The first week in November along the Grand Strand usually ushers in cooler weather, the dreaded time change, and a great chance for equine owners to participate in the American Heart Association’s annual Beach Ride.
Held November 1-5 at Lakewood Camping Ground, this year marks the 42nd anniversary of the popular event, which was founded in 1981 by Horry County local Jack Monroe, according to Lindsay Pampani, Director of Development – Beach Ride for the AHA. That first charity event along our sandy shores attracted 20 riders; now, it lures quite a few more.
“Today, the Beach Ride is the largest trail ride on the beaches of South Carolina, attracting over 2,000 participants annually from all over the United States. Since its inception, the Beach Ride has helped fund over $6.5 million of research and educational projects for the American Heart Association," Pampani notes.
Participants ride horses along the beach, which marks the culmination of the week-long gathering, on Saturday, November 4, from Lakewood Camping Resort (south of city limits) to 52nd Avenue North. It marks the only time when the City of Myrtle Beach allows horses on the beach.
“Our Celebratory Ride is a full 20-miles, kicking off around 7:30 a.m. and it goes for the full day,” she explains. “Typically, our riders make it back to the campground prior to the high tide.”
If you’re horseless, come watch the fun and feel free to donate to the AHA; their goal is to raise $550,000. Heart disease is the No. 1 killer worldwide, and stroke is No. 5, but a leading cause of disability. Even when those conditions don’t result in death, they often cause disability and diminish the quality of life.
Registration for riders remains open.
American Heart Association Beach Ride
Saturday, November 4, all day
Ahabeachride.org to register and/or donate