Trails4Transplants is a long-distance, multiple-week-long trail ride to raise awareness about organ, eye and tissue donation. The organization’s mission is to help alleviate major health issues by raising awareness for the immense need of donations and promote donor registration.

Secondly, it raises funds to promote awareness, support donor families and help those who have received the precious gift of life.

According to DonateLife.net, more than 124,000 men, women and children are awaiting organ transplants in the United States. Someone is added the list every 10 minutes, while 21 die each day waiting for a life-saving transplant. Trails4Transplants’ Legendary to Lakes will be its fifth leg of a six year, 2,000 mile round trip, all by horseback.

The group has traveled through several states spreading the word about organ donation to high school students, 4-H clubs, driver’s education classes and other civic groups. The ride has attracted riders from 11 different states – some as far as Louisiana. The goal is to raise $250,000 during the six-year trek. The group has grossed more than $125,000 in donations already.The Trails4Transplants’ Legendary to Lakes 2017 horse ride will be traveling through this area May 20 to June 3.

The ride will cover 15 towns, starting in Edgeley, N.D. and concluding in Bird Island covering 320 miles. Other towns along the route include LaMoure, Oakes, Forman, Lidgerwood and Fairmount in North Dakota; Wheaton, Graceville, Morris, Benson, Appleton, Monte-video, Granite Falls and Renville in Minnesota.

The organization has several activities planned along the route. The group will host the first ever DonateLife horse as its kickoff event May 20 in Edgeley at the Triple R Coteau Arena. The following 13 days, T4T will be educating and sharing personal stories to more than 800 students from various high schools, Lions clubs, women’s groups and 4-H clubs along the trail. The finale event will be held in Bird Island at the Renville County Fairgrounds June 3.

Bring the family to enjoy free horse rides, bounce houses, beer garden, food vendors and donor/recipient recognition program. More details on each town’s event can be found at www.trails4transplant.org.

Trails4Transplants welcomes all experienced horse riders. Riders may join or stop at any leg of the trail, so it is not mandatory to ride all 320 miles. Each night camp will be set up in the designated town. Bathroom facilities will be available. Support vehicles will be present to help move trucks/trailers to the next designated camping area. It costs $2/mile to ride.

For more information, contact Roger Hille (218) 201-0589 or Ashley Peterson at (701) 541-2902. Moere can also be found at trails4transplants.org.

Photo courtesy of Trails 4 Transplants Web site.