• Welcome to the Chronicle Forums.
    Please complete your profile. The forums and the rest of www.chronofhorse.com has single sign-in, so your log in information for one will automatically work for the other. Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are the views of the individual and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of The Chronicle of the Horse.

Announcement

Collapse

Forum rules and no-advertising policy

As a participant on this forum, it is your responsibility to know and follow our rules. Please read this message in its entirety.

Board Rules

1. You’re responsible for what you say.
As outlined in Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, The Chronicle of the Horse and its affiliates, as well Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd., the developers of vBulletin, are not legally responsible for statements made in the forums.

This is a public forum viewed by a wide spectrum of people, so please be mindful of what you say and who might be reading it—details of personal disputes are likely better handled privately. While posters are legally responsible for their statements, the moderators may in their discretion remove or edit posts that violate these rules. Users have the ability to modify or delete their own messages after posting, but administrators generally will not delete posts, threads or accounts upon request.

Outright inflammatory, vulgar, harassing, malicious or otherwise inappropriate statements and criminal charges unsubstantiated by a reputable news source or legal documentation will not be tolerated and will be dealt with at the discretion of the moderators.

2. Conversations in horse-related forums should be horse-related.
The forums are a wonderful source of information and support for members of the horse community. While it’s understandably tempting to share information or search for input on other topics upon which members might have a similar level of knowledge, members must maintain the focus on horses.

3. Keep conversations productive, on topic and civil.
Discussion and disagreement are inevitable and encouraged; personal insults, diatribes and sniping comments are unproductive and unacceptable. Whether a subject is light-hearted or serious, keep posts focused on the current topic and of general interest to other participants of that thread. Utilize the private message feature or personal email where appropriate to address side topics or personal issues not related to the topic at large.

4. No advertising in the discussion forums.
Posts in the discussion forums directly or indirectly advertising horses, jobs, items or services for sale or wanted will be removed at the discretion of the moderators. Use of the private messaging feature or email addresses obtained through users’ profiles for unsolicited advertising is not permitted.

Company representatives may participate in discussions and answer questions about their products or services, or suggest their products on recent threads if they fulfill the criteria of a query. False "testimonials" provided by company affiliates posing as general consumers are not appropriate, and self-promotion of sales, ad campaigns, etc. through the discussion forums is not allowed.

Paid advertising is available on our classifieds site and through the purchase of banner ads. The tightly monitored Giveaways forum permits free listings of genuinely free horses and items available or wanted (on a limited basis). Items offered for trade are not allowed.

Advertising Policy Specifics
When in doubt of whether something you want to post constitutes advertising, please contact a moderator privately in advance for further clarification. Refer to the following points for general guidelines:

Horses – Only general discussion about the buying, leasing, selling and pricing of horses is permitted. If the post contains, or links to, the type of specific information typically found in a sales or wanted ad, and it’s related to a horse for sale, regardless of who’s selling it, it doesn’t belong in the discussion forums.

Stallions – Board members may ask for suggestions on breeding stallion recommendations. Stallion owners may reply to such queries by suggesting their own stallions, only if their horse fits the specific criteria of the original poster. Excessive promotion of a stallion by its owner or related parties is not permitted and will be addressed at the discretion of the moderators.

Services – Members may use the forums to ask for general recommendations of trainers, barns, shippers, farriers, etc., and other members may answer those requests by suggesting themselves or their company, if their services fulfill the specific criteria of the original post. Members may not solicit other members for business if it is not in response to a direct, genuine query.

Products – While members may ask for general opinions and suggestions on equipment, trailers, trucks, etc., they may not list the specific attributes for which they are in the market, as such posts serve as wanted ads.

Event Announcements – Members may post one notification of an upcoming event that may be of interest to fellow members, if the original poster does not benefit financially from the event. Such threads may not be “bumped” excessively. Premium members may post their own notices in the Event Announcements forum.

Charities/Rescues – Announcements for charitable or fundraising events can only be made for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations. Special exceptions may be made, at the moderators’ discretion and direction, for board-related events or fundraising activities in extraordinary circumstances.

Occasional posts regarding horses available for adoption through IRS-registered horse rescue or placement programs are permitted in the appropriate forums, but these threads may be limited at the discretion of the moderators. Individuals may not advertise or make announcements for horses in need of rescue, placement or adoption unless the horse is available through a recognized rescue or placement agency or government-run entity or the thread fits the criteria for and is located in the Giveaways forum.

5. Do not post copyrighted photographs unless you have purchased that photo and have permission to do so.

6. Respect other members.
As members are often passionate about their beliefs and intentions can easily be misinterpreted in this type of environment, try to explore or resolve the inevitable disagreements that arise in the course of threads calmly and rationally.

If you see a post that you feel violates the rules of the board, please click the “alert” button (exclamation point inside of a triangle) in the bottom left corner of the post, which will alert ONLY the moderators to the post in question. They will then take whatever action, or no action, as deemed appropriate for the situation at their discretion. Do not air grievances regarding other posters or the moderators in the discussion forums.

Please be advised that adding another user to your “Ignore” list via your User Control Panel can be a useful tactic, which blocks posts and private messages by members whose commentary you’d rather avoid reading.

7. We have the right to reproduce statements made in the forums.
The Chronicle of the Horse may copy, quote, link to or otherwise reproduce posts, or portions of posts, in print or online for advertising or editorial purposes, if attributed to their original authors, and by posting in this forum, you hereby grant to The Chronicle of the Horse a perpetual, non-exclusive license under copyright and other rights, to do so.

8. We reserve the right to enforce and amend the rules.
The moderators may delete, edit, move or close any post or thread at any time, or refrain from doing any of the foregoing, in their discretion, and may suspend or revoke a user’s membership privileges at any time to maintain adherence to the rules and the general spirit of the forum. These rules may be amended at any time to address the current needs of the board.

Please see our full Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

Thanks for being a part of the COTH forums!

(Revised 1/26/16)
See more
See less

Fun events in h/j barns: community building?

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Fun events in h/j barns: community building?

    I'm on the hunt for fun events you trainers have held at the barn that aren't just horseshows or clinics: in or out of the ring, and include out-of-the-box thinking kinds of stuff that isn't necessarily hugely profitable at the moment, but adds to the good vibe in the barn. Creative, entertaining, encourages client bonding and maybe adds another side to the "training" part of your barn business family.

    This is for a round-up I'm writing and I think it's especially important during tougher economic times, yes?

    Thanks so much for input.
    Stephanie Stephens

  • #2
    A fire drill! The barn had their local fire department out along with insurance agent - complete w fog machine and alarms. They taught firemen how to put on a halter and lead a horse. Put blindfolds on the horses and had the guys in full gear. Barbecue afterwards with lesson/"pony" rides for the guys.

    Host a fitness bootcamp! Your barn will be the first place these folks think of when their kids hit the horsey stage, when neighbors ask for recommendations, or when they become empty nesters and need a new hobby/"kid"
    CLIPclop Bodyclipping by Morgan
    Serving North GA with high quality clips.
    --> Just Press Start // '99 Oldenburg
    --> Always The Optimist (reg. Simply Stylin) // '02 Thoroughbred

    Comment


    • #3
      A few ideas that pop off the top of my head:

      (*) Pony Club / 4-H / Girl Scout meetings
      (*) Annual barn Christmas party (white elephant gift exchange!)
      (*) Large pizza orders for anyone in the barn at dinner time
      (*) "Adult Swim" (adults only lesson times)
      (*) "Pony Parties" - essentially like a birthday party for the kid who gets a new pony (or horse), complete with a cake, a decorated stall (streamers, balloons, group made poster), and a collective gift (usually a saddle pad with new pony's name embroidered, maybe matching polo wraps).

      I have seen the latter play out enormously well for purposes of "client bonding." If you get the kids together - supporting and encouraging each other, they begin to form friendships outside of the horse barn. This makes it harder for "barn hoppers" to up and leave, because now the kids have a social circle that's deeply connected to the barn.

      Comment


      • #4
        My mom owned a boarding barn when I was growing up. Once a quarter we did something non-horsey together. The most fun thing was a pot luck dinner at the barn complete with softball game! During the winter we'd go to the movies or roller skating. Totally hilarious to see our trainer on skates...she was awful! Riding is primarily social for so many kids and adults, so it's good to incorporate those activities into the "program".

        Comment


        • #5
          My mom and I had a boarding/training barn for many years and we would always have big BBQ's… we also try do things like go bowling or take the kids to the movies or whatever the BBQ;s were REALLY REALLY fun… we even swam some of the horses in the lakes… or big huge barn trail rides… you can do it from your famr or trailer to somewhere cool… Also, when we went to "away" shows we always go do something cool on the off days. When we were in Atlanta we would all get up and help at the barn in the morning and then go to Six Flags… stuff like that… a lot of times it's the non-horsey stuff that bonds you all even more……
          Friend of bar.ka

          Comment


          • #6
            Our barn also does an annual "field trip". Usually we go to Medeival Times, but one year we splurged and went to Cavalia and got the backstage tour!

            A barn I boarded at in the past closed for one night each month. They had a very wide aisle (I think 4') and would host a lobster dinner and ballroom dancing in the aisleway. It was a ticketed event.

            Support other local 'farmers'! We had an open house meet n greet and invited other local businesses to come sample their foods. We had a jam company, a honey farm, an elk farm (elk summer sausage), and local cheeses. We also made chili using our own farm-grown beef. It was nice reason for neighbors to get together and get to know each others products & the public.
            CLIPclop Bodyclipping by Morgan
            Serving North GA with high quality clips.
            --> Just Press Start // '99 Oldenburg
            --> Always The Optimist (reg. Simply Stylin) // '02 Thoroughbred

            Comment


            • #7
              My barn I rode at growing up used to have a tradition that whenever you fell off, you had to put $1 (maybe it was 50 cents??) in a jar at the barn. At the end of the month (or every 3 months or whatever the time period was...I can't exactly remember). The barn would have a pizza party for all the "fallers". Of course the rest of the barn was invited too

              Comment


              • #8
                Everyone has great ideas. Here's my contribution for you. I'd love to see your final article.

                *something out of your discipline. I am at a strict H/J barn. One day I set up a trail class for them and we had a blast. Didn't cost a lot but it was great to see the horses try and navigate things that they weren't used to - walking on tarps, crossing a wooden bridge, going past an animated stuffed animal toy - think monkey clapping cymbals, closing a "gate," walking through an area draped with streamers (scary!), anything different is challenging and fun. Don't get this too structured or competitive. I allowed anyone the option of skipping obstacles or leading their horse instead of riding.

                *movie night - we always go when there is a new release of a horse film. Lots of fun to see everyone cleaned up and not stinking.

                *Halloween costume day - there are always some great paired outfits. We have had Santa and a reindeer, Tigger and Pooh, etc.

                *Pas de Deux or drill team practice. Good times with good music if you can arrange it.

                *Trail rides - great to get out of the arena so long as the horses can behave. We don't have trails but can ride along some country roads that have decent shoulders.

                *Paint the poles day - the kids love to get messy and actually do a nice job. Mom and dad picnic at the same time.

                *Easter egg hunt - THAT was a lot of fun! We used plastic eggs. I even hid a "golden egg" which contained a special prize - I think it was a certificate for a free lesson.

                *One summer we had summer day camp. Painted t-shirts, did horsie crafts and had horse trivia contests. Very fun with ice cream on the last day. When I had an older group of teens we "secretly" slept over at the barn in tents and in sleeping bags in the aisle. We did this while the barn manager was on vacation so that "secret" made it that much more fun. Sneaking around in the middle of the night in PJ pants is mandatory! Scaring each other is also mandatory!

                *make a barn scrapbook for the barn manager. Everyone does a page or two and then throw them all together. These are great to look at over the years.

                There are lots of other good ideas out there. I am glad to see this list!

                Comment


                • #9
                  At a previous barn, we would have an annual July 4th trail ride followed by a potluck. It was loads of fun, I even stenciled red white and blue glitter stars into the gelding I was riding. One of the boarders had a family recipe for carrot cake that was divine, too. Definitely a great way to bond, right smack in the middle of show season too.

                  At the barn I'm at now, there is always an annual Christmas party. It's a big deal- everyone shows up, dresses up, and has a great time... Horse people sure do know how to party!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Had an animal communicator come and spend a day at the barn to "talk" to horses, dogs, and a barn cat.

                    Usual assortment of BBQs at the barn. The BO did a Halloween party with a pumpkin-carving contests and a wildly popular raffle consisting of a free month's board.

                    When the adult evening lesson gets rained out they will typically meet at a restaurant instead.

                    Field trips to watch medal finals and regionals. One year a group of us went to the Olympic dressage trials (it's a hunter barn so kind of out of discipline).
                    The Evil Chem Prof

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      we would do overnight barn slumber days(well more of a camp but got to sleepover) that included riding during the day,games in the arena(mounted and unmounted),barbeque,swap riding stories,just an over all good time,and then sleep either in the hay loft or tackroom.we did this more often in the spr/sum,but can be done anytime.

                      we have done some things similar like lizrd

                      painting pole days...then we would have each person draw out a course,set up and then ride each others courses..varying heights to include everyone(ground pole to 3+ great fun

                      drill/musical ride...each rider had there input of each movement..good idea for team building exercise,as it will not work properly if you don't.

                      find it games/hunts.

                      anyways don't really have anything new,except the slumber days.
                      a;; great suggestions on here for ideas
                      http://myridingjourney.blogspot.com

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Our barn participates in the local annual " Pink Ribbon" ride , we raise a TON of money and spend an entire day trail riding in the local horse park!! And we all dress in pink , its a blast!

                        Comment

                        • Original Poster

                          #13
                          OhMyGosh, you guys are GOOD. This is just too much fun! Thank you. Really.

                          I'll be in touch via PM to get your details.

                          Makes me want to go play at the barn!!!

                          Yay!
                          Stephanie Stephens

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Every Christmas our H/J barn would do an obstacle course, with specific obstacles for each level. It included everything from picking the santa hat off the gate, to jumping a low fence that had lit christmas lights wrapped around the pole!

                            Another was having a star chart for falls. Each time you fell off, you put a star by your name. At the end of the year, we'd have a 'fall off party', and play games on horseback. Including an obstacle course (see above!). Sometimes trading horses, or having everybody divided into teams.

                            It was loads of fun, and really good for the horses. My schoolmaster hunter, who had been to Madison Square Garden, and everyplace inbetween, and you couldn't build a jump he hadn't seen - about came undone at the chalk outline of the keyhole. LOL.
                            The truth is always in the middle.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I have very fond memories of jump painting parties in the summer. The barn owner/trainers would supply the paint, pizza, snacks, and water/soda/adult beverages) and we would paint away. There was no mandatory time or number of jumps you had to paint, but everyone loved it and hung out for hours on end.

                              I still have and older pair of paddock boots with blue, purple, and white paint on them from when I was a teen

                              Comment

                              • Original Poster

                                #16
                                Love these, too. Thank you!
                                Stephanie Stephens

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  We recently held a Ride-a-thon fundraiser for the American Cancer Society. It took a lot of planning, but we had ring rides, trail rides, door prizes, silent auction and raised a lot of money. We also had a goal (we made it) to keep at least one horse in the ring at all times for 12 hours. Long day, but fun.
                                  "Radar, the man's ex-cavalry: if he sees four flies having a meeting, he knows they're talking about a horse!" Cptn. BJ Hunnicutt, M*A*S*H Season 4, Episode "Dear Mildred"

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Beer and cheap pizza worked for us, even with kids around.
                                    Visit my Spoonflower shop

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      We go to the track. Hire a couple of limos (so we can enjoy adult beverages), get all dolled up, get a couple of boxes, and have a great time. DH will even come to this sort of event. Not cheap, but it's sort of an annual thing so it's okay to splurge once in a while.

                                      Comment

                                      • Original Poster

                                        #20
                                        To everyone who replied, I'd love to run photos of your events or outings. You can send to me via e-mail here, at last 300 dpi. All the ideas are super.
                                        Stephanie Stephens

                                        Comment

                                        Working...
                                        X