SHERIDAN — As the Triple Crown winds down for the season, Children, Horses and Adults in PartnerShip Equine Assisted Therapy staff will keep Sheridan race fans horsing around a bit longer.
Saturday marks the first of three races in the organization’s inaugural “Riding for the Brand Triple Classic,” a series of pre-taped horse races filmed at fairgrounds in Sheridan, Casper and Laramie. The races will be streamed at Luminous Brewhouse and Smith Alley Brewing Company in Sheridan over the next three Saturdays, and all profits from the events will benefit equine therapy in the state of Wyoming, including the services provided by the CHAPS team.
Kristen Marcus, executive director of CHAPS, said the organization’s goal was to raise $5,000, which would help fund their general operations.CHAPS serves children and adults with special needs through equine assisted services and therapy from March to November. In an average year, CHAPS serves roughly 250 people, Marcus said.
“For us, these dollars will mostly go into operating funds,” Marcus said. “So that means things like liability insurance; our facility lease; utilities; administration and personnel; and feeding and caring for the horses.”
The event, which also serves as a fundraiser for Laramie’s Ark Equestrian Center and Casper’s Reach 4A Star Riding Academy, will give the audience chances to “bet” on their favorite horses online, Marcus said. Since horse betting is illegal in Wyoming, CHAPS is doing a lottery style betting system where each horse’s supporters will be entered into a drawing for prizes. People who place “bets” for all three days of racing will be entered into a grand prize drawing for a Montana Silver belt buckle and Crown Royal lap quilt.
Marcus said the idea to stream the races at local breweries came early in the planning process, when the COVID-19 pandemic was still in full swing and gathering at a physical racetrack was impossible. Partnering with Luminous Brewhouse and Smith Alley Brewing Company brought another unique opportunity: the chance for the brewers to create specialty drinks for the event.
Visitors to Luminous during the Triple Classic will have a chance to experience their new strawberry fields IPA, according to general manager Jonny Law.
“It’s a light, highly drinkable beer with a subtle strawberry flavor right at the front end,” Law said. “I try to tell people that it’s not a fruit punch. It is still very much a beer, but with a light, slightly fruity flavor.”
Over at Smith Alley, head of brewing operations Jeremy Mayo is introducing his calypso mango IPA.
“It’s a single-hop, single-grain beer,” Mayo said. “It has a circa 2001 IPA kind of flavor that gives away to the mango finish.”
Both Mayo and Law said they were excited to partner with a local organization making a big difference for local children and adults.
“We love every opportunity we have to partner with CHAPS,” Law said. “This should be another great event.”
Marcus said she was hopeful young and old would come out, cheer on the racers and maybe have a beer or two — all for a good cause.
“We’ve put together some extremely entertaining races,” Marcus said. “This is a great opportunity for our community to get together, socialize a bit and support an organization that is doing a lot of good in the community.”
The opening event of the triple classic will be races filmed in Casper Saturday. The Sheridan races will be broadcast May 29 followed by the Laramie races June 6. All races will be streamed at Luminous and Smith Alley starting at 2 p.m.