Birdstone © Laura Battles

Letter From Michael.... Some people they say are "glass half full" or "glass half empty" people. I'm, for better or worse, a "glass overflowing" person. Even in these dreadful times, at Old Friends joy explodes from every retiree to every autumn leaf. While I'm a huge supporter of horses going on to second careers through the Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance's myriad of professional organizations, it sometimes creates the mistaken impression that complete retirement is a second-rate alternative. Nothing could be further from the truth. The idea that they need to be ridden, or otherwise serving humans, to fulfill themselves--or us--is, at best, inaccurate. They need us to feed them, provide health care and, basically, be their butlers. When they retire to Old Friends, they finally get to train us. The shoe is, literally, on the other hoof.

I was also reminded of their inherent value while visiting our new location, Old Friends at Ashton Grove, a beautiful assisted-living complex for both our Thoroughbreds and their human friends. One human resident told me that his wife had died 11 months ago. Since then, he had not had one minute of joy. But, now, coming to the paddock fence feeding carrots to Porfido and Daytona, he had his life restored. And he was crying. 

Personally, I think we've only touched the top of the iceberg when it comes to how much these horses give us. They are so much more than ornaments in a pasture.

We're doing some limited tours this fall--see below. We have COVID restrictions in place for everyone's safety, so we hope you can visit. We have several new horses, including Belmont Stakes and Travers winner Birdstone. We look forward to seeing you, and, as always, we can't thank you enough for your continued support.


Our Special Memorabilia Auction continues for the next three weeks with the most coveted items in the collection: Rare halters, saddlecloths, racing plates, and more. See our eBay story beginning Sunday, Oct.18, at 8pm (EST) and follow link to the Special Memorabilia Sale.
Not a collector? Check out our gift shop online while you're there.
The Breeders' Cup World Championships are November 7-8 at Keeneland Racecourse. There is still time to reserve your Maker's Mark/Breeders' Cup Charity for Champions 2020 commemorative bottle, this one honoring Keeneland's Ted Bassett. 100% of the proceeds benefit designated charities, including Old Friends!
Support the Old Friends herd with a special T-shirt for Fall 2020, featuring 1996 Breeders' Cup Classic winner Alphabet Soup. 100% Gildan cotton, this comfy tee is available in unisex sizes YXS - XXXL. All proceeds benefit the horses of Old Friends. Available for a limited time only!
INTERESTED IN TOURING OLD FRIENDS? Guided walking tours, approximately 90 minutes, are offered Thursday - Sunday at 10 am and 1 pm daily through November. Michael Blowen Founder's Tours are also available at noon Thursday. Friday, and Sunday. Reservations required. No walk ins. Please visit our website for more info or call us at (502) 863-1775 to book.

 For special Breeders' Cup Week tour schedule CLICK HERE
Old Friends is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization that cares for over 200 retired racehorses. It's Dream Chase Farm, located in Georgetown, KY, is open to tourists daily by appointment. Old Friends also has a satellite facility: Old Friends at Cabin Creek: The Bobby Frankel Division in Greenfield Center, N.Y. For more information on tours or to make a donation, contact the main farm at (502) 863-1775 or see their website at www.oldfriendsequine.org.

Old Friends
1841 Paynes Depot Rd
Georgetown, KY 40324