just plain horse talk.”
In addition, the club helps to maintain the equestrian easements and have adopted the Wild Horse Creek Easement on Pueblo West’s north side, hauling out truckloads of trash and debris.
They also put on clinics and have speakers at their monthly meetings to help educate new horse owners and to tune-up horse owners that have been around awhile.
“Some of our members have been very active in trail construction and maintenance of trails in the Pueblo Reservoir area; working to maintain a cohesive relationship with bicyclists, hikers, and other trail users that respect and appreciate the availability of an area treasured by outdoor enthusiasts. In addition, several of our members belong to other equine clubs such as Back Country Horsemen, the Rowdy Riders and Wild West Stables.”
Pueblo West was designed to be an equine community with miles of equestrian easements throughout the 46 square miles that is Pueblo West.
The initial community design and planning had hitching rails in front of the post office and other community buildings.
It was designed that way so you could ride your horse to pick up your mail or to have a drink at the local pub. Pueblo West Horsemen’s Association’s mission is to maintain and hold onto the rights of their equestrian population and the initial design of the community.
“This community has brought so many of us to a place that we can keep our horses in our back yard and ride out to enjoy a beautiful sunrise or sunset from the back of our horse on one of our many equestrian easements,” said Cozzetto.
The Pueblo West Horsemen’s Association welcomes new members any time. Meetings are at 7 p.m. on the third Wednesday of each month at the Pueblo West Library. Yearly dues are $20 and a commercial sponsor membership that includes advertising in the monthly newsletter is $30. If you do not have a horse but enjoy being around horse minded people and want to attend the events, an associate membership is $15.
Additional information about The Pueblo West Horsemen’s Association can be found on their Facebook page, Pueblo West Horsemen’s Association.