NORTH RIDGVILLE, Ohio - The Cleveland Mounted Police Unit is over 100 years old and still going strong. It is one of the oldest mounted units in the United States. It took a budget hit in 2004 and was dismantled. Since then it has been reinstated but still faces many financial challenges.
The city had three different stables throughout the city. Today they have one. Seven horses and seven riders make up the unit now and they would like to get up to 10 to 12 mounted riders. They rely on fundraisers and donations to help pay for feed, hay, veterinarian and blacksmithing for the horses.
They had a fundraiser at the Black Dog Pub and Eatery in North Ridgeville. Hundreds showed up and had a good time bidding on gift baskets and partaking in a 50/50 raffle, all in the name of raising funds for their beloved horses.
Since the casino opened downtown, the Mounted Unit has had a presence on the square. Not only does it serve as a way to help deter crime, it is a great public relations coup for the Cleveland Police Department.
Sergeant Mark Medwid took over the unit about a year ago. He said, "Wherever the police come out on the horses the public comes out to talk to them."
This St. Patrick's Day parade they plan on having seven horses and riders and they haven't had that many horses in years.