Home > News > Press Releases
For Immediate Release: July 12, 1998 Contact:

Hope Gruzlovic

Agriculture Secretary Art Brown, Jr., and representatives of the Garden State's equine community today dedicated the new permanent grandstand at the Horse Park of New Jersey at Stone Tavern, just outside of Allentown in Monmouth County.

"This is a wonderful day for New Jersey's equine enthusiasts," Brown said. "This new grandstand is an important step in the Horse Park's development as a first rate equine exhibition and competition facility." The new 60' by 170' grandstand is adjacent to the east show ring at the Horse Park and replaces the open-sided canvas tent which formerly sheltered spectators. The grandstand will seat nearly 300 spectators and provide an area for the vendors who attend equine events. The 147-acre Horse Park of New Jersey is the result of a unique public-private partnership. The land was purchased by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection with Green Acres Funds while the New Jersey Department of Agriculture continues to oversee the development of the Park. The state's equine industry and private-not-for-profit groups worked together to design the Park which is operated, under contract with NJDA, by the Horse Park of New Jersey at Stone Tavern, Inc., a not-for-profit educational organization. Park trustees and hundreds of volunteers have donated over 100,000 hours to beautification and fund-raising efforts since the Park opened in 1983. New Jersey offers a tremendous diversity of equestrian activity which extends well beyond the Park. The horse, the official state animal, has played a key role in New Jersey history and has assured itself a thriving future in the Garden State. New Jersey is home to 7,100 facilities, 60,000 horses representing more than 60 breeds, and 120,000 scenic acres of open space dedicated to the equine industry. In addition, there are three carriage driving associations; active breeding and showing of Arabians (3,300) and Quarter Horses (10,000), two of the most popular and versatile horse breeds in the country; numerous rental horseback riding stables throughout all 21 counties; 14 state and county parks allowing horseback riding; and the Cowtown Rodeo, which brings the thrills of the Old West rodeo to thousands of fans each year.

The New Jersey horse industry directly employs over 10,000 people in addition to the veterinarians, farriers, jockeys, trainers, grooms, tack shops, feed and bedding producers, farmers and thousands of others who work within its infrastructure. Equine owners and operations annually contribute over $600 million to the state's economy. Equine-related assets are valued at over $4.1 billion of which $725 million is the value of the horses alone.