Once in a Blue Moon Gala raises money for San Diego River Science Field Station

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A hometown fundraiser, the Once in a Blue Moon Gala Dinner and Auction was set at the beautiful River Valley Equestrian Center in Lakeside on Oct. 16. A major fundraiser for the Lakeside’s River Park Conservancy the evening was filled with a fine BBQ dinner, live and silent auctions and opportunity raffles that ranged in prices that gave most everyone in attendance a chance to help raise money for the River Park. This year’s gala is special as it was dedicated to the kids of Lakeside and many underprivileged children in East County.

A hometown fundraiser, the Once in a Blue Moon Gala Dinner and Auction was set at the beautiful River Valley Equestrian Center in Lakeside on Oct. 16. A major fundraiser for the Lakeside’s River Park Conservancy the evening was filled with a fine BBQ dinner, live and silent auctions and opportunity raffles that ranged in prices that gave most everyone in attendance a chance to help raise money for the River Park. This year’s gala is special as it was dedicated to the kids of Lakeside and many underprivileged children in East County.

Lakeside River Park Conservatory Executive Director Robin Rierdan said this was its major fundraiser for the River Park and this gala is dedicated to raising money for its upcoming Science Field Station.

“Everything that you donate and purchase today, it all goes to the Science Field Station,” she said. “We are going to build a replica of the Old Bostonia House, but really what we are doing is building a hands-on place for science for East County kids, particularly here in Lakeside. Science has gone from memorizing facts and knowing the periodic table to a far more hands-on integrated approach. This not only covers science, but it also covers STEM because in restoring the river you need all of those things. We are very eager to build this facility and get this house construction going.”

We are here because we like to focus on the things that affect the San Diego River in Lakeside, and this year the Once in a Blue Moon Gala is being held at the River Valley Equestrian Center because we want you to know that we have this amazing facility off of Ashwood where you can get first class equestrian polo.

Kip Herring’s father founded the Equestrian Center in 1955. Herring said he was happy to see all the people at the Herring Ranch and Equestrian Center and pointed out that the storyboard on display offered much information about the ranch’s history.

“We brought the horses out in 1955 and put the field in in 1956 and continued to build from there. Over the years it started to grow. It was my dad’s ‘Field of Dreams’ to build a place where he could play polo with all of his friends. All that are here tonight is a real testimony to that, because that is what that is what this place is for. This place is land to enjoy and share,” he said. “I can pass the torch to a family now that has that same vision and even bigger.”

Now turned over to the Bankhead family, it is entrusted to take care of this legacy and takes this seriously. A major initiative is to preserve this wonderful river valley. Weather permitting, the River Valley Equestrian Center plays polo every Saturday at 9:30 a.m. This is world-class equestrian polo. It now new polo ring at the other end of the Center off of El Monte more geared towards the kids. It has a middle school team, a high school team and is starting on a college polo team. It has polo there on Thursday nights and beginning to start on Tuesday nights as well. Both are open to the public. The River Valley Equestrian Center also has many more amenities to offer such as polo classes, boarding, events and weddings. It is a beautiful spot of the El Monte Valley and a perfect venue for many events.

To find out more about Lakeside’s River Park Conservancy visit www.lakesideriverpark.org.

For the River Valley Equestrian Center visit its Facebook page at www.facebook.com/rivervalleyequestrian.

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