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Posted on September 13, 2014
First things first, we just wanna give a big Faulkner’s thank you to all of our Pony Campers and their awesome parents, grandparents, family, and friends who helped make this summer’s camps a huge success! 
When pony camp is over, we usually get several inquiries on where to further your children’s riding experience.  So we thought we would share with you some tips that Emily, our Pony Camp Specialist, gave us on finding a great lesson barn, as well as some recommended locations.

Tips for Finding a Great Lesson Barn
After picking a barn to check out, arrange for a visit. It is best to visit during a lesson so you can see what it is like.   Saturdays are usually popular lesson days.
Here are some things to be on the lookout for:
  • Is the barn/facility clean? People who take pride in doing a good job of teaching usually want their barn to be clean.
  • Do you see anything that can cause an accident? (things like loose wire, things to trip over)
  • Do the horses look well cared for? (this means a clean coat, happy expressions when you pass by, clean stalls/pens)
  • Look at the arena – you want a place that has good footing (not hard or dusty) and a safe fence/wall (nothing that a rider can get hurt on poking out).
  • Are there safety rules posted? A good instructor will want to have rules posted.
  • Are riders wearing helmets? This is a must!
  • Is the instructor kind to the horses? An instructor that yells at or is aggressive with a horse will not be a good role model for your child.
  • Do the students seem to be having a good time? A good instructor will be able to engage a student and assess needs.
Questions to Ask:
  • How long have you been teaching? It is best if your instructor is seasoned.
  • Do you have any qualifications/certifications? CHA , CCHI, USPC are respected certification agencies for riding instructors.  If the instructor is not certified, find out who they learned from. It should be a well-known or certified individual.
  • What is your policy for missed lessons?
  • Are you CPR first aid certified?
  • When was the last time a student had an accident? How did you handle it? 
  • What measures do you use to determine if a horse is safe for kids? A good instructor will give specifics, not just talk about how safe his horses are.
Red Flags to Watch Out For:
  • An un-welcoming intro
  • Horses that look mad or scared when you pass by them
  • Dirty facilities
  • A ‘gut feeling’ that this is an unsafe facility
Good Signs:
  • Happy horses, happy students, a professional and welcoming tour, a certified instructor who has been teaching for years, a clean facility, posted safety rules, and helmets for every rider.  If you see these things, chances are you are in a good place!

Recommended Lesson Locations
Ransomed Heart Ranch (This is where Emily, our Pony Specialist, teaches!) 
204 E Casey Rd, Lone Jack MO 64080
Emily’s number is 816-560-8535
Painted M Ranch
12631 Homestead Ln. Olathe, Ks 66061
Abby Rd Farm
19608 J Hwy. Peculiar MO 64078
Woodson Hill Equestrian Center
http://www.woodsonhill.org/
7990 NW Mace Rd, KCMO 64152
Once again, thank you to everyone who joined us for Pony Camp 2014!
We are already taking reservations for Pony Camp 2015 so grab your spot early!  Plus, what a great Christmas gift or stocking stuffer! 
Have a great rest of the summer ya’ll!
Posted on July 1, 2013
Here at the ranch we love to treat our ponies right!
That’s one of the big reasons why we LOVE our Pony Camps during the summer.  Our ponies get an extra special dose of love and attention from all of the campers.  This year, they got really spoiled with some brand new tasty treats!
Our Pony Professor, Vicki Massey, shared her equine chef knowledge with the campers by teaching them how to make this fun recipe.
Follow the instructions below to make some of your own to share with your favorite pony!

“Chef Vicki” teaching the campers the recipe.
Sticky Pony Pleasers

Ingredients:

apple slices
carrot pieces
corn syrup
instant quick-cook oatmeal 

Instructions:
1.  Line up 3 paper plates.  Pour a generous puddle of corn syrup on the first plate.  Spread a layer of dry instant oats in the second plate.  
2.  Dip an apple slice or carrot piece in the corn syrup, coating on all sides.  
3.  Dip the syrup coated apple or carrot into the oatmeal and roll until all sides are covered. 
4.  Place the coated apple slices/carrot pieces onto the third plate.
5.  Lick your fingers (yup, there’s a treat in it for you too!) and then continue coating the remaining apples and carrots.
6.  Serve to your pony or horse in their feed bin or bucket.  You’ll be their favorite person with this delicious snack!

Our Campers hard at work!

What kind of snacks does your pony or horse like?  Do you have any special recipes like this one?

Have a great day, ya’ll!

~ Your Friends at Faulkner’s


PS – Remember it’s not too early to sign up for our 2014 Pony Camp I.
Click here to fill out your registration form!

Posted on March 8, 2013
Lately our weekends here at the ranch have been filled with the cutest little cowboys and cowgirls coming to celebrate their birthdays
with a Pony Party!
We just love seeing the awesome ideas that their mamas and papas come up with.  We especially love seeing what theme they choose!
This month we had a super cute theme that we just had to share…
A Princess Pony Party!
Meet Olivia! The Birthday Girl and Princess for the day!  
She is also a Pony Camp graduate!  
Last year she celebrated with us with a cowgirl themed party, but this year she brought the sparkle and the glitz with a super cute princess theme.
Of course, Olivia was dressed for the part complete with a tiara and wand!  And check out that ring on her finger!  This party was all about the bling – lots of sweetness and sparkles!
Party Tip: In the invitation, encourage your kiddo’s guests to dress according to the theme!  It not only gets them excited for the party, but it also makes for some really cute pictures on the big day.
We just love it when our pony campers come back to the ranch to celebrate their birthdays. It’s so much fun to see them reunite with their pony camp pony and show what they learned to their friends.  Plus, the ponies LOVE all of the extra special attention. 
A good party favor is a great way to thank your guests for coming and a fantastic way to give them something to remember the fun that they had.  We just love the party favors from this party!  Aren’t they cute?
Her mom ordered these personalized bottlecap necklaces from Etsy to give to all of the girls.  
Party Tip: With handmade or personalized party favors, it is important that you know your guest list well in advance so that you get them ordered on time.
The cuteness didn’t stop there.  Just look at the adorable pony cookies that were served.
Not to mention this princess cake…
Can you believe that her mom made it herself?!  Way to go, mama!
Party Tip: Even one really creative snack that goes along with your theme, like the cookies above, will leave a lasting impression on your guest.
Needless to say, this was a super fun party with a super fun little gal!
Thanks for celebrating your birthday with us again, Olivia!  You rock!
Interested in throwing a Pony Party at the ranch for your little cowpoke?
And don’t forget to sign up for Pony Camp!  Sessions are booking fast!
Have a great day, ya’ll!

Posted on July 31, 2012

What can we say? We are just so proud of our Pony Campers!  It is a true delight to watch how they grow throughout the week.  We love watching them build friendships and become more comfortable with the horses.  Plus, we are always so impressed with what they do at the end of camp Pony Show – they’ve got some serious skills.
There’s no denying it…Pony Camp is where it’s at!
We had a lot of fantastic moments during this Pony Camp Season.  
Here are a few of our favorites:
The Pony Olympics
To get into the Olympic spirit this year, Sarah, our college intern, added a new group of activities to Pony Camp known as the Pony Camp Olympics.  Complete with an opening ceremony, seven different events, and a closing ceremony, the campers waved their flags and tried their hardest to win gold!

An Award Winning Pony Camper

Pony campers bring show and tell items.  This camper had something to share that she should be really proud of.  She competed in a horse show over the weekend and won 2nd place!  Way to go!!! And check out the size of that ribbon! How awesome is that?

Our Pony Beauty Salon

This year our ponies got the royal treatment at the Pony Camp Beauty Salon as campers learned all about how to care for their ponies.
Check out these awesome hairdos!  Lookin’ good gals!

Nothing like a cool bath to cool off on a hot summer day…

This next picture is really cool.  Campers learned how to do quarter marks.  Quarter marks are a type of ornamentation on a horse seen in certain types of exhibition or competition.  

Doesn’t it look cool?
Our First Loose Tooth
It wasn’t until our fourth session of pony camp that we had our first loose tooth.  Miss Juliana lost one of her front teeth.  She took the tooth home and got $1 from the Tooth Fairy.  She told us that she was going to put it in her college fund! So much wisdom at five years old!
Our Fantastic Teachers
We couldn’t talk about Pony Camp without talking about our fantastic teachers.  Pat and Vicki do such an amazing job.
Pat and Vicki
Plus we can’t forget our college intern, Sarah.  She is so creative!
Sarah takes a ride with the pony campers on the last day of camp.
Fun Fact: Pat has been teaching the kiddos in our family (some who are now all grown up) how to ride horses for over 20 years. 
Pat stays beside a young camper as they practice trotting.
Pat and Vicki work with small groups of campers to practice their pony skills.
Vicki leads one of the indoor pony games.
The Mama and Paparazzi
The last day of camp is very special.  It is the day when all of the little cowboys and cowgirls can show off their new skills and knowledge to their family and friends.  The campers put on a special performance followed by a demonstration of their new pony skills.

The End of Camp Pony Show

Speaking of that special performance on the last day of camp, check out the campers from session 4.  Didn’t they do an awesome job?

Our Pro Cowboys and Cowgirls
Without a doubt, one of the biggest highlights this summer was watching the campers truly grow around the ponies.  By the end of the week they are able to ride unassisted and even pick up some speed!
Pony Camp 2012 was such a great time here at the ranch.

So great that spots are already filling up fast for Pony Camp 2013!

If you’re interested in reserving a spot for your little cowboy or cowgirls please contact us at 816-761-1234.
Have a great day ya’ll!
Posted on July 30, 2012
This past Friday wrapped up our final day of Pony Camp this summer.
Pony Camp was an amazing experience for everyone involved this summer and we couldn’t do it without the amazing group of teachers that work with our campers each week.
So today we want to shine the spotlight on one very special teacher, Sarah Brines, our pony camp intern.
We asked Sarah what her five favorite thing were about Pony Camp.
Read below to see what she had to say.
Howdy y’all! This is Sarah, the college intern here at Faulkner’s Ranch. 
This is my third summer at the ranch and my second year of doing pony camp. We’ve had some fantastic sessions this summer. So I have done my best to come up with my five favorite things about pony camp. It was very hard to pick just five but here they are! 
My 5 Favorite Things About Pony Camp
1.  All the different kids I meet and get to work with. 
Each week is a new mix of different personalities and attitudes and one of my favorite parts of every week is getting to meet and spend time with all the awesome campers. Every week is very different but always very fun.
2.  The questions the campers ask. 
I’ve gotten lots of awesome questions but my favorites are “Do you own a McDonalds?” “Do you smell like horses?” “Is there an old farmer around here?” and probably my all-time favorite occurred after showing the campers a picture of my fiancé, when one of the boys asked “Can I marry him?”
3.  Getting to plan things.
I love spending time thinking about pony camp and ways to make it better. I’ve been working on improvements for this year since we finished last year’s camp and I just love planning new activities and reworking our normal activities to make the week better. Creating the multi-day Pony Camp Olympics (a series of fun ranch games) has been one of my favorite additions to pony camp, and the campers certainly do enjoy it. 
4.  Seeing the kids grow throughout the week. 
I love not only seeing how much more comfortable the kids get with the ponies but also how they learn to get along with each other. 
5.  Seeing how happy the campers are!
At the beginning of every week I tell my campers that my job is to make sure they have as much fun as possible. I love seeing the campers smiling and my absolute favorite part is when the kids tell me their favorite part of camp is everything.
Thanks for reading! And if you’re interested in Pony Camp be sure to register. Next year’s camp dates are available and filling up fast!
Like we said, we couldn’t do it without our amazing teachers.
Pat and Vicki
You gals are the best of the best!
Thinking about Pony Camp for next summer? Registration has already begun for 2013 and spots are filling up fast! Visit our website for more details or call 816-761-1234 to register now.
Have a great day ya’ll!
PS – Congrats to Sarah on her engagement!  
Remember to rock some cowgirl boots with your dress!

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