The Stable Secretary Blog

StableSecretary Featured Subscriber: The Sanctuary at Red Bell Run

The Sanctuary at Red Bell Run is located in the foothills of western North Carolina surrounded by incredible views of the Blue Ridge Mountains. The property boasts 40 acres of vineyard and 200 acres of sanctuary that is home to over 150 special needs equines from miniature to draft horses. 


Mary Adams, president of the Red Bell Run Foundation, Inc. and avid horsewoman of 60 years, established the Sanctuary in Florida ten years ago. The Florida facility was a state-of-the-art rescue based on a modification of the Centralized Track System. When the Sanctuary moved to its current property in Columbus, North Carolina, the Florida facility was given to Hope Equine Rescue, Inc. 


The Sanctuary at Red Bell Run accepts animals in need from other equine 501(c)3 charitable organizations, law enforcement cases, and occasionally compassion placement for terminally ill owners.  “We provide a lifetime sanctuary for equines of all types who, with managed care, can have a good quality of life,” shared Mary. “I rode American Saddlebreds as a child, hunters as a young adult and have had nearly every breed from Tennessee Walking Horses to Andalusians. I love them all. They have been an integral part of my life and the Sanctuary at Red Bell Run is my way of giving back to the ones needing a soft landing.”


The Sanctuary began using StableSecretary five years ago after researching barn management tools and determining that StableSecretary offered all of the features they needed to operate efficiently. With so many equines on their property ranging in age, breed, and health needs, StableSecretary has been essential in helping staff and volunteers maintain meticulous health records for each animal. “Our largest equine is Shelby Ann, a 1500 pound Belgian draft mule and our smallest is Twinkle Little Star, a 100-pound dwarf miniature horse,” explained Mary. With such a drastic difference in nutritional and health needs between the residents, having records in one location that is easily accessible wherever a person is on the property is extremely helpful. 


The Sanctuary doesn’t only provide a loving home to equines though, it also boasts several community programs as well. The Reading with Rescues Program gives kids from kindergarten to 5th grade the opportunity to visit the rescue, complete horse-related crafts, read to the rescue horses and have educational interactions with them. Free educational tours of the facility are also available by appointment. Appointments can be made by contacting the office (828-863-2017) or visiting


When asked about the future goals of the Sanctuary at Red Bell Run, Mary explained that they want to continue to provide the best care possible to the equines at their facility, stating, “We are committed to giving our special needs equines the best possible life for however long that may be.”

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