Up & Coming Weekly

December 11, 2018

Up and Coming Weekly is a weekly publication in Fayetteville, NC and Fort Bragg, NC area offering local news, views, arts, entertainment and community event and business information.

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Page 13 of 32

WWW.UPANDCOMINGWEEKLY.COM DECEMBER 12-18, 2018 UCW 13 ere is an interesting backstory to both the carriage and the horses featured in the annual Cool Spring Downtown District's Carriage Rides with Santa. is year, the festive rides started this past weekend and run through Dec. 22 in downtown Fayetteville. Jim Bob and Jolene are dappled Percheron draft horses. When they are not on loan to Santa for the carriage rides, they live free-range with Gary and Tina Sessoms in a pasture on the Sessoms' farm. Tina has been a horsewoman her whole life. She originally rode quarter-horses until a condition af- fecting her balance forced her to sell her horses. It wasn't long before she realized that working with horses had to be part of her therapy. Because she could no longer ride, Tina and her husband, Gary, decided to work with draft horses. e Sessoms knew a gentleman who owned draft horses, so they arranged to work in his stable in exchange for lessons to learn how to hitch and drive the horses. When the Sessoms were ready to estab- lish a herd of their own, they decided on Percherons because these horses have a reputation among the draft horse breeds as eager pullers. e Sessoms traveled to Amish country in Ohio and began purchasing fully trained draft horses be- ing retired from field work. e Amish replace their farm horses when they are around 8 years old. Since eight years is still relatively young in horse years, the Sessoms knew these Percherons would still enjoy an active life. e Sessoms' carriages also come from Ohio Amish country where carriages and wagons are still the approved mode of transportation. Gary credits a conversation with Hank Parfitt as the beginning of their association with the carriage rides in downtown Fayetteville. Jim Bob and Jolene and the carriage they pull are a perfect complement to the quaint downtown district, where the short carriage rides take place. What better way to slow down during this holiday season and enjoy the lovely decorations along Hay Street than from the vantage point and leisurely pace of a horse drawn-carriage? Carriage Rides with Santa take place on recurring Saturdays and Sundays from 1-8 p.m. ey began Dec. 8 and run, weekends only, through Dec. 22. Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for children and can be pur- chased by phone by calling 910-223-1089 or in person at the office of the Cool Spring Downtown District, which is located at 222 Hay St. Reservations are recommended. Jim Bob, Jolene and Santa will be waiting to greet everyone out in front of the CSDD office, where the carriage rides begin and end. Celebrate the season with Carriage Rides with Santa by PRUDENCE MAINOR EVENTS Carriage rides with Santa run weekends only through Dec. 22. Photo credit: visitfayettevillenc.com PRUDENCE MAINOR, Con- tributing Writer. COMMENTS? Editor@upandcomingweekly. com 910-484-6200. M A G A Z I N E b y , f o r & a b o u t Fayeeville Women

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