Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Hemsley Trust Fund Sued by Animal Welfare Orgs.



HSUS,ASPCA, and Maddie's Fund Charge That Helmsley Trustees Are
Misdirecting Funds Despite Clear Direction from Late Heiress to Help Dogs

NEW YORK (Aug. 11, 2009) -- Three of the country's most prominent
animal welfare organizations -- in what they are terming the most
significant financial litigation in animal welfare history -- have filed
suit in New York's Surrogate Court to intervene in the matter of Leona
Helmsley's $5 billion estate.

The groups are seeking to force the Helmsley Trustees to follow Mrs.
Helmsley's expressed intent to help dogs. According to the groups, less
than $100,000 of the initial $136 million Helmsley grants have gone to dog

"Mrs. Helmsley's Trust Agreement was clear: Help dogs. And the
Trustees have not done this, and instead pursued their own agendas with
Mrs. Helmsley's money," said Wayne Pacelle, president and CEO of The
Humane Society of the United States. "Every person with a will or estate,
and every charity that relies on bequest income, should be profoundly
concerned about this misdirection of funds."

The three organizations believe that State Attorneys General have a
responsibility to protect the wishes of any heir or heiress, and also to
protect the entire charitable sector from the whims of trustees who wish
to ignore detailed and unambiguous estate planning instructions. In this
case, New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo failed in his charge to
protect these interests.

"Literally hundreds of millions of dollars that have been willed by people
nationally, who cared about dogs, have not gone to provide for dogs as was
intended," said Rich Avanzino, president of Maddie's Fund. "The ignoring
of donor intent in this country has become an unspoken national shame.

With $5 billion at stake this is a game changer. We want to work with the
Helmsley trustees to arrive at a figure that is consistent with Mrs.
Helmsley's intentions and would change injustices in dog care and welfare

For instance, even a small fraction of this money makes it possible to
virtually empty all animal shelters in America of dogs without homes."

"There has been a sea change in recent years in how we treat animals and
the Helmsley trustees don't understand that change," said Ed
Sayres, president and CEO of the ASPCA. "Mrs. Helmsley understood the
importance of animal welfare and was determined to help. She had a vision
for her worldly estate to make our society a better place for dogs and
animals, and consequently, people. We want that noble cause to go forward.
Dogs give us so much in our lives, and the least we can do is make sure
they are not harmed, exploited, or neglected, and the Helmsley estate
allows us to do so. It is not an overstatement to say that the fate of
dogs in this country could very well rest on the
decision of this lawsuit."

The trustees went to court last fall to invalidate Mrs. Helmsley's express
wishes, asking the Court to declare that they "are not bound by the
expression of Decedent's wishes...."

The Trustees disregarded Mrs. Helmsley's wishes and obtained court
sanction for doing so. The process deprived the parties most affected by
their decision -- dog welfare charities -- of any fair opportunity to have
a say on the issue. Neither the Trustees nor the Attorney
General contacted any of these three nonprofit organizations, which are
widely recognized as the leading advocates for dog welfare in the country
if not the world -- or any other organization that might speak up on
behalf of the charitable community that Mrs. Helmsley had a
right to expect would receive "special emphasis" in the Trustees'

After a judicial ruling without hearing from the only charitable
category of recipients specifically listed in Mrs. Helmsley's mission
statement, the trustees distributed the initial round of grants from Mrs.
Helmsley's trust, blatantly disregarding Mrs. Helmsley's express wishes.
The trustees allocated less than .1 percent to dog welfare charities.

"These three leading organizations tried to reach an amicable solution
with the trustees; unfortunately, the trustees were unwilling to
discuss this with us. Now these organizations are forced to resort to
litigation to correct this abuse," Pacelle said.

They have filed a motion to intervene and vacate the initial order.

Posted by:

Click on title above to go to a petition we have made for the dogs;

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Vasella calls animal-rights activist attacks 'terrorism'

August 10, 2009 — 10:48am ET | By Tracy Staton

Novartis chief Daniel Vasella (photo) says "terrorist" attacks from animal-rights activists have changed his life "markedly." And with the extremist groups threatening to continue their assaults if the company doesn't stop doing business with U.K.-based Huntingdon Life Sciences, those changes could certainly continue.

Vasella says the attacks--including a fire at his holiday home in the Tyrol, and theft and vandalism at his parents' graves--amount to terrorism. "For me, it is terrorism to propogate fear, to put targeted people under pressure with all possible and in particular illegal methods," he told a Swiss newspaper over the weekend.

Ironically, Novartis says it hasn't done business with Huntington for some time. Vasella said in an interview with SonntagsBlick that he understands the activists' sympathy for animals, but that animal testing is necessary for some aspects of drug development. "The population fully supports medical-biological research with the goal of making progress for patients," he said. "That must be respected."

Meanwhile, law enforcement has no new leads in the case, SwissInfo reports. And Vasella says the police haven't taken the attacks and threats seriously enough until now. Novartis spokesman Eric Althof told the AFP news service that the attacks have been escalating "since the end of last year."

- see the SwissInfo story
- read the news from AFP
- get the coverage in Swisster

Related Articles:
Militants target drug execs in wide range of attacks
'Militant' group claims Novartis attack
Extremists accused in attacks on Novartis chief
Activists torch Novartis CEO's home, steal mother's ashes

Click on title above to go to article with working links;

Monday, August 10, 2009

Tortoise Protection Group UK

Welcome to the Tortoise Protection Group Website
The Tortoise Protection Group is a non-profit organisation founded in 2007.

Our site is dedicated to helping ensure the survival of tortoises in the wild by campaigning for a ban on the importation of tortoises for the commercial pet trade, and to promote high standards of husbandry to tortoise keepers in the UK.

With your help we can make a difference
Sign our online petition here

Watch our graphic slide show - not for the faint hearted. (Click on title above to go to website)

See commercial trading of wild caught and captive bred tortoises at the Hamm Terraristica Reptile Fair - A Far Cry From Nature:

We are a group of volunteers striving to campaign against the importation of tortoises into the UK for the commercial pet trade. Please help and be assured that any donation gift, no matter how small, will be well spent working towards making a lasting difference for tortoises. We rely on your generosity to help our cause.

If you wish to donate by using PayPal please click on the Donate button on the right hand side of this page, or alternatively you can send your donation by cheque made payable to the Tortoise Protection Group and send it to our contact address:

The Tortoise Protection Group
PO Box 1484, Oxford, OX3 3BQ

Many thanks for your suppport.


Latest News


The Tortoise Garden in Cornwall has again been targeted by spineless, greedy, thieves. The sanctuary has been offering homes to unwanted tortoises for 11 years and had 7 tortoises stolen in June of this year. 5 futher tortoises were stolen on Sunday; 2 seven year old Indian Stars, 2 two year old Hermanns and a mature Spur-Thighed Tortoise. Last Night, further tortoises were stolen:-

"There is worse news, they came back in the night and stole my big giant and several pens of toddlers, leopards and god knows who else."

If you have any information that may lead to the recovery of the stolen tortoises, please contact John Hayward - Coordinator National Theft Register - who will also handle the issuing of rewards due for the recovery of the animals and the conviction of the dispicable people involved in the theft.

John Hayward

National Theft Register

Tel 01869 325699 / 07802 404929


10th August 2009


TPG Online Petition
We would like to thank everyone who has taken the time to sign our online petition and we do hope to be in a position to present both the online and the paper petitions in the near future.

We currently have over 15000 signatures in total but we would appreciate more. If members would kindly consider either signing our online petition, which fortunately we have been able to continue, by clicking here or continuing to collect signatures from work colleagues, friends etc on our paper petition, which can be downloaded here, we should be grateful:-

In the meantime we are waiting to hear back from an MP who is working on our behalf with regards to obtaining answers from Animal Health/DEFRA regarding important issues on importation raised by us.

April 2009


Veterinary Adviser
The TPG are pleased to announce the appointment of Kevin Eatwell Veterinary Adviser to the Tortoise Protection Group.

29 March 2009


2008 TPG Annual Review (A Year of Good Progress)
To read a brief summary of the work undertaken by the TPG over the last 12 months click here


Information Required
Would anyone who has purchased a tortoise over the internet please contact us giving details of the transaction, in particular how the tortoise was delivered, packaged etc.

We are also seeking information on any sick tortoises purchased.

Herpes Virus

Tesco Turtle Abuse in China


Click here to view Readers Letters
Latest Item 12 August 2008 - Weed Poem by Sharon B


On the night of July 20th our private collection of 14 tortoises were stolen from our back garden…as they slept. We are so desperately worried about their health and well being after such a long time. Now their hibernation time is getting nearer and it is vital their well-being is monitored at this crucial time.

Please look carefully at the photos below of our 6 Hermann and Spur-thigh adult tortoises, and babies,who are missed terribly and adored by us all.

is offered ….substantial amount…..for ANY information leading to the safe return of the six adult tortoises and their 8 hatchlings, all 3 year olds.

Did you know that these pets are loved, as part of our family?
Did you know they should not be sold unless with DEFRA certificates?

Have you seen a new tortoise in your neighbour’s or a nearby garden, shed or greenhouse?

Have you, or someone you know, been offered a baby or adult tortoise for sale, other than from a pet shop or reputable dealer?

If you can answer “Yes,” to either of those questions…….. PLEASE! PLEASE! Let us know…

In any 1 of the following ways….anonymously if preferred….

Phone Pauline or David Bromly on 02392 381451
E-mail to
Phone Portsmouth Police 0845 045 4545 or Crimestoppers on..0800 555 111
Phone John Hayward, National Stolen Exotic Pets Register on….07802 404929
Two adults have been returned, thanks to someone in Winchester seeing our flyer!!

Please keep looking and help us get the rest home, where they belong!!!!!

Click on title above to visit website;

RSPCA ropes in rodeo over wild horse race / AU

By Kate Dennehy
August 9, 2009

Mount Isa Rodeo (AU) organisers last week axed an event after the RSPCA threatened to prosecute them for cruelty.

RSPCA Queensland senior inspector Tracey Jackson said the wild horse racing event was "traumatic" for the animals and, had it gone ahead, the organisers would have been prosecuted under the Animal Care and Protection Act 2001.

Ms Jackson said the event involved "terrified" unbroken horses being roped, saddled and mounted and raced around the arena.

"In the past, horse's ears were bitten and lugged and horses are pulled over on their backs," she said.

"The entire entertainment value of the event relies upon the horses being distressed, in fear and terrorised and constitutes an offence under the act.

"Community standards have changed since the inception of this event and it is clearly no longer acceptable to put these animals through this kind of trauma just for entertainment."

Animal activists welcomed the decision.

Jeanie Walker, who runs the anti-rodeo website, said her group had been trying to have the "horrendously cruel event" banned for years. She sent a letter and wild horse racing footage to Premier Anna Bligh last year.

Animals Liberation Queensland's Annette Guice said the event was about "terrorising horses for public spectacle" and hoped it would be banned from all rodeos.

Ms Guice and Ms Walker also called for the calf-roping event to be banned, but it is still included at the rodeo.

Calf roping of young calves is banned in Victoria and South Australia.

Rodeo manager Patricia Esdaile said the wild horse racing had been dropped because of the RSPCA's concerns and another reason on which she would not comment.

Ms Esdaile said the calf roping had not been dropped because "it's not illegal".

Australian Professional Rodeo Association general manager Steve Hilton said he was disappointed the wild horse racing was dropped.

"It's not cruel," he said. "The horses aren't terrified, they're just trying to get away because they're not broken in."

The rodeo started on Friday and finishes today.

Source: The Sun-Herald

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Bob Barker Sicks PETA on Cruel NC Bear Zoo

I was there, I decided not to go see the bears, I inquired into their habitat, the lady didn't have anything good to say about their existance, it made me sick in my heart, here I was in a beautiful place, a place of my ancestors, then there were those poor bears.

Click on title above to hear bob live on 08/04/lkl-web-exclusive-bob-barker-im-not-an-expert-on-bears-im-an-expert-on-giving-away-refrigerators/

August 4, 2009

LKL WEB EXCLUSIVE: Bob Barker — “I’m Not an Expert on Bears, I’m an Expert on Giving Away Refrigerators”

Posted: 10:32 AM ET

Editor’s Note: LKL has reached out to “Cherokee Bear Zoo” for a response to this commentary. So far, our calls have not been returned.

Cherokee’s Unbearable Bear Pits

By Bob Barker

Even though my life has been full of incredible experiences and I’ve learned that there’s always more on the horizon, I never imagined I’d be writing a blog post for CNN at the age of 85. But when I was asked to write about my work for animals and my recent campaign to free some bears who are living in appalling conditions in Cherokee, North Carolina, I knew it was time to ask Debbie Leahy of PETA to help me with my computer skills.

Knowing about my love for animals, a few months ago my good friend Rep. Bill Young of Florida called me about an unfortunate experience that his family recently had involving caged bears. His wife, Beverly, had taken their children and grandchildren to Cherokee to educate them about life on a reservation. Being part Native American myself and having grown up on the Rosebud Indian Reservation in South Dakota , I appreciated their interest in Indian culture.

Beverly saw a sign that said, “Come Feed the Bears,” so they stopped at a roadside zoo. She described what she saw as “sickening.” There were six to seven bears in concrete cubicles. Their fur was hanging off, they were begging for food, and an employee was tossing one bear cub around by the scruff of his neck. Beverly said she had an uncomfortable confrontation with the person who was mishandling the cub, and was asked to leave. I remember her saying, “The prisoners at Guantanamo Bay are treated better than these bears, who have done nothing.”

I contacted my friends at PETA, and they sent a staff member and a bear expert to investigate. They reported that the situation was much worse than what the Young family had witnessed. There are actually three roadside zoos in Cherokee—Cherokee Bear Zoo, Chief Saunooke Bear Park and Santa’s Land. They house close to 30 bears in unimaginably awful conditions. The bears are confined to desolate concrete pits or cramped cages where they often pace back and forth, walk in endless circles, get into fights with each other, cry and whimper and beg tourists to throw food at them. They have no dirt to dig in or trees to climb—just the same four walls every single day of their lives.

Accompanied by representatives from PETA and the Performing Animal Welfare Society (PAWS) sanctuary in California, I went to Cherokee to appeal to Michell Hicks, principal chief of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, to intervene in behalf of these beautiful animals. Before the meeting, I planned to visit these zoos to see the conditions for myself. I guess the owners of the two facilities where bears live in pits were too ashamed to let me see what was going on there because they refused to let me in.

I told Chief Hicks that I’m not an expert on bears. I’m an expert on giving away refrigerators. But I can tell you that these bears are not properly housed or fed. Cherokee has a rich cultural history and much to be proud of. The cruel bear displays are a glaring blemish on the area, and I hope that the members of the Tribal Council for the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians will open their hearts and do the right thing by shutting them down.

The good people of Cherokee welcomed me warmly, and many told me they agreed that the bears are kept in deplorable conditions. Bears are very intelligent, active and curious animals. They need room to roam, natural surroundings to investigate and opportunities to forage, climb and dig dens.

Earlier in my career, I hosted a show called Truth or Consequences. I closed the show by saying, “… hoping all your consequences are happy ones!” I hope with all my heart that Chief Hicks and the tribal council will make the consequences for the Cherokee bears happy ones. Until then, my heart and my conscience won’t allow me to do anything but ask people to stay away from Cherokee and voice their support for allowing the bears to retire to a sanctuary.

To learn more about how to help these bears, please visit

Filed under: Bob Barker • LKL Web Exclusive

Friday, August 7, 2009

Whichita's Mini-Horse Show a Big Hit

Posted on Fri, Aug. 07, 2009
Wichita's miniature horse show attracts people from Minnesota to Texas

The Wichita Eagle

A miniature horse gets ready to compete at the AMHA Central Regional Championships at the Kansas Coliseum Thursday. Winners advance to compete at the AMHA World Show in Fort Worth.

(Click on title above for original article with photos & video)

Trainers get ready to take their miniature horses into the show ring to compete in the AMHA Central Regional Championships at the kansas Coliseum Thursday. The Show will run through Sunday.

Miniature horse trainer Carlos Andrade works with "Sugar and Spice" in the 28'' and under senior gelding division at the AMHA Central Regional Horse Show at the Kansas Coliseum Thursday. The show will run through Sunday. Admission is free.

Judge Steve Lampson puts the red ribbon on "Blackhawk," after being named the Central Regional reserve grand champion in the senior gelding class at the AMHA Central Region show for miniature horses at the kansas Coliseum Thursday. The show will run through Sunday and admission is free.

Larry and Sue Elniff have been training and showing miniature horses for 29 years because, they say, they love the fellowship and the friendship.

"We are members of our local club, and we just love getting together with our friends, even if we don't involve the horses," Sue Elniff said.

The Elniffs and other trainers are in Wichita this weekend for the American Miniature Horse Association's central regional show, which features more than 200 miniature horses. Winners from this competition qualify for the association's world show in Fort Worth in the fall.

"We have people coming here from all over the Midwest," said Laura Mullen, show manager for the event. "We have some from Minnesota, all the way down to Texas, so it's one of our bigger shows."

The regional show started Thursday and runs through Sunday. Competition each day begins at 8 a.m.

The competition includes a variety of events, with everything from obstacle courses to cart-driving. In order to qualify as a miniature horse, the animal must be no taller than 34 inches at the bottom of its mane.

The Elniffs got started with miniature horses when they bought two of them in 1990.

"After we bought them as pets, we went to a couple shows just to watch," Larry Elniff said. "We thought to ourselves, 'Hey, our horses could do that.' "

They traveled to Wichita from their 40-acre farm in Ozawkie, where they keep their animals and train them.

Known for their calm demeanor, trainability and, of course, their smaller size, miniature horses make good pets, but are also great for competitions like these.

"These animals are great for children," Sue Elniff said. "They are nice animals and are easier to handle because of their size."

The Elniffs' grandson, 14-year-old Garret Rathbun, shows their horses and has already qualified for the world show in Fort Worth.

"We think this competition really helps kids to build character and strong friendships," Larry Elniff said. "To do well at these competitions, you've got to put in a lot of hard work and practice. At the same time, though, they're having fun doing it."

Rathbun echoed his grandfather's words.

"It's great to come to these shows and see all your friends and have a good time," he said. "This is my sixth year competing, and we usually do about six shows a year."

The Elniffs have no plans to stop training and showing miniature horses.

"It's possible that when we both are retired, we will want to do some traveling," Larry Elniff said. "But until then, we will continue to show these horses. We love it, and our grandson is hooked."

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

RI to Ban Greyhound Racing!


Dear Friends,

Today I bring you great news!! After hearing from greyhound advocates
around the world, the Rhode Island legislature has announced it will not hold a
special summer session in order to prevent Twin River from shutting down
live racing.
his means that dog racing will end on August 8!

When lawmakers report back in September, we will introduce legislation to
end dog racing as a matter of law. Please thank Representative Patricia
_rep-serpa@rilin. state..ri. us_
( and Senator Lou Raptakis
_sen-raptakis@ rilin..state. ri.us_
( for sponsoring this bill, which
will end dog
racing for good in New England. Click here to read an Associated Press
about our rally at the state capitol- _http://www.forbes. com/feeds/
ap/2009/07/ 16/ap6662278. html_

**To hear the latest update on the campaign to end dog racing please tune
into Sins of Omission Radio on Monday, August 3 at 9 p.m. (Eastern time).
will discuss the "Unseen Costs of Greyhound Racing" with host, Paula
Log into _www.blogtalkradio. com/NQR_ (
and call 347-677-0792 with your questions and comments.**

Once Twin River ends dog racing, there will be just eight states remaining
where dog racing is legal and operational. We are committed to ending dog
racing in Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Iowa, Texas, West Virginia
and Wisconsin.

Please help us reach this goal by becoming a member of the
Gracie Club or by making a contribution today.
Together, we can end dog racing nationwide!
For the greyhounds,

Christine A. Dorchak, Esq.

Dennis Tabella of Defenders of Animals, Rep. Pat Serpa & Rep. Rod Driver
with Christine Dorchak, Carey Theil & Zoe at the Rhode Island rally.


"All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it
violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident."

Arthur Schopenhauer (1788-1860)

"The fate of animals is of greater importance to me
than the fear of appearing ridiculous;
it is indissolubly connected with the fate of men."

- Emile Zola (1840-1902)

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

For Immediate Release
July 29, 2009

New Prisoners: Utah Activists BJ Viehl and Alex Hall Locked Up Again!
Meanwhile Political Prisoner Jordan Halliday Remains Caged for Refusal to Co-operate with Grand Jury

BJ Viehl and Alex Hall were put back into custody for alleged "violation of their pretrial orders". The judge (an ex-prosecutor against "eco-terrorism") has ordered that they remain in custody pending trial.

WILLIAM "BJ" VIEHL AND ALEX HALL were originally arrested March 5, 2009 for their alleged role in a raid of a South Jordan, Utah mink farm in August, and the alleged attempted raid of a second mink farm in October. Both are being held captive in Salt Lake City Jail on charges of animal enterprise terrorism, while the real terrorists continue to trap, maim, imprison and murder thousands of innocent fur-bearing animals for their own perverted profits. Their trial has been postponed; we don't know the exact date, but will keep everyone updated when we find out.

JORDAN HALLIDAY was arrested for contempt of court on March 13. The United States Attorneys office subpoenaed him to testify in front of a Federal Grand Jury, and provide information involving the mink liberation's in Utah. He refused to cooperate, because the questions asked where not related to the investigation. He was only asked personal questions about his friend and associations.

Grand juries are unconstitutional fishing expeditions that have been used throughout U.S. history to disrupt and destroy social justice movements. They take away rights to force answers to questions, without being able to have a lawyer present. Jordan was well aware of the exploitation and abuse of these tactics and resisted the proceedings which resorting in him being arrested.

Please send books and letters to:

William James (BJ) Viehl
Inmate #2009-05735
Davis County Jail
800 West State St.
Farmington, UT 84025

Alex Hall
Inmate #2009-06304
Davis County Jail
800 West State St.
Farmington, UT 84025

Jordan Halliday
Cache County Jail
Inmate # 24836
1225 West Valley View Highway Suite 100
Logan, Utah 84321


For more information visit,

Animal Liberation Press Office
6320 Canoga Avenue #1500
Woodland Hills, CA 91367


Monday, August 3, 2009

Stop Omak's Suicide Races!

Crossposting for Zoe;

My name is Zoe, I belong to Care2...I have been an animal rescuer for a very long time. Right now there is a situation going to occuring Omak, Washington. There is a race called the Suicide race, horses are killed and's been going on since the 30's...I have been emailing since I got the message from IDA, In Defense of might know the group.

If you don't have this info, I am going to put it in the body of this letter. I'm not very good with computers. I wanted to list it on Care2 as an emergency situation, there are people they can call or email. Wrangler, Coors and Campbells soup are 3 companies who sponsor this thing.


Stop The Omak Suicide Race!

Next Scheduled Cruelty: August 6 - 9, 2009 - Letters And Phone Calls Needed

The Omak Suicide Race is the most disgusting part of the Omak Stampede, a rodeo held in a small town in eastern Washington since 1935. The race regularly and routinely kills horses. Just since 1984, there have been at least 20 documented horse deaths.

After a galloping start, horses plunge over an almost vertical drop (62 degree angle) of about 225 feet. The horses do not realize where the ground is until it is rushing beneath them. They cannot see horses ahead of them. This is not professional riding or racing. This is documented cruelty as riders have a “no holds barred*” mentality that forces horses onward to win AT ANY COST. Horses are pushed to breakneck speed, with inevitable collisions and pile ups that cause serious injury or death. And that’s just the first leg.

At the bottom of the downhill charge, the horses are pushed to survive the swift current of the rocky, deep Okanogan River. Horses may have already sustained injuries from the steep downhill run of this race and then must brave the waters; horses have panicked and drowned. If they land sideways, which happens frequently if they lose balance, they can wrench their necks, causing severe neck and back injuries and further trauma. It takes far more energy to move through water than to gallop on land.

Exhausted horses are pushed on to an uphill sprint another 500 yards. With this continuous overexertion, recovery is nearly impossible, and with reduced oxygen flow, muscles are doomed to permanent damage. The psychological trauma endured by the horses who are injured or survive is lifelong.

Thanks to PAWS for information used in this alert.

At the bottom of this e-mail is a list of sponsors of the Omak Suicide Race, and others involved with the event. Write some letters! Make some phone calls!

The Omak Stampede has tried to separate itself from the Suicide Race. But in the Suicide Race Rules, which must be signed by participants, it clearly requires the Omak Stampede, Inc., to be included in news releases. Part of the race purse money comes directly from the Omak Stampede Committee. Some sponsors, such as Wal-Mart and Crown Royal, have withdrawn their support completely. But the Omak Stampede has directed sponsors such as Coors Beer, Pace Picante Sauce, and Wrangler Jeans to declare that the Stampede and Suicide Race are unrelated events and has convinced these sponsors to continue their sponsorship. Furthermore, official merchandise, logos, and even letterhead of the Omak Stampede feature the Suicide Race. See for yourself at

A sample letter is printed below, after the list of sponsors. You may use the sample letter, but your letters and calls will have greater effect if you use your own words.

Who to write and/or call:

Pace Picante Sauce Sponsorship of Omak Suicide Horse Race
Jerry S. Buckley, Sr. VP - Public Affairs
Campbell Soup Company
1 Campbell Place
Camden, NJ 08103-1701

Coors Beer Sponsorship of Omak Suicide Horse Race
N. Cornell Boggs , III
Chief Responsibility and Ethics Officer
300 12th Street
Golden, CO 80401

Wrangler Jeans Sponsorship of Omak Suicide Race
Eric C. Wiseman
Chairman, President and CEO
VF Corporation
World Headquarters
105 Corporate Center Blvd.
Greensboro, North Carolina 27408

Letters Editor
The Seattle Times
P.O. Box 70
Seattle, WA 98111

Mayor of Omak, Cindy Gagne
2 North Ash Street
PO Box 72
Omak, WA 98841

Colville Tribes Involvement:
Owners and Jockeys Assoc.

Omak Stampede & Suicide Race Board
George Dunckel, Chairman
509-826-1983 or 1-800-993-6625
PO Box 2028
Omak, Washington, 98841

Sample Letters: (Below are one sponsor sample, and one sample letter to the Mayor):

Sample Sponsor Letter:

Eric C. Wiseman
Chairman, President and CEO
VF Corporation
World Headquarters
105 Corporate Center Blvd.
Greensboro, NC 27408

Re: Wrangler Jeans’s Sponsorship of Omak Suicide Race

Dear Mr. Wiseman:

Wrangler Jeans is sponsoring the Omak Suicide Race and Stampede, a barbaric event which has killed at least 20 horses in the past 25 years.

We ask that Wrangler Jeans drop its sponsorship of the Stampede until it ends the “Suicide Race.”

The organizers of this event have many excuses, but none withstand scrutiny. For example, the Stampede says that it does not run the Suicide Race, but the Stampede’s web site markets the race. The Stampede says that the race is a traditional native event, but that is untrue; the Native Americans did not race horses off this cliff at night, causing so many deaths and injuries. And, if that were really the genesis of this event, why is not limited to Native Americans?

The very name, “Suicide Race,” tells us what they are selling. Does Wrangler Jeans really want to be associated with this?

Wal-Mart and Crown Royal have pulled their sponsorships. Please follow their humane lead and do the same.

Thank you for your kind attention, and a response would be appreciated.


Sample Letter To Mayor:

Cindy Gagne, Mayor of Omak
2 North Ash Street
PO Box 72
Omak, WA 98841

Dear Mayor Gagne:

I am writing to you regarding the Omak Suicide Horse Race. This event of the Omak Stampede is surely a “business draw” for your community. Sadly, however, the money and entertainment value come from cruelty and inhumane exploitation of horses.

Pitbull fighting has been banned from all 50 states due to the inhumane and gruesome exploitation of dogs. The Suicide Race is much like the pitbull fighting in its cruel use of horses.

I urge you to be a leader and change your community’s direction. Many people are learning about this gore-seeking, pointless event called the Suicide Race. Your community will be under scrutiny and will have to answer the question: why sponsor an event that brings out the cruel, thrill-seeking, ugly side of humanity? This Suicide Race, by name, is selling death for thrills; this is NOT an American value nor a Native American value.

Please consider ways to transition your community away from the distorted and shameful focus on gore and cruelty that is the Suicide Race to truly honorable and respectable FAMILY entertainment. There are other options for drawing business to your community.

Thank you for your consideration, and I would appreciate a response.


In Defense of Animals, located in San Rafael, Calif., is an international animal protection organization with more than 85,000 members and supporters dedicated to ending the abuse and exploitation of animals by protecting their rights and welfare. IDA's efforts include educational events, cruelty investigations, boycotts, grassroots activism, and hands-on rescue through our sanctuaries in Mississippi, Mumbai, India, and Cameroon, Africa.

In Defense of Animals is a registered 501(c)3 non-profit organization. We welcome your feedback and appreciate your donations. Please join today! All donations to IDA are tax-deductible.

In Defense of Animals
3010 Kerner, San Rafael, CA 94901
Tel. (415) 448-0048 Fax (415) 454-1031

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