GRAFTON -- On May 17 at Grafton Ponds Outdoor Center the Southern Vermont Therapeutic Riding Center is hosting a 5K Walk, Trot or Pedal Fun Run event.

The 5K course winds through meadows, past the Grafton Village Cheese Factory and the village of Grafton overlook, back through meadows finally returning to Grafton Ponds. Registration begins at 9 a.m. with the event beginning at 10 a.m. The cost is $30 per person the day of the event (children age 11 and under are free). Teams of three or more are $20 per person.

Raising pledges is encouraged as prizes will be awarded for both an individual who and team that raises the most money.

All proceeds go to benefit the mission of the Southern Vermont Therapeutic Riding Center, located at 336 River Road in Newfane, which is to enrich, educate and expand the lives of individuals with special needs through Equine Assisted Activities & Therapies. Since its founding in 2010, SVTRC has grown from a few initial riders -- both children and adults -- to successfully working with programs and schools including veterans’ programs, the Brattleboro Retreat, Kindle Farm School, The INSPIRE School and local elementary and high schools. Since the fall of 2012, Landmark College has enlisted SVTRC to provide their Equine Assisted Learning classes.

While the benefits of Therapeutic Riding have been medically documented, statistics alone cannot fully describe the true value of this service. The look of confidence, pride and achievement on a rider’s face when he or she has successfully completed a task is the most profound measure of its value. However, many clients, young and old, who benefit from SVTRC’s programs cannot afford the full cost of lessons.

Proceeds will be also used to help pay for the care and boarding fees of the team of five therapy horses that have been specifically trained for this program.

Water and juice will be provided to all attendees as well as fresh fruit, yogurt and snacks. There will also be children’s activities, "Tana the Smiling Horse" available to pet, brush and feed, and the opportunity to have your picture taken with Tana. T-shirts will be provided to registrants age 12 and up as well as goodie bags.

For more information, visit www.sovtrc.org or call 802-221-4409.