ASPEN, COLO.–Dec. 17, 2013—Sopris Therapy Services, a Colorado-based non-profit serving children and adults with daily challenges since 1994, has been designated as one of the charities for the Dec. 19-20 Piaget World Snow Polo Championship at Wagner Park.
Pat Horwitz, executive director of Sopris Therapy Services, said the organization depends on community support to help empower children, adults and wounded veterans with disabilities to reach their full potential through equine assisted-therapies.
“When we started out we found that we could combine physical therapy and horses,” Horwitz said. “It has been done in other parts of the country. We studied and worked with other organizations and decided to start Sopris Therapy.
“I get tears in my eyes every day,” Horwitz said. “I can’t believe the progress that’s made with the connection between the horses and children. It’s about the movement of the horses creating a brain connection with the child or adult and stimulating the nerve endings. It helps with better movement with walking, balance and core strength. Equine movement is a treatment strategy and another way to get patients to move their body. People believe in what we do. We are very appreciative of the Ganzis for selecting us.”
Melissa and Marc Ganzi, owners of Aspen Valley Polo Club, sister club of their Wellington-based Grand Champions Polo Club, along with Nacho Figueras and Larry Boland, president of Piaget North America, are hosting the final stop on the World Polo Tour.
The much-anticipated snow polo event has attracted three of the biggest names in polo and two of only six players in the world with the perfect 10-goal rating.
The Dec. 20 championship will be a round-robin tournament format with three polo teams: Audi, Piaget and St. Regis Hotels & Resorts, where teams will compete for valuable World Polo Tour points in the final snow polo event of the year.
Ten-goaler Facundo Pieres, ranked second in the world, will captain the Audi Polo Team. Gonzalito Pieres, also a 10-goaler, will head the Piaget Polo Team and 6-goaler Nacho Figueras, will captain the St. Regis Hotels & Resorts Polo Team.
Figueras, who serves as a St. Regis Connoisseur, is one of the sport’s most popular and well-recognized players in the world.
On Wednesday, a press conference and cocktail party will be held in The St. Regis Aspen Resort hotel lobby from 6-7 p.m. where team jerseys will be distributed to the players.
On Thursday, Dec. 19, media day and St. Regis brunch at Wagner Park will be held while polo practice chukkers are played to enable players and horses to acclimate to the weather and playing surface.
Friday tournament action gets underway. At 11:40 a.m. Piaget will play St. Regis Hotels & Resorts Polo Team; 12:30 p.m. Audi will play the loser of the Piaget-St. Regis Hotels & Resorts Polo Team game and at 1:15 p.m. Audi will play the winner of the Piaget-St. Regis Hotels & Resorts Polo Team game.
The awards ceremony is 2:15 p.m. followed by the lavish VIP Tent After Party.
Polo fans can relax and watch world-class snow polo from the VIP Pavilion while enjoying mountain fare from the The St. Regis Aspen Resort, including the brand’s signature Afternoon Tea Service along with cocktails from Johnnie Walker Blue.
Tickets are available through Ticket Leap (www.ticketleap.com). A one-day pass for the VIP tent is $150.
The VIP Pavilion ticket includes full access to the heated tent, lunch courtesy of The St. Regis Aspen Resort and cocktails provided by Johnnie Walker’s mixologist.
General admission is free to the public and will be first-come, first-serve bleacher seating on the east side of the park.
ASPEN VALLEY POLO CLUB
CONTACT INFORMATION: Phone: 970-710-1663 and email: email@example.com.
ABOUT THE CLUB: The nation’s newest private polo club still in its’ developing stages features a complete facility offering stick-and-ball field, club house, wooden horse polo pit, exercise track, indoor school, arena, pony hire, livery, coaches, stable and turn to hire and grooms accommodations.