Elephant Rides Coming to Fair, Despite Outcry

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Not even a vote.

Despite a well-presented effort by animal advocates, the contract the Board Of Directors had agreed upon to bring elephant rides to this years Nevada County Fair in August will stay in effect.

“The board heard testimony both for and against the current contract,” said Board President Tom Browning.  “They felt it wasn’t necessary to comment, so we moved on.”

“I’m very disappointed,” said Shelley Frost who spoke out against the elephant rides.  “I’m shocked.  I’m sad that the contract wasn’t even discussed.”

Frost was one of many to speak out against Have Trunk, Will Travel, the company providing the elephant rides.

Frost, and others at Ponderosa Hall on Thursday, believe trainers from Have Trunk, Will Travel abuse the elephants, providing an on-line video showing the animals being beaten with a stick.

“We do not want those abused animals to come to our County, to the Fair putting small children on their backs.  It’s a tragedy waiting to happen,” Frost said.

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  • lacofortwenty

    Frost is 100% correct, and if the elephants are being abused, the people doing so should be arrested and the company shut down forever.

  • stephanie adams

    these animals need to be in TN @ the elephant sanctuary. NOT giving bratty kids and adults rides. leave them alone. they r either exploited or poached for ivory.

  • freespeechfan

    Who is responsible for this contract ever being created? Who had the stupid idea to bring this sleazy outfit here? Who's making money off the deal? Time for some digging. And time for citizens to boycott the fair and to spread the word. We speak with our dollars, folks.

  • ericmills

    The Fair Board will likely be singing a different tune when an elephant with six kids aboard runs amok. Could be caused by an earthquake, a car backfiring, or a firecracker. How exactly does one stop a frightened, rampaging five-ton pachyderm, pray? Here's hoping the Fair's liability insurance is payed up. The Half Moon Bay Pumpkin Festival banned elephant rides 10 years ago due to public safety and animal welfare concerns.

    Time for a lawsuit, perhaps, to protect public safety AND animal welfare? Meanwhile, I would encourage an on-going series of Letters to the Editor of local newspapers.

    AND ANOTHER THOUGHT: Does anyone have an estimate of how much money that HAVE TRUNK, WILL TRAVEL stands to make from this? Might the animal welfare community consider coming up with an equal amount to help pay for the animals' care, in exchange for cancelling the rides at the Nevada County Fair? Keeping in mind that the round-trip from Perris, CA to Grass Valley is 1,000 miles–stressful AND dangerous for the elephants. And an Endangered Species, yet. Is THIS what we're saving them for?

    I'd appreciate any thoughts on these questions.

    Eric Mills, coordinator
    email – afa@mcn.org

    P.S. – And see the editorial in today's GRASS VALLEY UNION (on Google).