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Dear AHA Beach Riders;

We are looking forward to kicking things off and to making this year’s 37th Annual AHA Beach Ride the best ever. We are so appreciative to the City of Myrtle Beach and Horry County for hosting our event for the 37th year. Each year, we have to go through multiple council meetings to obtain approval to have horses on the beach for this special event. It is not a given that we will always be allowed to ride, so we appreciate all that you do to keep this amazing event going.

If you were at last year’s event, you may have noticed quite a few open campsites. From January until early October, we were turning hundreds of riders who were interested in attending the Beach Ride for the first time away, because all of our sites were reserved. The AHA estimates we lost close to $30,000 in critical, life-saving funds because we were not able to fill these sites at the last minute.

As you know, it takes many months to plan and prepare your horses for the AHA Beach Ride and to be able to raise the money needed to attend. When sites are canceled within a few weeks of the event, it is extremely difficult to refill with new riders. We are asking you to PLEASE only reserve and pay for sites you will be using. For these reasons, we are implementing a couple new policies for the 2018 event.

  • ALL riders attending must register at www.ahabeachride.org and pay a $50 non-refundable deposit by June 15th or your campsite through Lakewood will be canceled. This includes every rider who will be camping on the site, not just the person making the reservation.
  • There will still be a fundraising minimum each rider will have to meet to attend. The $50 deposit will be subtracted from this amount. As in year’s past, we will offer a discounted early bird rate if you meet or pay this minimum by June 15th. Visit www.ahabeachride.org to obtain a break down in early bird rates.
  • If you cancel more than 2 sites for the 2018 AHA Beach Ride after June, you will not be able to pre-register on a blue slip for the 2019 AHA Beach Ride.
  • Riders with horses are given priority when booking campsites. We certainly want your family and friends who do not ride to join us but cannot hold full sites for them if they do not plan to bring horses. They are more than welcome to camp on your site with you. These sites could be filled with riders wanting to participate. If any sites are available in October, we will open them to non-riders.

We appreciate your ongoing support and understanding. The Beach Ride has grown to be such a unique and special event in the equine world, we want to make sure everyone who wants to attend and is passionate about supporting such an important cause, has the ability too. We look forward to seeing you on the beach on Oct. 31st as we kick off the 37th Annual American Heart Association Beach Ride!

All Our Best,

Sara Nelson (AHA) and Mary Kate Allen (Lakewood Camping Resort)