The Carroll County Equestrian Council has received $2,000 in cash and prizes as one of 10 winners in a national "Trails for Tomorrow" contest.
The Du Pont Co. sponsored the contest and awarded the council $500 cash and $1,500 in hiking and camping equipment.
The Equestrian Council won the prizes for organizing three events on National Trails Day, June 5, said Jeff R. Degitz, chief of Carroll's Bureau of Recreation.
Mr. Degitz represented council members at an awards ceremony at the Outdoor Retailer Expo West in Reno, Nev., Aug. 17-20. Du Pont paid for his trip.
The Equestrian Council plans to use the $500 to develop a show ring at Gillis Falls Park, Mr. Degitz said.
Grading work has been done at the site, but the council needs $4,000 to $5,000 more for bleachers, an entrance road and a parking lot.
Council member Sharon Biddison said the group also would like to build barns to house horses for shows that run longer than one day.
The council will probably sponsor an auction or raffle to sell the merchandise it received as prizes, Mr. Degitz said.
On National Trails Day, the Equestrian Council sponsored guided trail rides at Gillis Falls Park and the Union Mills Reservoir, and a cleanup day at the Morgan Run Natural Environment Area.
The council was a contest winner because the events brought together a variety of trail users and community groups, Du Pont said in a news release that announced the awards.
The Equestrian Council was the only winner from Maryland. Judges were members of the American Hiking Society, an educational group that organized National Trails Day.
The Carroll Equestrian Council was founded in 1984 and offers educational and recreational programs.
A Department of Recreation and Parks report shows that 602 people participated in Equestrian Council events in fiscal 1993, from June 30, 1992 to last July 1, and that 30 volunteers devoted almost 2,200 hours to community projects.