Fighting cancer one ride at a time

A competitor races around a barrel Saturday at Rockin’ N Stables in Athens Township.

ATHENS TOWNSHIP — Every year, Rockin’ N Stables looks to help a local community member battling cancer through its annual Barrels and Bikinis fundraiser.

This year, stable owners Monte and Nancy Nicholas have upped the ante, and dedicated Saturday’s edition of Barrels and Bikinis to seven-year-old Ariah Cooke and eight-year-old Seeley Carlin, who are both battling cancer.

In fact, Nancy noted that a third individual was added to the benefit — one of the stable’s boarder’s mothers — who was recently diagnosed with stage four breast cancer.

“Cancer doesn’t discriminate,” Nancy said. “It doesn’t matter who you are.”

Tons of games, activities and, of course, horses made sure fun was available in abundance during the event despite the dreary, rainy day. And when competitors were not running in barrel races, the dash-for-cash, keyhole and poles, spectators could also participate in the silent auction, face-painting, 50-50 raffles, pony rides and grab a bite to eat. Kids could even practice roping in a designated area.

“It’s so amazing to be able to have this every year to help people,” Nancy said. “It means so much to us to be able to put this on. One of the people who benefited from this event before, Charity Field, comes back every year helps us out so much.

“There’s just no feeling like it,” she continued. “We constantly look to knock it out the park every year, and even today we’ve had a great turnout despite the weather. It’s just amazing.”

Johnny Williams can be reached at (570) 888-9643 ext. 232 or Follow Johnny Williams on Twitter @johnnywMT

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