'Party in the Park' to raise money to keep Bridle Trails Park open

Bridle Trails Park Foundation will host its annual "Party in the Park" on Saturday with horses, fun runs and lots of pancakes.

The party is the foundation's biggest event of the summer and president Ken Hite expects hundreds of volunteers and at least 1,000 people from the community to come to Bridle Trails State Park.

"It gets pretty crowded," said Hite. "It's one of several events we put on to get people to the park, get people enthused and get donations."

The foundation pays half of the net operating costs to the state to keep the park open.

"Bridle Trails State Park was on the closure list," Hite said. "The state was going through budget woes like they are today and to save money, they were looking at closing the park."

The community formed the nonprofit Bridle Trails Park Foundation and agreed to fundraise about $40,000 on an annual basis. In turn, the 120-plus-year-old park will remain off the state parks closure list and the community is free to enjoy 28 miles of horse and pedestrian trails, horse show grounds with three arenas and a picnic area.

Party in the Park, which generates a "good chunk" of the park's revenue, will include a 10K run, a 5K run, and a 5K and 10K walk, said Hite. Hungry athletes or regular park goers are welcome to a $5 pancake and bacon breakfast with coffee or juice while The Black Pearls entertain.

"Let me tell you, it's a lot of bacon to cook," Hite laughs, who enjoys riding his two horses and hiking with is dogs at the park.

Because of the high volume of guests and need for horse trailer parking, the foundation has provided a shuttle service that will run from the Central Park Tennis Club to the park every 10 minutes from 7:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. The club is located at 5820 125th Lane NE, Kirkland.

To volunteer at Party in the Park, contact Runners can register at or in person at Everyday Athlete in Kirkland and can email for more information. To help the Bridle Trails Park Foundation with its park funding contact

For more information about the foundation or Party in the Park, visit


Schedule courtesy of the Bridle Trails Park Foundation

When:  Saturday, June 22;  8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Where:  Bridle Trails State Park Horse Show Grounds, Northeast 53rd and 116th Northeast in Kirkland


7:30 a.m. - Day-of-race registration and packet pickup begins.

Cost: $30.00 pre-registered - $35.00 day-of-race of race for adults;

$15 pre-registration and $20 day-of-race for kids 15 years and under.

8:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. - Breakfast: Pancakes, bacon, coffee or juice -

$5.00 a plate

9 a.m. - 10k begins

9:05 a.m. - 5k begins

9:06 a.m. - 5k/10k walk begins

9:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. - Pony rides (suggested $5 donation), cake walk, face painters, Donkey Dash

10 a.m. - 12:30pm - Free entertainment featuring jousting knights, equestrian drill teams


Raechel Dawson:

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