Equestrian enthusiasts have plan to save Koko Crater Stables
HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Koko Crater Stables has boarded horses and provided a place for people to ride for more than 50 years.
But that long history may have reached the end of the trail. Unless someone can convince the city to reverse course, the stables will close.
"There's limited space. That's one thing that has cropped up as a problem, and the other is of course the aging facility," city deputy Managing Director Georgette Deemer said.
A year ago the stables boarded about 30 horses. They are all gone and the city's agreement with the present operator, Stable Solutions, expires on Tuesday.
The city has no plans to sink money into improvements.
"It is only 10 acres. We can't expand the trail because the botanical garden is right there," Deemer said.
But Jane Mount and a group of avid horsemen and women want to save the stables. They have a blueprint and business plan.
"We've done some of the financials on Koko Crater and we have figured out that it will take about 14 horses stabled there to make up for the operating cost currently," Mount said.
The group said it would move its members' horses from a Waimanalo ranch to Koko Crater, restore the facility, and run the stables as a non-profit.
"We could make this a going concern within a couple of weeks," Jerry Mount said. "And my concern is if the property is closed down for any period of time, it's so much deferred maintenance now that it would never re-open again."
Jane Mount said the group has an advisory board, and could bring in cleaners, feeders and a pony club.
'"We'll be able to lift the staff that is currently at this facility which is closing and bring them right into the Koko Crater Stables, including a trainer," she said.
Deemer said the city will discuss the Koko Crater Stables situation at the Hawaii Kai Neighborhood Board meeting Tuesday.
If a new operator comes on board, it would be under a one-year revocable permit while the city puts out requests for proposals.
"We know how beloved the stables has been historically. We would love to see people there if it works out for them," Deemer said.
If Koko Crater Stables does close, the site will be folded into Koko Crater Botanical Garden.
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