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The J.F. Shea Therapeutic Riding Center held its 39th annual BBQ and Family Faire on Sept. 23. The family gathering brought together over 1,500 attendees, including Shea Center riders and their families, donors, sponsors, community and business leaders, volunteers and equestrian professionals.

In addition to the barbecue meal, country faire games, face painting, petting zoo, and live and silent auctions, the evening featured Shea Center rider demonstrations and the “Parade of Stars” of 70 therapy clients and their families. The evening’s featured rider was 3-year-old Jaxlee Barton, who was diagnosed with cerebral palsy. Jaxlee’s parents, Emily and Jonny, spoke about how the Shea Center has helped their daughter’s development.

Event organizers said so far, the barbecue has raised over $950,000. That number is still climbing thanks to post-event donations.

For more information on the Shea Center, visit

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