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need help supporting Hoosier Horse Park for IEA

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  • need help supporting Hoosier Horse Park for IEA

    The Johnson county commissioners are at it again. They just won't admit that the Hoosier Horse Park brings an income to Johnson County in Indiana. Last year the park had almost 100,000 documented visitors. Those are all the people who paid something to be there. Most shows are free at the park, so there are many more visitors that probably were overlooked.

    The county just won't believe that the park gets the county approximately $3.9 million in revenues, they think those figures are inflated, but a US government formula was used to get that figure. The HHP is also the only Indiana park that almost completely pays for itself, the rest are strictly paid for by the government. The current staff has done an incredible job of doing more with less and less money, they are very accountable and professional!

    Including the Indiana Eventing Association, there are almost 100 horse organizations in Indiana and most of those members do some type of activity at the park.

    IEA's HT, T3D and N3D did get radio, social network and Newspaper publicity this year because while the competitors paid to be there, the show was free to the public. Horse sports are a family sport, its hard for the commissioners to see that. Plus, the Hoosier Horse Park at Johnson County park is the ONLY PUBLIC XC COURSE in Indiana. IEA has invested alot of money there building safe jumps and do work the county won't pay for (like fixing drainage, etc). While most of the Jumps are portable, finding a similar facility in Indiana will be difficult!

    I am asking my fellow COTH peeps to write the commissioners. They want to budget cut again, possibly down to 2 employees for the next year. The Land contract renewal for the HHP lease is also coming up. We need your support. If you want lots of numbers and details, please let me know and I can send you that info. here are the Johnson County Commissioners emails. We annoyed then last year with emails..lets do it again.

    FYI: john price is the biggest offender of the group, he was trying to do land deals behind the HHP board's back to get rid of the HHP and give it to the military, but the land contract with the DNR and US government stopped that. He fights everything tooth and nail. For example, IEA was using xc schooling funds to pay for mowing and he figured out a way to stop that!

    On the other hand, Ron West is a fellow horse owner and very pro HHP.

    Johnson County (Indiana) Commissioners

    "Anita Knowles" <anitaknowles@comcast.net>,
    "Beth Boyce"<bethboyce@hotmail.com>,
    "Brian Walker" <wbrian@sbcglobal.net>,
    "JamesEckart" <jfeckart@me.com>,
    "John P. Wilson"<jwilson@wilsongreenandcecere.com>,
    "Josh McCarty"<mccartymulch@sbcglobal.net>,
    "Pete Ketchum" <ketchumpete@yahoo.com>,
    "RonWest" <rhwest2001@aol.com>,
    "Brenda Jones-Matthews<bjonesmatthews@co.johnson.in.us>,
    "John Price" <jlprice1333@comcast.net>,
    "Kathy Haste" <kathy-haste@iaswcd.org>,
    "Mark Loyd"<markloyd@co.johnson.in.us>,
    "Rick Schlosser" <ric-schlosser@iaswcd.org>,
    "Tom Kite" <thomaskite@embarqmail.com>,
    "Troy Dehart "<dehartenterprises@earthlink.net>,

    Thank you all!
    I love my OTTB! I get my dressage test done faster!

  • #2
    Maybe a "vote out the jerks" campaign should be started before the next election.
    "Of course it's hard. It's supposed to be hard. It's the Hard that makes it great."

    "Get up... Get out... Get Drunk. Repeat as needed." -- Spike


    • Original Poster

      tle. some did get voted out...and the new ones haven't been much better
      I love my OTTB! I get my dressage test done faster!


      • #4
        What should we tell these commissioners? Other than "HHP is the sole reason I drop $1000 dollars in Johnson County every year."


        • #5
          I suggest everyone that showed there this past weekend send a list of things they bought and paid for in Johnson County with their hard-earned, out of state leisure dollars. I'm estimating close to a grand between hotel, fuel, food, ice, cold drinks, and the on site goodies I purchased.
          Click here before you buy.


          • #6
            Yikes! We cannot lose the HHP, we don't get up there a lot but I love it. IEA does a fabulous job supporting it. I'll e-mail these guys, I did it before looks like some things are slow to change.


            • #7
              When talking to others at the IEA 3 Day last week it seems like a good bit of these people's frustration comes from the fact that many coming to the HHP don't actually bring much money to Johnson county--they bring money to the surrounding counties due to the county lines, etc.
              Originally posted by RugBug
              Don't throw away opportunities because they aren't coming in exactly the form you want them to.


              • #8
                Originally posted by Dressage.For.Life. View Post
                When talking to others at the IEA 3 Day last week it seems like a good bit of these people's frustration comes from the fact that many coming to the HHP don't actually bring much money to Johnson county--they bring money to the surrounding counties due to the county lines, etc.
                I was going to say this. I would imagine that most people stay in nearby Columbus,which is in a different county.
                Life-long horse lover, dreaming of the day when I have one of my very own.


                • #9
                  Well, OK, I didn'tbcheck the county lines. Are the various neighboring communities really that shallow and shortsighted? Does the state have no input? I certainly bought fuel, food and ice in Johnson county. If there WERE any hotels closer than Columbus I'd use them.
                  Click here before you buy.


                  • #10
                    Columbus/Bartholomew County does have better hotels (and me, but I know you all weren't here for me!). I work for Bartholomew County government, and all the county governments around here are hurting due to various state political wheelings and dealings, it honestly does not surprise me that they're thinking about this again. They probably will do this each year as we approach budget time. The bad thing is, I feel like Bartholomew County would be ecstatic to have something like the HHP in our county with the way we have a serious tourism initiative with random things like sports championships and famous architecture. Bartholomew County also has a lot more money than the surrounding counties due to Cummins and could totally float it. If only we could redraw those county lines...
                    www.cobjockey.com - Eventing the Welsh Cob


                    • #11
                      bbt-- should we cc our emails to all of the commissioners or just one?

                      And does anyone know whether the hotels at exit 76 (Best western, etc.) are Johnson County?
                      Taco Blog
                      *T3DE 2010 Pact*


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by CookiePony View Post
                        bbt-- should we cc our emails to all of the commissioners or just one?

                        And does anyone know whether the hotels at exit 76 (Best western, etc.) are Johnson County?
                        I would address it to all commissioners, definitely. They don't really work together outside of meetings.

                        Exit 76 is squarely in Bartholomew, not Johnson county. The closest Johnson county exit on I65 I believe is exit 80 for Flat Rock, though I'm somewhat new to the area and could be wrong.
                        www.cobjockey.com - Eventing the Welsh Cob


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by CookiePony View Post

                          And does anyone know whether the hotels at exit 76 (Best western, etc.) are Johnson County?

                          That is Taylorsville, Bartholomew County, iirc.


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by CookiePony View Post
                            bbt-- should we cc our emails to all of the commissioners or just one?

                            And does anyone know whether the hotels at exit 76 (Best western, etc.) are Johnson County?
                            Exit 76 is Bartholomew County, which is part of the issue Johnson Co has.

                            I was down at the HHP all last week, stayed in my trailer at the park but I still manged to spend close to $500 in Franklin between food for me and incidentals for the N3DE and T3DE.

                            Because I am aware of the County issue (this County line issue has been the case since we first looked at the bare ground in 1986) I always try to do as much business in Johnson County as I can, even if I prefer the hotels and food at exit 76.

                            I can't believe the County would cut off their nose to spite their face on this--when I first started making the trek down to the site that was becoming the HHP (I was the co-organizer for the 1987 Pan Am games 3 day and the organizer of the first show at the HHP which was used as the trial run for the Pan Am checkins) there were no hotels except the mom and pop places on 31 and what was then the Best Western at exit 90. Now there are a plethora of hotels, restaurants and other businesses, and some of those are there solely because of the increase in tourism that is directly attributable to the HHP.

                            I was sick this weekend saying goodbye to some of the HHP guys I've dealt with forever. Harold stopped everything else he had on his agenda to help me when we needed more water at the D box even though it was on his time, not the payroll time--Horse Park John watered the rings for me when he was supposed to be done. They have always, always been so good to me when I've needed their help. We (or I) will be so lost without them!


                            • Original Poster

                              believe it or not, the hotels at the franklin exit (north of the taylorsville/columbus exit) are actually .5 miles closer to the HHP. Many competitors stay at the taylorsville since you can walk to decent restaurants while at the franklin exit, one would need to drive a mile or so into franklin. However, many competitors do drive into Franklin as there are more grocery stores.

                              I can surmise that at least 50% of IEA entry/stabling fees are paid back to the HHP and/or Johnson county with the cost of renting the HHP and paying for use of hhp equipment, ambulance/EMT's, materials, food and beverages, other equipment rental, etc. I am taking into consideration that other portions of the entry/stabling fees go to paying officials, insurance etc that do not go to the HHP.

                              Exit 76 is just south of the Johnson county line. Exit 90 is the Franklin exit that has hotels.

                              If I could figure out how to get Bartholomew and Johnson County to work together, That would be a miracle. I've tried talking to the state, but they was their hands of it. I did show How these types of venues support a state-wide industry. And yes, Bartholomew county does a better job with it's tourism and its a shame the HHP isn't there!

                              I would email a letter to all the Commissioners. and yes, they are short sighted because there are many residents that are unaware of the HHP, even though they have many non-horse activities..the heart nut festival, antique machinery, marathons etc. That is the county's fault on not advertising.
                              I love my OTTB! I get my dressage test done faster!


                              • #16
                                Perhaps someone could draft a "form" letter that everyone could utilize and pass on to others to get the influx of mail to the county rolling?
                                It's a lot like nuts and bolts - if the rider's nuts, the horse bolts! ~Nicholas Evans


                                • #17
                                  I think the best way to get results is to have business owners/managers in Johnson County send letters/e-mails to the Commissioners pointing out how much business they get from visitors to HHP. The next time you're at some business in Johnson County, make a point of letting them know you're there because of HHP.


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by khp vol View Post
                                    I think the best way to get results is to have business owners/managers in Johnson County send letters/e-mails to the Commissioners pointing out how much business they get from visitors to HHP. The next time you're at some business in Johnson County, make a point of letting them know you're there because of HHP.
                                    Exactly, when I was at the UPS store in Franklin for the copies I had to run off to make the xc packets I told them what they were for - ie: where their business was coming from! They also had no clue about the activities going on there and were very interested in hearing about it.

                                    I do think that the state should be holding this gem. I know that for the CDE run there on Labor Day weekend that competitors come from 15 states and Canada. What more can be said for the state than that!

                                    I send this link to all of the volunteers that I worked with last weekend. A few new recruits were actually from Johnson County and had never been to the park before! and therefore got to witness it in all it's glory. I know the education that they got for themselves and their children that came with them had to impact them. We also had a volunteer come off of a Craig's List annoucement and he had nothing to do with horses, just felt like trying something new, and he was blown away by the park and the event. He had no idea that it was there nor the level of the competitions held. He wants to come BACK and also volunteer for other things there now.

                                    Maybe not the money in the Johnson County pockets but it is the PRIDE of Indiana! why the state should step up.
                                    Don't let anyone tell you that your ideas or dreams are foolish. There is a millionaire walking around who invented the pool noodle.