Changes are on the way for a popular Bradenton beach that allows horseback riders to stroll the shoreline. Some say the privilege is spoiling and soiling the scenic beach.
Bradenton city officials say complaints about horse waste on Palma Sola Causeway have surged over the past three months. The rising popularity of horseback riding along the beach is to blame for the pungent problem. In just one year, the number of companies offering horse rides has skyrocketed.
"Now there are three commercial enterprises, in addition to the citizens that are bringing their horses to ride there on their own," said Ingrid McClellan of Keep Manatee Beautiful.
City officials are now proposing putting up a handful of signs along the beach to remind riders to clean up after their animals. Pet waste signs and wastebaskets are already present at Palma Sola Causeway. The new signs would be specifically directed at horseback riders. If that doesn't work, city leaders say they may revoke the right to ride altogether. They're also trying to track down repeat offenders, who could face fines of up to $500 in litter law violations.
In the meantime, city workers are cleaning up any mess stuck in the sand. They say a little common courtesy will go a long way in preserving a coveted pastime.
"To see history and tradition lost at the Causeway, that would be a real shame to see that lost," McClellan said Tuesday.
Bradenton City Council will vote on whether or not to install up to ten signs along Palma Sola Causeway at a meeting on Wednesday morning.
FOX 13 / WTVT-TV
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