Author Archive | IMPD Mounted Patrol

Road Rally Charity Challenge: Local Charities To Compete For $50,000 Dollars

Road Rally Charity Challenge: Local Charities To Compete For $50,000 Dollars 1 Leave it to auto enthusiast, Stutz Factory owner and community philanthropist Turner Woodard to create a unique and exciting way for local charities to raise money. “Sure, the Woodard Van Riper Family Foundation can just write a check for a worthy cause we believe in and we certainly do”, states Turner Woodard, head of the Woodard Van Riper Family Foundation, “but our marquee event is a road rally where we bring together 12 charities, they get to know each other in a competitive and social setting and every charity who participates receives a donation”. The total amount awarded is over $50,000 dollars, with the winning charity receiving $12,500, second $10,000 and third place $7,500. The remaining nine charities receive $2,500 dollars each. The charities competing are College Mentor for Kids, Heartland Film Festival, IMPD Mounted Horse Patrol, Indy Humane, Indiana Landmarks, Keep Indianapolis Beautiful, WFYI, National Junior Tennis League (NJTL), The Villages, Christel House, Children’s Bureau and A Little Help. For those new to road rallys, it’s a fun-filled, adventurous, scenic drive with a purpose! Rallys don’t involve speed and teams can compete in regular passenger cars. They really only need some directions, a watch, a pencil, paper and a keen sense of awareness! Each car has a driver and navigator. The winner is determined by the most correct answers completed in the lenient designated timeframe. IndyCar driver Conor Daly is this year’s celebrity starter. The Woodard Van Riper Family Foundation Charity Road Rally is Saturday, October 5th. It starts at 10am at The Stutz Factory in downtown Indianapolis, drives to a lunch stop at King Dough Pizza in Bloomington and rallies to a finish with an awards dinner at Turner Woodard’s Wasatch Lake Retreat in Poland, Indiana, all while meandering through the Indiana country side following clues and looking for signs and landmarks to answer specific questions for points. The family foundation is truly a family affair with Diann Woodard, TJ Woodard, Whitney Woodard, Taylor Woodard and extended family all lending a hand to make sure everyone feels welcome. “The rally encourages charity staff members, donors and their board of directors to work together as teams and get to know each other better by creatively solving a driving, road sign quest”, says TJ Woodard. “Too often charities are competing for the same donors. By bringing 12 charities together to compete at an event, the charities get to better know each other, how they can help each other and the safety net to our community grows wider and stronger than previously may have existed before”, adds Taylor Woodard, who travels in from Denver, Colorado for each rally. Although the Woodard Van Riper Family Foundation has a formal mission statement, the bottom line is GET INVOLVED and each family member is deeply passionate about improving their local community. “I know for many it’s a different sort of day,” Turner says. “That is one of our goals. We hope all of what we are doing will help in some meaningful way.” As new and pressing needs arise in our local community, the Woodard Van Riper Family Foundation will continue to be a rallying cry for local charities to help them make a difference.

Getting to know the IMPD Mounted Patrol Unit

When you see these officers on the street, it’s hard to miss them. The IMPD Mounted Patrol Unit helps manage crowds, secure big events and patrol our trails and neighborhoods.

They spend hundreds of hours riding out in the community, but in order to do that, many hours are spent training behind the scenes.

IMPD Officer Lorie Phillips is training to become part of the unit right now.

“A lot of people, when I tell them we have to get 400 hours, they say why do you need 400 hours? But you have to remember these are animals with their own mind…

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IMPD Mounted Patrol ready to welcome thousands Downtown for Indiana Black Expo

The final weekend of the 2017 Indiana Black Expo Summer Celebration is this July 14-16. Festivities wrap up July 16th and will bring thousands of visitors, concert-goers, musicians, sponsors, and exhibitors to Downtown Indianapolis from across the region. The Indianapolis Mounted Patrol has five objectives this weekend.

  1. Be visible. All 5 IMPD Mounted Patrol officers and their mounts will be working this weekend to ensure safety. Officers on horseback are higher off the ground enabling them to see across hundreds of people in a crowd and for others to see them. Anyone who needs help – either with an emergency or just directions to a destination – will be able to see Mounted Patrol officers.


  1. Positive public relations. “We’re here to help in any way we can. Part of that is helping pedestrian traffic and make sure everyone is safe. The other part is we also genuinely want to have a conversation and a good time with everyone,” said IMPD Mounted Patrol Sergeant Allan Whitesell. “If there’s a problem in your neighborhood, let us know. If you see something suspicious while Downtown, let us know.” Mounted Patrol officers are easy to spot in a crowd.


  1. Interact with children. “Our horses are trained to disregard distractions and they’re very good at it. We may not be able to walk up to every child we see, but if a kid walks up to us, they’re welcome to say hello and pet our horses, as long as we aren’t busy,” said Whitesell. Parents and guardians with children are encouraged to greet Maddie, Stretch, Neve, and all the horses with the unit while on patrol.


  1. Be firm but fair with all. “It’s our priority to keep people safe. We don’t always have the luxury of immediate and on-demand information and truth in the case of a dispute or accident,” said Whitesell. “But we’ll always do everything we can within the law and our power to make sure everyone’s rights are protected,” added Whitesell.


  1. Adapt as needed. This year’s IBE Summer Celebration will involve joint work with the IMPD, the Marion County Sherriff’s Office, Indiana State Police, Indiana Homeland Security, and many other agencies like Indianapolis DPW and EMS. Streets will be closed to vehicles around the American Legion Mall (including Meridian, Pennsylvania, Michigan, St. Clair, Walnut, North, and Fort Wayne Streets) starting at 6 pm through midnight on Friday, July 14.

Officers may need to close and restrict streets around the Convention Center, too. “We have a lot of people monitoring the flow of movement in a crowd. We want to protect people from traffic, but it’s no fun for anyone in a large group if everyone gets stuck in one spot for a long time. We’re looking out for everyone’s ability to move around, too. That may be why we ask people to move one-way down a street,” said Whitesell.

If you see a Mounted Patrol officer this weekend, take a photo and tag us on Facebook @IMPDMountedPatrol or Twitter @IMPDMountedPtl.

Polo At Sunset, a benefit for Mounted Patrol on July 29

An evening of polo to benefit the IMPD Mounted Patrol and Morning Dove Therapeutic Riding.

At the Hickory Hall Polo Club

Photos by Lesa Nelson

See more photos from this event


Polo At Sunset, a benefit for Mounted Patrol on July 29 21

Thanks to Go Ape for donating a $60 gift card for the event