TETRA - Trail Riding for Everyone

Youth Outreach Held October 2011
By: Debby Alley

TETRA’s Youth Outreach Ride was held at Parrie Haynes Ranch on the Hilltop the last week of October, 2011.  Three groups of students attended this year in order to manage the budget and tight finances. The groups came from Morgan Mill, Carrollton, and Quinlan. 
The students had fun learning about Texas history with a hands-on approach. They played rodeo with stick horses on the clover-leaf barrel pattern with Louis Burney and Carol VonArx monitoring their pattern. They had so much fun running crazy after sitting on the bus for 4 hours. They threw horseshoes with real mule shoes while Joyce and Charles Mosie watched and cheered them on. They threw ropes at steer heads under the instructions of Jack Borchers and Richard Burney. Some became real cowboys and cowgirls. Prizes were awarded to the top competitors; these were flashlights donated by Victory Truck Lighting.
Cooks Tim Spice and Vernon Leuschner ensured that all ate tasty and nutritious meals. Kathy Leuschner and Ronnie Crouch were able assistants and helped the business in the kitchen run smoothly. Ronnie even delivered the lunch to the oak tree at noon.
The students then branded some leather with hot irons. With the burn ban statewide, we were expecting to have to “brand” with paint but Juanita Brooks’ husband Truman designed and engineered a propane burner especially for the branding. The students were passed from one person to another (that would be Rita Motley, Carol VonArx, Blanfard Perry, Barbara McKnight and Norman Lorenzen) in a very controlled line before actually reaching the hot brand station. After burning their leather, they listened to Sylvia Perry talk about the history of barbed wire.  Juanita then had the chance to explain the prickly pear cactus’ white spots made by the cochlea bug. The kids then put the red dye on their face and painted it like the Indians.  Rita Motley told a campfire story about a family moving west in their covered wagon. Bob Rawson told the history of the Texas Rangers with details that would have made a teacher proud.
Cattle Call by Eddie Arnold woke the camp up at 6:00 the next morning. Some students did not sleep all night and I think the tally on teachers sleeping at all was a ZERO.
After breakfast, all loaded into wagons to make the trek to the log cabin.  Kelly Boesen had his iron wheel wagon that rides like the real thing that the settlers would have used (I am talking no padded seats on this one).  Blanfard Perry brought his team as he always does. Randy Greenfield brought his people hauler and was able to carry a large crowd for us. Mary Devine brought her Halflingers and did a wonderful job; there was no need to fret, Mary.  Juanita Brooks’ yellow wagon came as usual and she did a fine job of demonstrating how to harness the team before we pulled out.  To keep the wagons traveling smoothly and safely, Richard Burney rode in front as Trail Boss with outriders being Sylvia Perry, Jack Borchers, Barbara McKnight, Kristin Dalley, and debby alley.  Stan Dalley helped the students in the wagon and assisted some children needing special attention.
At the log cabin, Judy, Chris, and Peggy, who are members of the Friends of Parrie Haynes Ranch, showed the kids how the settlers made butter, darned, ground corn into meal and washed their clothes. They made a fresh batch of corn bread each morning to serve with the prickly pear jelly made by Rosalie Lorenzen and the dewberry jelly made by debby alley.  Outside the cabin, Bradley displayed and explained the tools that the farmers would use to grow food and put meat in the smoke house.
After eating lunch under the oak tree, the wagons delivered the kids to the hunter’s cabin where JonEd Blakistone had a rollicking good time with his quiz Texas Trivia. Students were jumping up and down with their hands in the air wanting to win the prize. This was a fun way for the students to learn historical dates and places. The teachers even started raising their hands.
The volunteers worked hard with some making two round trips to get all their equipment and horses to the site, some coming by themselves for the first time, and some leaving their families to deal with crises at home.  I thank each and every one of them for their dedication and efforts.

Parrie Haynes Ranch Trip
A’dayr Shewmaker
Recently my class and I went to Parrie Haynes Ranch in Killeen. We had to wake up at 4 in the morning and leave at 5. The bus trip was long but, it was worth it. Most of us said we weren’t going to sleep on the way there but less than 45 minutes into the trip the bus was dead silent. Most of us slept until we got there. We all were very excited for this trip.
When we got to Parrie Haynes Ranch, we went to the dining hall and at a breakfast of tortillas, eggs, sausage and coffee or orange juice. After breakfast we were taken down to where the horses and wagons were and were told about all the different kinds of equipment they use on the horses and wagons. Once we were done being told about the equipment we were shown some of the different barbwire they used back when Texas first started being cattle land. We were then shown the cochlea or the white stuff on the cactus. If you rub this between your fingers it turns a bright red. Indians and Spanish explorers used cochlea as red dye for their clothes and other items.
After that we were put in wagons and rode in them down a trail as if we were back when people were coming to Texas in wagons. As we rode the wagons we got to feel what is was like to ride in one of these wagons all day every day. In each wagon there was a booklet on all of the important or useful plants they had used. Most of the plants you could see if you looked closely as you rode down the trail.
Once the wagons stopped and let us off, we saw all the old farm equipment they used back then. We got to see a tobacco grinder, pig scalper, corn grinder and planting equipment. They told us how nothing went to waste back then, and everything was put to use. Then we played a game where we learned that if the animals don’t get enough of what they need whether it is food, water, or shelter they will end up dying and the herd won’t be plentiful.
We then went into an original dogtrot cabin; inside was transformed into the 1800’s. They told us how a woman’s work is never done. They told us how they used the pig’s lard to make lye soap. They also had a giant pot that they basically used for everything including, laundry, food, and boiling water. They had to mend their own socks and make their own clothes. They picked the cotton they used. We also got to try some cornbread they made the way the settlers would have, with either prickly pear or blackberry jam.
We then ate a lunch of sandwiches, chips, cookies with the choice of apple or orange. After that we got on a different wagon and rode down a trail to the ropes course. At the ropes course we were asked questions about Texas history. After we were done with the questions, we got on a different wagon and headed back to the area where we ate breakfast. After saying our thank you’s and goodbye’s we headed back home.
The ride home was all but quiet. We stopped at a convenient store and bought snacks for the ride home. Jade, Ale, Katie, Kinley, Kaitlyn and I started singing for everybody. After that we were back at the school, and it was time to go home.
I enjoyed going to Parrie Haynes Ranch. I look forward to it every year. This year was my last year going, and I will miss looking forward to it.

Parrie Haynes Ranch
Katie Pierce
This year the 7th and 8th graders went to Parrie Haynes in Killeen, Texas. It was a bunch of fun, and I learned a lot. Unfortunately, I had to wake up at 4 a.m. to the bus at school. We rode the bus for what felt like five hours, but really it was only three. Even though it was really early, everyone was excited about the day ahead of them. When we arrived, we were greeted by Ms. Debbie who then led us to breakfast and rode as side rider on the trail ride. We had a huge breakfast with eggs, sausage, and muffins. After we all ate, we walked down the hill and watched people hitch up the horses to the wagons.
Ms. Debbie introduced us to Mrs. Burney as soon as we got down the hill. Mrs. Burney told us about how we could compare a horse-drawn wagon to a car. The four things that are similar are that they both have a transmission, engine, brakes, and steering wheel. The reins were considered the “steering wheel”. The berching is the “brakes” on the backside of the horse. Mrs. Burney showed us multiple types of barbed wire varying in size and shape. One piece she showed us came from an old ranch in south Texas that was settled in the late 1800s. Mr. Burney came and showed us some cacti covered in white stuff called cochlea. Cochlea is a white substance that grows on cacti and when you rub it between your fingers, it turns red. This red cochlea was used by Betsy Ross to make the first American flag. After that little history lesson, we loaded up onto the wagons and rode to the Dog Trott cabin.
When we got there we were split into groups and were sent to different stations. The first station was inside the cabin where they let us grind up corn and shoed us where they slept. We got to eat some cornbread with either Prickly Pear jelly, Dewberry jelly, or both. Then we moved to the next station that focused on farming machinery. The guy that was talking to us had an old shotgun that was mostly used after the Civil War. Our third and final station was about animals and their habitat. We played a game that was a lot of fun. We all ended up dying in the game. After everyone was finished with the stations, we ate lunch.
Soon after lunch, we loaded back up the wagons and headed to the roping center. Our teamster was named Kelly, and he was driving Bonnie and Clyde. He was a real sweet guy who drove in a big trail ride in Fort Worth. When we arrived at the roping center, we had a surprise quiz on Texas history.
After we got done with our quiz, we loaded up for the last time on the wagons and rode back to camp. We thanked all the people involved in the trail ride and went back to the bus. On the way home, we all burst out singing on the bus. It was hilarious!
Parrie Haynes was a wonderful experience for me. I want to thank Coach Hutchison and Mrs. Sanders for taking us. Also I want to thank the volunteers like Mrs. Burney and Kelly for making our trip unforgettable. I hope I get to go back.

Parrie Haynes Ranch
Makinley Ingram
My class and I recently visited Parrie Haynes Ranch. It is a very entertaining place. The bus ride took a few hours, but after arriving I realized it was all worth it.
In the morning when I got to the school to leave on the long bus ride, all the kids piled onto the bus. Then we set off on a world full of adventures. Once we got tour destination, we went to a dining hall where they would serve us breakfast. I ate sausage and scrambled eggs with orange juice.
On top of all the things I already knew. I learned a lot of interesting facts about horses. Getting to watch people strap up the horses with big black harnesses was fun! We learned that horses used to be the size of a German Shepard. Horses also had 4 toes, but then realized that they can run faster with 1 toe rather than 4.
After that we learned a little about barbed wire. We saw a lot of different types. We got to use cochlea. Cochlea is a white substance grown on a prickly pear cactus, when rubbed between your fingers it turns into a red shade. We found out that Betsy Ross used cochlea to die the red stripes on the first American Flag.
Finally we got to ride the wagons. The wagon I rode was Kelly’s. His wagon has the real wheels that are made out of metal. This made it extremely bumpy. We saw many deer. Kelly’s wagon took is to a site where we all split into groups and went to different stations. I first went to a field where Catilin, Kaitlyn, Kaitlin, Ale, Katy and I played a deer game. I had to stand on one side and played a habitat so did 3 other people. The other two went to the other side to be deer. There were three different signs to use, water, food or shelter. It was fun.
Then we went to a dog trot cabin and got to look at all the different kind of tools that they used to cook, clean, iron, and sew. They let us eat prickly pear cactus jam on a piece of cornbread. We ate lunch once we were done on the dog trot cabin. I ate a ham sandwich and an orange.
Later we rode back to camp. Soon we went home. It was an amazing experience. Also it was very educational. I wish I could go back again next year.

Texas Equestrian Trail Riders Association, Inc.

P.O.Box 655

Springtown, Texas 76082

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