first published in the February 2023 Equiery

PVDA Suspends Ride for Life After 2023
The PVDA Board of Directors issued the following statement concerning its annual Ride for Life benefit show.

“On June 24-25, 2023, PVDA will host the 20th Annual PVDA Ride for Life at the Showplace Arena in Prince George’s County, MD. We are pleased to share that since its inception in 2004, the Ride for Life has raised nearly $975,000 for Johns Hopkins Breast Center. Our goal for 2023 is to reach $1 million raised.

Unfortunately, a fundraiser of this size combined with a large horse show requires enormous time and effort from an organization that is run 100% by volunteers. Therefore, although PVDA will continue to host a summer recognized/licensed show in June at the Showplace Arena, 2023 will be the finale for Ride for Life. We understand that this will disappoint many people, this was not an easy decision to make. However, PVDA is not a professional fundraising organization and simply no longer has the volunteer manpower to continue. The fundraiser part of the show required coordinators for rider donations, sponsorships, vendors, awards, and the raffle, plus a chairperson to coordinate the coordinators. This is in addition to the many volunteers who make the show itself happen. The Ride for Life show has become smaller over the years, and because we can’t hold the Fundraiser Freestyle in the manner which we have previously, as USDF has deemed it outside of the official rules, the amounts raised each year have been significantly decreasing.

Therefore, we would like to have one last, big show! The 20th Annual PVDA Ride for Life with a goal of $1 million raised. We hope you will join us, either by participating in the freestyle exhibition or showing and raising funds to reach this goal.

Our gratitude goes out to all Ride for Life participants over the years: riders, volunteers, and/or donors, without whom this accomplishment would have not been possible. We especially want to recognize Pat Artimovich who had the vision and the passion to bring about the Ride for Life. She is an inspiration to all, and proof that it only takes one person to start something big.

We would like to invite everyone to join the challenge of reaching the one-million-dollar goal at the final PVDA Ride for Life in 2023. Let us celebrate the success that we have achieved as an organization. Riders, volunteers, donors – it will take everyone to meet this challenge!”