1841 Paynes Depot Rd.
Georgetown KY 40324
Contact Information
Address 1841 Paynes Depot Rd.
Georgetown, KY 40324
Phone (502) 863-1775
Fax 502 863-1776
Contact Name Michael Blowen
At A Glance
IRS Ruling Year 2003
Other ways to donate, support, or volunteer

Donations in any amount can also be made to Old Friends by direct mailing to Old Friends at 1841 Paynes Depot Road, Georgetown, KY 40324, by phone at 502-863-1775 via credit card, or through PayPal (PayPal information is available on our web site at www.oldfriendsequine.org ).


Sponsor a share in any one of our retired thoroughbreds by donating $100 and receive an 8 X 10 photograph of the sponsored horse, a signed share certificate issued in the donor’s name, and a short biography of the horse. Shares make nice gifts to your horse loving friends and family.


Become a Member of the Old Friends family by donating $150 and receive a welcome gift as a token of our appreciation.


Become a Best Friend of Old Friends by making a donation of $1,000 or more and have your name engraved on a plaque that will be mounted on the “Best Friends Wall” displayed in the barn area where it will be viewed by daily visitors and dignitaries that visit us at Old Friends. 


Reserve a specific date on our annual Calendar by donating $100 and provide us with the text that you would like to have printed on that date.


Donate to a Special Project (i.e., paddock fencing, run-in shed; automatic waterer, etc.).    Information on specific projects is available on the "How to Help" page of our web site at www.oldfriendsequine.org.


 In-Kind Donations of horse related supplies (i.e., vet wrap, vaccines, blankets, fly masks, etc.) are gladly accepted, as well as items and/or services that can be auctioned at our fund raising events to generate income for Old Friends, sold in our gift shop, or sold/auctioned online through our web site or on Ebay.


Volunteer opportunities are always available at Old Friends and we welcome anyone who wants to help.  Volunteers may have opportunities to work directly with the horses, act as tour guides, or help with administrative and/or fund raising activities
Other Documents
Financial Summary
Mission Statement Old Friends provides a permanent retirement home to at-risk racehorses - those whose racing and breeding careers have ended. We are the only thoroughbred rescue / retirement facility that accepts stallions.  In addition to our pensioned stallions, Old Friends is home to some very deserving retired mares & geldings. Through our campaign of education and tourism, we draw attention to all retired Thoroughbreds and all equines in need.
Background Statement

Old Friends is a non-profit organization that was founded in 2003 as a retirement facility for Thoroughbred horses whose racing and/or breeding careers have ended, and is unique in the fact that it is the only such facility in the United States that accepts stallions. With a mission to provide a safe and comfortable place for these celebrated athletes to live out their natural lives, Old Friends currently cares for a herd of 160 horses, 27 of which are stallions. Old Friends is open to the public 364 days a year, with walking tours that provide visitors with an up-close and personal experience with horses that range from champion graded stakes winners to horses that only raced at the lower claiming race levels.  Tour guides familiar with the history of each horse provide an educational and entertaining narration along the tour, while visitors may feed carrots to the horses and take pictures of their favorites. Visitors can also peruse the Visitors Center and gift shop located on the farm where they will find literature and souvenirs pertaining not only to our own horses, but thoroughbred racing in general. 


Old Friends also provides educational opportunities for scouting organizations and grade school classes, as well as internship opportunities to college age students, with an emphasis on equine care/management and equine career opportunities.

Impact Statement

2015 Top Four Accomplishments

 1.  In 2015 Old Friends opened a satellite facility at Kentucky Downs in Franklin, Kentucky, where we currently house 6 thoroughbreds and will eventually be able to house 10 - 12.  This is the first such arrangement with a Kentucky race track and is operated under cooperative agreement between Old Friends, Kentucky Downs, and Simpson County Tourisim.

2.   Old Friends acquired fee title to 44 additional acres adjacent to our Dream Chase Farm and was able to provide homes for 17 more thoroughbreds. 

3. Obtained a gas powered, all terrain golf card designed for commercial use to accommodate mobility impaired visitors on our daily walking tours.
4. Secured a stand alone, rodent proof, shed for storage of feed. 
2016 Major Goals

1.  In late January of 2015 we lost our Quarantine Barn in a fire.  During the coming year we are planning major renovations to a metal barn located on the new acquired 44 acres that will be come our new Quarantine/hospital barn.

2.  Plans are to construct a new barn that will be as fireproof as possible that will serve as the farm's main barn with stalls, wash rack, and secure storage.
3.  Once the new barn is in use, the existing wood barn will be repurposed to serve as an event facility for Old Friends' fundraising events.
4.  Construction of ADA accessible restrooms adjacent to the new event facility.
5.  Continue with fund raising for monies to complete fencing, run-in sheds, and automatic waterers on the new acquired 44 acres. 
Needs Statement

1.       Hay and grain for a herd of 160 horses – 2016 costs are estimated at $312,000

2.       Farrier and veterinarian services – 2016 costs are estimated at $60,912

3.       Volunteers to help with fund raising events and to serve as tour guides on the farm

4.       Quality auction Items for annual fund raising events

5.       Monetary contributions toward an Endowment Fund that will insure financial stability for Old Friends.  

Board Chair Statement

As President of Old Friends, I am always the first to admit that I have the best job in the world. This has become my life’s work and there is nothing more gratifying than knowing that we care for Thoroughbred horses that have nowhere else to go in the latter years of their lives. Regardless of their accomplishments on the track, from champions like Silver Charm (1997 Kentucky Derby & Preakness winner) and Touch Gold (who spoiled Silver Charm's bid for the Triple Crown by winning the 1997 Belmont); War Emblem (who won the 2002 Kentucky Derby and Preakness) and Sarava (who spoiled War Emblem's bid for the Triple Crown by winning the 2002 Belmont); or Alphabet Soup (who won the 1996 Breeders Cup Classic) to horses that only succeeded in earning our respect, they all deserve to be treated with the care and humanity found at Old Friends.

Our end goal is to provide for every thoroughbred that needs a home. Sadly and all too often though, we have to turn away horses that may be in dire need simply because we don’t have the room or monetary resources to care for another horse.  It breaks our hearts when we have to turn away any horse, but the only way we can expand our operation is to raise the money necessary to cover those additional costs, and donations from individuals and companies are crucial to that goal.

For those who have donated to Old Friends in the past, we are eternally grateful and hope you’ll continue to support this worthy cause. For those who may consider donating for the first time, rest assured that every dollar donated makes a significant impact toward accomplishing our end goal. I invite everyone to visit Old Friends and get to know us first hand. 

Geographic Areas Served
Throughout the United States

Old Friends is open to horses in need throughout the United States. We also have an active program to identify horses that raced and/or bred in the United States who have since been shipped to breeders outside the United States, and to bring those horses home to Old Friends when their breeding careers have ended so they can live out their natural lives in the peaceful and tranquil environment that is Old Friends.  

Impact Questions
GoalsHelpWhat is the organization aiming to accomplish? This is the organization's ultimate goal for intended impact.
Old Friends Founder and President Michael Blowen was heart broken when he read that 1986 Kentucky Derby winner (and 1987 Horse of the Year) Ferdinand died in 2002 when he was sent to a slaughter house in Japan.  Michael saw a need, and made it his mission to save as many  horses as he possibly could from similar fates.  As a result, Old Friends was founded in 2003 with one retired thoroughbred on a leased farm in Midway, Kentucky.  In 2016 we are responsible for 160 horses and our main farm is 136 fee owned acres in Georgetown, Kentucky, with satellite facililities in Greenfield Center, New York, and Kentucky Downs in Franklin, Kentucky.  
Old Friends serves a vital role in the thoroughbred racing industry.  All too often, an individual or group joins the ranks of thoroughbred owners without a clear understanding of the costs and responsibilities ownership brings.  When their horse or horses stop earning money for them, they are faced with the continued costs of caring for the horse and find they cannot afford to meet the financial responsibility.  Those are the horses that need us most, and we have a waiting list of owners looking to place their horses with Old Friends.
Old Friends does not require or ask for any monetary compensation from an owner when we accept their horse into our program.  We are solely dependent on the money we can raise as a non-profit organization.   
We are fortunate that some owners and trainers do support Old Friends through monetary donations, but a horse is never turned away because the owner can't or doesn't offer financial support.  We are also fortunate that some well known champions have been retired to our facility.  We offer guided walking tours 364 days a year, where visitors meet not only our champions, but the multitude of horses that go unnoticed in the annals of racing history.  It's through this public education effort that we can promote the successes of thoroughbred racing and call attention to the overwhelming need for facilities that can care for these horses that could otherwise end up in dire straights when their owners can no longer care for them.  
 Old Friends is unique in the fact that we are the only throughbred retirement facility in the United States that specializes in the care of retired stallions.  Due to their unique unique housing and management requirements, most retirement facilities are not equipped to accept stallions.  
StrategiesHelpWhat are the organization's strategies for its stated long-term goals?
In order to accept more horses we look to expand our facilities.  We have recently acquired an additional 44 acres, and have an option on another 99 acres.  Plans are currently being made for roads, fencing, run-in sheds, automatic waterers, and support structures on the 44 acres that will allow us to accept more deserving thoroughbreds.  
A number of champion stallions are sold to overseas breeders.   With the fate of Ferdinand always fresh on our minds, Old Friends has established working relationships with breeders in Europe and Japan to repatriate retired stallions to Old Friends when their breeding careers are over. When these celebrated stallions return to the United States they draw legions of their fans to Old Friends, where they also meet the less successful thoroughbreds that have found a home at Old Friends, and learn of the overwhelming need for facilities such as Old Friends.    
CapabilitiesHelpWhat are the organization’s capabilities for doing this? What resources, capacities, and connections support its progress towards long-term goals?
Some of our most valued resources are the donations from our long term supporters.  Some are small one time donations, some are monthly pledges, and some are of substantial amounts, but they all count and add up to a significant source of funding.
 We are also fortunate and thankful for the financial and moral support of owners, trainers, and jockeys throughout the United States who recognize the vital role that Old Friends serves in the thoroughbred racing industry.  Not only do they make monetary donations to Old Friends, but they participate in our annual fund raising activities throughout the year through personal appearances and donations of racing memorabilia for our auctions.
 Our accreditation through the Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance and verification by the Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries is a testament to our commitment to quality care of the thoroughbreds that are retired at Old Friends, and it is an assurance to our supporters that their donations are used to provide the best care possible of our horses.
 We are also fortunate to have the support of several organizations that have grant programs that we qualify for, and their annual donations are used for various programs including feed, hay, dietary supplements, equipment, and capital improvements.
Last but not least, is our dedicated staff and volunteers.  Through their tireless efforts Old Friends has become a Flagship of thoroughbred retirement facilities in the United States.    
IndicatorsHelpHow will the organization know if it is making progress? What are the key qualitative and quantitative indicators against which the organization assesses its progress toward its intended impact?
We can measure our progress through multiple indicators.
1)  A substantial increase in the number of national and international visitors on our daily tours.
2) Increased media attentin.
3) Industry recognition and support
4) The Eclipse Award sponsored by the National Throughbred Racing Association, the Daily Racing form, and the National Turf Writers Association that was presented to Old Friends.
5) The opening of popular satelite farms in Greenfield Center, New York, and Kentucky Downs in Franklin, Kentucky. 
Board Chair
Board Chair Michael Blowen
Company Affiliation President and Founder
Board Members
Steve Allday Community VolunteerVoting
Michael Blowen President and FounderVoting
Dennis Brida Community VolunteerVoting
Jeffrey Burch Community VolunteerVoting
Barbara Fossum Board MemberVoting
Cynthia Grisolia Community VolunteerVoting
Corey Johnsen Board MemberVoting
Suzanne Mundy Community VolunteerVoting
Rosie Napravnik Community VolunteerVoting
Clark Nyberg Community VolunteerVoting
Mark Otto Board MemberVoting
Ron Portell Community VolunteerVoting
Bill Van DenDool Community VolunteerVoting
Ron Wallace Community VolunteerVoting
Diane White Community VolunteerVoting
Board Demographics - Ethnicity
African American/Black 0
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 15
Hispanic/Latino 0
Native American/American Indian 0
Other 0 0
Board Demographics - Gender
Male 10
Female 5
Unspecified 0
Board Term Lengths 1
Board Term Limits 0
Board Meeting Attendance % 73%
Written Board Selection Criteria? Under Development
Written Conflict of Interest Policy? Yes
Percentage Making Monetary Contributions 100%
Number of Full Board Meetings Annually 3
Board Co-Chair
Board CoChair Bill Van DenDool
CEO Comments Board terms are indefinite.  Board Members can resign or they can be removed for cause through a vote of remaining Board Members.
CEO/Executive Director
Executive Director Michael Blowen
Term Start June 2003
Email Michael@oldfriendsequine.org
Full Time Staff 10
Part Time Staff 2
Volunteers 31
Contractors 0
Retention Rate 100%
Management Reports to Board? Yes
Staff Demographics - Ethnicity
African American/Black 0
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 10
Hispanic/Latino 2
Native American/American Indian 0
Other 0 0
Staff Demographics - Gender
Male 6
Female 6
Unspecified 0
Formal Evaluations
CEO Formal Evaluation Yes
CEO/Executive Formal Evaluation Frequency Annually
Description Provide sufficient office space for staff and volunteers, staging area for tours, handicap accessible restrooms, gift shop, and paved parking
Population Served , ,

Preserve and highlight horse racing and its cultural impacts on the Commonwealth of Kentucky and the regional areas including and surrounding Lexington, with special emphasis on the accomplishments, trials, and tribulations of horses retired at Old Friends.

Population Served , ,

Expansion of Old Friends, and partnerships with other retirement facilities and farms (nationally and internationally), to insure that all Thoroughbreds in need are given a safe and comfortable place to live out their natural lives.

Population Served , ,
Description Old Friends suffered a barn fire in late January 2016.  Thanks to the efforts of staff and volunteers the horses in the barn were rescued unharmed and thankfully no one was injured.  The goal is to replace the barn with a new barn in 2016 that will be as fire proof as possible  
Budget $100,000+
Population Served , ,
Plans & Policies
Organization has a Fundraising Plan? Under Development
Organization has a Strategic Plan? Yes
Years Strategic Plan Considers 4
Management Succession Plan? No
Organization Policy and Procedures Under Development
Nondiscrimination Policy Yes
Whistleblower Policy Yes
Document Destruction Policy No
Eclipse AwardNational Thoroughbred Racing Associaiton, Daily Racing Form, National Turf Writers Association2014
Fiscal Year
Fiscal Year Start Jan 01, 2016
Fiscal Year End Dec 31, 2016
Projected Revenue $1,810,049.00
Projected Expenses $1,562,262.00
Spending Policy Income Only
Detailed Financials
Revenue and ExpensesHelpFinancial data for prior years is entered by foundation staff based on the documents submitted by nonprofit organizations.Foundation staff members enter this information to assure consistency in the presentation of financial data across all organizations.
Fiscal Year201520142013
Total Revenue$1,536,230$1,310,457$918,817
Total Expenses$1,408,412$1,152,962$1,286,941
Revenue Less Expenses$127,818$157,495($368,124)
Revenue SourcesHelpThe financial analysis involves a comparison of the IRS Form 990 and the audit report (when available). Revenue from foundations and corporations may be included in individual contributions when not itemized separately.
Fiscal Year201520142013
Foundation and
Corporation Contributions
Government Contributions$0$0$0
Individual Contributions$1,263,511$1,149,241$737,080
Investment Income, Net of Losses$392$60$953
Membership Dues--$0--
Special Events$82,702$41,031$90,308
Revenue In-Kind--$15,528$15,153
Expense Allocation
Fiscal Year201520142013
Program Expense$1,266,730$1,012,978$1,141,624
Administration Expense$120,474$124,047$118,638
Fundraising Expense$22,618$15,937$26,679
Payments to Affiliates------
Total Revenue/Total Expenses1.091.140.71
Program Expense/Total Expenses90%88%89%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue2%1%3%
Assets and Liabilities
Fiscal Year201520142013
Total Assets$2,866,790$1,959,878$1,848,052
Current Assets$30,322$120,256$113,002
Long-Term Liabilities$2,281,791$1,548,414$1,841,340
Current Liabilities--$0--
Total Net Assets$537,999$411,464$6,712
Capital Campaign
Currently in a Capital Campaign? No
Capital Campaign Anticipated in Next 5 Years? Yes
State Registration Yes
Address 1841 Paynes Depot Rd.
Georgetown, KY 40324
Primary Phone 502 863-1775
CEO/Executive Director Michael Blowen
Board Chair Michael Blowen
Board Chair Company Affiliation President and Founder