07 Sep The Elvenstar Family Loves the Community (Part 1 of 2)
In October of 2003 Moorpark, California experienced a devastating brush fire that burned all the way up to the border of Elvenstar. With all the trainers and grooms away at a horse show, only a few grooms, Jim’s parents, and Meaghan were working at the barn. Knowing they needed to evacuate, the group was scrambling to get all of the horses to safety. “I felt an enormous sense of responsibility for all the horses,” recounts Meaghan, “it was very scary and surreal. We were grabbing horses from above Red’s ring with embers falling and the smoke so thick you could barely see 5 feet in front of you.”
“We had a plan to evacuate the owned horses first, followed by the school horses. If the worst happened, the school ponies would be put in arenas and turnouts with the sprinklers on. Our idea was to evacuate early and in an orderly way, but the firemen sealed off the valley so no one could get in or out. When we could leave, we only had 45 minutes to get all 120 horses off the property. About 80 trailers from all over were lined up and started coming in. So many farms and even private homes opened their doors and let our horses stable with them. The surrounding community was so generous with their time and resources.
This incident will remain a rich part of Elvenstar’s history. It truly changed the way we think about a community of horse lovers. “The gratitude we felt when we received all this help made us so much more aware that we need each other. Today, Elvenstar’s staff is ready to help anyone who needs to evacuate or temporarily stable horses. We will never forget that the horse community is one big family.”