• Dalton Vaughn works on his roping skills at the Roaming Roan arena with the help of David Withers.

Local arena opens doors for horse riding and roping enthusiasts

David and Jenna Withers are offering their personal arena to friends and the public to practice roping and barrel racing. 
“God gave us this place and we want to share it, we want to help the horse community however we can,” said Jenna.
The Withers moved to Linden in July 2016 when they found the perfect property, which had a horse arena on it. 
“Gary Boles, the previous owner, built the arena and then when we moved here it was completely covered in weeds, but that was one of the main selling points for us,” said David. 
Jenna added, “We had so many discussions over the years in what we wanted in a home, so we sat down and asked the family, ‘what do you want in your future home?’ -- Bella said she wanted a pool, David said ‘I want an arena’ and I said ‘I wanted some green.’” 
The Withers have three children, Liam, 20, Bella, 14 and Jocelyne, 4. 
During the day David works at home as an IT consultant, but in the afternoon, he loves to have people out to the Roaming Roan arena to ride horses and rope steers. They don’t give lessons at the arena but will help beginners and anyone willing to learn.
“We don’t teach but we help newer ropers out and since I am a newer roper, I know the fundamentals,” said David. 
“We have so many people that come here that are willing to give you pointers and talk to about your roping and they have been a huge help for all of us,” said Jenna.
David said, “That’s the beauty of the people who come out to the arena is, I can help people out who are getting started and tell them my mistakes as being a newer roper, because I can relate. And we have enough people with experience that if I don’t know then they can pitch in because they have more experience.”  
They don’t require people to pay to use the arena but they do appreciate donations because they rent the steers for roping purposes.
“Originally, we were charging and it seemed that it was making it cost prohibitive for some people that wanted to rope or maybe were thinking about roping,” said David. 
Jenna’s home town is Camp Verte, Ariz. and David’s is Temple City, Calif., but they have made Linden their home. 
They have had several events at the arena, such as a horseback Easter egg hunt, a horse and rider costume contest at Halloween and a charreada (Mexican rodeo). 
“We do pretty much anything with the arena to help the community,” said David. 
On Thursdays and Sundays, they have roping practice that starts around 7:30 p.m. and on Tuesdays they have a barrel and pole night and other activities. 
“We are open just about any night if people want to come out and ride,” said David. 
Many people use the arena if they are looking at buying a horse and need a place to test its skills and behaviors.
“They will come out here and try out the horses because it’s a neutral place, so they can see how the horse handles outside their barn,” said David.

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