Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

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Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

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Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

Spring/Summer 2021

Emilie Goddard




in every issue 7 From the Publisher 9 Your Letters

24 Farms 42 Horsepeople 54 Horse Logic

Amber Wilmore-Hurley

10 Feature: Manure Happens


60 Trail Guides 74 Grand Prix Guidance 77 Overherd 82 Above the Bar 86 Partners 95 This Olde Horse

122 Directory

Stacey Stearns

98 Events Calendar

60 Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021




vol. 1, no. 1 Spring/Summer 2021 99 Bissell Road, Williamsburg, MA 01096

ISSN 2766-5011 PRINT; 2766-502X ONLINE •

phone: (413) 268-3302

Community Horse is owned and operated by Community Horse Media LLC and is an all-breed, all-discipline equestrian publication for Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island. © 2021 Community Horse All rights reserved, including the right to reproduce this magazine or portions thereof in any form without prior written permission.

publisher Stephanie Sanders • • (413) 268-3302 editor Kathaleen Emerson public liaisons Sally L. Feuerberg . (203) 339-0357, Lara Rudowski . (860) 841-9070, feature writers Mark R. Baus, DVM, Nicole Birkholzer, Sally L. Feuerberg, Sean T. Hogan, Esq Alessandra Mele, Kara Noble, Lara Rudowski, Stacey Stearns contributors Deborah Blagg, Judy Bosco, Brittany Adams Photography, Kathy Diemer, Allison Forsyth, Emilie Goddard Meghan Hamilton, Bentley David Hammond, Katie Hylen, Becky Kalagher, Jeanne Lewis Images Suzy Lucine, Lori Mahassel, Christine Mard, Debbie Martin, Diane Merritt, Kat Morning, Annamaria Paul Jeanna Pellino, PGriffin Photography, Lucy Prybylski, Tess Richards, Becca Rose, Jane Salko Howard Schatzberg, MaryAnn Smith, Scott Smith, Ruth Strontzer, Amber Wilmore-Hurley Tracy Van Buskirk, Elizabeth Vars, Kevin Vitali, Kara Waldron-Murray advertising & questions main office • (413) 268-3302 •

Erin and Sean ©Katie Upton,

Community Horse is printed with soy-based ink on recycled paper.

the fine print The views and opinions expressed are not necessarily those of the Community Horse staff or independent contractors, nor can they be held accountable. Community Horse will not be held responsible for any misrepresentations or any copyright infringement on the part of advertisers. Community Horse will not be held responsible for typing errors other than a correction in the following issue. All letters addressed to Community Horse, its publisher, editor, and staff are assumed for publication. Photos, stories (verbal or printed), notifications, news items, and all other material that is submitted, including all materials and photos not specifically solicited by Community Horse, are assumed to be legally released by the submitter for publication. Community Horse assumes no responsibility for damage to or loss of material submitted for publication. Reasonable care will be taken to ensure the safety and return of all materials.


Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

From the Publisher


elcome to the inaugural issue

Want to read just the sections relating

of Community Horse! We’ve

to your state? The magazine is color coded

combined Massachusetts Horse

with purple representing a feature for all

and Connecticut Horse magazines and we’ve

three states, orange for Connecticut, blue

added Rhode Island to our coverage.

for Massachusetts, and green for Rhode

Community Horse is your source for

Island. Also look for your state’s icon in

everything equestrian in Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island! Published each spring and autumn, every issue features farms, horsepeople, and a comprehensive events calendar prepared exclusively for each state. In our directory, you’ll find a range of horse products, horse-related services, and equestrian businesses in our community. Each lead feature will be a topic that touches each horse owner and will be specific to our region. Every issue will have profiles of horsepeople — both professional and amateurs — and farms — backyard and large facilities — as well as a Trail Guide location for each state. You’ll hear from Horse Logic columnist Nicole Birkholzer as well as other professionals with advice to impart. We’ve moved to a smaller format to

Miniature horse Peanut halfway shed out in the spring grass at Pocketful of Ponies Farm.

make Community Horse easy to take with you and to tuck into your truck’s door

the upper left corner of the first page of a

pocket. Every page is now full color and


the paper is a joy to touch. (I say this as a paper connoisseur!) This Olde Horse is a spotlight that will include a photo from each state. Check

As we come out of a long winter and pandemic, I for one am happy to see the birds returning and the flowers poking up through the soil. Happy Spring!

the Is This Your Horse? contest in the back of each issue to see if you’ve won! Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021



Insurance for All Your Equine Needs Farm & Equine . Equine Mortality Horse Owners Liability Our agents have been serving the equine community for a combined 50+ years. Call Richard, Wendy, John, and Cliff for a competitive quote with one of our many equine insurance carriers.

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Your Letters To the Editor: Congratulations on Community Horse! I’m so excited to see you expanding into Rhode Island. Your publications are completely unique and share the people, places, and ideas of the horse world that are usually unseen. You are doing an amaz-

To the Editor:

ing job creating community and truly

The article in the Connecticut Horse November/December 2020 issue on Hoary Alyssum and Other Poisonous

changing lives with your work. Thank you for all you do! Carrie Brady, Possibilities Farm, Wilton, CT

Weeds provided excellent information! If anyone would like more information on plants that could be dangerous to horses, Dr. Deb Bennett has published a very thorough and well-illustrated guide,

Poison Plants in the Pasture: A Horse Owner’s Guide, which can be purchased at

To the Editor: I've been engrossed in reading

Massachusetts Horse for the past three hours! As always, your magazine is chockfull of interesting articles and photos. Marcheterre Fluet, Petersham, MA Jean Morrison, Chaplin, CT

Let us know your thoughts!

We’ll enter you to win a $75 Cheshire Horse gift card! All letters received by August 5 will be entered in the drawing. Send your letters to: or Community Horse, 99 Bissell Rd., Williamsburg, MA 01096.

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


Manure Happens

Emilie Goddard

Here’s What to Do About It

by Alessandra Mele


elting snow and ice in early March is one of the most glorious sights a horse owner can gaze on. Glorious indeed: that is, until a winter’s worth of manure slowly begins to surface. You thought you were diligent, scouting frozen buns with your metal pitchfork as yet another fresh coat of snow magically absolved the barnyard of all impurities — but no. Soggy pile after soggy pile cruelly reveals your manuremanagement shortcomings. Hibernating horse poo can be a big springtime letdown, leaving many of us knee-deep in you know what. Although it’s particularly potent in spring, manure is a year-round side effect of horse ownership, and managing the mess is a constant responsibility. Consistent mucking and a good disposal plan are essential for the health, wellness, and happiness of everyone in and around your barn and is a daily priority. There are a few ways to approach the poop problem, and understanding what will work best for your barn will help prevent manure mayhem.


Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

Daily Management The average horse produces 40 pounds of manure a day. That’s 280 pounds a week, 1,200 pounds month, and 14,600 pounds a year. That’s a lot of manure — and what if you have more than one horse? If that output is neglected for just one day, the consequences literally start to pile up. A reliable pitchfork and a hardy wheelbarrow are the weapons of choice heading into the daily manure battle: they’re the essentials for routine stall and paddock cleaning. The number of horses and the available space will determine how often you are mucking, but horses that live in stalls and small paddocks must have their quarters cleaned at least once a day; twice is better. The daily muck should address all manure in a horse’s area, as well as urinesoaked shavings. This is particularly important because buildup of urine releases ammonia fumes, which are harmful to a horse’s lungs. Bedding can make or break the ease of the mucking process, so consider it carefully. Starting with good-quality stall

mats will significantly cut down on the number of times you need to strip the stalls, and will prevent you having to dig to China when you must accomplish a big cleanout. (Plus, they create a stable, comfortable surface on which your horse stands and snoozes.) There are a few options for the bedding you spread on top of the mats, each with its own costs and benefits. Perhaps the most common is pine shavings, which provide excellent absorption, high comfort, and a lovely fragrance. Dust can be a drawback here, and becomes a greater issue as the shavings get finer. Straw is fairly inexpensive and also comfortable, but is less absorbent and typically requires more maintenance.

Hibernating horse poo can be a big springtime letdown, leaving many of us knee-deep in you know what. Wood pellets specifically made for horse bedding, a newer option, cut down a manure pile but require some additional preparation and maintenance. The pellets are broken down into sawdust by a horse’s hooves and the moisture they absorb. They are super absorbent; often people will spray them with water before putting them in the stall in order to facilitate the breaking-down process. Removing manure and urine is easy, and the amount of bedding going into your manure pile will be significantly less. Footing in the paddocks also has a big impact on your mucking process, particularly because it will either add to or help control the mud factor. Mud and manure go hand in hand, building off each other. Whenever you cut down on mud, you’re improving your horse’s living conditions and making the manure situation more manageable. Footing is key; high-traffic areas and small paddocks need the support of mud-averse materials. Stone dust makes a particularly good footing because it drains moisture well. It

doesn’t mix with manure and remains sturdy underfoot. Sand and wood chips also handle moisture well and reduce mud. Laying down a geotextile fabric below whatever footing you choose is a good idea, as it prevents the formation of mud by keeping soil out of the mix. One more crucial item to consider in your daily manure-management practice is placement of the pile. Pay attention to regulations that dictate how far manure must be from your neighbor’s land and from a water source. Creating runoff, foul odor, or contamination that goes beyond your property line is an offense you don’t want to commit, for the sake of being a good neighbor, a steward of the earth, and a responsible horse owner. Finding an isolated and well-contained but accessible area is of the utmost importance for the workflow of your farm, and for the health and happiness of everyone around it.

Composting You may not realize it yet, but the manure that’s piling up all around you has value. “Black gold,” as you may hear an old farmer call it, composted horse manure is some of the best fertilizer nature has to offer. There are many farmers and gardeners out there who will pay good money for the stuff, or, if you keep it for yourself, you’ll harvest the benefits in the form of exquisite homegrown veggies. Composting is a simple, time-honored practice that turns manure piles into usable fertilizer. “Based on the number of phone calls and emails I receive from people who want to learn more about composting, I believe it’s becoming quite popular,” says Masoud Hashemi, Extension Professor at the Stockbridge School of Agriculture at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Masoud focuses on sustainable farming and specializes in plant and soil sciences. He has published various studies on composting, and regards raw horse manure as some of the best fertilizer there is. “The problem with using horse manure as a fertilizer isn’t the Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


manure itself; it’s the bedding that’s mixed in with it,” he says. “Horse manure mixed with bedding must be composted before it’s added to a garden or field.” Carbon-based bedding materials, usually wood shavings and sawdust, upset the formula microorganisms need to break down the organic matter. “Microorganisms require carbon as a source of energy and nitrogen as a source of protein. It’s important to maintain a balanced ration of carbon and nitrogen, ideally about twenty carbons to one nitrogen,” Masoud says. “Manure mixed with bedding contains too much carbon: a ratio of about five hundred to one. This causes the microorganisms to draw far too much nitrogen from the soil in an effort to balance — and they’re very competitive! They’ll leave no nitrogen behind for plants, which will likely die from the deficiency, so we need to compost as a means of balancing the ratio of carbon to nitrogen.” The ingredients essential for successful composting are food, water, air, and proper temperature. “There’s plenty of

food; don’t worry about that,” Masoud says. The microorganisms are eating all the abundant organic matter you’ve provided. “Moisture is usually easy to manage,” he says, “but important to monitor. If you

There are a few ways to approach the poop problem, and understanding what will work best for your barn will help prevent manure mayhem. take a handful of your material and squeeze it, it should dampen your hand but no water should come out. Temperature should also be monitored: microorganisms operate best in temperatures between 130 and 150 degrees Fahrenheit,” he says. “Oxygen is what makes the process a little bit difficult,” Masoud says. Compost must be consistently aerated to accelerate


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Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

courtesy of Meghan Hamilton

the decomposition process, typically by turning over the pile with a shovel or a tractor. “The more frequently you turn, the quicker the process goes and the better the results,” he says. “However, not many people have time to physically turn the pile upwards of two times a week. An alternative method is to install a perforated PVC pipe below the composting matter, which is attached to a small air pump. It’s only necessary for the pump to run one minute of each hour to properly aerate.” The pipe and pump, for what’s called static aeration, are reasonabley simple to install and energy efficient — and save a lot of grunt work. Masoud recommends organizing compost into a system of either piles or bins. Each system can be tailored to the space and equipment available and the number of horses you have. “Piles about ten feet long, four feet wide, and three feet high are an ideal size,” he says. “One pile works fine for someone with one or two horses; the pile grows as material is continuously added to the tops and sides.” A continuous three-pile system — one pile for adding fresh manure, a second that’s in the process of composting, and a third that contains the finished product — is also a good solution. Over time, material shifts as part of the turning process. Trash bins can be employed similarly for a system that’s more contained and mobile. “Bins with wheels on the bottom can easily be taken to the barn to collect manure and then wheeled out,” Masoud says. “For aeration, put holes in the bottom of the bins through which a PVC pipe and air pump can be utilized, as with the piles.” There’s certainly a host of ways to create compost, as long as the moisture, oxygen, temperature, and carbon-tonitrogen ratio are maintained. Meghan Hamilton, owner of Sleepy Hollow Farm in North Dartmouth and a longtime proponent of composting, recently gave her pile system a face-lift. “I’ve been composting since I was a kid growing up on the family dairy farm,

The compost system at Sleepy Hollow Farm in North Dartmouth, owned by Meghan Hamilton,

and I’ve even taken classes in composting,” she says. “I’m very conscious of how we manage our property because space is limited; we have just under five acres of land with thirteen to fifteen horses at any time.” Meghan kept a three-pile system active for years and was producing highquality compost, but a few years ago she

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


How do you dispose of manure? We use ours for compost for our gardens and our neighbors use it for theirs as well. I continue to pick my paddocks in the winter, which prevents a huge buildup in the spring. Any excess manure is brought to the town compost pile. Horse manure is fantastic for growing a green lawn! —Shannon O’Neill, Hanover, MA I pick the barn twice daily, paddocks daily, and pasture weekly to help control parasites and to minimize flies and odors. The manure is then kept under cover in a three-sided shed and removed monthly by a local farmer for her fields. This keeps rain and snow from creating manure “tea” runoff into local wetlands. Jocelyn Sloaner, Bristol, RI Our manure is taken away once a month. We also start a smallish pile in early spring for friends’ gardens. We clean all turnouts daily and have worked hard on footing, packed stone dust and sand added. —Jennifer Knox Kruzel, Whitman, MA I compost and spread on my vegetable and flower gardens. I take small amounts and put it in black plastic bags. It breaks down faster this way. When I use sawdust, I spread it on my trails on my property. (You can’t do this with shavings because it will not break down well at all.) –Susan Oliveira, Rehoboth, MA Years ago barns were built with consideration for manure disposal. There were floor openings where it could be dumped or swept [into a truck or spreader parked below]. I was amazed visiting a distant cousin in Italy a few years ago to find that his new barn had the same setup. So easy to drop it into a spreader today! —Sylvia Zalla, Andover, MA Composting makes good “neigh”bors! Once you get a colony of worms, they make quick work of the pile. Covering fresh manure with a sprinkling from another section keeps odors down and keeps the worms well fed. Then, letting neighbors come and take what they want for their gardens. –ShawnaLee Waterbury Kwashnak, New Haven, CT We use sleds to pick the paddocks in winter — so much easier to maneuver through the snow than a wheelbarrow. We sometimes get strange looks when someone new sees our method but everyone is sold after even a quick cleaning session. —Erica Damon, Northampton, MA


Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

came across a system in a magazine that she realized could make her operation even better. “When I read about O2Compost Systems, I thought, ‘Wow, this is brilliant!’ It’s a totally new approach to an old system,” she says. An environmental consulting firm out of Washington state, O2Compost specializes in designing aerated compost systems, similar to the static-aeration method Masoud described. “The system we had installed is basically four stalls, with concrete floors and roofs that cover the piles. Aerated chutes run through the concrete and forced air regulated by a cycle timer blows out,” Meghan says. “It enables us to control moisture and air, and ultimately makes the compost cook faster. We just got it up and running in November, and are very impressed!” Meghan was able to install the system with the help of a federal grant, and she encourages other farm owners to explore this possibility. “The grant we got was through the Agricultural Environmental Enhancement Program [AEEP],” she says. “We received twenty-five thousand dollars to fund this project. There are a lot of resources out there for equestrian farmers that most people don’t really know about. It’s always worth doing some research and learning what your options are.”

Spreading Another way to recycle all that manure is to spread it directly over your land. Investing in a manure spreader can be a great solution for horse owners with a lot of pastureland. Millcreek Manufacturing, in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, has been producing quality compact spreaders for horsepeople since 1985. “In the late eighteen hundreds, farmers realized that the traditional method of standing on a wagon and pitching manure from it into fields was woefully inefficient, not to mention backbreaking,” says Tracie Noel, a representative of Millcreek. “The original manure spreaders developed to address this problem were made of wood, but today’s far more durable models are metal, ranging from

galvanized to stainless steel. Spreaders can be ground-driven, with the motion of a spreader’s wheels engaging the gears, or PTO-driven from a tractor.” Tracie describes spreading as a solution that brings efficiency and purpose to manure management, as it removes the pile from the picture. “Piles are often breeding grounds for vermin and flies,” she says, “both of which can spread disease. Runoff can contaminate water sources, and local regulations may actually prohibit manure piles or strictly regulate their construction and maintenance. If you situate your manure pile far away from the barn, you’re faced with trundling a wheelbarrow or carrying muck buckets a great distance from the stalls. “Bringing a manure spreader into the barn makes stall cleaning much faster and easier. It ends the wheelbarrow battle,” she says, “and ends the manure pile problem, too.” Convenience is a benefit here, but what spreading will do for your land is its ultimate reward.

“The second advantage of manure spreading is the immediate source of free fertilizer,” says Tracie. “When properly spread on fields and pastures, horse manure is an excellent source of nutrients, such as nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorus, for soil and plants. The action of a manure spreader breaks the material into small pieces, which dry out quickly, are more easily incorporated into vegetation, and are less hospitable to parasites. Increasing organic matter improves the soil structure and water-holding capacity as well.” Although manure is a breeding zone for harmful parasites, such as strongyles and ascarids, spreading it raw where your horses graze can be done safely, but only at the right time of year and in the right climate. Professor Martin Nielson, DVM, of the University of Kentucky, who specializes in equine parasitology, cautions against spreading manure in moist, warm weather, especially on pasture that’s being actively grazed: distributing it all over the

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grass would leave horses unable to avoid the manure, as they’re naturally inclined to do. Ideal manure-spreading conditions are hot and dry, on fields that are at rest for a few weeks. Larvae won't thrive in the heat, and will likely die before horses can ingest them and thus perpetuate the life cycle. Spreading is a great way to fertilize your pastures, but be sure to time it carefully. The amount of spreadable land you have is key. “A good rule of thumb is that one acre of land will handle the manure from one or two horses, depending on their size,” Tracie says. Avoid spreading too thickly if wood shavings are in the mix: remember the magic ratio? Nitrogen depletion from the wood can damage the pasture. Selecting the right spreader for your operation is also critical. Tracie says bigger is usually better. “No one ever says, ‘Gee, I wish I’d bought a smaller spreader,’ ” she says, laughing. “Spreader manufacturers should have a table outlin-

ing the capacity of their machines, by wheelbarrow load or bushels. You can’t go wrong sizing up, as a larger spreader just means faster loading and a shorter trip around the field to spread.” But, she says, “Don’t forget to take into consideration the width of your barn doors, aisles, and possibly stall doors if you plan to bring the spreader directly to stalls.” “Size affects cost,” says Tracie, “but it’s important to think long term. One type of spreader might be less expensive up front, but if it’s difficult to use, can’t do what you need it to, or doesn’t last long, your initial savings will disappear when you have to buy a new one in just a few years. Quality design, materials, and construction are worth the investment.” Ease of use, maintenance requirements, and additional features are other aspects to weigh as you choose your spreader.

Removal Services Another way to say good-bye to horse poop is to hire a removal company that

Containerized Manure Removal Containers from 4 to 30 cubic yards . Farms with one horse to 100!

Associated Refuse supplies manure removal containers in Fairfield, New Haven, and Litchfield Counties in CT, Westchester and Putnam Counties in NY Our container sizes range as follows 4, 6, 10, 12, 15, 20, and 30 cubic yards. Please inquire about delivery and pickup guidelines as well as service area.

Newtown, Connecticut 203-426-8870 18

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

will haul manure regularly. A manureremoval service is a great resource any for anyone with horses; it takes a lot of the work — and the stress — out of dealing with the ever-growing pile. Mitrano Removal, in Shirley, Massachusetts, is a solid-waste and recycling company that offers complete manure removal to local horse farms of any size. Says owner and president Matt Mitrano, “Removal is neat and clean, and is handled on a frequent basis. We can provide both large and small horse farms with a program that suits individual needs.” He emphasizes that it can be a particular boon for farms that are tight on space: “We’ve found that a lot of the barns in the areas we service don’t have the fields or the extra room to handle a lot of manure,” he says, “so removal has become a great option for them.” It also eliminates some of the concerns these farms have about local ordinances. “Because manure-storage regulations have become stricter and

stricter,” Matt says, “whether it’s regarding location or how long you can store it, having the container service is a solution that takes away a lot of that worry.” Mitrano Removal offers two plans for manure removal. “We can provide roll-off containers that are placed on a permanent basis and are emptied as needed,” says Matt. “For some of the larger barns, we’ll be there every week to empty the containers, or sometimes even twice a week. Smaller barns may go as long as three or four months with a smaller container, or call as they need service.” Alternatively, barns can store the manure without a container and still receive full-service removal. “The other option is pile removal,” Matt says. “For barns that have the room to store three to six months’ worth of manure, we can come in with a machine and haul the material off for them.” It then goes to be turned into that black gold. “We have our own composting facility,” says Matt. “We bring all the

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manure to it, then create a straight compost — we mix the manure with other organic waste — and we make a landscape mulch with some of it as well.” Fred LeMay is a Nutmeg State native who’s been hauling horse manure since 1992. “In the hauling business, I’ve learned that everyone’s needs and requirements are different,” says Fred. “For big barns, I have a suitable container along with single-day, weekend, weekly, or regular scheduled service available.” Fred has containers ranging from 10 to 40 yards to fit your needs. “If you have a small farm of four horses or more, I have smaller trucks and containers ready for your use too. Whatever size you need, we’ll drop it off for you to fill, and you call us when you’re ready for pick up. It’s as easy as that.” Fred travels to Connecticut, New York, and Massachusetts, and the manure does not have to be in the container. He will also come and take a pre-existing pile. “I’m always looking for new manure customers, so if you have a pile of it, I can utilize it,” says Fred.

What does he do with all this manure? In 2000, Fred developed Agrimix Mulch — a compost mulch with the ability to retain moisture for plants and slowly release its nutrients to the roots of plants. It’s made from locally sourced farm manure, and contains no dyes or chemicals. As for its beauty, it gets its rich dark color from the composting process. And, as for the science part, it’s composted properly with temperatures reaching 160 degrees to ensure weed seed kill with PH ranges from 6.5 to 7.5. Agrimix Mulch naturally contains nitrogen and phosphorus, unlike wood chips, which pull nitrogen from plants and soil when they break down, robbing plants of nutrients. As for the functionality part, Agrimix Mulch is formulated with essential nutrients for optimum plant growth. “I do test my mulch,” says Fred. “I go out of my way to make a better product with essential nutrients for plant sustainability. There are no chemicals, fertilizers, or dyes.” “Agrimix Mulch is available in bulk deliveries,” says Fred. “Contact me and I’ll

Since 1986

Routine Field Surgeries Reproductive Services

Joint Injections

Lab Work

Pre-purchase Exams

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Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

tell you where you can get that two yards you’re really looking for.” MANURE ISN’T WHAT we’d call a fun part of horse ownership, but why not embrace the challenge? Whether you want to create compost to improve your garden’s bounty, fertilize the pasture to provide your horses the greenest graze, or support a local business that values and recycles the stuff, productive solutions for horse manure abound. So this spring, don’t just manage manure — celebrate its possibilities!


Alessandra Mele is a freelance writer and designer in Wilbraham. She enjoys spending time with the horses on her family’s farm, especially riding her Quarter Horse, JoJo. To see more of her work, visit

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Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021



Twin Bays Stable Where the Magic Happens


by Sally L. Feuerberg

The location that Twin Bays Stable now calls home will forever hold a special place in my heart. It was here that my childhood dreams of learning to ride became a reality. Mind you, that was many years ago, but it remains a place I regard with nostalgic reverence, no matter what name has been associated with it in years past. The fact that the site now represents a dream come true

for Kim Mulligan, Twin Bays Stable’s owner and head trainer, only further enhances the allure and my enduring affection for this farm. When I arrived at Twin Bays Stable in Easton for my interview with Kim, I headed over to the lower barn. I knew there would be horses there, so it was a good place to start. Kim’s dog, Reese, was resting at the bottom of the small hill leading up to the indoor arena with the attached larger barn. Reese was wearing a jacket styled like a mini horse blanket, because, even though the sun was out, the air had taken on that late January chill that New Englanders are all too familiar with. She happily wagged her tail and decided to join me as the stable’s official escort. It was nice to be back. 24

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

As I walked in, the barn smelled of clean shavings and that glorious scent of horses. Horses contentedly munched on hay in their stalls on either side of the freshly cleaned aisle. I met Kim at the end of the barn aisle busily working in the wash stall. I told her the place looks wonderful and congratulated her on her new

acquisition. Although this was the first time I’d actually met Kim in person, I immediately felt at ease with her, and of course, completely comfortable in the familiar surroundings. As we toured the farm, I asked my questions.

CH: You’ve only been at your new location since early December. How are you, your staff, and your horses settling in? Kim: At first, there’s always that feeling of awkwardness where routines and patterns are changing every moment. But, little by little, I can make the changes that I’ve always wanted in a facility but couldn’t because I wasn’t the owner. The clients and the horses have all had positive feedback on their new accommodations. And this is just the beginning.

CH: What do you consider the best features of your new location? Kim: For the winter, one of the best features is the indoor arena. It’s a very comfortable size for multiple riders, with excellent lighting and a heated viewing area. And our horses appreciate the brand-new footing. As the weather warms up, we will move out to the outdoor arena, which is fully lighted and will have the same upgrade on the footing. We also have a nice grass field for those who want a break from the ring. For those who want to venture out into the woods, the trails throughout the property will be groomed and maintained.

CH: Can you tell us about some of the other amenities and opportunities for riders? Kim: We have 30 large stalls that are set up for maximum comfort for the horses. We have multiple wash stalls and the tack rooms in the upper and lower barns are heated. We offer full-service options including grooming, tacking, and aftercare for clients with busy schedules or multiple horses. We offer opportunities for clients to compete at the local, regional, and national level. They can compete in everything from Junior Hunters, High Child/Adult Jumpers, and Children’s Hunters to Adult Equitation, NEHC Medal, National Hunter Derbies, and everything in between. We’ve brought young riders up from Short Stirrup division through Big Eq, and we’ve helped adults get back in the saddle and into the show ring, if interested, even after decades off.

CH: Twin Bays Stable will be starting a new lesson program in the spring. What will the program offer, and what age range and level of rider would that cover? Will lesson horses be available? Kim: The lesson program is designed to be for beginner riders, whether kids or adults. We’ll be sourcing and investing in quality lesson horses/ponies that can assist our trainers in teaching the fundamentals to those who want to pursue

riding as a full-time hobby or serious competition. We’re creating an IEA team as well, which will provide an opportunity for riders to compete in team and individual competitions without the worry of owning their own horse.

CH: Can you tell us a little about your staff? Kim: My barn manager, Rory Gallagher, has been with me since I started Twin Bays Stable in 2005. He’s been an integral part of the operation. Rory lives on the property to ensure the safety and wellbeing of the animals. He enjoys and has a passion for teaching beginner adults. We’ve several other grooms that Rory oversees on a daily basis. With this new location, Rod Lopez is joining our operation. Rod’s a lifelong horseman from Long Island with extensive riding and showing experience. He has owned and operated his own farms.

CH: It seems that horses have always been part of your life, but how did it all start? Kim: My mom enjoyed pleasure riding with a few of her friends growing up. When I was very, very young, the first house I lived in had a few horses at the end of our street. My mom would take me on walks down the street to see the horses. I started taking lessons once a week at the age of eight. After a time, my mom started taking lessons. When I got to high school, we bought my first horse. He was a great, safe Quarter Horse that could jump up to 2’9”. We shared him until I went to college and then she took over the rides on him. My mom enjoyed going on hunter paces with friends. She’s been a huge supporter my whole career and is at almost all my competitions to watch and cheer me on. When I first started riding, we didn’t have the money to have a fancy horse and go to weekly shows. I had to work on weekends and clean stalls a few times a week to help pay for lessons, one-day shows and equipment. After college, I took a year off before graduate school. I worked at a place where they bred and backed the babies, and trained them for Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


either racing or showjumping. This is how I was able to buy young horses to bring along to do some of the levels I wanted to do. One of those horses was Butterfly Rouge; I’ve taken him to Grand Prix. When I was younger, I’d always dreamed of doing a Grand Prix, but never thought it would ever happen. After years and years of hard work, it finally paid off!

CH: What are your plans for Twin Bays Stable in the future? How would you like it see it to evolve and develop? Kim: My vision for this farm, along with all my associates involved in the operation, is to create a farm environment that can bring horse and rider from beginner stages to big stages at the top horse shows in the country. I’ve been blessed to pursue my passion and dreams of riding at the highest level of competitions. I want nothing more than to share my knowledge with those who share my passion. My success is a result of true dedication to the sport while maintaining the highest levels of ethics and integrity.

Our mission is to create a high-level training facility. We plan on expanding our current horse show schedule to accommodate the desires and needs of our customers. We also plan to upgrade the lesson program to better represent our commitment to riding. Quality training is increasingly hard to find. Our credentials and background within the horse community make us highly qualified to train both horse and rider. But above all else, we want to create an environment to pursue our collective riding dream. We’re all truly fortunate to be able to ride our horses and our desire is to provide the very best atmosphere to live out our love of horses. THROUGHOUT MY ENTIRE visit I was impressed with Kim’s rapport with her clients and their horses, and touched by the genuine heartfelt connection she had with her own horses. Her tenderness, loving care, and loyalty are exemplary. Boarder Stacy Gendels speaks highly of Kim. “I don’t know who likes Kim more,

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horse or human,” says Stacy. “Kim is an incredibly talented rider, and an experienced professional trainer. When Kim does a training ride on your horse, magic happens. She can fix, or work with most challenges. Kim is also a wonderful instructor who is not judgmental, and is accepting of all abilities. Her good and kind care is always her priority. Any horse, or rider is lucky to train with Kim.” It was getting late, and Kim was in the arduous process of organizing all the elements necessary for the stable’s upcoming trip to Ocala. As we said our goodbyes and walked back to my car, I couldn’t help but reminisce on how many of my happiest memories were made here. For Kim and me, this farm is proof that dreams do come true. And for Kim, this is just the beginning. y Sally L. Feuerberg is the president of the Middlebury Bridle Land Association and a longtime resident of Newtown. Trail riding and continuing her lesson programs are her passions, along with the care of her family, horses, and farm.

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The Common Stables A Growing Community

by Kara Noble

The Common Stables is a small, familyoriented equestrian center located in Sutton, a town with a history that predates the American Revolution. The farm offers boarding, leasing, and group and private lessons for riders of all ages and abilities. Kate Funari, owner, manager, and riding instructor at The Common Stables, recently spoke with Community Horse writer Kara Noble about the farm and its programs.

CH: How did you get started working with horses?

CH: Your farm is in a very historic area. What’s the history of the farm itself?

For the first six months I had him, I didn’t have a saddle, so I rode him bareback. I think I got a lot of my riding skills from going out bareback on him every single day. A year later, my parents got me my second horse, Stonewall, a two-year-old Quarter Horse. Stonewall and I grew up together and he helped me gain more riding and training skills. He started my love for training and teaching. When I turned 18, I started working full-time in my family’s construction company and put my riding on hold. Stonewall started having behavioral issues, so I brought him to a professional trainer. Working with

Kate: The Common Stables is on Boston Road, the old road between Sutton and Boston. The farmhouse at The Common Stables — the house where I live — was built in the 1700s, and from 1764 to 1785 it was owned by John Hancock, who signed the Declaration of Independence and served as the first governor of Massachusetts. We’re right in the center of town. We can see the town common and its gazebo from the farm. That’s where I got the name The Common Stables. Its location is unique. 30

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

Kate: I don’t come from a horse family, but I was one of those girls who was always interested in horses. My dad had always promised me a horse, and I got my first one from a neighbor here in town and started taking riding lessons when I was 10 years old. The horse was a retired world champion calf roper named Ebony.

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the trainer and Stonewall deepened my love for working with horses, and I decided I wanted to make horses my career.

CH: When did you open The Common Stables and how would you describe your facility? Kate: I became a licensed riding instructor in 2019 and we opened The Common Stables in 2020. We renovated part of our four-story antique barn, which gave us big, bright stalls. Right now, we have eight horses on the farm, but we’ve got room for twelve horses, so I’d love to see a few more boarders. The farm has about 17 acres, including lots of pasture, which the horses and the boarders love. We’ve got an outdoor riding ring and a round pen. We also have plans to build an indoor arena and another barn on the property in the future. We offer full board and semi-rough board, with experienced, knowledgeable staff on the property day and night. We


Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

want to give our boarders peace of mind. One of our happy boarders is Jenna Zaccarino. “I’ve boarded at quite a few different facilities,” Jenna says, “but none like The Common Stables. Not only is it incredibly beautiful, but Kate goes above and beyond to provide exceptional care. She is knowledgeable, compassionate, and dedicated to each horse. I never worry about my mare. That’s truly priceless.”

CH: How is your lesson program structured and what are your teaching goals? Kate: We are working to provide an atmosphere for people who want to ride for fun. There’s a big need for that in the area. Specifically, we want to create opportunities for the kids to have a good time, to get closer to each other in the barn, to become friends. To help with that, we hope to be able to offer more group activities, maybe a summer camp and a pony pals group, in the future. Every student should feel valued, and

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the bond between horse and rider is an integral part of learning and building confidence. Teaching methods are tailored to each student’s needs and interests to help them reach their goals. I currently have 20 students. A few of my students are adults, but most are kids. I go out of my way to make lessons friendly, positive, and reassuring, I start with an assessment ride to determine ability and confidence levels, and then go from there. When students first come to the barn, many of them have no idea whether they want to ride English or western. I tell them to try both and see which one they like best. So far, students are pretty evenly split between English and western. Horsemanship, grooming, and tacking are always part of the lesson, and for a lot of students, that’s their favorite part. My student Bella tells me she’s learned so much more than just how to ride a horse. She’s learned how different and special each horse truly is.

CH: Can you introduce us to the horses who work as your equine teaching partners? Kate: We have five lesson horses, all with incredible, individual personalities that make each of them an important part of our farm. The smallest is 11.2 hands, the biggest 16.1 hands. Our Quarter Horses, Stonewall and Oliver, teach English and western pleasure. Oliver jumps too. Ziggy, a pinto who’s the only mare among the lesson horses, teaches English pleasure and jumping. Devon, our five-year-old Appaloosa, does English and western pleasure and jumping with intermediate to advanced riders. We recently added Moakey, a Welsh pony gelding who rides and drives, to our lesson program. In the future I hope to use him to offer driving lessons, but we’re not quite ready for that yet.

CH: Taking care of so many horses and riders is a big job, but you have put together a strong volunteer program to help. How did you get that started and who are your volunteers?

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Kate: The volunteer program started with a friend who really wanted to come help on the farm, then it spread mostly by word of mouth. We have eight volunteers, ranging in age from kids who want to work with horses but don’t want to ride to a woman who met another volunteer at the grocery store and decided she wanted to come to the farm. Volunteers do a little bit of everything. They help muck stalls and fill buckets, but I like them to get involved as much as possible if they are interested in something. I train them if they want to learn to do new things. A volunteer who comes once a week told me she learns something new every time she comes, which helps her have more confidence and a safe, successful experience.

CH: What do you think makes The Common Stables a unique and special farm? Kate: A lot of the people who come here say it’s therapeutic to be with the horses and see other people, to be able to talk,

laugh, and have some fun. I’m always building and developing amazing relationships with all my riders and volunteers. To me, everyone that comes to the farm is more than just a rider or volunteer. They’re friends. It’s a strong and growing community here at The Common Stables. y Kara Noble is a writer and editor who lives on a hobby farm in Montgomery, Massachusetts, with her husband Jerry, an Icelandic mare, a Shetland pony, and a pair of very opinionated miniature donkeys.

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Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

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Farm Tiverton

Seapowet Stables Focus on Fundamentals

by Lara Rudowski

When Kim Herfert bought Seapowet Stables in Tiverton, she intended to use the nine-acre property as a space to pursue her childhood passion of riding and to cater to a handful of boarders. Five years later, Seapowet is a full-service, 24stall hunter/jumper barn and learning center. Mom life and barn life are much

CH: When did you decide to make the step into owning and operating Seapowet Stables?

the same for Kim, whose four daughters, Mackenzie, Olivia, Kennedy, and Avery, all share her love of horses and have given her a unique, nurturing approach as a trainer. And the support of her family is at the heart of Seapowet’s success.

one to six horses really quickly. My husband, Dave, told me, “Babe, you said this was a hobby. This is a lifestyle.” From there, I started to build up a clientele, strictly as an amateur, managing facilities. It got to the point where I felt it was time to buy our own farm and build a family business. In 2016, Seapowet Stables opened its doors with a simple mission — come here, ride horses, enjoy them. It just took off like wildfire.

Brittany Adams Photography

Kim: I was a marketing director in a big corporation with a nine-to-five job and I thought, “I’m just missing something.” So, I got back into riding. I rode a couple of horses, started taking lessons again, and then I bought a horse. I went from

CH: What was your earliest experience with horses? Kim: My mom grew up riding and she had a pony in her backyard. My mom was just 19 when I was born. As an infant, she would strap me onto her and ride her pony. I was always at the barn as a young child and I grew up in that environment. I was riding as soon as I could walk. I took to it naturally — it was just something I enjoyed doing. For me, it was second nature, and horses have been a part of who I am from a young age. 38

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

CH: What features and amenities does Seapowet Stables offer? Kim: There are 18 paddocks, with four large group turnouts. The indoor arena is 60' x 200' with GGT footing, and the 180' x 300' outdoor ring is filtered sand. We have both indoor and outdoor hot/cold wash racks and fans in the grooming stalls for

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


cooling in the summer. The barn is heated in the winter. There’s a heated lounge, individual tack lockers, laundry on site, and a storage room for off-season blankets.

CH: What is the focus of your lesson program? Kim: Most of my adult clients have returned to riding after having a family and establishing a career. I like to focus on setting personal goals and creating a program that helps riders achieve those goals. I incorporate various exercises that have a mental preparedness spin, which benefits both the horse and rider. I find that adults often juggle work and family time while trying to fit in personal time for riding, which can sometimes leave the adult rider distracted. Adults also tend to be more critical of their riding, the shape they are in, their limitations, the whole ‘when I was younger’ mentality. To get them focused and more self-aware, I’ll put them through an exercise that has them perform a sequence of movements while telling me what they’re feeling from the horse and how they’re correcting or praising the horse or themselves for doing the exercise correctly. Seapowet has many mother-daughter duos that ride here. We also have a growing group of dads who have participated in the parent horsemanship classes and join their daughters for barn time. To watch my non-horsey dads help their eight- to ten-year-old daughters tack up, longe, and mount up for a lessons is pretty special.

CH: What kind of environment do you strive to create for the clients at your barn? Kim: My adult clients are successful, careerminded people who like to be challenged and work toward their goals. They also benefit from my approach that tells them, ‘Hey, it’s ok to take this time to enjoy your horse. It’s ok to take time away from your job, your role as a wife/husband, as a parent.’ As a mom of four daughters, I want an environment that creates a positive image for young girls. Our group of girls is like a family. They make signs for each 40

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

other and have little slogans that they text to each other. We have a chalkboard in our lounge where the girls write positive affirmations to each other before events. It really is a supportive environment where all these kids from different areas can come together and share a passion.

CH: What values do you want to instill in your younger students that they can continue to draw from in their riding careers? Kim: Fundamentals. Most people can teach riders heels down, eyes up, thumbs on top. I want my riders to feel. I want them to say, “You know what, this doesn’t feel right today,” or “The horse is a little stiff on this side,” or “I just don’t feel like the horse is understanding.” I want my riders to be sensitive to their horse’s needs. Can they take care of their horse when their trainer is not there? All of my riders know how to wrap legs, take temperatures, and the signs of colic. They have the knowledge of truly being a horse person, not just going in the ring and winning. I always say to my girls, “I want you to be that girl who helps her buddy whether she’s your teammate or your competition.” That pay it forward concept. Cheer your competitors on. If they beat you, you clap for them. Being a good horse person is multifaceted — a good teammate, a good student, a good child.

CH: How have your daughters and husband influenced your success? Kim: My daughters have taught me that it’s okay to be vulnerable and it’s okay to say something that may not be mainstream and may just seem like a completely crazy idea. To be myself, unfiltered. My daughters say, “Mom, you’re great at this, just go all in!” I have a husband who’s wildly obsessed with me being successful. He’s here fixing fences, he went and bought a pair of cowboy boots, he’s got his Wrangler jeans now, and he’s always asking me, “What do you want to do next?” Without my family’s support I could never do this.

CH: You’re expanding to include a Learning Center. What was the idea behind that decision and what will the Learning Center offer the equestrian community?

that creates a better and more secure rider), and Emma Ford (world class grooming).

Kim: It’s been in my plans since I purchased the farm. The horsemanship and the education behind riding is super important. I ran a couple of successful, small in-house clinics and then I opened them up to outside participants. I’ve partnered with Stall and Stable Podcast to host Pro Series Clinics with high-level clinicians starting in March. These clinics will cover everything from natural horsemanship, dressage, hunter jumper, problem solving to proper fit of your tack. Our goal is to be a central hub where people can come together in an environment that’s welcoming with a focus on education. This year’s clinics include Chelsea Canedy (dressage and flatwork), Sinead Halpin (gymnastics and jumping), Tik Maynard (better performance under saddle by understanding how your horse learns), Don Jessop (natural horsemanship), Bernie Traurig (classic equitation

THESE DAYS, Kim’s phone is always ringing with parents looking for a sport their kids can still enjoy amidst the pandemic, or former riders spurred to get into the saddle again to avoid going stir crazy. For many, the sport has gone from an activity to a part of daily life and to a newfound commitment and passion. Kim’s long days are stretched even further to accommodate her new clients and growing barn family. Children who would otherwise be isolated at home now have a place to come and build friendships. Kim knows that she and her horses are doing more than teaching her students how to ride. They’re providing comfort and creating community.y Inspired by travel and the everyday details of life, Lara Rudowski can often be found, camera in hand, at equestrian events capturing her love of horses and riding since childhood.


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Horseperson Southport

by Alessandra Mele

Chris Salko Enjoying the Lifestyle CH: You’ve certainly invested a lot of time into the place. What sort of improvements have you made?

Chris Salko is the second-generation owner of Salko Farm and Stable in Southport. He and his wife, Jane, run a bustling lesson program out of the farm, fondly calling it “Fairfield County’s best kept secret.” Chris has seen a lot of changes over the years, but the farm, which he proudly maintains and improves day in and day out, remains his passion. Chris recently spoke with Community Horse writer Alessandra Mele about his life with horses.

CH: Tell us a little about growing up, and how horses were a part of your life. Chris: I’ve spent my whole life on this farm and grew up around horses. My father, Andrew Salko, bought 10.5 acres here in Southport in 1948, before I was born. He built the place and ran a successful boarding stable with my mother, Anna. The place was always filled with horses. I worked on the farm throughout high school, and also worked across the street at the DuPont Estate. I still work at both places today, except now I am the owner of Salko Farm and Stable. When my father turned 65 in 1973, I took over the farm at age 19. It’s been a work in progress for me ever since, and I enjoy improving it and making it a beautiful place to enjoy horses. 42

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

Jane Salko

Jane Salko

Chris: It’s been a slow progression with steady work put in over time, but we’ve accomplished a lot here on the farm. I started to rebuild all the barns in the 1970s, which took a lot of work but really improved the facility. In 2001, I built our indoor arena. Before that, we had really just been a boarding facility, but with the

indoor arena we were able to start offering riding lessons year-round. A few years later, I built another ten-stall barn to accommodate more lesson horses, and then in 2018 we made the indoor arena even larger, extending it an additional seventy-four feet. We also updated it with LED lighting and TraveLite footing. Today, we have 30 stalls altogether.

CH: It’s a beautiful facility. Tell us more about the lesson program. Chris: The lesson program has really grown in recent years; it’s sort of a phenomenon. Salko Farm and Stable was once primarily a boarding facility; today we have just two boarders and 25 lesson horses. The focus has really shifted to teaching riding lessons

and we love it. We have super nice families that come here regularly to enjoy the farm. We teach more than 200 lessons a week, with the help of Jane and our skilled trainers, Jenna Frascatore, Corrie Collins, and Michelle Nardini, who are all wonderful horsewomen. We run summer camps, which I’m pleased to say are filling up quickly for 2021. We focus on hunt seat riding, and enjoy seeing the progress all our students make, from children just learning to ride to adults who may be coming back to horses later in life.

CH: Do you get to ride very often? Chris: Occasionally. We have a lot of wonderful schooling horses and sometimes Jane will get me out for a ride. But mostly you can find me on the tractor.

CH: What goes into a day’s work around Salko Farm and Stable? Chris: Each day we put the horses out in the back fields where they have about eight acres to stretch their legs, and I bring hay out there with the truck when there isn’t much pasture. Otherwise, I’m doing maintenance most days, whatever it takes to keep this place running and in top condition. I don’t like to stand still for very long.

CH: The hard work certainly shows as the facility is immaculate. What do you think sets your farm apart? Chris: We’ve carved out a bit of a niche for ourselves. There used to be a lot of backyard barns in this area; this part of Fairfield County was mostly farmland and just about everyone had horses. These days, most of the farms are gone and the land has been developed, and I see it disappearing more and more each year. I’m really glad we’ve been able to preserve this land and keep it a place where people can come enjoy horses, a place where anyone can come and learn how to ride and care for horses from the ground up. During the pandemic especially, parents have wanted to get their kids outside doing something healthy. We’re fortunate we’ve been able to offer that, with plenty of space and horses to

keep the kids busy and safe. It makes me happy to see people enjoying it all.

CH: What do you envision for the future for yourself and Salko Farm and Stable? Chris: We are launching a new program this spring here on the farm focused on therapeutic groundwork with horses, and we’re all very excited for that new chapter. It will be a nonprofit program that explores the way horses enable humans to work through conditions like anxiety, addiction, and PTSD. Jane is currently working on certification to facilitate workshops here on the farm, learning from expert and author Kathy Pike. We’re also working on installing a new infrared heated and enclosed round pen, where most of this type of work will be done. Otherwise, I just turned 67, and I really want to keep it all going as long as I can. I’ve still got plenty of work ahead of me and I feel ready to do it. I would like to keep the place running at a high standard and continue to grow the lesson program so that more people can come enjoy the horses, the facility, and learn how to ride.

CH: That sounds like a good plan. What keeps you going? Why do you love this life with horses? Chris: It’s become a lifestyle, and I really wouldn’t have it any other way. This is a wonderful place to be, the people involved are great, and I genuinely enjoy the work I do each day. There’s nothing like it in the summertime. We have a big garden along the side of the house, and another out back where we grow vegetables and flowers, and beyond that the pastures are green with grass and filled with horses happily grazing. It’s a beautiful picture, and I feel truly blessed to have what’s here. y Alessandra Mele is a freelance writer and designer in Wilbraham. She enjoys spending time with the horses on her family’s farm, especially riding her Quarter Horse, JoJo. To see more of her work, visit

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021



Jamila Jackson Embodied Leadership Project by Alessandra Mele

Through this journey I met a woman, Lori Halliday, at a dance workshop and was really taken with her ability to listen. It felt so loving, pure, and connected, and it really struck me. I asked Lori where she had developed this kind of attention, and she gave me an answer I wasn’t expecting. “I have a herd of ten horses,” she said, and invited me to come out to her California

which can offer us all an opportunity to experience deep healing, connection, and love.

ranch. This is when I first became hooked on horses and started to realize their connection to the kinds of questions I was already exploring with dance.

Amber Wilmore-Hurley

Jamila Jackson is a storyteller, dancer, poet, and facilitator who explores the integration of African-rooted dance and wisdom with horsemanship. Through her own projects and the work of her organization, the Embodied Leadership Project, Jamila is bringing to light important similarities between the ceremony of community dance circles and the language of horses,

CH: Tell us a little about your background. How did your journey lead you to horses? Jamila: I’m originally from California; I was born in Oakland and raised in Berkeley. I didn’t grow up with horses, but I always had a strong passion for dance. I studied at Howard University and then at Hampshire College, and during that time I was on a journey researching ways that dance can teach us how to connect with ourselves and each other, and how to heal by understanding the stories that move through our bodies and being present with them. 44

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

CH: What did that connection look and feel like to you? Jamila: I had a powerful experience with one of Lori’s horses, Pepper. I was actually kind of scared of horses at that point; I’d only ridden a few times and they had been scary rides! I really felt their aliveness, and it was intense; I didn’t understand their language. One morning, Lori took me out to the pasture to sit with the herd. I sat there doing nothing, just observing the horses in the morning

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sun. After about 30 minutes, I felt this kind of magnetic draw pulling me toward one horse, Pepper. My fear dissolved and I naturally moved toward him. I paused a few feet away, and then felt him draw me even nearer. Close to him, I began to feel that same magnetic draw start to pull out all this grief within me. I began crying and shared all this emotion with him nonverbally, and he just listened. At one point I thought Pepper might walk away, but he just laid down next to me, and continued to listen. I felt this wisdom being shared in the stillness between us. I was amazed at the power of this experience and was hooked on horses from that point on. I understood what Lori meant by horses teaching us how to listen, and I began studying this a lot more and integrating it into my dance studies.

CH: What are the connections you’ve discovered between horses and dance? Jamila: All of the social neuroscience I was studying around dance and bodies fit in so perfectly with what I was observing

in horses. I was amazed by the way they communicate with one another; the way they process sensory information, express emotion, and engage in deep witnessing and listening. These are all concepts we explore in dance too. In spending time with horses, I’ve realized that the way they teach each other and connect is really the same way we teach African diasporic movement. The way I learned to dance is also the same way I am learning to be with horses. Essentially, there is a ceremony that is happening in most African and African diasporic dance, which is rooted in community circle. There are many levels of witnessing and listening that are happening between the drums, the movements, and one another that are based in sharing, empathy, and connection. There is also a profound mastery of polyrhythm, which is when more than one rhythm works together. When horses interact in their herds, they are using the exact same principles to communicate and develop a language that allows the herd to stay safe, peaceful, and together.

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Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

CH: How have these connections influenced your work and how have you put them into practice? Jamila: Horses are helping me to understand my own ancestry and are giving me a deeper understanding of the dance practices that I grew up learning. They are helping me understand the depth to which those practices can go, and how they can help us all process traumatic experiences and experience joy. I recently had an exhibition at the Northampton Center for the Arts that explored these connections using film, writing, photography, and performance. I told my story and used images of the horses out in the field with me and other women of color working with them and dancing with them. It was a great opportunity to authentically express the liberation that horses can offer all of us.

CH: Tell us about the Embodied Leadership Project. How does this organization explore

the connections you’re talking about and make them accessible to others? Jamila: I feel as though I’ve been gifted with incredible resources around emotional intelligence that are so rare, and I genuinely want to share this with people. The Embodied Leadership Project, a trauma-informed mindfulness, wellness, and inclusion organization, came out of this desire to share. Our mission is to use story, contemplative practice, rhythm, and movement as a way to invite community members to experience the authentic expression, deep listening, and languages of belonging inherent within the African diasporic community dance circle and the wisdom of the equine herd. Right now, we’re in a lot of collective pain. Society is out of balance and disconnected, largely because there are so many emotions we all experience but don’t have the education on how to feel, heal, and learn from them. People are longing to feel connected to themselves and one another, and the Embodied Leadership Project

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offers a space where they can do that safely and honestly. Through this program I’ve been able to work with kids, college students, and adults of many races, genders, and backgrounds to explore ways of being in our bodies, listening to one another, and telling stories. Dance and horsemanship are important ways of teaching that.

CH: What are some of your plans for the future, with the Embodied Leadership Project and otherwise? Jamila: I feel very committed to horses as they’ve helped me learn to heal, how to teach, and how to be better with one another. I want to talk more about how we can be better to horses, and how we can be better with them, learning how to care for and relate to them in a way that empowers them. I have a vision for a program that offers a gateway to horsemanship as a sacred practice. I have a very specific perspective to offer not only horsepeople, but also people who have never considered engaging with horses but are

interested in healing and social justice. I’ve already started exploring this with the young women in the Embodied Leadership Project, and I can offer even more that will benefit both horses and humans.

CH: Listening, witnessing, connection, and empathy feel more important than ever in the times we live in now. How do you think horses can help us heal, learn, and be better? Jamila: Horses offer us an opportunity to reconnect with our ability to be in community with one another, across all differences. They do this through their innate knowledge of how to communicate with each other, and they generously offer the same connection to us. One of the things that amazes me is their ability to listen to us, and the ways they can teach us how to listen to one another. This is such an important, valuable skill right now. This leads to something that’s constantly blowing my mind, which is how horses can teach us about navigating con-

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Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

sent and power. When you are at liberty with horses, you start to work on consent by letting go of your own agenda, bringing awareness to your body, and trying to learn their language. It’s understanding when someone is saying “yes” or “no,” and that not only gives us the opportunity to examine our own power and privilege but also gives us a chance to acknowledge the marginalized and preyed-upon aspects that exist within ourselves. It teaches us about allyship and how to respect one another, which is also especially important in this moment. Anyone who has spent time with horses knows how much love they are capable of. Horses know how to be close, without even touching. It’s something unlike anything I’ve ever experienced before. It’s pure grace.


Alessandra Mele is a freelance writer and designer in Wilbraham. She enjoys spending time with the horses on her family’s farm, especially riding her Quarter Horse, JoJo. To see more of her work, visit

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Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


Horseperson East Greenwich by Kara Noble

Amy Lynn Smith Topline Equestrian gelding named Chance — who she said I was never supposed to ride. He was awesome. When I was 12, I pulled him out of field rest and started riding him all the time. I was big into the show circuit as a kid. I rode with some of the larger farms in the South County, including Hunter Ridge (Ashaway) and Smithbridge Stable (South Kingstown) and trainers like Jennifer

Equestrian, a riding and equine training program based in East Greenwich. Community Horse writer Kara Noble recently spoke with Amy about the path that led her to start this program and her goals for the future of her new business.

CH: How did you get involved with horses and how have your interests with them developed over time? Amy: I am Rhode Island born, raised in the South County area. My mom rode when she was young, and she introduced me to riding when I was five years old. We started taking lessons together and eventually bought a leopard Appaloosa pony named Liam. I went from him to my first show horse, a Quarter Horse mare named Bobbie Socks. Mom had a Thoroughbred 50

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

Scott Smith

Bentley David Hammond

Rhode Island riding instructor and horse trainer Amy Lynn Smith has a broad range of equine experience, from starting green horses to teaching human students the essentials of horse care to helping riders refine their seat and position over jump fences. She has managed horse farms and served as an assistant manager at Dover Saddlery. Recently, Amy used her horse and business skills to launch Topline

Tillinghast and Kristen McKenna. Now I’m more interested in teaching and training.

CH: When did you realize you wanted to make a career out of working with horses? Amy: I got my first green horse shortly after high school, a two-and-a-half-year-old Thoroughbred mare named Montana that I bought from a woman who bred Thoroughbreds and sold them to trainers on the track. When she started Montana, she decided that the horse wasn’t going to make a good track horse. At that time, I was on a mission to get into training and reselling horses. I bought the mare figuring I would get the walk, trot, canter done, throw her on the market, and call it a day. Not long after that I became pregnant with my son. I ended up


leasing the mare out, and then she had some time off. Eventually, I reconnected with Kristen McKenna, who happened to be teaching at a farm where I was looking to board Montana. Kristen told me, “You should keep this one. She’s going to be a real nice horse if you slow down and take your time.” That was great advice and I’m glad I followed it. Ten years later, I’ve still got that mare. She’s my heart horse.

CH: What has Montana taught you? Amy: Montana and I have been through the mill together, through lots of ups and downs, through lots of learning. After my son was born, I was at a barn that didn’t have a riding ring. Montana and I used to trail ride extensively, and I would practice flat work on the trails and on an abandoned baseball field in North Kingstown. As a result, nothing phases her. I got so I could take her anywhere and do almost anything. As Montana matured, she was willing to take care of anybody I put on her. She’s 12 now and she is really awesome and super safe. She teaches riders so many things, but they are not afraid of her even though she is a big-bodied 17 hands. She’s calm, and handles everything with no preparation, no longeing. I had great intentions of showing in hunters with Montana, but physically, she is too big for her own good, so we’re princesses on the flat now. She has a lot to teach, and I’d love to let other people learn from her. My mare is the reason I fell so deeply in love with horses, why I want to want to make this my lifestyle. She taught me things no trainer, no person would have ever been able to teach me. She’s humbled me. She’s shown me the way when I couldn't figure it out on my own. Every time I look at her, I understand why I do this.

CH: You recently launched a new teaching and training program called Topline Equestrian. Where are you based? Amy: I am working out of Spring Hill Farm, which is owned by Frank Fallon, a 52

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

well-known farrier in our area. I boarded here before I had my son, and I found my way back here about four years ago. During the past year, I’ve started managing the barn five days a week. It’s a nice property, very quiet and low key. We have 15 stalls and we’ve currently got 11 horses. There’s a lighted outdoor ring and an indoor ring attached to the barn. It’s a really nice farm and I’m so grateful that Frank offered me the chance to teach there.

CH: When did you open and what types of services do you offer? Amy: We opened for lessons and boarding March 1. To give people a chance to explore the property and meet our barn family, we held an open house and tack sale in early March. Lessons are primarily hunter/jumper, with a dressage trainer also available on property. We welcome beginners and seasoned riders of all ages.

CH: Do you focus on teaching riders and training horses at Topline Equestrian? Amy: I’m open to working with riders of all ages and I’m not restricted to discipline. I like to say I have a mixed seat. I’m a hunter/jumper at heart, but I have basic dressage training as well. I’ve done a lot of training work with green horses and problem horses, and I’ve brought horses that have had time off for rehabilitation back into shape. I’d like to continue to do that, to build my knowledge to help other people and horses. As long as it’s within a reasonable distance, I’d even be willing to travel to do training. If somebody wants to try something, I’m willing to consider it. The door is open and I’m flexible.

CH: Who will be (is) working with you? Amy: I’m teaching with Montana and one of the boarders at the farm is letting me use her pony mare, Angie, for little kids. I’m on the lookout for one more horse to join my equine teaching team. My right-hand man is my son, Bentley. He’s nine now, and he’s had his fair share of lessons. He’s very hands-on with the

horses. Every morning before school, he helps me feed and turn out horses. In the summertime, he gives horses baths, and he doesn’t mind hand-walking or grazing horses. Now and then when I’m riding, he gives me lessons too, and he’ll take pictures and video for me. He’s great. Of course, all of this is possible because Frank has been so generous about letting me teach out of his farm.

CH: What do you think is the most important thing for people to know about how you work with horses and riders and about the program philosophy at Topline Equestrian? Amy: One key thing is that, for the most part, this is a no-judgment zone. Everything we’re doing is to help horse and rider in any way possible, whether it’s confidence building, strength building, any type of goal setting. I’m here to help in any way I can. This is a sport where we are forever evolving and learning. The best thing anyone can do for themselves is just to

continue their education, no matter what direction it leads them in. I want to help people and their horses do just that. y Kara Noble is a writer and editor who lives on a hobby farm in Montgomery, Massachusetts, with her husband Jerry, an Icelandic mare, a Shetland pony, and a pair of very opinionated miniature donkeys.

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Horse Logic

by Nicole Birkholzer

Seeking to Connect


another. We watch DVDs to become a better leader, yet we find that we still fall short. Despite our best efforts, that connection we were seeking seems to elude us. Over time, the behavioral issues and the communication blocks can strain your love affair. Some days, you wonder if all the hard work and money is worth it.

I call that something spirit. It tells me there’s more to life than our everyday reality. I feel the deep desire to connect with a horse and to move as one with it. I imagine the wind blowing through my hair as we ride across a meadow, carefree, in the moment, liberated. When we follow our desire to connect with a horse by taking riding lessons, or perhaps purchasing or adopting our dream horse, we’re often faced with a different reality. The horse may exhibit behaviors we are unprepared to handle, which can make us feel inadequate, and at times even a little afraid. Instructors may tell us to do something one way while trainers insist on

You may be surprised to learn there’s nothing wrong with your horse, and there’s nothing wrong with your heart. Every relationship needs attention, nourishment, and tender care. Your relationship with your horse is no different. In this column, I will help you establish a deep, meaningful relationship with your horse and the world around you. It will change how you perceive your horse, challenge much of what you’ve learned about horses and inspire you to try new things that can lead to a profoundly fulfilling connection with your horse. The simplest and one of the best ways you can influence your horse’s well-being, as well as your own, is through the breath.

Becca Rose

umans are fascinated by horses. We’re amazed by their majesty, beauty, and elegant movement. They are incredibly powerful, yet gentle and sensitive. But there’s something else that draws us, a quality unique to horses that is elusive and somewhat mysterious, which we yearn to experience for ourselves.


Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

A conscious breath brings you right into the present, the now, which is where your horse resides, and research has found that proper breathing supports your nervous system and a number of other functions in both your body and your mind. To make sure we speak the same language, let’s start with an easy breathing exercise that will shift your relationship with your horse profoundly. The type of breathing we want to do for ourselves and for our horses is abdominal breathing. When you take a deep belly breath and exhale slowly it turns on your parasympathetic nervous system. Cortisol levels are reduced, and brainwave activity goes from stressful beta waves to the calming alpha waves. In other words, after a couple of deep belly breaths you begin to relax and you and your horse simply feel better. In addition, similar to yawning, taking a breath is contagious. When you take a deep breath, you inspire your horse to take a breath. Take a look at this simple course of

action I take when I go to see my horse: • Whether I’m rushed, early, or on time, as I make my way down the aisle toward the stall or paddock, I take a deep belly breath, clear my mind, and tune in to my horse. • When I get to the stall or gate, I stop and take another breath and tell my horse the plan. I say, “Hi, Cutter, it’s time for our lesson.” This gives Cutter a chance to wake up, stop eating, or otherwise get ready. • Then I open the door or gate and step next to my horse, but instead of forcing the halter over his ears, I take another breath and invite Cutter’s participation by asking him to please put his muzzle into the halter. I stay open and curious — many horses have never had the chance to respond to a verbal request. Initially, Cutter was surprised to be asked, but after a few more offers, he gladly cooperated. • Next, before heading out into the aisle, I take another belly breath, and I invite my horse to follow me. This small but significant effort to connect with my horse

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pays off in the interactions that follow. After my offer of inclusion, Cutter becomes more tuned in — because I am tuned in. • As I groom, I try to devote myself to the task and keep chatter with other horse owners to a minimum. My late horse, Okie, always pawed when I got caught up in a conversation while grooming him. It was his way of telling me that he wanted my undivided attention, and rightly so: during the one hour a day I spent with him, he wanted me to be present. I’ve learned to chat before and after my rides, but not while I’m actively engaged with my horses. Grooming and tacking up present excellent opportunities to breathe and to bond. • If my horse is clean and doesn’t have a speck of mud on him, why brush? Instead, I use my hands and stroke his entire body, legs included. Physical contact is very soothing. At the same time, I watch his response to my hands. Cutter will let me know about any sore spots or areas he’d like me to scratch. • Before I head off to the mounting block, I take a deep breath. I take another deep breath before I mount up. This puts my horse a little more at ease before he enters the arena. These deep breaths help me too. • Throughout my ride, I remember to take deep breaths, maybe each time I go past the gate. My horse will follow suit and start blowing out through his nose, which calms his nervous system in a natural way. I notice that my seat is better and, with that, my connection with Cutter is enhanced. • When the lesson is over, I take off the saddle and slowly move my hand from behind the withers toward Cutter’s tail. If my hand wants to stop at a certain spot, I trust it. I hold my hand in place and breathe into that spot. I continue until the energy changes or my horse shows a sign of relaxation. Cutter lets me know he’s feeling calm by taking a deep breath, licking, chewing, or yawning. • As I return my horse to his stall or I connect through a belly breath before we 56

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

walk down the aisle together. Cutter and I enjoy this ritual; he goes back into his stall calmly. By breathing, paying attention, and partnering with your horse, you’re creating a mindful connection. It will help protect your horse from nervous-system overload. Being present for your horse is always a better gift than the yummiest treat. The process of building a mutually trusting relationship with horses has taught me that by “meeting the horse where the horse is” I can create a deep connection that provides the greatest potential for teaching and training. Imagine what it would be like to have your horse meet you at the gate when you call out to him in the pasture. How thrilling would it be if your horse stood at liberty while the farrier trimmed his hooves? How would you feel if your horse dropped his head into the bridle just because you asked? Suddenly, you and your horse would experience everything you do together, in trust, with willingness. I believe it’s time for us to awaken and create a bond with our horses that is the foundation upon which everything else will follow. When we were young, we didn’t have to think how to approach or be with a horse; we simply loved it, and it loved us back. If we continue to extend ourselves as we did back then, compassionately and honestly, meeting the horse where the horse is, we will experience an immediate connection. In future columns, I hope to show that what we seek already exists within us. It’s in our nature to bond with our horses, spirit to spirit. We just need to remember how. Your best guide on this journey is the horse. I will share simple ways of collecting and interpreting the information horses so freely provide, as well as some basic tools to help you raise your awareness and become a much better partner for your horse. I will show you how you can create more ease in your horse’s and your own life to prevent unexpected and undesired

behaviors. We will also explore how to remedy some of the behaviors your horse might already display. While you can’t always control your horse’s environment, when you begin seeing the world through your horse’s eyes, you will see opportunities to support and connect with your horse that will enrich your relationship. You’ll also realize that you have an essential role to play in your horse’s health and well-being. In each column, I’ll provide simple yet profound exercises that will enable you to connect with your horse in new and meaningful ways.

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Nicole Birkholzer is an author, animal communicator, and equine behavior and communication specialist. Her unique approach is based on respect, deep listening, and ancient wisdom. Her books, Horse Logic and Pet Logic, provide a dynamic and unique perspective on animal wisdom. To learn more about Nicole and her services, visit

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IT’S HERE! THE HORSE LOGIC BOOK Once upon a time, you fell in love with horses. You felt drawn to their warmth, their power, their soft eyes, and their gentle spirits. You loved the freedom of riding — the liberated movement, the rush of wind in your hair, and the feeling of limitless momentum. Over time, the practicalities of horsemanship — the grooming, the behavior issues, and the communication blockades — started to strain your love affair. And some days, you wake up and wonder if all the hard work and money is worth it. Here’s the good news: there’s nothing wrong with your horse and there’s nothing wrong with your heart. Every Horse Logic column printed since 2012 in Massachusetts Horse is included!

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Nicole Birkholzer Animal Communication Specialist • Author • Speaker • Educator Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021



Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021



Trail Guide

Sugarbrook Field Trial Area by Stacey Stearns


phone, knowing that it was on Route 14 and near Jen’s house. Jen and her daughters were planning to ride over and meet us, so I knew I could call her if I had trouble finding it. The brown DEEP sign on Route 14 pointed to Sugarbrook Road so I couldn’t miss it. Sugarbrook Road leads into the Sugarbrook parking lot. (Circle on map

The Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) manages the 400-acre Sugarbrook Field Trial Area. Sugarbrook is classified as a wildlife management area and is adjacent to the Tillinghast Preserve. Some of the Sugarbrook trails cross onto this 30-acre property. “My house is practically across the street from the dirt road into Sugarbrook,” says Jen Coffey, an endurance rider from Plainfield. “My family and I ride across the street and explore the trails regularly. We’ve also completed hundreds of hours of trail maintenance here.”

at right.) It’s a long dirt road, a bit rough, and dead trees from the gypsy caterpillar outbreak litter the side of the road. A few trees lean precariously over the road, and they're marked for removal. The parking lot is small, so I turned around and parallel parked along one side so that I could pull out when it was time to leave and avoid getting blocked in by anyone who arrived while I was out riding. There were four other cars in the lot when I arrived mid-morning. Because the parking is so limited it’s better to ride here alone, rather than trying to fit multiple trailers in the parking lot. Sugarbrook is a field trial area, so the day we were there we saw several people with their dogs in the parking lot, but

Stacey Stearns

ne of the best ways to explore new trails is with the guidance of someone who rides them regularly. That’s exactly what I did when I rode the Sugarbrook Field Trial Area in Plainfield, Connecticut, for the first time on a sunny Saturday. I was especially grateful to have a guide since it’s hard to find information about this area and its trails.

A Leg Up I typed “Sugarbrook Field Trial Area Plainfield” into the GPS app on my 60

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

never ran into anyone else out on the trails. Check the Field Trial Event calendar (on the DEEP website) before heading to Sugarbrook to ensure there isn’t a field trial taking place. Hunting is allowed and I would not plan a ride here during hunting season. I recommend hoof protection as there were rocks and roots on many of the trails. But there were also sections that were smooth and perfect for a nice trot or canter. We liberally applied fly spray to our horses and ourselves since we knew we would be in the woods near the river and swampy areas. It’s best to ride with a GPS or a sense of humor and adventure if you don’t have a personal guide. There are some blue blazes on the trail that form a 4.7-mile loop, but they aren’t always consistent or easy to find since several trees have come down. The Quinebaug River provides an excellent reference point and when you are in one of the trial fields you can often pick up one of the old logging roads and follow it back toward the parking lot.

Out Riding It Sugarbrook is the perfect place to ride since it’s relatively unknown so there are few other trail users. We rode down Sugarbrook Road, back toward Route 14, before turning left into the woods and onto a trail. We followed this trail through the woods for a while. It was wide enough in a few places for horses to go side-by-side. Soon, I could hear water running in the distance. We crossed through a deep and wide stream that feeds the Quinebaug River, and our horses had a chance to get a drink and cool off a little. The trails in Sugarbrook are hilly, and the challenging terrain was a good workout for our horses. We rode along the Quinebaug River for a stretch early in our ride, catching glimpses of the water shimmering in the sunlight as it quietly moved downstream. There’s a bend in the trail where we stopped and looked down over the river. “One of my favorite parts about riding at Sugarbrook is the Quinebaug River,” Jen says. “I love riding alongside it. Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


We take the horses down and water them in a couple of places. When the river is a little lower we can cross it and ride into trails on the other side, and there’s one spot where we’re able to ride down the river when the water is low.” On my next visit, I want to cross the river and explore the trails on the other side as well. Sugarbrook abuts private property and hayfields in several places as the trail loops through the woods and fields. I noticed several boundary markers while we were out riding. They are posted on trees, letting you know where the property line is for the DEEP land. The birds were delightful company, singing brightly as we rode along. We startled a black snake sunning himself in one of the fields midway through our ride, and he slithered across the path in front of us. Jen says she frequently sees snakes while in Sugarbrook. The trail crosses stone walls in several places, and our horses carefully picked their way over them.

The trails were rough and technical in places. I was glad to have a seasoned trail horse. We had to dismount a couple of times to go under fallen trees and found paths around several other downed trees. I noticed some really large, old pine trees deep in the woods as we rode along. This is an older forest stand. We also rode near a beaver pond. Ample space in open fields where the field trials are held is a welcome place to enjoy a nice canter. Our horses also enjoyed a snack in the field near the parking lot at the end of our ride. Altogether we rode four or five miles and spent a couple of hours exploring the area. I’ll definitely be back to explore the trails again and see more of what Sugarbrook has to offer. Happy trails! y Stacey Stearns, a lifelong equestrian from Connecticut, enjoys trail riding and endurance with her Morgan horses.






Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

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Trail Guide


by Stacey Stearns

Willard Brook State Forest


ate a shady canopy that keeps the trail cooler during the summer months, and in the fall, the area delights with foliage. The occasional abandoned stone wall that meanders through the forest is a reminder of earlier times. Many bird species, white-tailed deer, coyotes, smaller animals, and reportedly a few black bears call Willard Brook State Forest home. While you may not see any

this forest. One of my endurance friends grew up near here, spent many hours cruising through the forest, and raves about the trails. When riding in Willard Brook Forest, you’re usually going up or downhill. Although the elevation changes are gradual, your horse is working harder than you think. Water cascades over the rocks in three different channels at Trap Falls, creating a picturesque location that’s a favorite hiking destination and a fun swimming hole in the summer. It’s aptly named after Trap Fall Brook that feeds it. Trap Falls is a short hike from Route 119 and only 10–12 feet high, but worth a visit without your horse. Pine, maple, birch, and beech trees line the forest roads and trails. Trees cre-

of the mammals on your ride, the chorus of birds is a constant companion. On a sunny day shimmers of light peek through the trees and dance along the trails with the blue sky as a backdrop.

Stacey Stearns

illard Brook State Forest is part of a 4,000-acre swath of fields, forest, and open space nestled along the New Hampshire border in Ashby and Townsend, Massachusetts. Willard Brook’s 2,597 acres, with its dense forest and swift brooks, are pleasantly surprising as the terrain is what you would expect to find in the Berkshires. The rugged landscape attracted me to


Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

A Leg Up Use the Forest headquarters’ address, 599 Main Street in Townsend, for your GPS (Main Street is also State Route 119). Willard Brook, the Forest’s namesake, dances from one side of Route 119 to the other as it meanders through the forest. Download or print a trail map at The parking fee from Memorial Day through Labor Day is $8 for Massachusetts vehicles and $30 for out-ofstate vehicles.

Forest Headquarters

There’s a pull-off on the side of Route 119 at the headquarters you can use for parking and, if you go through the gate, a small parking area in front of headquarters. There’s also a large, paved parking lot at Damon Pond on Hosmer Road, off Route 119. This lot fills quickly on nice days as it connects to the picnic area and popular covered footbridge. Swimming and camping opportunities swell the population within the boundaries of Willard Brook State Forest during warmer months. I recommend coming to ride before peak season, early mornings, or parking and riding away from other recreational activities if you come in the summer.

Out Riding It The large network of unpaved roads within Willard Brook State Forest offers a relaxing ride with decent footing. Rocks abound, including some large ones, when you venture off the unpaved roads and onto the trails in the forest. There’s a stretch near Friends’ Loop Trail (orange blazes) that local mountain bikers refer to

as the granite garden. Roots also crisscross the trail in some areas. If in doubt, I recommend hoof protection. You’ll want to have bug spray for both yourself and your horse with you for this ride as the ponds and swampy areas are a prime habitat for biting insects, even early in the riding season. The trails are muddy when wet; it’s best not to ride when they are too wet to avoid tearing them up. (Being conscientious trail users is an important part of preserving equestrian access.) Footing is best from April through November. If you ride when it’s wet, stay on the unpaved roads. I started out from the paved parking lot at Damon Pond. I rode around the forest gate and onto unpaved Fort Hill Road. If you look at the map, this section is the ‘out and back’ to two large loops of unpaved road that form a figure eight on the map. Those looking for a shorter ride can ride the smaller loop and return back to Fort Hill Road. We incorporated both loops to make a longer ride and stay in the forest for a few hours. Fort Hill Road has another forest Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


middle of the forest cuts this second loop off, which requires riding a short distance on Route 119 to make a full loop. When you get to Route 119, go left, and then

Kevin Vitali

gate to ride around further up the trail, and at this point you’re sharing the trail with the yellow blazes of the Friends’ Trail. Bearing right at the intersection, we stayed with the yellow blazes. A while later, the yellow blazes head south into the woods, but we continued on the unpaved Fort Hill Road. Further up the road is a short ‘out and back’ trail into the woods, if you want to explore. Continue on the unpaved road until you get to a sharp intersection. I made the U turn to the right and headed south toward Pearl Hill State Park, adjacent to Willard Brook State Forest. You’re still in Willard Brook, and the change in elevation becomes more gradual in here. You’ll cross over a brook before arriving at another intersection. Here, you’ll want to go left and head north up toward Route 119. (If you go right, you’ll arrive at a paved road and Pearl Hill State Park where equestrians aren’t allowed.) This is a swampy section of the forest, and you’ll be glad you liberally applied fly spray. A section of private property in the

duck back into the forest less than a quarter mile up the street, on the left. Now you’re back on the unpaved forest road riding parallel to Route 119. As you ride south, you’ll come to an intersection where the roads all cross and

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Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

head in different directions. You’re riding back toward the trailer at this point, so take a right and then go straight, heading south, at the next intersection that comes up almost immediately. At the next fork continue to bear right. This will put you on the opposite side of the first trail loop you rode out on. This loops back through the woods and the orange-blazed section of the Friends’ trail crosses it. All too soon, the brown forest gate came into view and we were back at Fort Hill Road. Getting out to enjoy the woods with our horses provides a delightful escape and a chance to hit the reset button in our lives. Willard Brook State Forest is what trail riding in the Bay State is all about, and I know I’ll be back to ride this one again. Happy trails! y Stacey Stearns, a lifelong equestrian from Connecticut, enjoys trail riding and endurance with her Morgan horses.

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Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


Trail Guide Hope Valley by Stacey Stearns

Arcadia Management Area


at Arcadia Management Area every year and she and Kona, her Morgan gelding, have logged thousands of miles on the trails. “The nice part about riding throughout the Arcadia Management Area is that it’s not boring,” she says. “There’s so much history to notice as you ride dirt roads, single track trails, fields, hills, and more. Seeing the old cemeteries, foundations, old wells, a water tower, and more can only make you won-

Reynolds Horsemen’s Area — a spacious camping and parking location with direct access to the trails and other amenities. Trails in the Management Area are gravel roads and woods trails. The woods trails are well-maintained but are not marked, so bring the map on the next page. The Management Area is easily accessible from Interstates 95 and 395, making it possible for equestrians from Connecticut to frequently ride here. Use 364 Escoheag Hill Road in Exeter in your GPS to arrive at LeGrand Reynolds Horsemen’s Area. Linda Krul is a resident of Greene and serves as vice-president of West Greenwich Horseman’s Association and treasurer of the Rhode Island Federation of Riding Clubs. Linda manages several pleasure rides

der how people lived within the villages that are no longer there.”

Stacey Stearns

questrians in southern New England are fortunate to have access to numerous trails. Arcadia Management Area in Rhode Island is one such place. It’s the largest recreational area in the state at 14,000 acres and spans the towns of Richmond, Exeter, Hopkinton, and West Greenwich. Arcadia’s miles and miles of trails are enough to entice any equestrian, but it also has the added benefit of LeGrand


Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

A Leg Up The Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (DEM) manages Arcadia. Uses include fishing, hunting, boating, hiking, mountain biking, and horseback riding. All trail users, including equestrians, must wear fluorescent orange during hunting season. Dog field trials are held in the large grassy fields known as the Midway. When the dog trials are not in session, these are a favorite place for a long gallop, although I have missed trail markings on more than one occasion while enjoying a carefree gallop through these fields.



LeGrand Reynold’s Horsemen’s Area


Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

LeGrand Reynolds Horsemen’s Area has a riding ring, picnic pavilion, fireplaces, picnic tables, two water pumps (not potable — horse water only), and pit toilets. It was originally a Civilian Conservation Corps camp and the fireplaces near the picnic pavilion were built using stones from the original buildings. Camping is allowed for a maximum of four nights. To learn more, go to There are two large fields in addition to the trailer parking spaces in the wooded area behind the picnic pavilion. We’ve had more than 50 trailers parked at rides held here. One word of caution: there have been a string of thefts from horse trailers at Reynolds Horsemen’s Area over the last few years. Don’t leave anything out in your trailer and be sure to lock up before you go riding.

was via Interstate 95! We were looking for a shorter route, so we decided to let them focus on the wedding and ride back the way we came. Eventually, we made it back to horse camp. I highly recommend riding with a trail map or on an organized ride if you’re new to the area. It’s a 14,000-acre forest and although it’s well-maintained and there are gravel roads, it’s easy to get lost.

Out Riding It I’ve gotten lost in Arcadia riding with friends. We ended up at a wedding and when we asked how to get back to the Horseman’s Area we were told the only way Breakheart Pond is a favorite location for fishing and boating and has an area to stop and water the horses. Wood River, Flat River, and many of the streams throughout Arcadia are closed off to horses to protect trout fishing areas. There are a few other places in Arcadia where horses can access water while on the trails. For a fun and easy trail route, follow the driveway back out of Reynolds Horsemen’s Area to Escoheag Hill Road. Carefully cross the street and head toward Route 165, riding along the fence line. Take a left into the woods when the fence line ends. This takes you deeper into the woods. You’ll take a right after riding down a short slope, and that will lead you through an open area and onto Barber Road. Here you’ll see your first cemetery too. From Barber Road — a gravel road — you can access the rest of the trails. Once you are on Barber Road, follow it southeast until you come to an intersection with Brook Trail and Deion Trail. This intersection is not too far after you cross the Flat River. You’ll want to continue east 72

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

on Deion Trail for the longer ride rather than taking the left onto Brook Trail. This connects you over to Frosty Hollow Road where you’ll bear left, heading north on Frosty Hollow Road. Watch for vehicles as you’re riding on these roads; most are respectful of horses and yield the right of way. Frosty Hollow Road goes up past Frosty Hollow Pond, a popular stocked trout fishing location. A little further north is an intersection. Go right and ride over to Breakheart Pond, which offers a beautiful view and an opportunity to water your horse. After you finish, head back toward Frosty Hollow Road, and continue onto Austin Farm Road. You’ll follow this all the way back to Escoheag Hill Road and Reynolds Horsemen’s Area. When you start climbing a long, steep hill you’ll know that you’re close to horse camp. This seven-mile loop is a brief introduction to Arcadia Management Area, and it only scratches the surface of the available trails. I love riding here in mid-June when the Mountain Laurel is in full bloom and

the fragrance wafts through the air. There are also miles of single-track trails to explore. “Riding by the waterfalls, brooks, rivers, and streams is peaceful and it’s even better when you see or hear the wildlife,” Linda says. “I’ve seen hawks, owls, ducks, fox, deer, bear, and coyotes while riding in Arcadia.” For equestrians, Arcadia offers miles of trails so that each ride can be unique. I’ve ridden hundreds of miles at Arcadia and still find trails that I’ve never been on before — or haven’t ridden in so long that they feel new. The horse camp and dedicated parking is an added convenience because I never have to worry about finding enough space to park. We’re fortunate as equestrians to have access to such a beautiful and spacious area to enjoy our horses. Happy trails! y Stacey Stearns, a lifelong equestrian from Connecticut, enjoys trail riding and endurance with her Morgan horses.

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Grand Prix Guidance

The Equine Forelimb

by Mark R. Baus, DVM


Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

ground during the impact of landing. Consequently, it is prone to innumerable and significant distortions and forces during athletic function.



n the architecture world, the expression “form follows function” is used to describe the shape of an object based on its intended purpose. As one of the world’s greatest athletes, the horse’s form is designed to function beautifully for many endeavors. For the sake of this discussion, we will divide the horse’s form into three distinct areas: the forelimb, the hind limb, and the axial skeleton (the neck and back). Let’s start with the front legs. The primary function of the horse’s forelimb is to bear the body’s weight while standing but even more so while moving. The hind limbs propel the body forward and skyward, but it is the front limbs that provide the support system for holding the body up during the landing phase. As such, the front limb is a pillar limb with an exquisite suspension mechanism on the lower limb to mitigate the jarring forces that occur during the load-bearing phase of the stride. The front limbs have a unique system of tendons and ligaments called the stay apparatus to stabilize the limbs while standing and moving. The stay apparatus locks the shoulder, elbow, and knee into a loadbearing position with minimal muscle exertion. Although this helps the horse remain standing for long periods of time without fatigue, the key function of the stay apparatus is to ensure that the limb is locked into a straight column during athletic function. Can you imagine how precarious it would be for a horse to land after a fence with a front limb prone to collapsing? Thankfully the stay apparatus prevents this from happening. If the upper half of the forelimb functions as a pillar, the key function of the lower limb is based on the hoof and the suspensory apparatus. The hoof provides the interface between the horse and the

The suspensory apparatus consists of the superficial flexor tendon, deep flexor tendon, suspensory ligament, sesamoid bones, and the distal sesamoidean ligaments. This collection of tendons, ligaments, and bones supports the lower limb by absorbing the body’s mass slowly on impact and then releasing the impact with an upward push, much like a spring. If a horse survives the rigors of development during his or her early years, it is unusual for a problem to develop in the

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


upper forelimb. However, the hoof and the suspensory apparatus are prone to serious injuries during their athletic years. The incidence of these injuries will depend on the horse’s conformation and the degree of use the horse is subjected to. If your goal is to use your horse at an optimum level for a long period of time, what are some of the conformational defects you should be aware of? Any pillar bearing weight does it best when it is as straight and vertical as possible. If the limb is crooked at any level (toe-in or toe-out defects especially), uneven forces will be applied to the affected joints causing inflammation and subsequent arthritis. If the knee is bent forward (over-in-the-knee) or back (back-in-the-knee), excessive strain will be applied to the tendons and ligaments above and below the knee. Conformational faults that affect the suspensory apparatus are related to the length and angle of the pastern. This is also referred to as fetlock angle and pastern length. The lower limb, especially as it concerns the suspensory apparatus, is

a perfect example of a living physics lesson. Strain on the suspensory apparatus is defined by three forces: The force applied (body weight magnified by running and jumping), the length of the lever arm (pastern length), and the fetlock angle. Therefore, long pastern length coupled with a low fetlock angle (“dropped” fetlock) will result in excessive strain on the suspensory apparatus. If your horse is overweight, or if you ask too much of him, this strain is magnified even further. An upright fetlock angle or short pastern length will transfer the impact of landing away from the suspensory apparatus and directly up the bony column. Therefore, these horses will have limited athletic ability and will incur more problems in the bony column (osteoarthritis) and less so in the suspensory apparatus. In my experience, horses with long pasterns and low fetlock angles tend to make the most brilliant athletes but their athletic career is usually shorter than a horse whose lower limb conformation is more normal. How do you identify lameness in the front limb? It’s quite simple. While your horse is trotting (preferably in circles, with a rider, on a firm surface), watch his head. If the rider is posting, the head will come up when the lame limb is landing. Usually the lame limb is on the inside of the circle but occasionally it is on the outside of a circle. Outside limb lameness is a signal for specific causes of lameness and is harder to identify. Posting on the wrong diagonal in a circle will usually accentuate lameness in the outside limb. Now that we’ve reviewed the basic form and function of the forelimb, in the Fall/Winter issue, we’ll take a look at the hind limb.y

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Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

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Mark R. Baus, DVM founded Grand Prix Equine in 2009. He’s provided care to horses in the same region and for many of the same clients for more than 30 years. Mark began the Connecticut Equine Podiatry Group to foster relationships between farriers and veterinarians.


News in Our Community In February 2020, the world as we knew it shifted dramatically. As the pandemic spread across the globe, we saw travel restrictions put in place and schools and businesses began to close their doors in an effort to stem the spread of the COVID-19. In March, just weeks from the start of our spring semester, Manes & Motions Therapeutic Riding Center in Middletown closed its doors too, with only essential staff required to care for the horses. The challenges were many for both nonprofit and for-profit equestrian programs, but the most obvious and significant for Manes & Motions was how to continue quality care for our horses with no revenue stream. Silver linings appeared. Manes & Motions is fortunate to be part of the Hospital for Special Care, an acute care rehabilitation hospital located in New Britain. This affiliation proved critical in our ability to continue quality care for our horses during an historically difficult time. And, as winter turned to spring and the prospect of offering limited services seemed possible, we had to address the question of what our re-opening plan would look like. None of us had been through this before, but again, our affiliation with the hospital proved significant as we sought guidance from their Incident Command Team in implementing COVID-19 policies and safeguards. Other valuable support systems also surfaced. The State of Connecticut issued well thought-out guidelines for equestrian programs, which dovetailed well with the hospital’s policies. And, most heartwarming was the tremendous support that came from other professionals in the equine-assisted services industry, with centers from all over the United States sharing policies and documentation to assist each other with safety strategies.

But by far the most poignant was our volunteers reaching out to us, eager to return to serving their riders and help the center in any way possible. I’ll never forget the feeling of joy I experienced the first day we welcomed back our first few riders, volunteers, and staff. Symptoms screening and disinfecting riding equipment may have become our new norm but seeing the smiles behind the face

courtesy of Manes & Motions Therapeutic Riding Center

Silver Linings at a Therapeutic Riding Center During a Pandemic

Manes & Motions Therapeutic Riding Center rider Liz Smith on Truman with instructor Janice Anderson and volunteer Shawn Newton.

masks brought a renewed sense of hope that we all so desperately needed. It’s hard to say where we will be in six months or even a year, but I believe we’ve developed a deeper sense of appreciation for each day and each other. For information on our services or volunteering, please contact us at (860) 685-0008 or Please visit

n Jeanna Pellino

H.O.R.S.E. of Connecticut’s Events The Humane Organization Representing Suffering Equines (H.O.R.S.E. of Connecticut), now celebrating its 39th year, Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


courtesy of H.O.R.S.E. of Connecticut

will hold its annual Spring Open House on Saturday, May 15, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., with a rain date of Sunday, May 16. This is an event you won’t want to miss! The fun starts from the minute we open the gates for Hourly Tours (with a maximum of four people per group) to meet our newest arrival, Delilah, a rescue from the Texas kill pens, and her friends, from Miniature ponies to draft crosses. We’ll have our popular bake sale, OMI Jewelry from the talented Lise, bracelets and necklaces by Amy, and tie-dye T-shirts and bags will also be available. Remember, all the proceeds from your purchases go directly toward helping to care for our many horses! The tack shop is packed with too many items to list so be sure to stop in and check it out.

Montana, available for sponsor or adoption at H.O.R.S.E. of Connecticut in Washington.

The Summer Horse Parade on Saturday, July 24, from 1 to 3 p.m., is an opportunity for folks interested in adopting, leasing, sponsoring, or volunteering to meet our many fabulous horses aged 6 to 29, from Miniatures to draft crosses, with many available for the advanced beginner to experienced rider. Our leasing program is for adults who ride regularly and want to find out what is involved in caring for a horse, while adoption is for the experienced horse owner looking for a lifetime companion. Sponsoring is an introductory op-tion for those who would simply like to groom and hand walk a horse. A few of our featured horses for the Summer Horse Parade include Montana, 78

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

Legend, and Star. Montana is a 20-year-old, 16.3-hand, draft-Thoroughbred Paint gelding that loves working the trails and will go for miles. He’s traffic safe, happy to lead, follow, or go solo, and loves attention. Montana is available for sponsor or adoption, and requires an intermediate rider and 24/7 turnout. Legend is an 18-year-old, 16.1-hand, Appendix gelding that rides English, for an experienced rider. He’s a very handsome boy that loves to go for strolls and get lots of attention. Legend will be shown under saddle and is available for sponsor or lease. Star is a 16-year-old, 13.3-hand registered Morgan/Arabian cross gelding that rides English or western and loves to ride for miles on the trails. He’s easy to load, happy to lead or follow, and loves water. Star is available for lease, sponsor, or adoption, and requires an intermediate rider under 150 pounds. In addition to the horses, you will meet several of our dedicated volunteers and learn the many ways you can help. From grooming and cleaning stalls to helping at fundraisers, many of our volunteers have learned so much from their four-legged friends. Interested in a career in the equine industry? You can gain valuable hands-on experience working with our many rescues, and the personal rewards are immeasurable. H.O.R.S.E. of Connecticut is a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) organization funded entirely by charitable contributions. All funds raised go directly to the horses — from feed and blankets to farrier, dental, and veterinary expenses. If you’re looking for a lifetime partner, what better way to show your love than to support to a local equine rescue! H.O.R.S.E. of Connecticut is located at 43 Wilbur Road, Washington. To learn more or to make a tax deductible donation, visit or call (860) 868-1960.

n Kathy Diemer

The Fairfield County Hunt Club June Benefit Horse Show The Fairfield County Hunt Club is looking forward to welcoming returning friends and new exhibitors for an exciting week of horse showing on our beautiful property

June 22 to 26! We’re excited to announce our charity beneficiary partnership with the EQUUS Foundation. The June show committee has been working hard this past year to deliver to our exhibitors both a safe experience, compliant with COVID-19 guidelines, and an exceptional offering of competition classes. Some highlights for this year include our $30,000 Fairfield Grand Prix, $10,000 Welcome Stake, $5,000 3'3" Hunter Derby, $1,000 2'9" Hunter Derby, new 2'6" Hunter Derby, and the EQUUS Foundation Charity Team Challenge. The beautiful program and prize list original cover artwork entitled “High Style” created by Leslie Alexander, lkafineartcom. Complete prize list coming soon! Advertisement and sponsorship opportunities available. To learn more, visit or email

to reward those participants raising the most funds or completing the most community service hours. To raise money for the UPHA Foundation, Willow’s community service project was selling homemade maple syrup and honey to others in the barn family and in her community. Her mother helped her with this project. The kindergartener will put the scholarship money toward her future education. This is the fifth year Maya has participated in the UPHA Ribbons of Service program. This past year, for her community service hours, Maya volunteered at a local horse rescue, and wrote letters and made Valentine cards for a local Meals on Wheels Program. Maya will put the scholarship money away in her college fund. For additional program information, visit

Local Equestrians Win UPHA Scholarships

NEER North Earns TAA Endorsement

Willow Allen of Tolland won the $2,000 Becker Brothers Saddle Seat Equitation Youngest Participant Award. She competed in Lead Line riding LHS The Mistress under the direction of Scott and Danielle Neidlinger of Lingering Hill Stables in East Windsor. Maya Tasch of Ridgefield won two scholarships, the $1,500 Dave and Sarah Patton American Saddlebred Breed Performance 13 & Under Award and the $1,000 Independent Equine Agents Performance Youngest Participant Award. She showed CH Extremely Fortunut in the Junior Exhibitor Country Pleasure division and The Mask in the Road Pony Under Saddle division. The United Professional Horsemen’s Association (UPHA) Ribbons of Service program is a wonderful example of how young people can use their passion for horses to help the children of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and learn to give back to their communities. To date, UPHA youth members have raised more than $550,000 for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and almost $150,000 for other nonprofit charities. Scholarships are graciously donated

New England Equine Rescue North (NEER North) has become one of 81 organizations in North America — with only three in New England — to earn accreditation from the Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance (TAA), a North American association that inspects, accredits, and awards grants to approved organizations to retrain and rehome retired Thoroughbreds. To qualify for the distinction, NEER North has met what TAA president John Phillips calls, “the gold standard in Thoroughbred aftercare.” TAA-accredited organizations go through a detailed application and on-site inspection process that covers operations, education, horse health-care management, facility standards and services, and adoption policies and protocols. Organizations that earn TAA accreditation are eligible to receive grants to support the rehabilitation of Thoroughbreds in their care. TAA is funded by responsible Thoroughbred owners, trainers, breeders, aftercare professionals, and industry groups. NEER North president and founder Mary Martin welcomed the recognition, saying, “We’ve worked with many

n Suzy Lucine

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


courtesy of NEER North

Thoroughbreds in crisis over the years. Helping these extraordinary animals heal inside and out and transition to appropriate homes is tremendously meaningful work. Earning TAA accreditation is an honor that strengthens our ability to help at-risk Thoroughbreds and give them a new start in life.” In addition to the TAA distinction, NEER North also holds accreditation from the Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries, a platinum rating from GuideStar, a fivestar top rating from Great Nonprofits, and EQUUS Foundation’s accreditation and guardian status. Founded in 2011, NEER North is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit with a mission of res-

Thoroughbred mare Zella (registered name My Zealous Storm) gaining skills for her post-racing life with NEER North trainer Issy Cless.

cuing, rehabilitating, and rehoming horses and donkeys in need throughout New England. The rescue is based in West Newbury and has affiliated training and foster barns in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Maine. Information about adopting a NEER North rescue or requesting assistance with an at-risk equine is available at

n Deborah Blagg

Fuller’s Horse Facility Under New Management Fuller’s Horse Facility in Westhampton has been renamed Fuller Family Equestrian. This beautiful property is now managed by Emily Coggins and Lori Brogle. The facility, originally Fuller’s Country Horse Farm in the 1950s, was 80

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

owned and run by Percy W. Fuller, Jr., who trained and bred Morgan horses. In 1963, Percy and his wife, Marilyn, began Fuller’s Country Horse Camp, a resident summer horse camp for girls, which ran successfully for 25 years. Their daughter, Carolyn Fuller Coggins, who worked with her father training and showing Morgan horses, took over running the residential camp from 1980 to 1988, and then as a day camp from 1998 to 2014, under the name Fuller’s Horse Facility. Throughout the years the Fullers have provided boarding, training, lessons, trail rides, hay and sleigh rides, as well as horse sales and leases. After the indoor arena was built, the facility became a full boarding facility with lessons in hunt seat and dressage. Carolyn founded the Williston Fuller IEA Equestrian Team, bringing the Williston Northampton School’s riding program to the farm in 2003, where they hosted the team until August 2020. Today, the farm has been passed onto its third generation with Carolyn’s daughter, Emily, and Lori Brogle, long-time Fuller’s rider and friend, taking the reins. Emily rides in the adult hunters and dressage, and competed on the Mount Holyoke College IHSA team from 2009 to 2013, gaining championship titles in her divisions. The facility includes 10 stalls in the carriage barn, renovated in 2012. Riders in all disciplines, all ages and abilities are invited to visit and inquire about the facility. The farm offers all-day turnout in dirt or grass paddocks, matted stalls, indoor wash stall with hot water, indoor arena, jumping field, outdoor arena, and miles of private trails. This spring Fuller’s welcomes Chrysanthi Gavagan of Gavagan Eventing as their resident trainer. Chrys is a Preliminary-level eventer and third-level dressage rider. She specializes in the training of young and green horses in eventing and dressage disciplines. Chrys helps riders develop a fundamental basis of riding, good communication between horse and rider, and strong equitation to develop the tools to be successful as a rider and competitor. Outside riders are welcome to trailer in.

As a horse owner, Peter A. Moustakis has developed a passion and appreciation of matters related to equine law including contract law, transactional work, personal injury, and trust law. Equine contracts including purchase agreements, bills of sale, transportation releases, and breeding agreements. Equine facility boarding, liability, and lease agreements. Small business law and helping families pass down their business to the next generation.

Helping families through different legal matters as their lives unfold.

Peter A. Moustakis, Esq. | Dedham, MA | Amherst, NH (603) 249-5985 | | Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


Above the Bar

Purchase and Sale Written Agreements

by Sean Hogan, Esq.

This article is for educational purposes only, so as to give the reader a general understanding of the law— not to provide specific legal advice. No attorney-client relationship exists between the reader and the author of this article. This article should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed professional attorney.


erhaps one of the most common situations in which horse enthusiasts will find themselves involved, is the

unknown to the buyer at the time of the purchase, the horses were blind in both eyes. Subsequent to learning that the horses were blind and thus unsound, the buyer commenced a lawsuit against the seller for breach of warranty. Similarly, in Chadsey v. Greene, 24 Conn. 562, the matter brought before the court arose when a buyer, who was unfa-

Yes, ma’am, you can put the whole family on his back! But, your ad said he was a “family horse.”


sale or purchase of a horse. Unfortunately, when either a seller or buyer enters into this type of transaction unprepared, it can often lead to one party to the transaction being aggrieved and, as a result, lead to litigation. Connecticut courts have a history of hearing cases involving the sales of horses. Consider the facts of the following three cases, all of which arose out of the sale or purchase of a horse. In Bartholomew v. Bushnell, 20 Conn. 271, the seller sold two horses to the buyer, which were alleged that he warranted to be “sound and good.” In fact, 82

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miliar with horses, sued the seller of a horse based upon the representations made by the seller’s agent. The seller was known to be a man of questionable character and he referred the buyer to his agent. The agent told the buyer that the seller was a “highly respectable man . . . who had traveled to New York to buy a nice horse or two.” The buyer, relying on this statement, then purchased “one bay horse, seven years old and warranted sound, blanket and halter included.” However, the horse turned out to be lame, and the buyer sued the seller based

upon the representations made to him, which induced him to buy the horse. More recently, in the matter of Raudat v. Leary, 88 Conn. App. 44, the Court heard a matter where the seller had placed an ad for the sale of a horse which stated, “registered Appaloosa gelding 15.3 hands, green broke, six years old, excellent ground manners, ties, clips, trailers. Needs miles. $3,200 negotiable.” Upon seeing the advertisement, the buyer contacted seller, who referred to the horse as “green broke and needed some miles.” Unbeknownst to the buyer, the horse had a propensity to buck, and the buyer and her trainer were bucked off on several occasions. Subsequently, the buyer sued the seller, alleging that the seller failed to disclose a material fact regarding the horse bucking. I would suspect that a reader of this article has heard of someone or knows someone who found themselves in a situation similar to the buyers and sellers in the cases above. I would like to offer four principles to consider when entering into the purchase or sale of a horse: Trial period and pre-purchase examination; written agreements; warranty and disclosure; and caveat emptor.

Trial Period and Pre-Purchase Examination As a buyer, you may be able to negotiate with the seller a trial period wherein you may keep and exercise the horse at your farm for a brief period of time prior to the execution of a sales agreement. As we all know, horses react to various stimulations in the environment around them. The trial period allows the potential buyer to bring the horse to its presumptive new home and to test-drive the horse in the environment where it will be used. This is extremely beneficial to the buyer because they will be able to experience the horse being tacked up, washed, and loaded on and off a trailer. The more you can learn about the horse prior to the purchase, the better. However, a seller may be reluctant to give

a trial period, as removing the horse from the seller’s custody and control is not without its risks (i.e., the horse could be injured or worse while in the custody of a potential buyer). Should the parties to the sale consider a trial period, they should execute a clearly written agreement detailing the terms of the trial period, including the amount of time, deposit (if any), where the horse will be stabled, who will be responsible for expenses (such as shoeing, veterinary care, etc.), for what purposes the horse may be removed from the stable during the trial period (i.e., horse showing), and insurance coverage that the potential buyer will carry on the horse while it’s in their care. Related to the trial period is the veterinary pre-purchase examination (PPE). When having a PPE done, it’s important for the buyer to speak with their veterinarian and let them know what the intended use of the horse will be (hunter, eventer, reiner, etc.) so the veterinarian can take it into consideration during the exam. Also, if practical, the buyer should attend the PPE and ask questions and observe the horse — this is another opportunity to see how the horse will act once in your care. Although some buyers will take the word of a seller as to the soundness and/or general health of a horse so as to avoid the additional expense of a PPE, situations like those in the Bartholomew and Chadsey cases could have been avoided had the horses been inspected prior to the purchase.

Written Agreements Once the buyer and seller come to terms regarding the sale or purchase of the horse, having a written sales agreement and bill of sale can help to eliminate any misunderstanding that could exist between the parties. The sales contract should, at the minimum, detail the parties to the sale (and if an agent was used, as was in the Chadsey case, the name of the agent — this is often a trainer); the price sold, Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


including payment information (i.e., check or wire details, never pay in cash); commissions paid and to whom; a detailed description of the horse, including sex, breed, height, markings, branding or tattoo, and USEF or association registration numbers; warranties made by either party (including that the horse is free of any lien and that the seller has the authority to sell and that the buyer has the authority to buy the horse) and, finally, the agreement should be signed by both parties.

Warranty and Disclosure As we saw in the three cases listed earlier, all of the buyers found themselves in a situation where a dispute arose regarding the representations and warranties allegedly made by the seller. Buyers will want to discuss with the seller their intended use of the horse and ask the seller for a written warranty that the horse is fit for its particular use (i.e., use as an adult amateur hunter). Similarly, a seller should disclose to the buyer any and all information known about the horse, and not hide anything just to induce a buyer to complete the purchase. In the event a seller were to warrant a false trait or character of the horse so as to induce the buyer to complete the purchase, an aggrieved buyer would have a cause of action against the seller for breach of warranty. Often a horse will be listed for sale “as is” and a seller will attempt to limit any potential liability through the use of a disclaimer. However, buyers should be aware that, in a situation where a purchased horse does not conform to the sales agreement—which may contain a disclaimer, there may not be available an action based upon breach of warranty. However, there still may exist grounds to pursue a cause of action based upon fraud, should the buyer be able to show that the seller knew the warranty to be false, but still made same so as to induce the buyer to purchase.


Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

Caveat Emptor Caveat emptor is a Latin term for “buyer beware.” As a buyer of a horse, if something appears too good to be true, it may be, and a buyer should proceed with reasonable due diligence before agreeing to purchase a horse. The State of Connecticut has statutes meant to assist consumers, including the buyers of horses, from unfair and deceptive trade practices and advertising. Further, if you are the buyer of a horse and you feel that the horse you received is not the horse that you bargained for, you may wish to consult an attorney to discuss your rights regarding any claims against the seller for breach of contract, breach of warranty, fraud, and/or misrepresentation. The sale or purchase of a horse, regardless of sales price, is not a transaction to enter into lightly. However, with proper planning and due diligence, buyers and sellers can ensure that the transaction proceeds without issue and, with consideration of the preceding principles, limit or avoid potential liability.


Sean T. Hogan is an attorney in Westport, where his practice focuses on estate planning and assisting trainers, owners, and investors in equine-related transactions and litigation in Connecticut, New York, and before the USEF. He’s a governor of the Fairfield County Hunt Club and co-chairs the Fairfield County Hunt Club June Benefit Horse Show.

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Been there . . . . . . jumped that. Assisting owners, riders, and trainers with: • Equine Litigation & Dispute Resolution • Entity Selection & Formation • Equine Taxation • Ownerships, Partnerships & Syndications • Land Use & Agricultural Exemptions • Sales & Leases • USEF & FEI Hearings

SEAN T. HOGAN, ESQ. Member of the CT & NY Bar

10 Bay Street Westport, CT


203 . 221 . 3250

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


Partners Bay State Trail Riders Association

Becky Kalagher

BSTRA is excited about our 2021 calendar of events, and we’re looking forward to a great year. In addition to our rides and workdays, we now have a volunteer program, sponsored by Cabot Creamery Cooperative, and a new barn membership program. To learn more, visit Like us on Facebook so you don’t miss any updates. And, if you have not done so, please renew your membership!

BSTRA member Susie Fancher riding Spotty in 2020.

The Annual Awards Banquet, normally held in February, has been moved to July 11 so that it can be held outside to comply with COVID-19 restrictions. Annual awards will be handed out at the banquet. Our first trail workday is April 17 (inclement weather date April 18) at West Hill Dam in Uxbridge. The following weekend, April 24, will be the Nancy Maenzo Memorial Ride, held at Douglas State Forest. This first ride of the year is a great opportunity to catch up with friends and work on conditioning your horse for the riding season. The Spring Benefit Ride and the Patriotism Ride will be held May 15 and 23, respectively. Make sure you save the date for National Trails Day on June 13, and support trails while having a great time. There will be fantastic raffle prizes. 86

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Due to COVID-19 protocols, all rides are limited to 50 people until further notice. This includes riders and volunteers. Make sure to sign up early so you don’t miss out! BSTRA’s mission is to ensure equestrians and other users have safe access to trails. Our work includes trail maintenance and supporting projects in cooperation with the Department of Conservation and Recreation and other community organizations. BSTRA promotes good horsemanship and trail etiquette, but most important, BSTRA members have fun. Your help is needed for BSTRA to continue this vital work. Are you willing to host a ride? What about being part of a committee dedicated to trail maintenance issues? Do you know of a wonderful place to ride, but there’s no room to park trucks and trailers? Maybe we can work together to build a parking lot. Are there trails in your area that need a little love? Do you have a skill you’re willing to share with fellow equestrians? Your ideas and helping hands are needed to continue turning BSTRA’s mission into reality. Volunteering can be as simple as spending a few hours clearing trails, registering participants at a ride, or trail marking. Perhaps you can represent BSTRA at a community meeting to make sure equestrian requirements are considered when decisions are made. No matter how small or large, your help makes a difference. Contact us at with your thoughts or to seek out volunteer opportunities. Together we will make a difference! See you on the trails.

y Annamaria Paul

Connecticut Dressage and Combined Training Association Despite countless hurtles in 2020, CDCTA successfully hosted a Tag and Tack Sale, a Ride Critique Ride Clinic, and a two-show virtual SAFE Schooling Show Series. And,

y MaryAnn Smith

Connecticut Morgan Horse Association What a wild ride this past year has been — and not because of the horses! CMHA is eager to reinstate many of our classic events from our pre-pandemic lives including our Connecticut Morgan Open Horse Show (CMOHS). This year marks the 60th anniversary of the CMOHS, and will run from June 2–5 at the Eastern States Exposition in West Springfield, Massachusetts. We have Morgan, Friesian, and Academy divisions, the Youth of the Year Contest, Therapeutic Lead Line class, exhibitor parties, and our 60th anniversary gala. We’re excited

Howard Schatzberg

on January 24, it was with great pride last year’s winning riders were recognized during a Zoom Year-End Awards Ceremony. To see a list of all the award recipients, visit Congratulations to everyone! During the Zoom ceremony, tribute was paid to a very special horse. Ernie became a “member” of the club in 2001, when he was donated by member Mary Schmitt. A talented equine, he became the partner and teacher to multiple members, allowing riders the chance to experience the thrill of eventing. Retired in 2012 at the age of 30-ish, Ernie crossed to greener pastures this past October. He will be dearly missed by many. An annual award honors his memory; the Ernie Award is bestowed each year to the junior or adult amateur who has the best dressage score. Run free, Ernie, and thank you for teaching lessons and fulfilling dreams. Eyes up to the year ahead! The 2021 board of directors will be led by re-elected president Tracey Woods and welcomes new board members Thomas Rogers, Catriona Cleveland, and Kathleen Lamotte. The 2021 Dressage and Combined Training Schooling Show Series will take place May 9, July 11, and October 3, at Westbrook Hunt Club in Westbrook and Treasure Hill Farm in Salem. All are welcome, all ages and skill levels, members and nonmembers. Schooling shows offer the opportunity to polish skills, try a new level, or introduce a green horse/rider to the excitement of competition. CDCTA sponsors day-end high point awards, the Community Horse Youth Awards, Thoroughbred Incentive Program Awards, and participates in the USDF Regional Schooling Show Awards. Plans are coming together for clinics and events, and we’re optimistically looking forward to a healthy and brilliant season. For updates and more information visit and follow us on Facebook.

A Therapeutic Lead Line Class participant, from Camp Care in Columbia, Connecticut, in center ring during the 2019 Connecticut Morgan Open Horse Show.

to re-introduce the Morgan Nutmeg Sweepstakes — a tradition from our past. Horses from all seats accumulate points in the In-Hand, Pleasure Saddle and Pleasure Driving classes, and a high-point champion and reserve are crowned at the end of the week. CMOHS is also offering four People’s Choice Awards in Hunter Pleasure, Western Pleasure, English Pleasure, and Classic Pleasure. Youth western riders also have a scholarship class. The full horse show prize list, information on our classes, sponsorship opportunities, and other details about CMOHS are available at Many equestrians have turned to the trails during the pandemic, and CMHA Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


has increased our commitment to trail riders. We’ve formed a trails committee and will be hosting our regular trail rides — and new opportunities — as COVID-19 regulations allow. Updates on our June trail ride at Arcadia Management Area in Rhode Island, our November 21 Turkey Trot at Bluff Point State Park in Groton, and a new fall ride will be posted at Our Morgan Time Pleasure Riding Program begins again on May 1. Equestrians can track the time spent riding their horses and earn prizes for reaching time milestones. CMHA is dedicated to promoting Morgan horses and supporting our youth and members. We invite you to join us and look forward to seeing you at the 60th anniversary of the CMOHS or at one of our trail rides.

is home to 20 to 30 events each year, including new horse and rider clinics. What can you expect if you attend our April 17 new horse and rider clinic at the Old Bethany Airport? The first portion of the clinic does not include horses and covers an introduction to the sport and safe gun handling skills. Participants will learn how to load, unload, carry, and fire a firearm. Next, all new horses and riders will join a group of experienced riders and seasoned horses in the arena. This method of surrounding newer horses with experienced horses has proven to be very successful. While monitoring the behavior of both horses and riders, a gradual progression of gunfire is

y Stacey Stearns

Has this past year got you thinking about a new challenge that is unlike anything you’ve done before? Would you like to learn something new with your equine partner? How about taking a shot at cowboy mounted shooting? (Pun intended!) If we’ve captured your attention, read on for more about this sport and how you can get involved. Cowboy mounted shooting is a fastaction timed event using two .45 caliber single-action revolvers. Each gun is loaded with five rounds of blank ammunition designed specifically for shooting balloon targets. The black powder shots will break a balloon up to about 15 feet away. Each course of fire includes 10 balloon targets and varies in design. Five targets are shot with the first gun, and five more are shot with the second gun. Riders’ scores are based on both speed and accuracy. A missed balloon will add five seconds to riders’ overall time. The Cowboy Mounted Shooting Association (CMSA) has designed more than 50 courses. There are levels of competition for everyone, ranging from youth to the seasoned professional. The Northeast 88

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Jeanne Lewis Images

Connecticut Renegades Cowboy Mounted Shooters

Long-time Connecticut Renegades board member Chris Anson on Arrow.

completed until all the horses can accept the new sounds. Riders will then progress to simple patterns. Cowboy mounted shooters are known for their willingness to assist new riders, so training and coaching won’t stop at the end of the clinic. In fact, it’s not uncommon to see riders at higher levels discussing strategies and looking for feedback from their direct competitors. It’s a sport many of us have come to love for its challenges, fairness, and humbleness. We welcome new members. If you have an interest in horses and would like to find out more about this sport, please come to an event and introduce yourself to one of our many friendly members.

Riding or owning a horse is not required. Several of our members are nonriders and simply enjoy being part of a fun group. We’re always looking for help at our matches, including keeping score, helping with gates, balloons, and more. The first competition of the season will be Smokin' Guns in Bethany on Sunday, May 9. For more information about our club, including clinic and membership forms, please visit

y Allison Forsyth

Connecticut Trail Rides Association

Ruth Strontzer

CTRA is excited for a fabulous and busy year in 2021. We will be riding at Machamoodus State Park on April 11,

Connecticut Trail Rides Association member Marie Apero and Apache riding in the Mohawk State Forest in Goshen.

Chatfield Hollow State Park in Killingworth on April 25, Goodwin State Forest in Hampton on May 2, and Natchaug State Forest in Eastford on May 23. The June 13 Mountain Laurel Trail ride at George Seymour State Forest in Hampton is always a crowd pleaser. We’ll also ride at Upper Salmon River State Forest in East Hampton on June 27, Rorabeck Wildlife Management Area trail on August 1, and Bluff Point in Groton on September 12. All rides will follow Connecticut’s COVID-19 outdoor gathering guidelines. Membership is required to participate in the rides, although some rides may be

open to guests of a CTRA member. If you are interested in becoming a member, contact Ruth Strontzer at (860)-345-2954. To learn more, visit Members also have access to Camp Boardman in Goshen, a scenic campground owned by CTRA. The campground was purchased in 1961, and this year we are celebrating our 60th year. Camping with your horse is so much fun. There are beautiful trails to ride from camp up to nearby Mohawk Mountain. Besides riding the trails right out of camp, White Memorial and Steep Rock are within an easy trailer ride of the campground. Many of our members have rented seasonal sites but any member who wants to try camping with their horse is welcome. Contact Pat Gogolya, our camp director, at (860) 485-9092 to see if there are sites available. Several weekends throughout the riding season are special weekends at Camp Boardman. April 17 and 18 are camp opening and clean-up days. May 29–31, July 2–5, and September 4–6 are special camping holidays. Our annual barbecue and auction will be held on August 14 and 15. Over the course of these weekends, we typically have fundraiser dinners and/or breakfasts, organized trail rides or poker rides, general meetings, movie nights complete with popcorn, and, of course, great times visiting with friends around the campfire. We offer year-end awards for the most hours ridden, open to adults and youth, and awards to youth in Junior and Senior divisions for the highest number of rides attended. These awards are given out at our annual banquet on November 6. Join us today!

y Christine Mard

Hampshire County Riding Club HCRC is located on a scenic dirt road just off Route 9, in the town of Goshen. The 48-acre club grounds, owned by the club since 1967, consist of a large mowed area with ample trailer parking, two large riding rings, and two miles of woodland trails with an obstacle course in the forested area. Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


Through the years the club has hosted dozens of horse shows, gymkhanas, obstacle competitions, scavenger hunts, clinics, and competitive and pleasure trail rides. This year we’ve scheduled a variety of club events. An HCRC Fun Day, featuring horseback games, old and new, with divisions from beginner to serious competitor and all ages, including a Lead Line division for the littlest riders, will be held in June. Another Fun Day, hosted by the Hilltown Misfits 4-H Club, will take place in the fall. Also in June, HCRC is hosting a versatility and obstacle training clinic and competition with Peter Whitmore. It includes instruction on skills and allows practice with a variety of obstacles in the morning, and an afternoon competition. The club has been in involved in TREC, a relatively new sport from Europe that Bob Hatch and Stephanie Frend of Burnshirt Hills Equestrian Facility introduced to the club a few years ago. TREC is a trail/obstacle/orienteering sport adding new trail riding skills at an informal or competitive level. We’ve held clinics with them at our club including Control of Paces and Obstacles. This year, in July, we’re planning a clinic at the club grounds and in September, a competition in Chester, situated on more than 100 acres of trails of varied terrain through fields and forest. A dressage show, a first-time event for our club, will take place in August. The format will include both English and western tests. Club trail rides, open to HCRC members and their guests, the Chesterfield July 4th parade, and camping weekends will round out our schedule. Trail rides are scheduled for the Chesterfield Gorge and Kenneth Dubuque Memorial (Hawley) State Forest, with more to follow in the fall. Camping weekends will be shared with Barre Riding and Driving Club at Felton Field in Barre and Wagon Wheel Campground in Warwick. Our grounds remain available to members and guests for ring use (including obstacles, gymkhana equipment, and jumps) 90

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and impromptu rides throughout the riding season. Monthly meetings, on the third Wednesday of the month, are held at a local library or on Zoom and may include an educational presentation or guest speaker. This year we’re introducing the HCRC All-Round Horse and Rider Recognition. The purpose is to recognize members and their horses for the activities and events they participate in during the year that indicate their versatility and involvement. A member can accrue points for a variety of activities and earn medals/certificates for point accrual in various categories ranging from competitive to on one’s own, and that include almost anything one might participate in related to horses. To learn more and to join us, visit

y Diane Merritt

Massachusetts Quarter Horse Association The MQHA welcomes the new competition year with hope and anticipation. All previous memberships from 2020 will automatically renew for 2021 free of charge! We’re moving forward with plans to hold MQHA’s two annual shows, plus we point the Connecticut and New Hampshire shows. The lineup begins with our Novice Show April 9–11 in West Springfield. April 22–25 brings the Connecticut Quarter Horse Association’s Spring Breakout Show in Northampton with five judges. Our Spring Show is being held over a new weekend, May 5–9, in West Springfield. There are six judges and $25,000 in cash and prizes. Also new for 2021 is the Battle of the Breeds Hunter Under Saddle class and Western Pleasure class. Bring your whole barn to compete! The Connecticut Classic is June 9–13 in West Springfield with five judges awarding $50,000 in cash and prizes. July 13–18 brings the Region 6 Super 6 Show in West Springfield — six judges awarding $50,000 in cash and prizes. We invite you to visit for updates. If you’re not already a mem-

y Lori Mahassel

Middlebury Bridle Land Association Although I ride indoors during the winter, it’s different. I love that glorious feeling I get after I’ve warmed up—it’s as if I haven’t a care in the world. I wouldn’t change that for anything, but it’s that before-and-after rawness of the winter season that I find challenging. So, while I’m lamenting about my dislike for the cold, I want you all to know that there are still some hearty MBLA souls out there that are not only riding the trails but are clearing them as well! Sylvia Preston, our vice president, along with her husband, Tom, and Debbie Carlson, our treasurer, are out there riding, weather permitting, assessing trail conditions. If trees or branches are blocking a trail, they come back later with chainsaws and clippers, ready to remedy any situation. Sylvia told me they’ve even been able to revive some old trails that have not been accessible for a few years now. She’s also asked if any of our members are hiking, walking, or riding on our trails and spot downed trees or areas blocked by fallen branches, to please notify her. “This is an ongoing process,” she says, “And things can change day by day.” The new year will bring some changes to the MBLA. We will be issuing new membership cards and saddle tags, so be sure to renew your membership in April for the 2021 season! The forms can be found at Waiver forms must be included with your membership form and payment. We will also be hosting two Facebook pages. One will be a private page for MBLA members only. It will notify members of trail issues, meetings, and other items associated with club membership. The second will give the horse community a place to share events, news, and opportunities that may benefit local horse enthusiasts. Find us on Facebook by

searching for Middlebury Bridle Land Association. Finally, it looks as though our Membership Dinner Meeting, usually held in April, will be cancelled due to COVID-19. We’re hoping that the summer will allow us an opportunity for a trail ride and picnic. This will allow our many new member to ride some of our trails and get acquainted with other members. I’ll keep you posted on our Facebook page and via email!

y Sally L. Feuerberg

New England Equestrian Center of Athol Greetings from NEECA. We’re celebrating NEECA’s 20th anniversary this year. Join us on September 11 to celebrate the equestrian park founded by Elwin Bacon and many others, including Selectman Jim White.

Debbie Martin

ber, please consider joining. We welcome everyone. Stay well and ride on!

Stephanie Tessier leading Liam Ellis at a 2020 New England Equestrian Center of Athol gymkhana.

Work to add and improve trails at the equestrian center is ongoing. A new trail map is available at Many thanks to Fletcher Harrington from Mount Grace Conservation Land Trust for his invaluable assistance in getting this important project completed. Plus, colorcoded signs have been added to the trails. Saturday, April 17 is NEECA’s CleanUp Day. This is a great way to see the park and meet fellow horsepeople. We really do have fun. Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


honoring the bond between animals, humans, and the environment to help create a kinder and gentler world for all. In mid-June there will be a trail ride from the Boggs Hill area of Newtown to a designated outdoor access restaurant. The location is a secret right now but it will be sure to please. A trail ride at Steep Rock Preserve in Washington Depot will be scheduled in

Newtown Bridle Lands Association

July. If you have never taken your horse to Steep Rock, you will be delighted with the excellent footing, flowing river to play in, paddock, picnic tables, and easy parking for trailers. Follow us on Facebook and visit for updates. Have you ever camped with your horse? August 14 and 15 is a great opportunity for members to camp for the weekend at Happy Trails Farm in Danbury. From high on a hill, you will enjoy a campfire, a place for your horse to spend the night, songs, and group trail rides. Educational seminars on topics of general interest will be scheduled in September and October. December brings our Jingle Bell Ride. Deck yourself and your mount in holiday attire and bells as we amble down Main Street in Newtown singing carols. Membership in the NBLA is a wonderful way to expand your enjoyment of

y Debbie Martin

The NBLA has been in existence for more than 40 years. Our mission is to foster an interest in horseback riding as well as to preserve, protect, and maintain riding and hiking trails in Newtown. We also host many activities for horse lovers throughout the year. The highlight is our Frost on the Pumpkin Hunter Pace, which takes place on October 24 this year. The NBLA has planned an exciting year with varied activities that we can modify in response to public health guidelines. Our Spring Conditioning Ride in Huntington Park will be Sunday, April 25. This is a walk-trot-canter ride and will introduce you to the miles of excellent trails in this state park. May 16 we’ll ride at the Trail of Angels, which is located at the Catherine Violet Hubbard Animal Sanctuary. The sanctuary is dedicated to 92

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

Lucy Prybylski

The gymkhana series starts April 25 and runs through October. We’re looking forward to another fun-filled series this year. Patterns are posted at Join us for a Poker Ride April 18 at the equestrian center. On May 15, Margo Petracone will be leading a trail ride at Lake Dennison. July 11 is the date for the Open Show at the Barre Riding and Driving Club grounds at Felton Field in Barre. This show raises funds for improvements at the equestrian center. NEECA and the Athol Bird and Nature Club are planning two nature walks in the park. The park is a multi-use park used for many activities including hiking, bicycling, bird-watching, nature photography, and snowshoeing. November 6 is our Fall Social and Awards Dinner. This event sells out every year because of the fun folks have gathering with friends and enjoying a wonderful dinner and live auction. We offer special thanks to retired board member Pat France for her dedicated service to NEECA. Thank you, Pat. To learn more, visit

Andrea Christensen (right) and Lauren Guerrere were Batman and Robin at the 2020 Newtown Bridle Lands Association Frost on the Pumpkin Hunter Pace.

horseback riding. You do not need to be a Newtown resident or even a horse owner. If you love horses and want to be around like-minded people, this is the organization for you. NBLA members are able to participate in all NBLA functions, post on our Facebook page, have a say in the future of trails and open space, and receive emails about other local horse community news and activities. The annual membership fee is $45. To learn more, visit or email

y Tracy Van Buskirk

Rhode Island Federation of Riding Clubs RIFRC has been serving the horse community since 1966. Our goal is to organize horse clubs and individual horsepeople in Rhode Island and bordering states into a single body. Together, we work to create cooperative thought and action toward establishing and maintaining bridle trails and equine activities. We’ve lobbied for legislation and supported 4-H groups. We are an active member of the Rhode Island Trails Advisory Committee and the Rhode Island Farm Bureau. We maintain the LeGrand Reynolds Horsemen’s Area in Arcadia including rebuilding the riding ring, building a handicap ramp and a pavilion, rebuilding the main fireplace, installing benches around the ring, and more. We’ve worked with the Coventry Greenway and North/South Trails Greenways Alliance. The Federation is best known for hosting the annual Blessing of the Horses Ride at LeGrand Reynolds Horsemen’s Area. This year’s ride will be on April 25. Additionally, RIFRC puts on the Horseman’s Bazaar each spring. Due to COVID restrictions on indoor gatherings we are exploring the possibility of an outdoor venue later this year. Be sure to check our website, rifederation.wixsite. com/rifrc, for updates. We’ve also revamped our Rhode Island Equine Trail Ambassador Program. We’re looking for volunteers who will represent

trail users on behalf of all equestrians. We’re also focusing on making sure our bridle trails remain safe and enjoyable for the entire equestrian community.

y Kara Waldron-Murray

Rhode Island Horseman’s Association The RIHA board thanks its members for coming out last year, abiding by all the state and local protocols, and rocking a great show season. What a great testament to how much we all love our animals and competition! We look forward to having a great 2021. For all the current news, upcoming events, and updated point standings, visit A big thank you to everyone on the RIHA board who made the “non-banquet” banquet happen this year despite the pandemic. Major thanks to Dover Saddlery for its continued sponsorship, as well as Wendy Brayman, Ashley McDonald-Beye, James Paolino, and Jessica Roberts for their amazing contributions to provide everyone a safe award-receiving experience. The RIHA Benefit Show will be Sunday, April 11, at Claddagh Farm in Tiverton. Come out and support our association by competing in this wonderful horse show! The Rhode Island Equitation Championships will be celebrating its 40th anniversary on September 4 and 5. One of the highlights will be an equitation hall of fame, the Rhode Island Masters Class. This alumni class is open to all past champion and reserve champion winners, both amateurs and professionals, from any of the medals since 1980. We look forward to seeing everyone at this exciting event. To learn more, visit RIHA is offering a new division, RI Training Hunter, open to all horses and ponies, no age limitations, and no rider restrictions. Visit our website for further details.

y Elizabeth Vars

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


Rhythm Riders Old People’s Riding Club (OPRC) was created by a group of four friends who love to ride together and were looking for something a little bit different in a riding club. After working with the national office of the OPRC, an organization for riders over the age of 21 and with an emphasis on education, Rhythm Riders OPRC was born. Rhythm Riders’ focus on camaraderie, enjoyment, education, and acceptance of all breeds and disciplines is appealing to busy adult riders. Founders Kara Waldron-Murray, Jess Edwards, Meri Breault, and Rebecca Cyr are all accomplished equestrians from varied riding backgrounds, bringing different perspectives and ideas to the club. There will be an educational component of Rhythm Riders, as all members have to pass a basic horse and rider safety/knowledge test, or “rating,” as the national office of OPRC calls them. We are beginner friendly but we’re also big on horse and rider safety. The first rating, D1, ensures that riders have basic horse knowledge and riding skills to participate safely in OPCR activities. Of course, accidents happen, but the ratings give our members a clear understanding of what is expected of them. We want everyone to be safe and have fun. While anyone interested in becoming a member must pass the basic first rating, there are many different levels of optional rating tests for western, English, and driving disciplines. The rating tests include general knowledge, from parts of the horse and tack to safe handling on the ground, and more sophisticated ratings for equine management and riding tests at the higher levels. If you’ve ever wanted to attend a fox hunt, try cow sorting, cross country, or versatility, and laugh while working out the kinks, then this club is for you. With the hopes of hosting clinics seasonally, there are many other educational opportunities. “Think 4-H or Pony Club, but for adults,” says Meri Breault, club secretary. “This is the per94

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

fect outlet for adult riders who are looking for fun in a safe and supportive environment.” If you’re not interested in competing at shows or testing to higher level ratings, there are still many other activities for you and your horse. “We plan on offering a mileage program that is attainable for riders of any level,” says club vice president Rebecca Cyr. “You don’t have to ride one hundred miles with us to be rewarded.” Travel, and advocating for bridle paths and the equine community as a whole is also important for the Rhythm Riders.

Tess Richards, PGriffin Photography, and Judy Bosco

Rhythm Riders Old People’s Riding Club

Rhode Island’s Rhythm Riders Old People’s Riding Club officers clockwise from top left corner: president Kara Waldron-Murray, vice president Rebecca Cyr, treasurer Jess Edwards, and secretary Meri Breault.

“Sometimes, as riders we get stuck in patterns. We ride the same trails, show at the same shows in the same locations with the same people,” says Jess Edwards, the club’s treasurer. “There are so many possibilities, so many disciplines, and, of course, so many trails to explore, and it’s always more fun to do it with friends.” To learn more, find “Rhythm Riders Rhode Island Chapter of the OPRC” on Facebook.

y Kara Waldron-Murray


This Olde Horse

Melony Block Fire, Willimantic, Connecticut, 1908.

Centered Horse Massage

Sixth Annual

Cross-Town Ride with Tyrone Farm and Pomfret Horse & Trail Association

Sunday, May 30, 2021 Tyrone Farm, Pomfret 8 a.m. check-in opens; 10 a.m. last rider out Brick oven pizza lunch by the Rolling Tomato

Serving northern RI, central MA, and eastern CT

Cynthia Downs, CESMT (860) 753-1482

Register at: Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021



This Olde Horse

“Teaming & Furniture Moving, E.F. Shaw, 452 Warren Ave., Brockton, Mass.”


UNPARALLELED IN CARE & AMENITIES Lessons . Boarding Training . Sales Hunters . Jumpers Equitation Full Service Multidiscipline Facility

Sales and Repairs for more than 40 years. 29 GOSHEN RD. (RT. 9) WILLIAMSBURG, MA

(413) 268-3620 96

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

24/7 On-Site Care . Open 7 Days . Onsite Trainers 29 Stalls with All-Day Turnout Custom Feeding Programs . Showing Opportunities Indoor Arena & Viewing Room . Direct Trail Access

GOLDEN ROSE EQUESTRIAN CENTER 411 North Street, Jefferson, Mass. (781) 828-5015 .


This Olde Horse

“The Big Nine: These famous roan Belgians are the largest and only nine-horse team in the world. They range in height from 17 to 19 hands. The lightest horse weights 2,200 pounds and the heaviest is 2,500 pounds. The team as a whole weighing 20,625 pounds. When hitched with their perfectly appointed harness to the 20-foot show wagon the display is wonderful. They are used for exhibition purposes only and are shown throughout the country at all the leading fairs and horse shows. The James Hanley Brewing Company, Providence, Rhode Island.” The James Hanley Brewing Company was open from 1896 to 1922.

Open Shows . Horse Trials . Clinics Open Show Series

Horse Trials & Dressage

May 9 . June 12 . July 18 . Aug. 21

June 6 . July 10 . Aug. 8 . Sept. 18

Champion & Reserve in all Divisions!

Pre-Elementary through Novice!

Clinics & Summer Camps Azrael Acres, 144 Williams St., Uxbridge, MA (508) 234-2678 Visit for class lists, registrations, and more. Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021



April 2 – 4 PINES OPEN, Glastonbury. 3 CHJA SHOW, New Canaan.


4 NEHC CHJA SHOW, Ox Ridge, Darien.

24 NEHC CHJA SHOW, Ox Ridge, Darien.


24 – 25 PINES OPEN, Glastonbury.

10 NEHC CHSA CHJA SHOW, Gales Ferry.

25 CTRA RIDE, Chatfield Hollow State Park, Killingworth.

10 H.O.R.S.E. OF CT HORSE SHOWING, Washington.

25 NBLA SPRING CONDITIONING RIDE, Huntington Park, Newtown.

10 NEHC CHJA SHOW, Simsbury.

25 CHSA SHOW, Morris.

11 CTRA GINGER TULLAI MEMORIAL RIDE, Machimoodus State Park, East Haddam.

29 – May 2 SPRING FLING “A” SHOW, Westbrook Hunt Club, Westbrook.


30 – May 1 CROSS COUNTRY DERBY, Horse Power Farm, Canterbury.

11 NEHC CHSA SHOW, Willington. 11 – 12 NEHC SHOW, Eastfield Farm, Ashford. 17 RENEGADES NEW HORSE AND RIDER CLINIC, Bethany. 17 NEHC CHJA SHOW, Westport. 17 NEATO RIDE, Bluff Point State Park, Groton. 17 CHSA CHJA SHOW, End of Hunt, Suffield. 17 SCHOOLING DRESSAGE AND TWO-PHASE, Gales Ferry. 18 CABIN FEVER SHOW SERIES, Somers. 18 NEHC CHSA CHJA SHOW, Folly Farm, Simsbury. 18 TIME IN THE SADDLE OPRC THIRD ANNIVERSARY, location TBA. (860) 309-4507 or


18 REINDEER SHOW SERIES FINALE, Westbrook Hunt Club, Westbrook.

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

May 1 H.O.R.S.E. OF CT VOLUNTEER DAY, Washington. 1 NEATO RIDE, Machimoodus State Park, East Haddam. 1 – 2 RATED DRESSAGE SHOW, Gales Ferry. 2 CTRA RIDE, Goodwin State Forest, Hampton. 2 SCHOOLING OPEN SHOW, Portland. 7 3D BARREL RACING, All In Farm, Woodbury. (203) 948-3374. 8 NEHC CHSA CHJA SHOW, Willington. 8 CDA SCHOOLING DRESSAGE SHOW, Bethany. 8 CHJA SHOW, Morris.

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


8 NEHC CHJA SHOW, Westport.

29 CHJA SHOW, Westbrook.

8 GRTA DOGWOOD RIDE, Sabine Farm, Greenwich.




9 DRESSAGE SHOW, Sperry View Farm, Bethany. 9 SNEHA SHOW, Glastonbury. 9 CDCTA SCHOOLING SHOW SERIES, Westbrook Hunt Club, Westbrook. 9 NEHC CHSA CHJA SHOW, Folly Farm, Simsbury. 11 – 13 SPRING DRESSAGE SHOW, Gales Ferry. 15 PINES OPEN, Glastonbury.

31 CHJA SHOW, Ridgefield.

June 4 – 6 TSHA OPEN SHOW, Sterling. 5 RENEGADES AMITY MAYHEM MATCH, Bethany. 5 CTRA BLESSING OF THE MOUNTS, Barry’s Farm, Cheshire.

15 H.O.R.S.E. OF CT OPEN HOUSE, Washington.

5 NEATO RIDE, White Memorial Conservation Center, Litchfield.

15 CHJA SHOW, Ridgefield.

5 CHJA SHOW, Simsbury.



16 NBLA RIDE, Trail of Angels, Newtown.

6 CHJA SHOW, Gales Ferry.

16 CHJA SHOW, Suffield.


16 – 17 NEHC SHOW, Eastfield Farm, Ashford. (774) 262-6287.

6 TIME IN THE SADDLE OPRC TRAIL RIDE, Steep Rock Preserve, Washington. (860) 309-4507 or

21 3D BARREL RACING, All In Farm, Woodbury. (203) 948-3374. 22 CHJA SHOW, Hebron.



11 3D BARREL RACING, All In Farm, Woodbury. (203) 948-3374.

23 TSHA TRAIL RIDE, Pachaug State Forest, Voluntown.


23 TIME IN THE SADDLE OPRC TRAIL RIDE, White Memorial, Litchfield. (860) 309-4507 or


23 CTRA RIDE, Natchaug State Forest, Eastford.

12 CHJA SHOW, Ridgefield.

23 CHJA SHOW, Gales Ferry. 23 CCBA RATED SHOW, Glastonbury. 29 USEA HORSE TRIALS, Gales Ferry.


31 CHJA SHOW, Terryville.

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

12 – 13 SPRING CLASSIC, Westbrook. 13 SNEHA SHOW, Glastonbury. 13 SUMMER SHOW SERIES II, Somers. 13 CTRA RIDE, George Seymour State Forest, East Hampton.

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


13 DRESSAGE SHOW, Portland. 13 GREENWICH SHOW, Greenwich. 13 –16 PATH INTL. WORKSHOP, Old Lyme. 15 - 20 OX RIDGE CHARITY SHOW, Darien. 17 –20 ESMHL EQUINE SPECIALIST IN MENTAL HEALTH AND LEARNING WORKSHOP, Old Lyme. 19 PAINT WITH THE HORSES, Plainfield. 19 SCHOOLING SHOW SERIES, Broad Brook. (860) 558-2065. 19 PINES OPEN, South Glastonbury. 19 – 20 TSHA DRESSAGE SHOW, Sterling. 20 USEA HORSE TRIALS, Kent. 20 CCBA RATED SHOW, Glastonbury.

23 DRESSAGE SCHOOLING SHOW SERIES, East Haddam. 25 3D BARREL RACING, All In Farm, Woodbury. (203) 948-3374. 25 – 26 CROSS COUNTRY DERBY, Horse Power Farm, Canterbury. 26 CHJA SHOW, Simsbury. 26 NEATO ENDURANCE RIDE, location TBA. 27 CHJA SHOW, Morris. 27 SCHOOLING DRESSAGE SHOW, Salisbury. 27 CTRA RIDE, Upper Salmon River State Forest, East Hampton.



3 CHJA SHOW, Ridgefield.

22 – 26 FCHC JUNE BENEFIT SHOW, Fairfield County Hunt Club, Westport.

3 CHJA SHOW, Hebron.

Dawn Bonin Horsemanship Natural Horsemanship . Lessons . Sales/Leases . Versatility Course Two Outdoor Rings . Indoor Arena . Miles of Trails

June 6 - Versatility Clinic . June 12 - Versatility Competition July 20-23 - Pony Power Week: Focus on Horse Knowledge August 3-6 - Own Your Own Horse Week

See website for more upcoming events. Giſt certificates available! Coventry, Connecticut 860-742-2667 (barn) . 860-985-7611 (cell) . 102

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

Residential Camps: July 11-18 • July 18-25 July 25-August 1

Day Camps: June 28-July 2 • August 9-13

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


4 CHJA SHOW, Suffield.

16 – 18 TSHA OPEN SHOW, Sterling.

8 – 11 SHORELINE CLASSIC, Westbrook.

17 SCHOOLING SHOW SERIES, Broad Brook. (860) 558-2065.


17 TIME IN THE SADDLE OPRC PICNIC, ROUND TABLE DISCUSSION, Livery Stable, Morris. (860) 309-4507.



10 H.O.R.S.E. OF CT VOLUNTEER DAY, Washington.


11 SUMMER SHOW SERIES III, Somers. 11 3D BARREL RACING, All In Farm, Woodbury. (203) 948-3374. 11 CHJA SHOW, New Canaan. 11 CDCTA SCHOOLING SHOW SERIES, Treasure Hill Farm, Salem. 14 DRESSAGE SHOW, Bethany. 14 – 17 SHORELINE CLASSIC, Westbrook. 16 HAY BURR INN CHRISTMAS IN JULY LIGHT WALK, Plainfield.

18 CHJA SHOW, Ridgefield. 18 PINES OPEN, South Glastonbury. 20 – 23 PONY POWER WEEK, Coventry. 21 DRESSAGE SCHOOLING SHOW SERIES, East Haddam. 21 CHJA SHOW, New Canaan. 22 CHJA SHOW, Darien. 23 3D BARREL RACING, All In Farm, Woodbury. (203) 948-3374. 24 CHJA SHOW, Gales Ferry. 24 H.O.R.S.E. OF CT HORSE PARADE, Washington. 24 CHJA SHOW, Westport. 24 – 25 RENEGADES BORDER WARS MATCH, Bethany. 25 CDA SCHOOLING DRESSAGE SHOW, Salisbury. 25 CCBA RATED SHOW, Glastonbury. 25 HAY BURR INN CHRISTMAS IN JULY LIGHT WALK, Plainfield. 25 CHJA SHOW, Simsbury. 25 TIME IN THE SADDLE OPRC PICNIC, ROUND TABLE DISCUSSION, CLUB MEETING, Livery Stable, Morris. (860) 309-4507. 31 CHJA SHOW, Hebron. 31 SCHOOLING HORSE TRIALS, Lakeville. 31 – August 1 TSHA DRESSAGE SHOW, Sterling.


Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


14 – 15 NBLA CAMPING WEEKEND, Danbury.

1 CTRA RIDE, Harwinton. 1 SNEHA SHOW, Glastonbury. 1 CHJA SHOW, Suffield.

14 – 15 TIME IN THE SADDLE OPRC TRAIL RIDE, White Memorial, Litchfield. (860) 309-4507 or 15 CHJA SHOW, New Milford.

1 CHJA SHOW, Darien.


3 – 6 OWN YOUR OWN HORSE WEEK, Coventry.

19 – 22 FCHC USEF SHOW, Westport.

6 3D BARREL RACING, All In Farm, Woodbury. (203) 948-3374.


6 – 7 CROSS COUNTRY DERBY, Canterbury. 7 CHJA SHOW, Simsbury.

22 SNEHA SHOW, Glastonbury.

7 H.O.R.S.E. OF CT TACK SALE, Washington.



27 3D BARREL RACING, All In Farm, Woodbury. (203) 948-3374.

11 CHJA SHOW, Westport.

28 – 29 DRESSAGE BY THE SEA, Gales Ferry.

13 – 15 TSHA OPEN SHOW, Sterling.

28 – 29 USEA HORSE TRIALS, Lakeville.

14 SCHOOLING SHOW SERIES, Broad Brook. (860) 558-2065.

29 CCBA RATED SHOW, Glastonbury.

14 PINES OPEN, South Glastonbury.

Independence Stable HORSE POWER FARM An Eventing Facility Lessons • Boarding Clinics • Test & Tune

Dressage Schooling Shows Traditional & Western Dressage Tests

June 13 . July 11 August 22 . September 19 Personalized Boarding & Training Riding & Carriage Driving Instruction

404 S. Washington St. Belchertown, Mass.

(413) 284-0371

Cross Country Derby Dates: April 30/May 1 June 25/26 • August 6/7 October 8/9 Paperless Entry & Payment

Ann Bowie BHSII(T) Canterbury, CT 860.334.1772 Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021



April 9 – 11 MQHA NOVICE SHOW, West Springfield.

25 CMHSS SHOW SERIES, Camp Marshall, Spencer.

10 – 11 USDF “L” PROGRAM WITH JANET FOY, Apple Knoll Farm, Millis.

25 RIDE REVIEW RIDE DRESSAGE SHOW, Bradford Equestrian Center, Haverhill. (978) 374-0008.

11 MHC NEHC SHOW, Westford.

25 MHC NEHC SHOW, Pembroke.

11 RIDE REVIEW RIDE DRESSAGE SHOW, Bradford Equestrian Center, Haverhill. (978) 374-0008.








17 BSTRA TRAIL WORK DAY, West Hill Dam, Uxbridge.

2 WNEPHA SHOW, Muddy Brook Farm, Amherst.


2 GFF SHOW I, Buzzards Bay.

18 MHC NEHC SHOW, Pembroke.


18 IEA DRESSAGE SHOW, Apple Knoll Farm, Millis.

2 HDA SCHOOLING DRESSAGE SHOW, Briggs Stable, Hanover.


2 MHC NEHC SHOW, Bolton.

18 HUNTER EQUITATION SHOW, Byfield. 18 COMBINED TEST, Plymouth. 21 – 24 UPHA CHAPTER 14 SPRING PREMIERE, West Springfield. 22 – 25 CQHA SPRING BREAKOUT SHOW, Northampton.



5 SCHOOLING JUMPER SHOW, Plymouth. 5 – 9 MQHA SPRING SHOW, West Springfield. 7 – 9 NHHJA SHOW, Northampton. 8 BRDC SPRING TRAIL RIDE, Barre. 8 CAPE COD HUNTER SHOW, Medway.


8 USEA HORSE TRIALS, Apple Knoll Farm, Millis.


9 DRESSAGE SHOW, Haverhill. (978) 374-0008.



Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


The Western New England chapter of the Professional Horsemen’s Association of America holds Hunter, Jumper, and Dressage Shows.


GMHA Schooling Jumper

July 11 JW Equestrian

May 2

Muddy Brook Farm

July 14-18 GMHA Summer Hunter/Jumper

May 9

White Horse Hill

July 17 Harmony Hill Farm

May 16 SJH Equestrian

July 18 Muddy Brook Farm

May 22-23 GMHA Spring Hunter/Jumper

July 25 Bonnie Lea Farm

May 22 JW Equestrian

Aug. 1 Grindstone Mountain Farm

May 23 Riverbank Farm

Aug. 5-8 Northampton Hunter/Jumper

May 30 Harmony Hill Farm

Aug. 7 Bellwether Stables

June 6

Aug. 15 White Horse Hill

Bellwether Stables

June 13 White Horse Hill

Aug. 22 Berkshire Humane Society

June 20 Grindstone Mountain Farm

Aug. 29 Harmony Hill Farm

June 27 Bonnie Lea Farm

Sept. 5 Riverbank Farm

July 4

Bellwether Stables

Sept. 12 Bellwether Stables

July 9

SJH Equestrian

Sept. 19 White Horse Hill

DRESSAGE SHOWS English and Western Tests Visit for the 2021 schedule! Year-end awards in many divisions. Full schedule can be found at An organization for horsemen, by horsemen. Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021




9 WNEPHA SHOW, White Horse Hill, Richmond.






14 – 18 AHCC A SHOW, West Springfield. 15 NEECA TRAIL RIDE, Lake Dennison, Winchendon. 15 – 16 LAINE ASHKER CLINIC, Millis. 16 HRC TRAIL RIDE, Myles Standish State Forest, Carver. 16 SCHOOLING HORSE TRIALS, Rehoboth. 16 TWO PHASE, Rehoboth. 16 WNEPHA SHOW, SJH Equestrian, Richmond. 16 MHC NEHC SHOW, Westford.


Keith Angstadt

Dressage Training & Instruction Keith Angstadt

Kaylee Angstadt

USEF Dressage Judge USDF Bronze & Silver Medalist ADS Driving Dressage Judge

PATH-certified instructor USPC certified C3 Trad. & B Dressage FEI 3-Star Combined Driver & ADS Intermediate Pairs

Lynda Angstadt USDF L Graduate USDF Bronze Medalist • Full Care Facility • Individualized Programs • Excellent Footing • Indoor & Outdoor Arenas

• Ample Turnout • Reasonable Rates • Truck-ins Welcome • Competitions & Clinics

Merrimack Valley Dressage Shows

at Bradford Equestrian Center April 11 & 25 - Ride Review Ride May 9 . June 27 . Aug. 15 . Sept. 12 Intro to 4th and Above . High Score Awards Offering USEA event tests and western dressage tests! Discount for Pony Club.

Excellent Location – minutes from Routes 495, 95, and 93

109 S. Cross Rd. & 318 Boxford Rd., Haverhill, MA • (978) 374-0008 or 108

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

Apple Knoll Farm Events USDF “L” Program with Janet Foy

Jumper Shows

April 10 -11 .

June 9 . June 16 . June 23 . June 30 July 7 . July 14 . July 21 . July 28 Aug. 4 . Aug. 11 . Aug. 18 . Aug. 25 September 1 - Finale with Awards

IEA Dressage Show April 18

NEDA Summer Show

USEA Horse Trials

July 18 .

May 8

USEA Horse Trials

Dressage Schooling Shows May 9 . June 13 . August 8 . Sept. 26

Laine Ashker Clinic

September 11

Area I Schooling Horse Trials Championships September 12

May 15 - 16

Sinead Halpin & Tik Maynard Clinic

Norfolk Hunt Pony Club Clinic

May 22 - 23

September 16 - 20

Laine Ashker Clinic

NEMHS Shows June 6 . June 27 . Aug. 7 . Aug. 22

November 13 – 14

Alex Brackin

lists Prize forms r nt y . and e le e p at: ap the websit Check as events often dded! are a

Our MISSION is to provide a safe, comfortable, and well-equipped facility for horses and riders to develop the skills and confidence required for the sport of Eventing.

APPLE KNOLL FARM 25 Forest Lane, Millis, Massachusetts (508) 376-2564 | Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


23 WNEPHA SHOW, Riverbank Farm, Dalton.

2 – 5 CMHA SHOW, West Springfield.

23 CMHSS SHOW SERIES, Camp Marshall, Spencer.



5 – 6 NEDA SPRING DRESSAGE SHOW, Fieldstone Show Park, Halifax.




6 MHC SHOW, Bolton.


6 MYOPIA POLO MATCH, South Hamilton.

30 MYOPIA POLO MATCH, South Hamilton.

6 WNEPHA SHOW, Bellwether Stables, Richmond.

30 NSHA HUNTER SHOW, Byfield. 30 WNEPHA SHOW, Harmony Hill Farm, Great Barrington.




Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

6 GFF HORSE SHOW III, Buzzards Bay. 6 HORSE TRIALS, Azrael Acres, Uxbridge. 6 HCRC FUN Day, Goshen. 6 NEMHS  AMHR SHOW, Apple Knoll Farm, Millis.

89 Annual th

June Show Saturday • June 12

2'9" 2'6" & rby r De Hunte ions! Divis

Outside Course Warm-ups 6:30 to 8 A .M., Trailer Parking Starts at 6 A .M. Affiliated with NEHC, MHC & SSHC • MHC, NEHC & SSHC Medal Classes Show Manager: John Dougherty (781) 826-3191 Program may be downloaded at

Briggs Stable

Mini Shows

Wednesday evenings starting at 6 P.M. • June 30 to September 1 All members of the Hanover Hunt & Riding Club are eligible for year-end awards.

Lead Line . Therapeutic . Walk Trot . Games . Jumping . Equitation . Pleasure Great food and drinks available at the Hanover Hunt & Riding Club food booth. are Dates t to c subje o due t e g n cha 9. -1 ID V CO

Class lists may be downloaded at

623 Hanover St., Route 139, Hanover Centre, MA (781) 826-3191 . Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


9 AKF JUMPER SHOW SERIES, Millis. 9 – 13 CQHA CLASSIC, West Springfield. 12 HHRC 89TH ANNUAL JUNE SHOW, Briggs Stable, Hanover. 12 USEF NEHC MHC SEHA MHJ SHOW, Medway. 12 OPEN SHOW SERIES, Uxbridge. 12 NEECA GYMKHANA SERIES, Athol. 12 – 13 BRDC GARY LANE GAITED CLINIC, Felton Field, Barre. 13 MYOPIA POLO MATCH, South Hamilton. 13 WNEPHA SHOW, White Horse Hill, Richmond. 13 SCHOOLING DRESSAGE SHOW, Belchertown.

13 SPRING THREE-PHASE EVENT, Orchard Hill Equestrian Center, Berlin. 13 HCRC WHITMORE VERSATILITY CLINIC/COMPETITION, Goshen. 13 MHC SHOW, Haverhill. 13 USEA HORSE TRIALS, Plymouth. 16 AKF JUMPER SHOW SERIES, Millis. 19 CAPE COD HUNTER III, Medway. 19 – 20 WDAA WESTERN DRESSAGE SHOW, South Hadley. 20 CMHSS SHOW SERIES, Camp Marshall, Spencer. 20 BRDC OPEN SHOW, Barre. 20 MYOPIA POLO MATCH, South Hamilton.

13 GFF HORSE SHOW IV, Buzzards Bay.



20 WNEPHA SHOW, Grindstone Mountain Farm, Southampton.

13 HRC TRAIL RIDE, Carver.

Myopia Hunt Join us in 2021 for fox hunting and much more! Spring Roading begins May 1

Fall Hunt Season begins September 9

Spring Hunter Pace May 16

Mopia Horse Show September 3 - 5

Summer Hound Exercises June - August

Fall Hunter Pace October 31

We invite you to join us as we preserve the future through the traditions of the past.

Myopia has many opportunities to participate, watch, and volunteer. For more information, please visit

© Eric Schneider


Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

New England Equestrian Center of Athol’s

Upcoming Events

All take place at the Equestrian Center unless otherwise noted. Spring Work Day

Lake Dennison Trail Ride

Elwin Bacon Fun Day

April 17, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Pam at

May 15 Margo at

October 9 Frank at (978) 833-2634

Susan Harris Clinic

Fall Social

TBA Windswept Farm, Petersham Caroline at (978) 249-2813

November 6 Ellinwood Country Club, Athol Althea at (617) 678-9300

Poker Ride April 18 Frank at (978) 833-2634

Gymkhana Series April 25 . May 22 . June 12 . June 27 July 18 . Aug. 7 . Aug. 28 Sept. 12 . Oct. 3 Lead Line to All-Out Competitors Frank at (978) 833-2634

Open Horse Show July 11 Felton Field, Barre Althea at (617) 678-9300

20th Anniversary Celebration September 11

New Trail Map Brochure! More events will be added throughout the season so check in at often!

Become a member and be part of something special for generations to come! Protecting and preserving land for equestrian interests and hosting events for the enjoyment and education of horse lovers.

New England Equestrian Center, 802 New Sherborn Road, Athol

Go to for all the details! Thinking of Selling Your

Consult Althea today!

Horse Property?

Let more than 30 years of experience work for you! Althea Bramhall, Hometown Realtors 617-678-9300

Always Call Althea! Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021



27 DRESSAGE SHOW, Bradford Equestrian Center, Haverhill. (978) 374-0008.


27 SOUTH COAST SERIES HUNTER SHOW, Grazing Fields Farm, Buzzards Bay.

20 SSHC SHOW, Rosena’s Field, Raynham. 23 SCHOOLING JUMPER SHOW, Plymouth. 23 AKF JUMPER SHOW SERIES, Millis.


23 – 24 USEF DRESSAGE SHOW, South Hadley.




27 MYOPIA POLO MATCH, South Hamilton.




27 NEMHS  AMHR SHOW, Apple Knoll Farm, Millis.


27 WNEPHA SHOW, Bonnie Lea Farm, Williamstown. 27 HDA SCHOOLING DRESSAGE SHOW, Briggs Stable, Hanover.

1 – 4 BSTRA JULY 4TH CAMPOUT, Douglas. 4 WNEPHA SHOW, Bellwether Stables, Richmond 4 MYOPIA POLO MATCH, South Hamilton.

MHC Pleasure Classic Finals Sponsored by the Massachusetts Horsemen’s Council Double Point MHC Show Affiliated with NEHC, SSHC Open and Breed Classes More than 100 exhibitors compete for great prizes and awards offered in a multitude of Open, Breed, Pleasure, Western, Saddle Seat, and Equitation classes in two rings to ensure a variety of classes.

Sunday, September 12, at Briggs Stable, 623 Hanover Street, Hanover, Mass. Show Begins Promptly at 8 a.m.

Pleasure Classic Finals: Hunter, Saddle Seat, Western WalkTrot Pleasure Classics: MHC Walk Trot 10 & Under, SSHC Walk Trot 11 & Older (No qualifying needed for Walk Trot Classics)

Lifetime Pleasure Horse Achievement Award • Community Horse Youth Award

For more information, please visit 114

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021



5 MHC SHOW, Richmond.

12 MHC SHOW, Bolton.


13 – 18 REGION 6 SUPER 6 SHOW, West Springfield.

7 SCARLET APPLE HORSE TRIALS, Groton. 7 BRIGGS STABLE MINI SHOW, Hanover. 9 WNEPHA SHOW, SJH Equestrian, Richmond. 10 HORSE TRIALS, Azrael Acres, Uxbridge. 11 SCHOOLING DRESSAGE SHOW, Belchertown. 11 BRDC OPEN SHOW, Barre. 11 MYOPIA POLO MATCH, South Hamilton. 11 HRC OPEN SHOW, Briggs Stable, Hanover.

14 SCHOOLING JUMPER SHOW, Plymouth. 14 AKF JUMPER SHOW SERIES, Millis. 14 BRIGGS STABLE MINI SHOW, Hanover. 15 MHC SHOW, Pembroke. 17 WNEPHA SHOW, Harmony Hill Farm, Great Barrington. 17 HCRC TREC CLINIC, Goshen. 17 USEF NEHC MHC SEHA MHJ SHOW, Medway. 18 NEECA GYMKHANA SERIES, Athol.

11 SOUTH COAST SERIES HUNTER SHOW, Grazing Fields Farm, Buzzards Bay.

18 MYOPIA POLO MATCH, South Hamilton. 18 WNEPHA SHOW, Muddy Brook Farm, Amherst.

Stalls and Training Spots Available! Boarding . Training . Onsite Leases Lessons with Licensed Instructor Owner is an Eventer Open to all riding styles!

All-day Turnout, Stalls with Run Outs, Individual Turnouts, and Pasture Board Heated Tack Room . Indoor Arena Round Pen . Trails . Outdoor Arena

Kate Cameron

hase Two-P e Shows ssag r 31 ctobe & Dre .O

5 4 Plain Road, Hatfield, Mass. uly 2 on up 30 . J y Poles ice of a d n M u o (978) 739-4707 rs cho nd Gr ine a compeito ts. L d a Le tes nly age-o USDF ire. Dress USEA or al att inform t u b Neat Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


18 NEDA SUMMER SHOW, Apple Knoll Farm, Millis.

25 MYOPIA POLO MATCH, South Hamilton.

18 SCHOOLING THREE-PHASE EVENT, Orchard Hill Equestrian Center, Berlin.

25 SSHC SHOW, Rosena’s Field, Raynham.



24 – 25 USEA HORSE TRIALS, Sherborn.

28 – August 1 HEAD OF THE BAY CLASSIC, Grazing Fields Farm, Buzzards Bay.



25 WNEPHA SHOW, Bonnie Lea Farm, Williamstown.

30 – August 1 HCRC EQUESTRIAN CAMPING WEEKEND, Wagon Wheel Campground, Warren.

Hampshire County Riding Club Events! MAY 23 - Chesterfield Gorge Ride JUNE 6 - Fun Day at Club Grounds - Games for horse & rider/handler; kids & adults. JUNE 13 - Whitmore Versatility Clinic/Competition JUNE 26 - Members Afternoon of Riding Enjoy rings, trails, obstacles, jumps. JUNE 26-27 - Campout Weekend at Club with/without horse; bonfire, potluck. JULY 17 - TREC Clinic Obstacles & Control of Paces JULY 30-AUG. 1 - Camping in Warwick

AUGUST 7 - Dressage Show English and western AUGUST 28 - Lake Dennison Ride SEPTEMBER 10 - TREC Competition SEPTEMBER 19 - Hawley State Forest Ride OCTOBER 10 - Hilltown Misfits 4-H Club Fun Day & Scavenger Hunt OCTOBER 17 - Northfield Mountain Fall Foliage Ride OCTOBER 24 - Hunter Pace in Chester To learn more and confirm dates and locations, visit S

DE S E RI SOM EMBE R S M U ARE . JOIN Y ONL ODAY! T Hampshire County, Mass. 116

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

31 COMBINED TEST, Sherborn.

7 NEMHS  AMHR SHOW, Apple Knoll Farm, Millis.


8 SCHOOLING THREE-PHASE EVENT, Orchard Hill Equestrian Center, Berlin.

1 WNEPHA SHOW, Grindstone Mountain Farm, Southampton.

8 HORSE TRIALS, Azrael Acres, Uxbridge.



1 MYOPIA POLO MATCH, South Hamilton.

8 CMHSS SHOW SERIES, Camp Marshall, Spencer.

2 MHC SHOW, Westford.

8 MYOPIA POLO MATCH, South Hamilton.




8 SSHC SHOW, Rosena’s Field, Raynham.

6 MHC SHOW, Pembroke.




7 SUNRISE SHOW SERIES, South Hadley. (413) 695-8343.


7 WNEPHA SHOW, Bellwether Stables, Richmond.

12 MHC SHOW, Pembroke.


12 – 15 CCDS ANNUAL PLEASURE DRIVING SHOW, Orleton Farm, Stockbridge.

120th Annual

Myopia Horse Show September 3 - 5 • Myopia Schooling Field, South Hamilton, Mass. $2,500 Myopia Hunter Derby $5,000 Myopia Jumper Classic $1,000 Child/Adult Jumper Classic MHC Medals divisions include: Short Stirrup . NEHC and MHC Medals Jumper Divisions from 2'3" to 3'6" . Side Saddle Class Qualified Hunter classes, and more. ‘

Hunt Night ~ Friday, September 3 Qualified Hunters, Appointment, Hilltoppers, and more. Joint Masters Wendy Wood Nicholas White

All hunter classes held on the historic Myopia Hunt Field with some new as well as historic permanent jumps.

Manager John Manning

This show is professionally run with good courses in a beautiful setting.

Technical Advisor Wendy Wood

Prize list at Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


12 – 15 NORTHAMPTON HUNTER/JUMPER SHOW, Northampton. 14 CAPE COD HUNTER IV, Medway. 15 SOUTH COAST SERIES HUNTER SHOW, Grazing Fields Farm, Buzzards Bay. 15 MYOPIA POLO MATCH, South Hamilton. 15 DRESSAGE SHOW, Bradford Equestrian Center, Haverhill. (978) 374-0008.


15 WNEPHA SHOW, White Horse Hill, Richmond.

21 OPEN SHOW SERIES, Uxbridge.

15 HDA SCHOOLING DRESSAGE SHOW, Briggs Stable, Hanover.

21 ECTA EQUINE TACK & PARAPHERNALIA SALE, Topsfield Fairgrounds. (978) 768-6275.


22 NEMHS  AMHR SHOW, Apple Knoll Farm, Millis.








EN Presents the 26th

Equine Tack & Paraphernalia Sale Saturday, August 21, 2021 . 9-3





Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

Large vendor marketplace selling new and used items! Plus services for the horse, rider, and driver. $5 Admission . children under 10 free Vendor Spaces Available . Free Parking Held in the Arena Building at the Topsfield Fairgrounds

Contact Kay at: 978-768-6275 or

22 MHC SHOW, Haverhill.



29 MYOPIA POLO MATCH, South Hamilton.




29 MHJ FINALS, Halifax.



4 – 6 BLANDFORD FAIR SHOW, Blandford. (413) 695-8343. 5 HRC OPEN SHOW, Hanover.

28 NEECA GYMKHANA SERIES, Athol. 29 WNEPHA SHOW, Harmony Hill Farm, Great Barrington. 29 SCHOOLING THREE-PHASE EVENT, Orchard Hill Equestrian Center, Berlin.

5 MYOPIA POLO MATCH, South Hamilton. 5 WNEPHA SHOW, Riverbank Farm, Dalton. 5 USEF USEA HORSE TRIALS, Course Brook Farm, Sherborn.

Schooling Hunter Shows May 9 June 27 July 11 August 15 September 12 October 3 October 31 All shows at Grazing Fields Farm in Buzzards Bay, Mass. Classes for Lead Line through 2'6" Hunters and Equitation. Ideal shows for novice exhibitors and riders on school horses. Annual Banquet High Point Awards!

Find us on Facebook at *South Coast Series Horse Shows* More information at or email Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021









11 RIHA BENEFIT SHOW, Claddagh Farm, Tiverton. 11 SPRING SCHOOLING SHOW, Misty Meadows, Westerly. 17 RIHA SHOW, Sandy Point Stables, Portsmouth.

19 – 20 TIK MAYNARD CLINIC, Seapowet Stables, Tiverton. 26 NEWPORT VS. BOSTON POLO MATCH, Newport.




25 RIFRC BLESSING OF THE HORSES RIDE, Arcadia Management Area, Hope Valley.

11 OPEN SCHOOLING SHOW SERIES, Cornerstone Farm, Foster.



8 – 9 DRESSAGE4KIDS TEAM CLINIC, East Greenwich.

17 RIHA SHOW, Ashaway.



9 SPRING SCHOOLING SHOW, Misty Meadows, Westerly.

17 – 18 DON JESSOP NATURAL HORSEMANSHIP CLINIC, Seapowet Stables, Tiverton.

16 OPEN SCHOOLING SHOW SERIES, Cornerstone Farm, Foster.

18 “HOPPY” HOUR BEER TASTING FUNDRAISER for Yellow Horse, Grey Sail Brewing, Westerly.

29 – 30 SINEAD HALPIN JUMPING CLINIC, Seapowet Stables, Tiverton.


30 RIHA SHOW, Sandy Point Stables, Portsmouth.



6 RIHA SHOW, Sandy Point Stables, Portsmouth.

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


August 1 RIHA SHOW, Sandy Point Stables, Portsmouth.

7 USA VS. DOMINICAN REPUBLIC POLO MATCH, Newport. 11 HUNTER RIDGE SHOW, Ashaway. 14 NEWPORT VS. PALM BEACH POLO MATCH, Newport. 18 RIHA SHOW, Sandy Point Stables, Portsmouth. 20 – 22 BERNIE TRAURIG CLINIC, Seapowet Stables, Tiverton. 21 USA VS. JAMAICA POLO MATCH, Newport. 28 TSHA TRAIL RIDE, Escoheag. 28 NEWPORT VS. NEW YORK POLO MATCH, Newport.

September 4 USA VS. ENGLAND POLO MATCH, Newport.

Join us! We are a small but dedicated group, passionate about horses and hounds, friendly and helpful to newcomers. Join us for our June Hunter Pace, September Intro to Foxhunting Clinic, and the annual Pomfret Hunter Pace at Tyrone Farm. In the fall, more hunter paces, our popular hunter trials, and drag foxhunting every weekend!

Two Stalls Available Full Board and Other Options Large Outdoor Arena Access to Indoor Arena Access to Trails Drama Free with Lots of Fun Small Lesson Program Bethany, CT (203) 887-3521

Promoting dressage through education and opportunity with schooling shows, clinics, and year-end awards.

Schooling Dressage Shows May 8 Sperry View Farm, Bethany Alix Szepesi “L”

July 18 Carbery Fields Farm, Lebanon Virginia Leary “L”

July 25 Weatogue Stables, Salisbury Ann Guptill “L” & Krystal Wilt “L”

September 5 Follow us on Facebook: Tanheath Events Nancy Clemens, President (781) 801-9554 Ray Hill, Vice President (401) 741-8185 Cathy Leinert, MFH (860) 867-7063

Sperry View Farm, Bethany Roberta Carleton (r)

September 18 BelleFree Farm, Colombia Linda Currie “L” Detailed prize list information available at: Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


Connecticut Directory BARNS & STALLS

Triton European Stalls Made in the USA (800) 918-6765; Stalls, doors, windows, accessories. Hot dip galvanized. Thirty year warranty. Custom made in Wisconsin. Inventory reduction pricing on more than 200 stall fronts in six styles. Discounts up to 55% off. Ready to ship! Ad on page 51.


Fox Ledge Farm Ann Guptill; East Haddam, CT (860) 873-8108; USET Pan Am Dressage Team Silver, USDF Certified Instructor and Examiner, USPC Graduate A, and USDF “L” Judge Graduate. Training, lessons, board, clinics. All levels welcome. Schooling show series. Wooded trails, and open, rolling fields. Ad on page 27.


Sean Hogan, Esq. Westport, CT (203) 221-3250; Attorney focusing on estate planning and assisting trainers, owners, and investors in equine-related transactions and litigation in Connecticut, New York, and before the USEF. Three decades of experience in the equine industry. Ad on page 85.


Dillon’s Equine Dentistry Edward F. Dillon Serving New England (508) 528-2242 (voice/text); Overall dental care for horses, ponies, minis, and donkeys. Twenty-five years experience. Tooth extractions, no power tools, no sedation required, no farm call fee. New customers welcome. Ad on page 72.


Equine Massage by Kathleen Curran Redding, CT 122

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

(203) 297-3008; How about a nice massage? For your horse! Certified by Equissage. Call or email for your introductory offer! Ad on page 19.


Connecticut Draft Horse Rescue East Hampton, CT (860) 467-6587; CDHR rescues, rehabilitates, retrains, and rehomes at-risk draft horses in the Northeast. We host gelding clinics, educate horse owners about responsible care, help struggling horse owners, and assist in times of natural disasters. Rising Starr Horse Rescue Wilton, CT (203) 257-8345; We rescue, rehabilitate, retrain, and rehome at-risk horses. Adoptions, sponsorships, and volunteer opportunities. Summer programs with weekly fun and education. We give horses a second chance. Registered 501(c)(3).

FEED & FARM SUPPLIES Benedict’s Home & Garden 480 Purdy Hill Road, Monroe, CT (203) 268-2537; Serving Monroe and surrounding area since 1950. Feeds: Blue Seal, Nutrena, Triple Crown, Kalmbach/ Tribute, New Country Organics. Hay, shavings, straw. Horse/pet supplies and poultry/poultry supplies. Lock, Stock & Barrel Bethany, CT (203) 393-0002; Blue Seal, Purina, Standlee, Triple Crown, Cavalor, Nutrena, and more. Shavings, hay, tack, supplements, barn supplies, fencing, tractors, power equipment, and equipment service. Ad on page 132. Pleasant View Farms Somers, CT (860) 698-2388;

Premium quality hay, small and large square bales, large round bales, timothy, timothy/orchard grass, orchard grass/alfalfa, alfalfa. Bagged and bulk grains, bagged shavings in three flake sizes, pellets, hemp, and straw. Pick up and delivery. Ad on pages 28 and 29.


Babcock Hill Horses Naturally Dawn Bonin Horsemanship Coventry, CT (860) 985-7611 (cell); Lessons, versatility clinics and competitions, versatility course, sales/leases, two ourdoor rings, indoor arena, miles of trails. Competitions. Ad on page 102. Rebecca Hathaway Horsemanship Manager, Sandy Hook Equestrian Center Newtown, CT (203) 313-6389 (voice/text); Riding lessons, horse training, natural horsemanship, boarding. Equitation, jumping, dressage lessons, horsemanship groundwork/riding, haul-ins welcome. Self-esteem and confidence building, improve cognitive skills, problem solving, games, and fitness.


American National Ellington: Ron Hocutt (860) 875-3333 Lisbon: Dean Roussel (860) 808-6608 Middlefield: J. Lyman (860) 349-7064


Associated Refuse Hauler Newtown, CT (203) 426-8870; Containerized manure removal for one to 100 horses; containers from 4 to 30 cubic yards. Serving Fairfield, New Haven, and Litchfield Counties in CT, Westchester and Putnam Counties in NY. Ad on page 18. Fred Lemay Newtown, CT (203) 426-2497; Containerized manure removal, large manure pile removal, containers left on site, excellent references, since 1992. Manure used to create Agrimix Mulch. Ad on page 20.


Awl for the Horse Fran Hornick (203) 371-5635; Repair work for English, western, harness, and more. Refinishing, conditioning, custom work, leather carving. By appointment only; please leave detailed message if calling.


Equestrian Outfitters Somers, CT (860) 749-4420; Your source for all things equine new and used. Riders helping riders since 1986! English, western saddle seat, and dressage. Grooming supplies, blanket cleaning, horse clothing, supplements, gifts, treats, tack, engraving, apparel, footwear, fly masks, and sprays. Ad on page 41. The Paddock Inc. Ledyard, CT (860) 464-1559; The totally stocked English tack shop. Fitting you is what we do best. Great deals on your favorite equestrian gear for the whole family including your horse. Ad on page 76.


High Hopes Therapeutic Riding Old Lyme, CT (860) 434-1974; High Hopes provides inclusive equine assisted services including riding, carriage driving, and unmounted as well as field trips, summer camps, and specialty programs including leadership development, memory care, youth development, and veteran programs. New Canaan Mounted Troop New Canaan, CT (203) 966-0634; We are a 501(c)(3) youth development and therapeutic equestrian center. We operate a comprehensive horsemanship program for youth ages 7 to 17 and a therapeutic program.

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


SpiritHorse Therapeutic Riding Center 174 Morgan Road, Canton, CT (860) 841-9930; Therapeutic horseback riding and non-riding lessons for people of all ages, with and without disabilities. Early intervention program, one hour mentorship lessons, summer programs, and equine unified vocational agricultural training program.


Horse Power Farm Ann Bowie, BHSII(T) Canterbury, CT (860) 334-1772; Eventing farm specializing in lessons, boarding, clinics, and test and tune. Cross-country derbies, perfect for the green eventer and the professional with a young horse. Dressage, stadium jumping, and crosscountry training. Ad on page 105. White Birch Farm Amy Rader Johnson Portland, CT (860) 581-0307; Lessons, leasing, clinics, parties, show coaching, and training. Boarding with trails, two outdoor arenas, indoor arena, and covered round pen. Shows on site. Ad on page 41.


Beckett & Associates Veterinary Services Chip Beckett, DVM, Jennifer Webb, DVM Caitlin McIntosh, DVM, Stephanie Tornaquindici, DVM Glastonbury, CT (860) 659-0848;; Farm calls and trailer-in appointments. Preventative care, medical diagnostics, dentistry, sports medicine, ophthamology, surgery, alternative medicine, vaccinations, reproduction, and emergency services. B-C Large Animal Clinic, LLC Alice V. Ennis, DVM Serving Eastern CT and RI (860) 546-6998; Equines, bovines, small ruminants, porcines, and camelids. Vaccinations, Coggins testing, fecal egg counts, radiology, infectious disease testing, emer124

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

gencies, ultrasound, dental exams, and more. Mobile veterinary emergency service. Ad on page 26. Kneser Veterinary Services Cara Kneser, DVM; Lindsay Brooks, DVM Serving Eastern CT and parts of RI (860) 823-8951; Equine and farm animal veterinary services. Exceptional routine and 24/7 emergency care. Vaccinations, Coggins testing, health charts, lameness exams, diagnostic ultrasound, dental care, gastric endoscopy, and more. Ad on page 27. Tri-State Veterinary Services Lisa Dauten, DVM Litchfield, CT (860) 459-0986; Mobile large animal veterinary practice serving CT, MA, and NY. We provide skilled and reliable veterinary services to equines, cattle, swines, small ruminants, and camelids through science-based medicine, client education, and management ingenuity. Twin Pines Equine Veterinary Services Ashley Kornatowski, VMD; Matt Kornatowski, DVM Serving eastern CT and RI (860) 376-4373; Quality, compassionate care for your horse. Offering medical, dental, surgical, lameness exams, chiropractic, acupuncture, digital imaging, reproduction, and saddle fitting. Insurance, pre-purchase, and wellness exams. 24-hour emergency care. Ad on page 62.

Subscribe today at community!


Mindful Connections with Animals Nicole Birkholzer Phone consultations; barn calls serving MA, CT, and RI Is your horse is suddenly shying at the mounting block? Not getting along with a pasture mate? Depressed or overactive? There’s a reason for it. An animal communication phone call/barn visit gives you insights and clarity and provides you with a plan to bring your world and your horse’s world back into balance. Let’s tune in! Ad on page 57. ®


Barre Riding & Driving Club Central Massachusetts BRDC is one of the oldest riding clubs, established in1938. We promote an active interest in horses and further ideals of equine education and sportsmanship through our open horse shows, vaccination clinics, trail rides, campouts, and more. Ad on page 110.


Kathleen A. Reagan Quincy, MA (617) 773-1597; Horses, farms, livestock, and pets. Sales agreements, lease agreements, veterinary disputes, administrative law hearings, representation of non-profit associations, racing industry needs, civil litigation, and mediation services. Sowerby & Moustakis Law, PLLC Dedham, MA & Amherst, NH (603) 249-5985; Horse owner Peter A. Moustakis has developed a passion and appreciation with matters related to equine law including contract law, transactional work, personal injury, and trust law. Equine contracts including purchase agreement, bill of sale, transportation release, and breeding agreement. Equine facility boarding, liability, and lease agreements. Ad on page 81.

Equine Homes Real Estate Sally Mann (800) 859-2745; Featuring equestrian and country properties in New England and Florida. Our team of Realtors understands and appreciates the unique nature of these properties and looks forward to matching you to the property for sale that is right for you. Ad on pages 58 and 59. Hometown Realtors Althea Bramhall Serving Central and Western MA (617) 678-9300; Let more than 30 years of experience work for you by hiring Althea to sell your farm. Ad on page 113.


Dillon’s Equine Dentistry Edward F. Dillon Serving New England (508) 528-2242 (voice/text); Overall dental care for horses, ponies, minis, and donkeys. Twenty-five years experience. Tooth extractions, no power tools, no sedation required, no farm call fee. New customers welcome. Ad on page 72. Hanover Equine Dental Terry Paul Serving southern New England (781) 630-0741; Graduate of the American School of Equine Dentistry. Performance floating for all disciplines. Ad on page 67. Natural Balance Equine Dentistry Wendy Bryant, EqDT Leeds, MA (413) 237-8887; Optimize the health and performance of your horse with minimally invasive techniques. Wendy re-aligns the biomechanical function to fit the individual horse. Horses, ponies, minis, donkeys. Certified practitioner in Natural Balance Dentistry®. Ad on page 67. Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


Northeast Equine Veterinary Dental Services, LLC Leah Limone, DVM, DAVDC/Eq Topsfield, MA (978) 500-9293; Board-certified equine dental specialist licensed to practice in MA, NH, VT, ME, RI, and CT. Comprehensive oral/dental exams, routine maintenance, advanced diagnostics with digital radiography and oral endoscopy, basic and advanced extractions. Ad on page 53.


Jenn’s Tack & Blanket Service, LLC Jennifer Safron Gardner, MA (978) 340-5576 (voice/text); State-of-the-art equine laundry and repair facility. Delivery available at many stables throughout central Mass. Visit website for pick-up/drop-off locations or drop off at the shop. Expert tack repair. Gently used blankets and tack for sale. Since 1980. Ad on page 46.


Equine Tack & Paraphernalia Sale Topsfield, MA Kay at (978) 768-6275; Saturday, August 21, 2021, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Arena Building at the Topsfield Fairgrounds. Large vendor marketplace selling new and used items, services for the horse, rider, and driver. Vendor space available. $5 admission, free parking. Ad on page 118.


Barnstable Farm & Pet Barnstable, MA (508) 744-3232; Tack shop, consignment area, barn supplies, first and second-cut hay, paper-bagged shavings, Purina and Nutrena grain, livestock and poultry supplies, wild bird seed, and pet foods. Pick up and delivery. Ad on page 49.


Betsy Merritt Serving western and central MA, northwestern CT (413) 348-5798; Barefoot performance natural hoofcare. Orthopedic 126

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

trimming and holistic lameness rehabilitation. Trimming to promote healing. Genuine options to conventional shoeing and hoofcare. All equines including donkeys and Miniatures. Ad on page 55.


A & B Insurance Group Licensed in MA, NH, VT, ME, CT & RI (978) 399-0025; Insurance for all your equine needs. Farm and equine, equine mortality, horse owners liability. Our agents have been serving the equestrian community for a combined 50 plus years. Ad on page 8. American National Boxborough: Donald Ludwig (978) 467-1001 Carver: Richard Blair (508) 866-9150 Centerville: Mark Sylvia (508) 428-0440 Great Barrington: Dominic Sinopoli (413) 528-1710 Middleborough: Kevin Sullivan (508) 998-0512 North Adams: Kim Perry (413) 398-5011 Northborough: Jeff Pichierri (508) 393-9327 South Deerfield: Rick Green (413) 665-8200 Southwick: The Mason Agency (413) 569-2307 Topsfield: Scott Brockelman (978) 887-8304 Wilbraham: Sean Rooney (413) 887-8817 Williamstown: Maureen O’Mara (413) 458-5584 Worcester: Thomas Carroll (508) 752-3300 Don Ray Insurance Terri Ray Serving CT, MA, and RI (xx?) (781) 837-6550; Competitive rates, educated service, and help substantiating values. Mortality and major medical, farm packages, horse associations and clubs, directors and officers, horse shows, clinics, expo coverage, instructor liability, and payment plans. Ad on page 34.


Salty Dawg Equine Services Serving MA, CT, and RI (508) 259-6924; Custom-made jumps, tack trunks, bit boxes, and more. Great for year-end awards. View photos at and on Facebook. Ad on page 4.


Mitrano Removal Shirley, MA (978) 425-6181; We provide large and small horse farms with a manure removal program that suits the farm’s needs. Retain a 10- to 30-yard container and we provide removal service. Choose to stockpile your manure and we provide removal service. Ad on page 12.


Integrated Saddle Services Amy C. Barton Serving New England and beyond (978) 621-2633; DK saddle fitter and sales representative. DK Saddles feature an adjustable tree for every discipline. Revolutionary design provides optimal freedom of movement, ensuring maximum comfort and peak performance for horse and rider. Ad on page 33. New England Saddle Fit Lise Krieger Serving New England (203) 685-2308; Certified saddle fitter for English and western saddles. Saddle assessments, fitting evaluations, flocking, repairs, consignments, and sales. Ad on page 57.


Briggs Tack Shop & Trailer Sales Hanover, MA (781) 826-3191; A full-service tack shop with everything for the horse and rider plus we’re a Stübben Custom Authorized Dealer and Fitter. Authorized dealer of Kingston Trailers for more than 50 years! Ad on page 45.


Grey Mare Magna Wave Jenny Cournoyer Serving MA, CT, and RI (774) 329-7489; Grey Mare Magna Wave offers the best in pulsed electromagnetic field therapy. Serving all of New England. Sessions to suit all needs. Rentals available. Ad on page 15.

HorseBack & Body Jo Bunny, LMT/CEMT Serving central and western MA, northwest CT (413) 320-7690; Massage therapy for horses and humans. Recovery, maintenance, performance, bodywork, therapeutic massage, Reiki. Ad on page 49.


Blue Rider Stables, Inc. South Egremont, MA (413) 528-5299; Where happy horses help make happy humans. We offer a holistic educational environment in which people and animals can safely interact, and through their mutual therapeutic experiences, broaden the scope of their lives. Year-round programs for children and adults, with and without disabilities.


Bacon’s Equipment Paul Bacon Williamsburg, MA (413) 268-3620; Kubota, Stihl, Land Pride, and Husqvarna. Sales and repairs for more than 40 years. Family owned and operated. Competitive pricing and always changing inventory. We have what you want! Ad on page 96. Pasture Vacuum (813) 390-6730; Managing manure the easy way! Reduce time cleaning pastures, paddocks, and stalls. Tow with golf cart, lawn tractor, or ATV. Reduce parasites. Vacuum bulk shavings and dump into stalls. Save money, shavings, and labor. Spring cleaning sale! Ad on page 17.


Briggs Tack Shop & Trailer Sales Hanover, MA (781) 826-3191; Authorized dealer of Kingston Trailers for more than 50 years! A full-service tack shop with everything for the horse and rider plus we’re a Stübben Custom Authorized Dealer and Fitter. Ad on page 45.

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


Whitehorse Truck & Trailer Service & Sales Northbridge, MA (508) 641-9212; We come to you for complete trailer service! New and used trailers for sale, trailer consignments, prepurchase inspections, gooseneck and hitch sales and installation, truck modifications, brake controllers and repairs, and wheel/tire replacement. Ad on page 47. Yered Trailers Medfield, MA (508) 359-7300; Since 1976, new and used trailer sales and service. hitches, brakes, inspections, tires, cameras, and custom fabrications. Kingston, Sundowner, and Featherlite trailers. A happy horse rides in a Yered Trailer. Ad on page 63.


Apple Knoll Farm Millis, MA (508) 376-2564; Our mission is to provide a safe, comfortable, and well-equipped facility for horses and riders to develop the skills and confidence required for the sport of eventing. Facility rentals. USEA horse trials, jumper show series, clinics, and more. Ad on page 109. Back Bay Farm Robin D. Petersen Ipswich, MA (978) 356-0730; A premier hunter equitation training and boarding stable. Riding lessons, showing, training, full board, sales, and leasing. Horse shows on farm; beach and country rides off farm. Travel to USEF local shows. New riders welcome! Ad on page 118. Bradford Equestrian Center Keith & Lynda Angstadt Haverhill, MA (978) 374-0008; Dressage training and instruction, full-care facility, individualized programs, excellent footing, indoor and outdoor arenas, ample turnout, reasonable rates, dressage competitions and clinics, and truck-ins welcome. Ad on page 108. Cathy Drumm 128

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

Teaching throughout the Northeast (413) 441-5278; Clinician, trainer, and coach of western dressage, working equitation, and mountain trail. Kindful training for horse and rider. “Happy, relaxed horses and riders are my objective.” Ad on page 35. Central Mass. Equestrian Center at Camp Marshall, Spencer, MA (508) 885-4891; An affordable equestrian facility that has something for everyone! Boarding, riding lesson program for beginners to advanced, horse shows, clinics, events, youth equestrian team, pony parties, summer riding camps, and facility rentals. Ad on page 48. Crimson Acres Whitmore Family Orange, MA (978) 575-0341; Lessons, training, clinics, drill team, horse shows, games nights, boarding, and summer camps. We provide a safe educational environment. Dare to Dream Educational Farm Program. Ad on page 21. Fuller Family Equestrian Lori Brogle & Emily Coggins Westhampton, MA (413) 539-1242; Intimate boarding environment and quality care. Matted stalls, indoor arena, jumping field, outdoor arena, private and neighborhood trails, all-day turnout, indoor wash stall. Lessons with Chrysanthi Gavagan or bring your licensed insured trainer. Golden Rose Equestrian Center Julie Pickering Jefferson, MA (781) 828-5015; Lessons, boarding, training, sales. Hunters, jumpers, equitation. Full-service, multi-discipline facility with 24/7 on-site care, open seven days, onsite trainers, all-day turnout, custom feed programs, showing opportunities, indoor arena, and trails. Ad on page 96.

Independence Stable Dottie Foreman Belchertown, MA (413) 284-0371; Dressage schooling shows with traditional and western dressage tests. Riding and carriage driving instruction. Board and training with highly personalized attention for each horse and rider. Ad on page 105. It’s a Pleasure Training Peter Whitmore Orange, MA (978) 652-2231; Peter specializes in starting young horses correctly. More than 25 years experience starting horses as well as fixing existing problems. References available. Also available for clinics and events. Board available as well as internship program. Ad on page 66. Red Mare Farm Kate Cameron Hatfield, MA (978) 739-4707; Young horse training and starting. Lessons on your horse or ours. Kids and adults. Boarding with all-day turnout, stalls with run-outs, individual turnouts, and pasture board. Two-phase and dressage shows. Eventing barn, open to all riding styles. Ad on page 115. RER Ponies Heather Dostal Hatfield, MA (413) 427-2026; Lessons, summer porgrams, clinics, training, starting, Pony Club. Adults and children. Heather is a USDF “L” graduate and bronze medalist. Dressage, cross country, stadium jummping. Ad on page 73. Stonebrook Farm Devin Burdick Phillipston, MA (978) 696-1269; Specializing in starting young horses for riding and driving. Boarding, lessons, training, and coaching. Dressage and carriage driving focus. Devin is a USDF bronze medalist. Ad on page 53.


J.R. Hudson Horse Transportation West Bridgewater, MA (508) 427-9333; Dedicated to excellence in horse transportation. Serving the horse community for more than 35 years. Our goal is to provide our clients iwth the safest, most dependable service. Serving the lower 48 states and Canada.


EquidDoc Veterinary Services Caitlin Eaton, DVM & Liz Forbes, DVM Tessa Lumley, DVM Central MA and beyond (508) 885-4205; Veterinary care for your horses including 24/7/365 emergency coverage for our clients, preventative health care, lameness exams, parasite management, radiography and ultrasound, dentistry, prepurchase exams, geriatric exams, and more. Ad on page 32. Family Veterinary Center Bud Allen, MS, DVM & Robin Karlin Allen, DVM Haydenville, MA (413) 268-8387; Horses, small animals, exotics. Acupuncture, chiropractic, homeopathy, herbals, physical therapy. Full-service small-animal hospital, house calls, grooming, and pet supplies. Ad on page 31. South Deerfield Veterinary Clinic Robert P. Schmitt, DVM & Samantha C. Clay, DVM South Deerfield, MA (413) 665-3626; Equine medicine, surgery since 1969. Emergency services, radiology, dentistry, reproduction. Vaccinations, wellness exams. SRH Veterinary Services Helen Noble, VMD, Robert Orcutt, DVM Elizabeth Lordan, DVM, Evice Bolton, DVM Nicole Syngajewski, DVM, Delaney Patterson, DVM Ipswich, MA (978) 356-1119; Large and small animal medicine and surgery. Serving the North Shore since 1951. Ad on page 73. Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


Rhode Island Directory INSURANCE


Dillon’s Equine Dentistry Edward F. Dillon Serving New England (508) 528-2242 (voice/text); Overall dental care for horses, ponies, minis, and donkeys. Twenty-five years experience. Tooth extractions, no power tools, no sedation required, no farm call fee. New customers welcome. Ad on page 72.


David Craven, Esq. Providence, RI (401) 490-0109; Expansive trusts to include your equines, estate plans, contracts for horse purchasing, breeding, boarding, or training. Creating and/or advising on contracts between you and third party. Advising on regulations governing equine medical practices.

American National West Greenwich: Ashley Johnson (401) 397-1050


New Horizons Center for Equine Assisted Therapy Foster, RI (401) 397-9242; Located at Cornerstone Farm. Offers riding and driving instruction to individuals with a wide range of disabilities utilizing the healing power of horses.


Cornerstone Farm Beth Stone; Foster, RI (401) 397-9242; Instruction in all disciplines, quality boarding. Schooling show series: May 16, July 11, September 19, and October 7. “Ride for the fun of it!”

JR Horsemanship Colt Starting • Monthly Training Barrel Horse Development/Tune Ups • Hunter/Jumper Tune Ups Problem Horses • English & Western Lessons

Credible experiences across the board. References available. Standing AQHA Stallions • Horses For Sale

Jeremy Reid Northeast CT | (401) 742-9674 | 130

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021

Community Horse Spring/Summer 2021


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