Weld horseback riding group takes part in presidential parade
January 20, 2017
Weld County contributed its own local flavor to Donald Trump's inaugural parade Friday evening in Washington, D.C.
The Freedom Riders are a horseback riding group that consists of six women — five from Weld County — who present the American flag in ceremonies and events across the nation. Their presence in Trump's parade marked their third inaugural celebration.
"(Trump) saluted us as we went by," said Lee Barrett, one of the group's founding members, who took part in the parade. "He was talking to somebody, but once he saw the flags he saluted us."
As they passed the newly inaugurated president, Barrett said, the group's youngest member — 16-year-old Teliah Barrett — scrunched her nose at him. Barrett said Trump scrunched his nose back at her in response.
"There was some definite contact there," she said.
She said the parade, which started between 2 p.m. and 2:30 p.m., was the warmest of the three of which she has been a part. So far as she knew, the Freedom Riders were Colorado's only representation in the event, she said.
The parade marked the finale of a grueling, cross-country journey that took days. Barrett said the group spent about 10 hours a day on the road. The trek coincided with a blast of ice storms across the Midwest, but she said weather wasn't a problem.
She added the group will try to average the same pace on its drive home to Weld County, with one more story to tell about one more inauguration.