HoneyRock’s equestrian facilities have been home to thousands of campers, families, and guests since the ranch program’s inception in the 1960s. If fence lines and pasture grass could talk, they would share stories of accomplishment, grit, growth, encounter, and lessons on leadership as taught by one of God’s most powerful teaching tools – the horse.
The Mission of the Equestrian Program at HoneyRock
The mission of the equestrian program is to provide a safe, Christ-centered, engaging environment where horses, and their training and care, are used to deepen participants’ walk with Christ while equipping them with skills for life. As part of our overarching vision to provide whole and effective disciple-making leaders for Christ’s Church worldwide, we seek to use our industry-leading, year-round equestrian program to multiply influential Christian leaders for equine ministry at camps, colleges, and other organizations. This will be accomplished by:
Phase One - Complete!
- Hire full-time Equestrian Program manager
- Develop equestrian-focused track for Vanguard Gap Year Track
- Survey ranch facility and assess facility needs related to program vision
- Acquire initial drawings and site plan | Cost: $3,900 (funded)
- Design and build a new hay storage barn, feeding facility, and raze Back Barn | Cost: $195,000 (funded)
Phase Two - Complete!
- Launch equestrian track for 10 Vanguards fall 2021
- Accept 2 Outdoor and Adventure Leadership, equestrian-focused Graduate Assistants
- Finalize design and fundraise for Main Equestrian Center
Phase Three - In Progress
- Design and build a comprehensive Equestrian Center to include an indoor riding arena, classroom, office, tack storage, box stalls, and equipment storage. | Cost: $1.5 million; $250,000 funded
- Finalize master’s track in Equestrian Program Leadership.
- Develop partnerships with colleges and organizations for student recruitment and placement.
- Raze remaining old barn structures.
Overview of the Current Facilities at the HoneyRock Barn
Our current facilities are not only showing their age, but they do not meet current equestrian facility standards.
They are not adequate for a year-round, collegiate level training program. Sagging and splitting foundations, leaking roofs, freezing waterlines, and heaving fence posts struggle to withstand lengthy winters and busy summers. HoneyRock’s current equestrian facilities consist of the following:
The main front barn was built originally as a burro barn in 1964. After multiple additions, sagging and splitting foundations, and leaking roofs, it sorely needs to be replaced.
The Back Barn serves as hay storage, feeding, and machinery storage barn was constructed in 1970 and is on the verge of collapse.
Built in the early 1970s, the Tack House is separated from the indoor saddling area and has very limited classroom, equipment storage, and repair space.
Built in 1988, the arena is only sufficient for riding and instruction during warm, dry months. School year training, now the bulk of our equestrian ministry, is during the negative temperatures of the winter months.