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Join us on Sept. 23, 2017 for our Denim & Diamonds Fall Fundraiser!! The fun begins at 5:30 pm at our Indoor Arena!!!

Better Late than Never?

Thursday June 29th!
Dear Pony Farm Camp Moms, Dads, Grandparents, Sisters and Brothers,
It is with great glee that I get the chance to write to you about how camp is going. What a fantastic group of wonderful young people. Not only are they fun and funny, but hard working and conscientious. They ride well and work with great gusto in their teams… whether it be for room clean up or capers or barn chores. The days just roll along with glee and delight as I see them loving each other and their ponies. I feel like the luckiest person alive. I remember that someone once told me “I am so envious of you. You get to live in the world as it should be. I have to live in the world as it is!” I am indeed blessed!!! Thank you for sharing your kids.
I am being Becky’s Ghost Writer and Stand-In Camp Director for the next day or two. She worked so hard to get the Orientation week just right and the first two sessions set up so perfectly that this “New Mother” just plain wore herself out. She is staying at home for a couple of days to rebuild her energy and health. Catching a few extra winks can’t help either!!! She and Baby Jackson are resting comfortably so she can return this weekend and enjoy the 4th of July with the campers. I know I speak for you all when I say “Rest well, Becky. We got this”!
And “Got it” we do. It is so fun for me to return to being a Camp Director, my favorite and best job of all. I love being with the kids and staff from morning until night, including tucking them in. It helps me go back in time when I tucked many of you in, lo those years ago. I love it even more now.
So…here is the update… A whole fleet of kids went to the away horse show yesterday. All reports were that everyone had a blast. It was well organized, happy and with the kids in the right classes. They all came home bearing ribbons with some Championships and Reserves in tow. This is no mean feat as they had only had the benefit of riding their camp ponies for two days. Andi and the show crew do such a good job coaching. They all came home with smiles. That is what I care about way more than the ribbons.
Meanwhile, back at the ranch, the rest of the kids rode with gusto in their lessons. We are so glad none of the kids feel like they have to compete. The horse matches are all nice and appropriate. Again, Andi and her crew have done a great job of recruiting safe, capable and well-trained horses for the campers. With nearly 70 horses and ponies on site, we sure do have the right match for each and every girl.
Following a peaceful rest hour, the afternoon activities included a cantering trail ride, swimming and bracelet making with Elise, Catch Riding (which is where the girls swap horses and get the experience of riding several different horses in one afternoon), Free Ride (which is where the girls get to work on their skills and hone their partnership with their pony under the supervision of their instructors but not in a formal lesson), and Small Animals. A whole slew of kids played with the goats, miniature horses, donkey and sheep, as well as my dog. We set up an Obstacle Course on the lawn by the Homestead. Everyone loved it so much that we even started painting the obstacles so they could stay up and be reused time and time again. Much fun conversation ensued while we painted our hearts out. Pictures to come.
Barn Chores and Dinner followed the afternoon activities. Then, we all build a big fire in the fire pit and gathered around for stories. I love telling tales of the old days of the farm when I was a little girl. I also tell all kinds of stories about the various ponies and big events in the life of the farm. They listened with great attention and ended the evening begging for more. Such fun for me! We then went in and sang before and after Vespers. Everyone tip toed off to bed and a good night’s sleep was had by all.
Today, they are riding in their groups again. Level One kids are having a “Cowgirl Day” with everyone dressed in jeans, bandanas and chaps. Sooo cute and fun. Much afternoon festivities are planned. We will get pictures of all of this for you and when Becky is back and she can send them to you!!!
A Pizza Party, the Chocolate Game and Counselor Quest is on the docket for tonight…We will also be greeting my new 9 week old puppy…So fun. Hope you are all well. WE love your daughter(s) and look forward to seeing you when you return. Be well and enjoy your time at home. We sure are enjoying our time here at Touchstone Farm. Hugs and with a great big smile, Boo

Pony Farm Summer Camp Session 2 – Day 1

Dear Camp Families,
It was so fabulous to see you all on Sunday! We had so many familiar faces that were lovely to see and we were exuberant to see new families too!
Yesterday the campers got to brainstorm all of the activities they would love to do this week and our lovely Camp Director Becky worked with our very own fabulous Boo to fit everything possible into the schedule, we can’t wait for the campers to do them all and have a great time! Today in the morning all of the lovely campers had their trial rides to make sure everyone was on the perfect horse or pony for them! We are happy to say that the lessons went flawlessly in the morning and that we only had to make a few pony/horse switches that were tested this afternoon. Now everyone seems to adore their horse or pony! If the pony or horse worked out well the campers got to take their swim test, then swim in the pool, play with the small animals, and or help Boo garden, sounds like a great time to me!
Barn chores went extremely fast this morning, it was quite impressive for day one we managed to finish early! The weather has been lovely so far, the sky is bright and blue and it is a beautiful 71 degrees! Once the kids have done evening barn chores, showered, and eaten dinner they will get to do Bag Skits for the evening activity! Bag skits are where each room places a few items in a bag, the bag is then randomly distributed to a different room and that room creates a fun and funny skit using all the items in the bag. I bet the kids will have a great time with Bag Skits! It has been so great to see all the campers talking with old friends as if they had just seen them yesterday and making close bonds with new friends!
Tomorrow we will have normal lessons as the campers begin to get more accustomed to their horse or pony, the kids going to the away show will have a separate lesson to prepare for the show on this Wednesday. In the afternoon tomorrow campers a will have the option to drive, trail ride, paint ponies, or go on a trip to see the Clydesdales! There are so many great possibilities I imagine it will be hard to choose just one to do, but most activities will be offered again in the next weeks, so everyone should get to do everything they hoped to in this session. Then for the evening activity the campers will get to participate in a Horseless Horseshow where they will, if they would like to, run around and pretend to be horses, with prizes of course!
The week so far has gone effortlessly and we cannot wait to continue our next two weeks with your daughters having a blast!! Your children are so sweet, helpful, friendly, and extremely hard working and we are extremely happy that you allowed us to have them for Session 2 of the 46th summer of Pony Farm!!

Best wishes,
Sophie Kofsky, Counselor in Training

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Pony Farm Camp Families Newsletter May 2017

May 2017

 

Dear Camp Families,

 

Camp is a few short weeks away and we are busy getting ready for your arrival!  The horses are working on getting into shape after a tough winter.   We have more horses and ponies arriving daily to make sure they are just the right fit for camp.  Our grounds crew is busy cleaning up the property and getting it ready for summer!  Tammy is also busy at the lodge sprucing it up for camp!

Baby Jackson – If you haven’t heard already, Becky, our camp director, had her baby on March 30th at 2:19 pm. His name is Jackson Ransom Hawkes and he weighed 8 pounds and 5 ounces and was 22 inches long.  The whole family is doing great!  Jackson is looking forward to spending his summer at camp!       


Camp Forms –   Camp forms are due June 1st.  Please do strive to have your forms in on time.  This allows us to get them all organized and processed before your camper’s arrival.  These forms effect horse matches, riding groups, room placement and allows our staff to get to know your camper before she arrives. Please find all of the camp forms at the link below – https://www.touchstone-farm.org/camp-forms/

 

Packing List – Please find the packing list at the link just below.

http://www.touchstone-farm.org/what-to-pack/

 

Balance Due – Just a friendly reminder that the balance is due for camp on May 1st.  You can make payments on-line.  Here is the link to make your payment online, if you still need to do so.

http://www.touchstone-farm.org/product/pony-farm-summer-camp/ 

 

Reminder, there is a 4% processing fee to pay online 

 

You can also write a check payable to Touchstone Farm and mail to 13 Pony Farm Lane, Temple NH 03084. 

 

If you have questions about your balance, please contact our bookkeeper Kim Borges.  She can be reached at kborges@touchstone-farm.org

 

Website – We are working on improving our website.  Everything you need to know for and about camp from packing lists, to contacting your camper, even pick up and drop off times will be found under the Pony Farm section.

However, if you feel we are missing something, please contact Becky Hawkes as she is always looking for ways to improve the process and/or make it more user friendly. Sometimes we are just too close and can’t see the forest between the trees!  You can email her at bhawkes@touchstone-farm.org

 

Show Team – We are trying to stream line the process for everyone!  The sign up for the Show Team is a little different this year.  The sign up is in the camp forms under the Camper’s Release and the Financial Release, please be sure to check off each box.  In order to do the Show Team you will need to have your camp forms in and marked correctly by the Wednesday before your session starts. 

There is a lot of coordinating that goes into the away Show Team events with horses, lessons, registrations for the show, and shipping of the horses and ponies; therefore, we will not be accepting late sign ups.    

The show team is optional and limited to 15 campers per session.  Here is the link on our website with more information about the Show Team – http://www.touchstone-farm.org/pony-farm-horse-shows/  

If you have questions about the Show Team you can always contact Andi Snow, our Equine Trainer, asnow@touchstone-farm.org

 

Tours – If you are a new camp family and haven’t been up for a tour, we highly encourage it!  We find that camp tours are very helpful in getting campers and their families ready for camp and know what to anticipate and expect when they are here!  Tours are available by appointment!  Contact Becky to set one up! bhawkes@touchstone-farm.org

Social Media – Check us out online!  

  • Blog    http://www.touchstone-farm.org/blog/    You will find our blog located on the Touchstone Farm Website under News. Please be sure to view periodically for updates and others goings on at the farm and with camp!

Lastly, if you just plan can’t wait ‘til camp gets here, then come up to our Horse Capades event on Sunday, June 11th!  Here is more info in a Facebook Event –https://www.facebook.com/events/1136266979829578/

We can’t wait to see you this summer!  Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions or concerns before camp gets here!   

 

Best,

Becky, Meg, and Boo and the rest of the Crew!