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Thornbury Horse Park Becomes a Reality (Posted On: Friday, February 23, 2007)

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Thornbury Horse Park in the Town of Blue Mountains, near the resort destination of Collingwood, ON, will be the new home of the Collingwood Horse Shows.

Having celebrated its 20th anniversary in 2006, the Collingwood Horse Shows will be held in its new location this year thanks to the Town's recent final approval of the master plan of Thornbury Horse Park. The 250-acre equestrian community will be unique in that it will offer a state-of-the-art horse facility combined with residential condominiums as well as club amenities under one management and ownership umbrella.

"Ontario has a huge hunter/jumper community and while we have many nice facilities, our intention is to build a first-class competition facility with a residential component," explained Jay Hayes, President of Cedar Run Corp. "The club amenities will be an added bonus for those looking to enjoy a recreational lifestyle while also pursuing their equestrian goals."

Thornbury Horse Park will include 300 quality residences comprised of studio, one, two and three-bedroom condominiums surrounding the horse show grounds. Owners will have access to a Club House, spa, pool and tennis courts. The equestrian facility will feature three Grand Prix rings - one grass and two all-weather - four hunter rings, an indoor arena, 20 paddocks, and 300 permanent stalls plus temporary stabling for an additional 1,700 horses. In addition, there will be viewing terraces and VIP and media lounges. Parking will accommodate up to 5,000 vehicles.

"The unique thing about Thornbury Horse Park is the way that we are structuring the ownership," stated Hayes, a two-time Canadian Olympian.

Identifying the need to keep the entire project moving in the same direction and avoid conflicts that have strained other prominent equestrian facilities around the world, Hayes and partner Peter Lush have developed a win-win ownership plan.

"We are going to sell 25 units, and those owners will own the facility, the residential component, and the horse shows," explained Hayes. "I want to have 25 partners who are all proactive, and who can pull together for our mutual success in support of the Park. In total, we will have 300 residential owners who are members, and will have full access to the facilities. We will also offer another 200 non-residential memberships. Members can use the facilities year-round, and will also enjoy preferred stabling, discounts on show entry fees, and other benefits. We have already sold more than 50 memberships, which is extremely encouraging at this early stage. I knew there was a need for this type of facility, but I wasn't sure exactly what the reaction would be."

While Thornbury Horse Park will host a wide variety of multi-discipline equestrian competitions and clinics year-round, the Collingwood Horse Shows will be the flagship event, held in 2007 from August 8-12 and August 15-19.

"The best thing is that all three grand prix rings will be very special," continued Hayes. "One will be grass with a beautiful view of the Georgian Peak Bay and the mountains, with natural amphitheatre seating, while the other two rings will have all-weather footing. All three Grand Prix rings will be 'number one' rings. Even nicer is that the three hunter and dressage rings, featuring natural sand footing, will be nestled in an apple orchard, tucked away in their own little enclave among mature trees. Thornbury Horse Park will showcase equestrian competition in a beautiful natural setting."

While Hayes has designed much of the Thornbury Horse Park himself based on his twenty years experience running the Collingwood Horse Show, he has also consulted several highly respected show jumping course designers including Leopoldo Palacios of Venezuela, Guilherme Jorge of Brazil, and Canada's own David Ballard. Other experts involved include McCowan Excavating, Harry Merideth who will manage the footing, the engineering firm of Tathum and Associates, and Souhaila Sarkis, registered landscape architect. Preeminent Canadian designer John Bousfield of Toronto developed the overall master plan.

"The Town has been super and the mayor has been supportive, which is very rare especially in today's world when there are usually so many environmental concerns," praised Hayes. "We did everything by the book, including involving the Ministry of Transportation and conservation groups in our plans, and everything went smoothly. The knowledge and expertise of John Bousfield also helped us to accomplish in one year what would normally take three years to get final approval of the master plan."

For more information on memberships, event marketing, sponsorship and investment opportunities, please visit or contact Jay Hayes at tel: (905) 588-1430 or e-mail:


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