GREEN VALLEY, ARIZONA — A unique set of children’s toy horses will be on display Dec. 8-Jan. 5 at Historic Canoa Ranch, 5375 S. I-19 Frontage Road in Green Valley.
On display for the first time, the collection is courtesy of Cheri Raftery, part of a fourth- generation ranching family that breeds, raises and trains cutting horses at the equestrian center at Canoa Ranch, which is managed by the Pima County Natural Resources, Parks and Recreation Department.
The antique rocking horses and mechanical horses range from pre-Civil War era to the 1960s. The horses come from different areas of the country, though some may have originated in Europe. Their styles vary greatly. Depression-era horses are crudely and simply made; however, the classic rocking horse has remained the same for generations.
The collection features the different type of mechanisms of motion used on a child’s toy horse. One is made from a model T spring, others have real horse hair manes or tails.
Exhibit hours are 10 a.m.-2 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday (closed Dec. 25 and Jan. 1). After viewing the collection, visitors can tour the Manning Jr./Schnaufer House. There is a $10 donation per person to view the exhibits.
The entry gate to Historic Canoa Ranch is open seven days a week from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. for access to the newly restored Canoa Lake and the Anza Trail. Guided tours of the historic site are conducted Tuesdays and Saturdays at 10 and 11 a.m. Visit www.pima.gov/canoaranch for more info on programs and other guided tours.
In 2001, Pima County purchased and began to restore the 4,800-acre Canoa Ranch complex with voter-approved 1997 and 2004 bond funds. Pima County opened the ranch headquarters to the public in March 2013.