I'm looking for either a hunter/jumper or jumper barn in the Chicagoland area that would be good for riding lessons. I have been riding for most of my life but this would be a new discipline for me.
This is the fun part: after dealing with parking in the city for a month and a half (as I foolishly signed a lease without a parking spot available) I ditched my car. Full immersion into city life via public transportation That being said, I'll need to rent a Zipcar to get to my lessons...so if a good barn exists near the actual city of Chicago, that would be amazing. I'll definitely drive further for a better barn/experience though. I live in Wicker Park and work in the Loop.
As far as other things go, I don't forsee buying a new horse in a discipline I'm learning anytime soon so they need to have school horses. Having nice horses available to potentially lease would be a bonus. Starting at a barn that is competitive would be a bonus in the event that I get a horse. The last two of this list aren't dealbreakers but I thought it might spur some more conversation so I can get a better idea of what's out there.
I appreciate the help! Feel free to PM me.
Last edited by stirrup33; Nov. 13, 2010 at 12:48 PM.
Red Coat Farm in Hawthorn Woods is absolutely amazing. I've known Mary Goldman and her daughter Lisa for over 15 years and they are nothing but amazing. Lisa's riding and achievements speak for themselves. They have nice school horses and a lot of room for you to grow.
It sounds like the OP is looking for a true lesson program to start with since they do not own their own horse, at this point.
Does Springfield Stables have a lesson program? The website makes it appear more geared towards boarding/training. Sounds like the direction the OP wants to go, but not where they will be starting.
Mary Goldman definitely has a school program and lots of school horses, but the location of that facility is pretty far off the highway. Depending on the time of day & day of the week OP is looking to ride, the commute might be prohibitive.
So, OP, knowing what you already know about driving in the Chicagoland area, what kind of driving distance / time are you thinking for your commute to the barn?
There aren't a lot of barns right outside the city, so you are going to be going pretty far North or West. This can probably help people with suggestions...
Actually Springfield Stables us indeed building their lesson program. I am pretty sure I have heard there are lesson horses there. OP- if you look at the website, and like what you see, call. If not, dint, lol. Either way, best of luck finding the right situation for you!