Dinah McGibbon needs help raising the roof.
After last week's heavy snowfall, the barn roof collapsed at Niagara Riding Stable, which McGibbon owns.
“A lot of snow is what happened,” McGibbon said Monday at her property on Warner Road in St. Davids.
“I think the rain we had in between added some real good extra weight in there. It was not something I imagined.”
A friend started a GoFundMe campaign to help raise money to reconstruct the roof and ensure her horses don’t have to spend too much time in the cold.
Not that they mind.
“They truly are actually happier and healthier moving around outside,” McGibbon said.
She uses the barn to keep them inside during extreme weather and it is where they usually eat their grain.
Thankfully none of her horses were injured when the roof collapsed. Even though two were inside at the time, the roof did not fall in past the hayloft, meaning anything inside was perfectly safe.
“Better to stop there,” McGibbon said.
But it’s not exactly an ideal situation.
“I’m more comfortable having them outdoors,” McGibbon said with a laugh as she stood in front of the collapsed barn.
She said a lot of concerned neighbours have popped by to see if everything is OK, including former lord mayor Pat Darte.
McGibbon took over the stable operation some 20 years ago after her father and mother retired. Her parents had owned the property since the 1960s.
She remembers her father running out of the house when kids parked at the end of their dead-end road. He would fire blank cartridges into the air to scare them off.
“The neighbours told me, years later, that kids used to come down there just to get a rise out of him,” McGibbon said with a smile.
Her oldest horse, named Piper, is just about to turn 30.
Which begs one to wonder: what do you get a horse for his 30th birthday?
“Lots of carrots,” McGibbon said.