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Wolfe Ranch is one for the books

T-R PHOTO BY JANINE ERMAN
Dave Smith, the Wolfe Ranch of Quakerdale ranch manager, and the Clydesdale Matt warm up in the stables as Smith regales stories about the draft horse. Matt is 14 years old and was donated to the Ranch in August. He is a giant of a friend to any children that stop in to visit. “He is a favorite of the kids,” Smith said. “They love him and they play all around him and he won’t move.”

Who said books and horses don’t go together?

Well, no one at the Wolfe Ranch of Quakerdale anyway.

For the third time, the ranch is hosting Storytime at the Stables from 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday.

Kids can get a storytelling experience at the ranch, located at 2932 240th St.

The cost is $5 per child and ranch manager Dave Smith is happy to welcome all visitors.

T-R PHOTO BY JANINE ERMAN
The Wolfe Ranch of Quakerdale stables are home to nine ranch horses and in the summer will board up to six more residents. Horses Indie and Stormy are waiting to greet visitors attending one of the many camps and special events throughout the year.

Held every other Tuesday, the series of events began Jan. 21.

“The program will continue year round and kids will enjoy story time, arts and crafts and a visit to the stables to groom and pet the horses,” he said.

When the weather is too cold, Storytime will be held in the Lodge by the fire.

Other upcoming events happening on the ranch include Stronger than the Storm camp which is an event for the Marshalltown elementary schools.

Students will get to spend the day from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. in five activity stations.

The stations are:

• Building a survival backpack

• Making blankets

• Grooming horses

• Counselor sponsored mental health therapies

• Equine therapy.

Two Marshalltown elementary schools — Rogers Elementary and Anson — have already participated in the program and students at Franklin Elementary School will attend Monday.

Visits for other schools, such as Woodbury Elementary, Fisher Hoglan, St. Francis Catholic and Marshalltown Christian School, are scheduled in March and April.

The Hope for Healing organization was the main initiator of the program.

“I believe 32 kids are signed up for it. It’s open to anybody. They just have to sign up for it, but they’re really trying to target the kids that were affected by the tornado,” Smith said.

Counselors and therapists will participate and help students voice their concerns or fears brought up by experiences during the tornado.

There are more programs and events starting in May, beginning with a grooming 101 class. Wolfe Ranch partners with Quakerdale Family Services and can be reached at 641-752-6446.

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