coachella valley horse rescue

Where Horsing Around is Encouraged

Coachella Valley Horse Rescue helps introduce the public to its equine family through a special fundraising event.

Carl Schoemig Attractions, Current Digital

coachella valley horse rescue

You can watch a horse paint a work of art and then take home the finished product at the April 3 fundraiser in Indio.

If your only perception of a horse is to ride one, then the Coachella Valley Horse Rescue (CVHR) is about to expand that impression.

At their April 3 “Let’s Spring on the Love” charity event, you’ll be able to watch a horse paint a work of art that you can take home or read a book to one among a variety of safe activities at Coachella Valley Horse Rescue’s Indio headquarters.

“We really love what we do because we see the impact that it has on the people involved, and not just the horses, but also the people who receive the benefit of working with the horses through our program,” says Lisa Lynn Morgan, CVHR marketing director.


Coachella Valley Horse Rescue dates back to 2008 when director Annette Garcia saw a need to help abused, abandoned, and ill horses in the valley. A generous donation from comedian Ellen DeGeneres and her partner Portia de Rossi led to building a ranch to further their efforts of placing horses in “loving forever homes.”

Palm Springs Life spoke further with Morgan about the weekend event.

How did the horse painting start?

A rescue horse named Decco did the first painting. Decco succumbed to some injuries that we couldn't fix. We have a special painting in our clubhouse done by Decco. In the painting, you can see very clearly a horse. This is in memoriam of Decco. And that's what inspired us to do more of this.

How else can kids interact with the horses?

The kids can expect to learn how to approach a horse. They can meet the horses from the outside of their stall. There is also an opportunity where kids can read to the horses, which is a very special bonding experience because the horses really pay attention to it. It is really amazing.

What is the schedule of events on April 3?

From 2- 4 p.m. the portion of the ranch where the horses live is going to be the hub. There will be food offered by Costello's Café. There will be live music safely distanced up on a stage from Pescaterritory, and there will be a horse exhibition where visitors can meet the horses. We will explain how we work with the horses, what our method is. The mini horses will be right there in front. We have about 20 other horses that can be introduced by our staff and volunteers.

From 4 p.m. to closing, the event will move to the back portion of the ranch where we have four acres and a stage for live music. People can park within a distance from each other, and enjoy Joe Joe's hot dogs and listen to live music for the first time, in a safe environment, in their parked cars. The bands include Lisa Lynn and The Broken Hallelujahs, The Ghost Notes, and The Red Hot Chollo Peppers.


How do you plan to keep people socially distanced?

We're following all the procedures that have been recommended. We have masks at the gate if somebody doesn't have one. Visitors as well as staff will be required to wear masks. There will be washing stations throughout. Our purpose is to keep everybody safe.

What about horseback riding?

We've been able to do horseback riding during the pandemic because it's a one-on-one type of activity with enough distance. We actually have a waiting list right now, but yes, there will be information about horseback riding

What if people are interested in volunteering?

There will be information about how to volunteer, so if you want to be around horses and learn about horses, that's the best way, because you would go through a really great training program with our wonderful volunteer director, Cindy Currie, so that everybody knows how to stay safe

They learn about how to approach a horse, how to not approach a horse, what horses need, what they don't need, what's healthy, what's not healthy. It's easy to be around the horses, just being on the ranch can be pretty cathartic, because it's very peaceful. It's very well run. It's very clean.

What life lessons can caring for horses teach us?

When you see teenage girls interact with the horses and how they are able to learn from experts how to manage, read, and communicate with horses. They learn how to identify different personalities in horses as well. These are life lessons that our kids take with them. We have programs that address bullying and how horses handle bullying in the wild. It’s all about how to approach each other, how to communicate and how to have confidence in yourself and overcome fear.

For ticket info, visit

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