Philadelphia/ Parks & Nature
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Published on February 26, 2024
'Freeway' the Horse Captivates Philadelphia After I-95 Adventure and Inspires Namesake Video GameSource: Unsplash/ Lucas Santos

A horse that turned heads and hoofed it down I-95 earlier this week clinched its 15 minutes of fame and a fitting new moniker to boot. The steed, now dubbed 'Freeway' captured the internet's attention after bolting from Philadelphia's Fletcher Street Urban Riding Club and storming the interstate in an impromptu early morning gallop. According to CBS News Philadelphia, the horse's pit stop back at the club saw the local kids pick its new name, with '95 North' and 'Freeway' being the top contenders.

It wasn't just a run-of-the-mill name-selection process, as the young riders at the club held a horseshoe-throwing contest to determine the winner. 'Freeway' won out, a choice that club member Garvin deemed perfect. "We're all building a bond with the horse because he's a new horse," Garvin told Local 21 News. "And we want him to get used to people touching him, loving him, caring for him so he's a real fun guy." The nonprofit isn't sure how Freeway made his break for it and suggested vandalism could be a culprit. In the face of this wild escape, they're beefing up security to ensure it doesn't happen again.

Meanwhile, in a collision of equestrian antics and digital satire, Philly's newest four-legged celebrity has inspired a side-scrolling video game dubbed 'Horse 95'. It sends a virtual version of Freeway on a less risky dash down the Interstate while players dodge traffic cones and fuel up on Wawa coffee. "Fortunately, the horse that the game is based on was not harmed during its escape," states an article by Escapist Magazine. The game, although simplistic in nature, has turned the horse’s escapade into an interactive experience for locals and beyond.

Ferrell, founder of the Fletcher Street Urban Riding Club, expressed relief over the outcome of the unconventional jaunt. "I was thankful that he didn't get hurt and I'm thankful he didn't cause no accidents," Ferrell said, per an interview with Local 21 News. The club is using the incident and newfound viral fame to highlight free riding opportunities for kids and celebrate the history of Black horsemen in Philadelphia.