Dawn Duesler knows the healing power of a horse.
Duesler is vice president on the board of directors for HorsePower Therapeutic Riding in Maple Park, a nonprofit organization that provides therapeutic horseback riding lessons to children and adults with disabilities. Her daughter, who has Down syndrome, has greatly benefited from the program.
"It's made her more confident," Duesler said. "As a volunteer at HorsePower, I see the magic of how a horse makes a student respond to them. It's remarkable."
HorsePower also never turns away anyone because of their inability to pay, providing needy families with scholarships. To help HorsePower continue its work, the third annual Highway Life Music Festival will be held from 2 to 9 p.m. Saturday at Campton Township's Poynor Park, 6N098 Swanberg Road, St. Charles.
Campton Township as well as the villages of Campton Hills and Lily Lake and many local businesses are sponsoring the festival. Admission to the event is free, but proceeds will go to HorsePower Therapeutic Riding.
Local bands Majors Junction, The Western Sage and The Frizz will perform during the festival. Duesler's boyfriend, Matthew Janecek, is organizing the event and also fronts the band The Western Sage.
The festival also is a way to bring the community together.
"We're both teachers and we see the fast-paced world and how people need to sit back and take a breather and just enjoy life a little bit," Duesler said.
Janecek teaches in Glenbard District 87 and Duesler teaches first grade at Cambridge Lakes Charter School in Pingree Grove.
More information can be found on Facebook at @matthewjanecekmusic.