Stop pointing fingers at horseman's club

Editor, the Advocate:

Regarding the article titled "Council may take back park arena" in the Dec. 4 edition of the Victoria Advocate:

The Victoria Horseman's Club has been in existence for close to 60 years. Back then, Victoria was a much smaller and more rural community. The horseman's club provided an inexpensive place to keep a horse and have a place to practice. People of like interests could get together and enjoy horse-related activities.

I think that back then there was a greater percentage of Victorians who had horses but couldn't afford to build their own facilities. In the '70s, the youth rodeos were huge, and there were many local horse shows and play days going on. Entry fees were cheap. Competition was more for fun.

These days, there are fewer horse owners, and it has become very expensive to own and compete with them. I think now people who can afford to own and compete can also afford their own facilities for practice. This has reduced the number of people who need a place like the Victoria Horseman's Club.

Have you heard of "creative destruction"? For example, eight-track tapes replaced vinyl albums; cassette tapes replaced eight-track tapes; CDs replaced cassette tapes, etc.

I see this happening with rodeo arenas. The old outdoor arena is becoming a thing of the past, having been replaced by much larger, multipurpose buildings. Victoria is way behind in this respect. Other area communities have the newer type of facilities.

Let's stop pointing the finger at the beleaguered horseman's club members who have tried for so many years to provide a place where our area youth can learn to ride and compete. It is a small club with few resources and nothing but good intentions. The whole purpose of the club has always been to promote youth horsemanship. It is obvious that the day of the horseman's club has passed.

Let's look to the future and work together to provide up-to-date facilities for our area youth. Victoria, I know we can do better.

Donna Thomas Sparks, Victoria Horseman's Club member, Victoria