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Barbara Lombardo of Saratoga Springs, NY, is a journalism adjunct at University at Albany and retired executive editor of The Saratogian, The Record and the Community News. Follow her on Twitter @Barb_Lombardo.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Funny Cide, horse-drawn carriages and vacations

Horses are always on our mind in Saratoga Springs, for good reasons. And Tuesday, April 20, is the 10th birthday of Funny Cide, the surprise Kentucky Derby winner partly owned by local resident Jack Knowlton. Reporter Paul Post is working on a story about how Funny Cide is enjoying retirement.

I am just back from a vacation in Charleston, S.C., and Savannah, Ga., where horses were everywhere in the cities' historic districts -- pulling carriages with tourists.

A horse-drawn carriage sounds fun and maybe even romantic. But walking by the horses on vacation, I couldn't help but notice how tired and sad they seemed. The question of whether an impending air show would spook the horses in Charleston led to a dispute between city officials and carriage owners. The concern seemed not so much about the well-being of the horses, but about the safety of people around them.

Coincidentally, Sunday's New York Times ran a piece about whether horses that draw carriages receive adequate time off to roll in the grass.

Well, I have 561 unread e-mails to check, stacks of newspapers and paperwork to catch up on, and a staff to bug.


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