Club News

News on the Trail

February 2022 Fechtel Workday

  • Florida Trail Blazers and volunteers from Kentucky and Tennessee came together this weekend to add Corrals at Fechtel Campground. Four new corrals were added. Thanks also to the club members of Osceola County Wagon Train and Trail  Ride Club who donated the funds to make this happen!
Karen, Chris and Jerry
Larry and Buzzard
Richard installing gates
Larry and Buzzard digging post holes
Valerie giving the guys a break diging holes
Valerie clearing some brush
Jerry and Valerie
Larry taking a well deserved break!
Kelly made us shrimp and grits for supper!
Thank you, Buzzard, for your help again this year!
Team setting one of the poles

September 10, 2021

Hello Florida Trail Blazer Member!
We hope this email mail finds you and your family well and in good health. It’s been a strange and bumpy ride these past months and we all look forward to clearer skies in the future.  Riding our horses has been a respite from the COVID cloud that hangs overhead. Riding a horse gives a chance to take in the sunshine and put a smile on your face; the smile that comes as soon as you swing a leg over and land in that place you love, the back of a horse!
Getting the club back on track is important;  we need our horsey time. So you will be happy to know that the board met a few weeks ago and came up with the 2021-2022 Camp and Ride schedule. This ride schedule can also be found on our Florida Trail Blazers’ Facebook page or here on our website.
If you are new to the club and are unfamiliar with our camp ride Saturday get together dinners here is how it works:
The Club provides the main course (meat dish) prepared by the camp host and all members bring a side dish or dessert. A donation of $10 per rig is welcomed; this helps us cover food cost and club projects.
• The November camp ride is dedicated to Thanksgiving. We all have things to be thankful for and this weekend is one to celebrate just that. Saturday evening menu will be based on Thanksgiving, so bring on the stuffing or your turkey day favorite!
• December’s camp ride will be all things Christmas with a Silly Santa Gift exchange. Bring a gift and get a gift. Gift amount should be $20 or under.  Merry Christmas y’all; it’s silly and fun!
• Please make sure you SAVE THE DATE for our annual Pig Roast – Poker Ride fundraiser February 10th-13th. Extra camping days can be added and further details about this event will be coming to you soon.
Tracy McCommon, our former Secretary, has moved north and we need a cowgirl or boy to fill her shoes. We wish Tracy all the best in her new home and thank her for all her time and effort that she put into supporting the club. We miss you, Tracy! Anyone interested in either joining the board or becoming secretary please let one of our board members or officers know.  You can find their contact info here.
If you have questions about any of our campouts please contact the host for that weekend. If you have  general questions a board member can help. You can also PM us on our Florida Trail Blazers Facebook page and one of the board members will respond.
That’s all for now. Stay safe and happy trails to you all!


January 2021

Florida Trailblazers board members, family and friends spent New Year’s Day dividing in half the front 5 paddocks at Fechtel .  We turned 5 paddocks into 10 and they are still a nice size!  This is another example of your dues and financial support at work!  Thank you to all our supporters and volunteers!


November 10, 2020

Good news!  The new pavillion at Fechtel now has lights, just in time for our Thanksgiving campout, November 13.  We will see you there!  Thank you to Valerie Tanner for her efforts on this project!

June 30, 2020

It is with a heavy heart and broken spirit that we have to let our members and followers know that former FL Trail Blazers President Rolando Coto passed away suddenly while riding his horse in the mountain in the Big Horn on Tuesday, June 30th. He and his wife Jennifer were living their dream of exploring the country on horseback. Jennifer says he would want all his friends and fellow riders to know how thankful he was for your love and friendship. Our prayers are with Jennifer at this sensitive time. We will miss you Roly. Rest in Peace.

May 13, 2020

The concrete down under the new pavilion!

koi hi

April 27, 2020

The new Pavilion is completed!  Now all we need are some cement and some grills!  We are getting ready for the riding season!


March 2020

Your club dollars at work!  A new covered pavilion began construction at Fechtel State Park.  We will have shade and a dry place to hang out!

July 2019

  • Beth Emmons and Chris Drooker got new horses….congratulations, ladies!
  • Tracy McCommon has a new trailer.  Hope you and your family enjoy your new “home away from home”!
  • Valerie and her herd moved to her new ranch in Fort White. Her ponies are enjoying the room to run.  They are not to sure about all that tall grass though.  Valerie says they don’t want to venture beyond the places they have cropped short.  They’ll explore soon I’m sure!



FLORIDA GREENWAYS AND TRAILS SYSTEM PLAN RELEASED  – The Florida Department of Environmental Protection’s Office of Greenways and Trails has released the Florida Greenways and Trails System 2019-2023 Plan. A vital part of the plan is to establish a stronger relationship with planners, land managers and other stakeholders at all levels, both public and private. They wish to share this plan with others in support of a common vision of creating a strong Florida greenways and trails system. The plan notes that Florida’s outdoor recreation and trails have long been an economic driver, generating $17.9 billion in wages and 485,000 direct jobs. The plan is available for download at



  • Florida Horse Park has the following events happening this Fall:
  • We have received an email from Judy Spires, on behalf of Larry Gunnell, and Carol Spelz.  You may or may not know, but this trio works tirelessly keeping the trails at Fechtel safe and mowed.  Hurricane Irma has caused a lot of damage to the park, so extra efforts are needed to return the park to its former condition.  Here is an excerpt of an email from Judy asking for help in this effort:
  • “I am writing this on behalf of Carol, Larry and myself.  We have riders inquiring about helping with cleanup at Fechtel, which is greatly appreciated.

    If you have ridden Fechtel since the hurricane  you know what a mess we have.  The north end is cleared and mowed unless more came down after the rain storm Monday night.  We are in process of clearing the main road south.  Lots of large trees are down preventing access to other trails.

    Many of the trails are so wet they can’t be cleared so we are waiting for those to dry up some before scheduling an official workday.  That will happen.  We need lots of help and means of getting volunteers to and from the trails.

    In the meantime, during the week, we are taking a few volunteers and working the dry trails.  Larry, Carol and/or myself are required to be there so we have to schedule according to the times we have available to work with those that can help. Those that are available to help before the organized group workday, can contact me by email, phone or text, 352-459-5129.  I will keep Larry and Carol apprised.

    We so appreciate everyone’s concern and willingness to help.  This will take time to get our beautiful trails rideable but working together, we can do it!





  • Board members met on July 16, 2017 to set the new ride calendar.
  • Welcome to four new board members:  Julie Cesary, Trudee Mason, Robin Bures, and Brett Bures
  • Club dues for 2017/2018 are $20 per individual and $35 for a family.  Sign up forms and releases will be US mailed to each individual on the roster, along with a copy of the ride calendar.
  • Robin Bures has a new horse and Tracy McCommon has a new trailer….congrats to you both!  Can’t wait to see them both in the new ride year!