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L.A.'s Griffith Park Pony Rides Shutting Down, Owner Blames Activists

UniqueThis 4 December 4, 2022

The Griffith Park Pony Rides and Petting Zoo operation is closing its doors for good, it seems after the City cut ties -- and the owner is blaming activists who've been on his ass.

Steve Weeks -- who's been running the place for years now -- broke the news this weekend on Facebook, writing ... "It is with much sadness that I announce that Griffith Park Pony Rides will be ceasing operations December 21, 2022. I have received a letter from Los Angeles Recreation and Parks stating that our contract will not be renewed."

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He adds, "After 74 years serving the children and parents of Los Angeles, this iconic institution will be closed forever by order of the City."

Weeks says this is a direct result of extremists who've been protesting his establishment for months, explaining ... "You have all followed our fight against these few radical animal rights activists. Despite our year long fight to answer the untrue statements of these individuals, our efforts were not heard. This was the city decision and not the pony rides choice."

As for what's to become of all the animals there -- which entail way more than just the ponies themselves -- Weeks says he's attempting to relocate them now. He writes, "In the days ahead I will be attempting to find forever homes for our many ponies. I am determined to find homes for our ponies with qualified horsepeople who will care as much about our ponies as I do. If you are interested in [providing] a home please message me."

GPPR has been open since 1948, and was a staple attraction for Los Angeles-area families for a long time. Kids could ride their ponies around their stables and track -- and they were able to get up close and personal with other livestock, like goats, sheep, bunnies, etc.

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In recent months, the establishment has been under siege by demonstrators and other parties who've accused the owners of mistreating the animals by forcing them to give rides in extreme heat during the summer -- among other claims of alleged animal abuse ... all of which Griffith Park Pony Rides has denied.

This even got to the L.A. City Council, who ordered a review of their business. It seems they found something was amiss, 'cause they're closing the place down -- apparently forever.