Finding the good in the seemingly all bad about TIEC

Published 8:00 am Wednesday, July 11, 2018

For weeks, I struggled with my annoyance with Tryon International Equestrian Center. 

I looked long and hard for the reason it caused me so much aggravation, but never found it. In the looking, however, I found something else — I discovered how unique our town is.

Polk County is a microcosm of very different people: locals mixed with transplants from the North, South, East and West.  Diversity is everywhere, but there’s a common trait that abounds — charitability. 

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People donate their time, money, property and skills to help abused women, hungry children, the disabled, abandoned animals — the list goes on.  Polk is an extremely kind and generous county. 

You might think the annoyance with TIEC came down to the sharp contrast between the intrusion of the extremely wealthy outsiders on the not-so-wealthy generous town folk.

However, that’s not the case, due to my epiphany the other night.

My husband and I went to TIEC to watch the Belmont Stakes on the giant screen. Along with thousands of people from the community, we witnessed Justify defy the doubters and cheered along as if we were at the real deal.

The night continued with the grand prix jumping, live music, mechanical horse, merry-go-round, pony rides and more. 

Why am I complaining when all these people are getting to spend quality time together in a safe environment, for free, on a regular basis?  Where else can you find that these days?

Maybe TIEC is just what this town needed — a gift to the kind and generous people of Polk County.

I’m not denying people near the venue, myself included, are being hit hard by the higher taxes, heavier traffic and noise, but I’m hopeful things will work out for the best.

What I’m reminded of here is that things are not always what they appear to be, and that everything isn’t always about me.

In this case, both things make me happy. 

Pam Gordon,