As many of you already know, the Red Barn’s Winter term kicked off a little over three weeks ago. We patiently awaited the return of all our students during the holiday season, and have been grinning nonstop from once again seeing the faces of the kids we know and love. The weather has mostly felt like a mild October, but that’s been nice, as it means there have been far fewer weather cancellations compared to past winters. Needless to say, it has been a very busy term (hence, the gap in blog posts (I apologize!)).
Monday is filled with riding lessons both in the morning and afternoon. The facility/operations team also has time set aside that morning to work on any pressing projects. Tuesday is mostly filled by instructor and all-staff meetings, but there are a couple of lessons and the Bully in the Barn camp thrown in as well. Wednesday consists of both riding and unmounted lessons. Thursday morning contains our Social Skills camp, as well as a staff to staff ground lesson for some of our coworkers who are interested in sharpening their horsemanship skills. Friday is a bit lighter, mostly due to staffing, but we still have the student work group in the morning and riding lessons throughout the day. Saturday morning is usually open for volunteer groups, with the 4H camp in the afternoon and a couple of lessons strewn throughout the day. Sunday is typically a busy day in terms of completing chores, but we may also host volunteer training in the afternoon.
But that’s not all! In addition to our regular schedule, we’ve also hosted several awesome instructors or groups over the past few weeks. Lisa Wysocky came out and did training sessions on January 18th and 19th. Several of our staff attended a PATH clinic that following weekend, and I want to give a huge shout-out and congratulations to Elisabeth on becoming a PATH-certified instructor! UAB’s AED honor society came out for their monthly volunteer service on January 28th. And finally, the JAYC Foundation hosted their LEO program, which primarily works to supplement law enforcement officers’ awareness in the field, at the Red Barn this past Monday and Tuesday.
Normally lessons, camps, and other activities slow down in the Winter term, but that hasn’t been the case this year. We’re grateful to be this busy and to be able to teach so many kids. It’ll serve as a nice warm up before lessons really crank into gear when the Spring term starts next month.