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Frequently Asked Questions About Driving at The Florida Horse Park
Sunday, May 15, 2022
Posted by Mary Phelps
FLORIDA HORSE PARK CARRIAGE DRIVING | FLORIDA HORSE PARK
The Florida Horse Park is supportive of our driving community and welcomes visitors. There has been tremendous support from the driving community contributing towards the constriction and development of world class obstacles that are safe and welcoming for beginners to advanced.
Check out our calendar of events (and often as it grows) to benefit from all the activities being offered.
The Florida Horse Park
11008 South Hwy 475
Ocala, FL 34480
Please read the following information to understand rules and regulations, and to note dates of availability.
Frequently asked Questions about The Florida Horse Park
Q: Can I come drive/ride at the Florida Horse Park?
A: Yes! We welcome trail riders, and drivers however there are some restrictions:
1. There are certain days that the park is closed to trail riding and driving. These dates will be noted on the Florida Horse Park Events Calendar on our website.
2. You must check in at the front office, provide proof of a negative coggins, and sign a liability form. For now also for payment although we will have a way to check in on-line in the future.
3. Trail riding and driving does not include riding in any of the arenas (outdoor or covered)
4. You may ride/drive on the cross–country course, but no jumping or use of the obstacles is allowed, and the water complexes are closed. For Drivers, please note the multiple schooling and training days listed at this link where access to obstacles is allowed. If available we will make every effort to allow drivers to come on other days. Try to do this at the beginning of the week if a week day as there are often preparations for multiple events going on towards the end of the week.
5. We have designated parking for trail riders near the trail head. Click on our map of the park page to learn more. Drivers can park behind the barns.
Q: How much does it cost to ride in the arenas?
A: It costs $50 per horse to ride in the arenas. Currently for the Driving community $25 for access to the fields, trails and designated obstacles.
**You must call and schedule this ahead of time to make sure the arenas are available. Please also bring proof of a negative coggins and sign a liability form. 352-307-6699
Q: Do I have to pay to come watch the horse shows?
A: Most of the horse shows hosted at the Florida Horse Park are free to the public. There are some ticketed events, so please check the calendar on the website for more information.
Q: Are there RV hookups? Shower facilities?
A: Yes, there are 40 RV hookups and we do have shower facilities. The RV hookups have 30-amp and 50-amp power and water. There is no sewage at this time. Most weekends these hookups are reserved by the shows that are here. If you are not with an event that is being hosted at the Florida Horse Park and would like to rent an RV hookup for the night, please call the office to make a reservation. (352) 307-6699
Q: Where is the closest place to have my RV pumped out?
A: Ocala Sun RV resort is located just a few miles from the park:
Address: 2559 SW Hwy 484, Ocala, FL 34473
Q: I’m a vendor, may I come to your shows?
A: If you are interested in being a vendor, please fill out the vendor application on our website. We will be in touch if your application is accepted. Add link to vendor page here.
Q: Is the Florida Horse Park owned by the state?
A: The Florida Agriculture Center and Horse Park Authority is a charitable organization that has been approved by the IRS as a 501(c)3 and is situated on 500 acres owned by the state of Florida. The Florida Horse Park operates as a Direct Support Organization (DSO) under the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. For more information on what a DSO is, click here: https://www.freshfromflorida.com/content/download/82076/2387865/FDACS-DSO-Report-2018.pdf
Q: Are we owned by the County?
A: No, the Florida Horse Park is not owned by Marion County. However, we work closely with the County on many of our projects at the park.
Q: What does the grant money go towards?
A: Grant money that the Florida Horse Park receives goes towards capital improvement projects, infrastructure, and other pre-approved projects. Grants must be applied for every year and do not come to us on a re-occurring basis. Some examples of how past grant money has been spent include:
375’ X 212’ covered arena
12 barns that include 320 permanent 12’ x 12’ stalls
Two 350’ x 250’ outdoor arenas with Martin Collins footing
Two 140’ x 240’ outdoor arenas with Martin Collins footing
Infrastructure- new roads, 3-phase power, additional wells for irrigation and much more!
Q: As a Driver what does my fee of $25 go towards?
A : Currently for 2022 all money collected, and donated goes directly into funding improvements and construction of driving obstacles.
Q: Are we government employees?
A: No, the Florida Horse Park staff are not state employees.