The Pennsylvania Rangers
The PA Rangers were incorporated in the state of Pennsylvania on January 31st, 1961. At that time, it was an all male organization, formed for the purpose of search and rescue, promoting horsemanship, and aiding the general public of Pennsylvania and neighboring states if call upon. In 1971 the club was reorganized through the efforts of Harold Coldren and membership grew to approximately 40 members. The club’s activities were increased to include drill teams, horse shows, parades and cattle round-ups for local farmers. In the 1980’s membership was opened up to women.
By 2006, club membership had dwindled to approximately 10 members and it was decided to promote membership again. The PA Rangers presently has over 100 members and is continuing to develop new ideas and activities.
PA Rangers celebrate their 50th Anniversary
In January, 1961 a group of 8 horsemen from the Spring Grove, PA area
formed an organization for the purpose of providing trained horses and
riders that could assist law enforcement authorities in search and
rescue operations in remote areas of Pennsylvania and surrounding
states. The PA. Rangers were on their way!
By 1971, this core group of "Rangers" had expanded both its
membership and its activities to include trail rides, cattle
round-ups, horse shows, parades, and a mounted drill team.
As the reputation of the Rangers spread, they were asked to perform for many
public functions, including the York Hospital Fete, Baltimore MD and
Washington DC parades, and all "hometown" parades. The Drill Team was
in demand for performances at various horse shows and their sharp drills added interest to many public functions.
At the same time, The Rangers also honed their "search and rescue" skills with mock drills
to find "lost" hikers in the mountains of central Pa.
During the 1970's several members traveled to the Pennsylvania State
Capital to obtain permission to develop riding trails in a "Project
70"- funded program being planned for an area south of Hanover, PA.
That project is now Codorus State Park. From the beginning, the PA.
Rangers have focused on designing and maintaining the equestrian trails that criss-cross the park.
These trails are easy to ride, and offer many scenic views of Lake
Marburg. The Rangers continue to open new trails, and work tirelessly
with Park personnel to provide a trail system that is enjoyed by visitors
all year long.
As the times changed, so did the Rangers. In the 1980's, women were
welcomed into the membership for the first time, and this year the
Rangers have their first woman President! The members are now focused
on family functions, trail rides, fun shows, camping and educational
activities. While still maintaining the ability to assist the local
authorities in an emergency situation, the club now concentrates on
promoting the welfare and enjoyment of the horses and the land.
This year is off to a great start! We've held a Trail clean-up, a
vaccine clinic, a "sub" sandwich sale, a Judged Pleasure Ride with 64 competitors, a fund
raiser at Texas Roadhouse, and our Benefit Ride is scheduled for May
1st. at Codorus Park. These activities provide the money needed to
maintain the riding trails, the trailer parking lot, and add amenities
like the mounting block and the "Port-a-pot" at the trail head.
Our 50th Anniversary ride and picnic will be held on May 21st.
Rangers from years ago are coming to renew old friendships and make
new friends. The annual horse show will be held on June 12th at the
York Springs Equestrian Center. Classes are divided into Jr. and Sr.
divisions and ribbons and cash prizes will be awarded. At our regular
meeting in May, our guest speaker will demonstrate how to pull a shoe
in an emergency on the trail. Later this summer we will have a
weekend trail ride and camp out at Micheaux State Park near
Chambersburg. Our activities continue into the summer, with a Family
picnic, a "Gamblers Choice" ride, a Gettysburg Battlefield ride, and a
Fall Judged Pleasure ride. Due to the hard work of our active members, we have grown from the
8 charter members to our current roster of over 130 members.
As we start our next 50 years, you are welcome to join us, as a guest,
a competitor or a potential member at any of our activities. Please
check out our website at www.parangers.com. You can find contact
names and numbers for upcoming activities, we would be happy to have
you come ride with us! We are the PA. Rangers!
The Pennsylvania Rangers