Greater Newark LifeCamp, providing children from Newark, NJ, with summer programs in the country, will be sole beneficiary of Event

Far Hills, NJ, December 8, 2016: The Board of Directors of the Mars Essex Horse Trials, Inc. (Essex) is pleased to announce that, as competition re-commences at this iconic area Event next year, proceeds will directly benefit Greater Newark LifeCamp – providing an enriching day camp experience for approximately 300 Newark-area youths, per day, for six weeks during the months of July and August.

The Life Camp movement began in 1887, when the original editor of LIFE Magazine founded the Life Fresh Air Fund to aid underprivileged, inner-city children by sending them to the country for fresh air and sunshine. The current mission of LifeCamp, Inc. is to empower children from Newark to succeed and excel in life by developing life skills, character and leadership through a summer enrichment program outside of an urban enriching day camp experience for approximately 300 Newark-area youths, per day, for six weeks during the months of July and August.

The LifeCamp campus, which first opened in 1923, is located in Pottersville, NJ. The site lies within a few miles of Essex’s new home at Moorland Farm in Far Hills and encompasses 90 acres of open fields, rolling hills and woodlands on the Lamington River. The rural campus provides an effective teaching environment and unique opportunity for children to stretch their talent and imagination in a way few other summer camp programs can match.

“We are so appreciative and grateful that LifeCamp is the beneficiary of the Mars Essex Horse Trials,” says Kathy Cree, LifeCamp Executive Director. “The LifeCamp experience makes a lasting, positive impression on our children and their future. The generosity of the Essex community will make a meaningful difference in the lives of our campers and their families.”

Ralph Jones, President of the Mars Essex Horse Trials, adds, “All of us involved with the upcoming Horse Trials are thrilled to begin this affiliation with LifeCamp. Its mission is clearly inspirational and we look forward to discovering ways that our organizations can work together to bring additional experiences to both LifeCamp campers and the Essex community.”

The 31st annual Mars Essex Horse Trials will return to the equestrian competition calendar June 24-25, 2017, after a 19-year hiatus. Essex will also move from its former site at the U.S. Equestrian Team in Gladstone, NJ, where it was last held in 1998 – relocating to the Moorland Farm Estate in Far Hills. At Moorland Farm, Essex will be the first equestrian event – apart from the Far Hills Race Meeting – to be held on the 230-acre property, situated at the crossroads of Somerset, Hunterdon and Morris counties.

Essex’s two days of scheduled competition offer far more than a strictly equestrian experience. This family- friendly weekend will also feature a classic car show, farm-to-table food court, the “Essex Market” – a high-end fashion and retail fair, picnicking, tailgating and an all-inclusive, premium two-day entertainment package with admission to the “Hoopstick Club,” adjacent to the Show-Jumping arena.

Essex’s revival is part of a strategic plan developed by community leaders and local equestrian organizations – including Far Hills Race Meeting Association, Inc. (FHRMA) and Gladstone Equestrian Organization (GEA) – whose goal is the revitalization and growth of high-level equestrian competitions, events and clinics in Somerset County and the surrounding region.

Mars, Inc., the original sponsor of the Essex Horse Trials, will once again be the competition’s Title Sponsor. Presenting Sponsors include Open Road Auto Group, Peapack-Gladstone Bank and RWJBarnabus Health.

For more information about the Mars Essex Horse Trials, visit


Lisa Mackintosh
Press Officer
Mars Essex Horse Trials