Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Happy New Year Raynham Riders!

Hey Raynham Riders!

We hope everyone has had a wonderful holiday and Happy New Year!  Our apologies if you tried to get in touch with us over the past week, we were crazy busy with Jillian (Lindsay & Caryn's daughter, Nikki's sister)'s wedding!  We are working through the backlog of emails now and Nikki is working to finish the schedule for the winter session ASAP.  It will be posted on the blog, as usual.

Below are a few reminders and upcoming events, please take a look!

We look forward to seeing everyone back at the barn soon,

Nikki, Lindsay & Caryn
The reason for our radio silence the past week -  a huge congrats to Jillian and Colton on their marriage! 
In-House Clinics - Thurs. Jan 2nd & Fri. Jan 3rd

There are still a few spaces remaining for our awesome in house clinics!   We will be doing dressage on Thursday and stadium on Friday.  Lunch is included and riders are welcome (and encouraged!) to stay for the day and watch each other's lessons.  You can view the full details here.  Please email Nikki by to register!
Inclement Weather Cancellations

All cancellations for inclement weather will be posted on our blog and on Facebook.  We will NOT send out individual emails, but on the top left corner of the blog page, you can subscribe by email and it will email you any posts.  You can view our full inclement weather policy here.
Winter Schooling Show Date Change

As the tack up area is not quite complete, we have decided to postpone the winter schooling show until it's ready.  We will post the official date once the work is closer to completion, but most likely Sat. January 18th or 25th.  Riders can enter online here.  This means that classes will be running as usual on Sat. January 4th. Please let us know if you have any questions.
Other Upcoming Events (Dates TBA)!
  • Dressage Clinic with Meredith Risk
  • School Horse Spa Day & Saddle Fitting
  • Tuesday Fun Nights!  We are going to be running fun nights on Tuesdays throughout the session - pony games, stadium round/dressage test practices, stable management lessons, and more!  Watch the blog for details!
  • Equestrian Canada Rider Level Testing

Thursday, December 19, 2019

Make-up Lesson Option this Saturday!

Hey Raynham Riders,

Have a make-up lesson from last night or another time this session?  
We are offering some additional times for make-up lessons this weekend!  Below are the group classes we are offering on Saturday.  It's supposed to be a balmy +1c on Saturday too! 
  • Saturday, Dec. 21 @ 10:30am - Novice/Intermediate
  • Saturday, Dec. 21 @ 11:30am - Adv Beginner/Novice 
  • Saturday, Dec. 21 @ 12:30pm - Beginner/Adv Beginner 
Please enter the booking code SNOWGROUP into the online scheduler: http://www.raynhamstables.com/online-lesson-scheduling.html so the scheduler knows it's a make-up class.  Please sign up today - if by tomorrow afternoon, there are insufficient #'s to warrant running a class, we will combine some of the groups.  If you missed a private lesson with me last night, I am still trying to sort out my schedule for this weekend, and will post some availability shortly :) 

Please let me know if you have any questions,


Wednesday, December 18, 2019

LESSONS CANCELLED - Wednesday, December 18th

Hey Raynham Riders!

To keep riders (and instructors) from getting too chilly, we classes if the temperature is going to be below -12c before the windchill.   Tonight it's supposed to be -15c by 6pm, so classes are cancelled for this evening.  Since it's the last week of the session,  we are happy to offer some make-up classes this weekend.  Please email us TODAY to let us know if you would be available this weekend so we know if there is enough interest to warrant running some classes.

We want to remind everyone that during the winter session, there are no make-ups required for inclement weather cancellations!  If the weather conditions are fine here and we do not cancel, but the driving is unsafe in your area, you can still cancel and either book a make-up or deduct from the next session - so there's no reason not to continue over the winter!

Dressing for success is critical for winter riding! Here are my best tips:

  • Wear LOTS of layers, but remember to remove layers before you sweat and put them back on as soon your done riding to trap in your post-ride warmth!
  • Thermals under your tops/breeches are awesome!  You can even add sweatpants/snow pants on top on really chilly days.
  • Winter riding boots and wool/thermal socks make a huge difference.  If you don't own a pair, you can see my recommendations here:  https://raynhamstables.blogspot.com/2019/11/winter-riding-tips.html.  If your regular winter boots have a small heel and aren't too wide, you may be able to ride in them!  Ask your instructor to check!
  •  Cold fingers are no fun - winter riding gloves are great but on those really chilly days, wear mittens and add hot packs for extra warmth!
I hate the cold more than anyone else I know, but if I can dress to stay warm to ride throughout the winter, anyone can!


IMPORTANT - Schooling Show Date Change!

Hey Raynham Riders,

The tack up area is progressing well but since we had a delay with replacing the posts initially and now the upcoming holidays, it may not be 100% finished for January 4th. Since running schooling shows is challenging already, we've decided to hold off on the show until we know we can use the tack-up area. We will announce an official date once work is close to completion, but it will likely be January 18th! This means there WILL be lessons on Saturday, January 4th. Hopefully, this means even more riders will be able to participate as some people were going to be away still for holidays.

Thanks so much for understanding!   We'll keep everyone posted on the progress of the tack up area :)


Monday, December 16, 2019

Winter Session: Saturday, January 4th - Friday, March 13th

Hey Raynham Riders!

There has been an unprecedented number of requested changes to the schedule for the next session so unfortunately, it looks like I need to redo the schedule from scratch.  If all riders could please submit this form by the end of the day WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 18th, it would be greatly appreciated. - http://www.raynhamstables.com/winter-2020-availability.html.  My goal is to post the revised schedule by this Friday, before the winter break.

We also wanted to remind everyone about our winter cancellation policy!  During the winter session, students do NOT need to book a make-up for inclement weather cancellations, so there’s no reason not to continue riding over the winter!   We cancel classes if the temperature is below -12c (before the wind-chill) or during unsafe driving conditions (such as heavy snow or icy rain).  The winter session is 10 weeks but we only bill for 9 classes so if we have to cancel once, we are square.  If we have to cancel any additional time(s), riders will have the option to schedule a make-up or deduct the class off of the spring session fees if you prefer.  Please remember to check the blog or our Facebook page to ensure classes are running.  Any cancellations will be posted by 7:30 am on weekends, 1:00 pm on weeknights.  

Also, our tack-up area renovation is well underway!  It will make a HUGE difference to have a warm area to tack-up/untack.  It should be done by the first week of January! I hope everyone is aexcited as I am!

If you are unable to continue with classes next session and have not yet emailed the office, please so do ASAP.  We'll miss you!  Please be aware that we cannot hold spots for riders that discontinue classes and it's hard to take three months off riding. If you wish to start back in the spring, please contact us mid-February and we can let you know what spaces are available. 

Finally, there seemed to have been a bit of a mix up with different dates being posted for the final day of classes. Just a reminder that the LAST day of this session is Friday, December 20th.

As always, we are constantly working to make Raynham the BEST place to ride.  Please let us know if you have any questions or concerns!

Nikki & the Raynham Team

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Blanketing Tips!

Hey Raynham Riders,

Since it appears winter has arrived and is here to stay, most of our horses have winter blankets on. Here are some important things to know:

  • If your horse is very sweaty, they need to be cooled out by hand walking them with a cooler on before their blanket is put on. Coolers are available in the tack up area.
  • Blankets are sized and straps are adjusted specifically for each horse. Please ensure you are putting the correct blanket on by checking the name tag on the front of the blanket. If you are unsure, please ask a staff member.
  • It is very important that blankets are put on/taken off correctly, for both the safety of the horses and riders and to prevent damage to the blankets. Below are the steps.
As always, if you are ever unsure, please ask one of our friendly staff! Thank you for your help keeping our horses safe, warm and blankets in good repair,

Your Raynham Team


  1. Unclip leg straps at the back of the blanket
  2. Undo the belly straps
  3. Undo the chest clips/buckles
  4. Fold the back 1/3 of the blanket forward to ensure the leg straps are not tangled around their hind legs
  5. Fold the front 1/3 forward and then slide the blanket off the horse towards you. Please hang up neatly while you are riding (on the horses' stall door, on the blanket rack in the big barn, or on the grooming stall partition, once the tack up area is complete).

  1. Ensure you have the front of the blanket orientated toward the front of the horse and slowly drape the blanket of the horses' back.
  2. Do up the chest buckets, ensuring you put the strap back through the buckle (not just the pin) so it is secure. If the blanket has chest clips, please attach them with the opening of the clip towards the horse's chest, so they do not get caught on anything.
  3. Do up the belly straps (they cross), and ensure they are laying flat, not twisted
  4. Attach the leg straps by passing the strap around the hind leg and attaching at the back of the blanket on the same side. When doing up the second strap, also loop it through the first strap to make the blanket more secure.
  5. If any of the straps are missing or the blanket is damaged, please check with staff - it may not be safe for the horse to wear.

Here are some photos:

Chest buckles done up correctly

Snaps should be clipped with the opening towards the horse

Belly straps should be done up diagonally,
and ensure that they are not twisted.


Image may contain: one or more people and outdoorIT'S HAPPENING!!! Demo on the tack up area is complete, and rebuilding is about to begin We are looking forward to having somewhere enclosed and warm for our riders and horses to get tack-up very soon!

During the construction process, horses will be tacked up in their own stalls or in the cross ties in either the boarder barn or drive shed - check the lesson board when you arrive as it will indicate where you should tack up. Please be courteous and sweep up before and after your ride - as always! Also, please be sure to return all equipment (tack, brushes, etc.) to the riding school tackroom, which will remain accessible throughout the renovation.

We will keep you posted on the progress throughout the renovation!

Thank you again to everyone who participated in our fundraisers to help make this possible!

Sunday, December 1, 2019

Sunday, December 1st - Lessons are running today

Hey Raynham Riders!

They are calling for a mix of winter weather today! If the driving is bad in your area, you can cancel and reschedule.  We will post details of how to reschedule shortly.

Stay safe today!


Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Holiday Schooling Show & Team Tryouts - Saturday, January 4th, 2020

As always, schooling shows are open to ALL Raynham Stables students.  Our schooling shows are low-stress, a great learning opportunity as well as a ton of fun!

For this year's show, we are going to run using our winter format again. Riders will complete a dressage flat class then an equitation over-fences round.  This way, all the classes will last approx. 1 hour so riders don't have to wait around all day in the cold!  You can enter online here!

For those hoping to compete in 2020, please indicate "Show Team" in the "Questions?" box on the entry form.  Please see further details about Show Team 2020 here.

In-House Clinics - Thurs. Jan 2nd & Fri. Jan 3rd

Here are the details for our AWESOME annual in-house clinics!  The clinics will be held over two days, the first day will be dressage day with Nikki and the second day will be jumping with Lindsay! You can decide to do both days or just one of the days but it is a great way to keep up your riding skills over the winter break. Everyone is welcome to come and watch, you can learn a TON from watching! Our in-house clinics make a great gift idea - certificates are available!

Thursday, Jan 2nd - Dressage Day!

Time: 9:30am - 4:00pm.  Riders are welcome to (and encouraged!) to stay and watch as many of the other lessons as possible.  You can learn a ton from watching!
Lunch: Lunch is included!  Pizza, chips, salad, drinks, snacks etc.
Lesson Type: 30 min Private or 45 min. Semi-Private Dressage Lessons with Nikki!  (We will group riders into semi-private lessons if we have riders at the same level).  Test ride optional but encouraged, especially those of you hoping to show this year!  You will run through your test with Nikki during your lesson, receive feedback, and then go back and work on the areas that need improvement!  Here is the link to the dressage tests (learn the 1 test for your level):
Cost: $80.00/rider ($10 less if you own/lease your own horse)

Friday, Jan 3rd - Jumping Day!

Time: Time: 9:30am - 4:00pm.  Riders are welcome to (and encouraged!) to stay and watch as many of the other lessons as possible.  You can learn a ton from watching!
Lunch: Lunch is included!  Pizza, chips, salad, drinks, snacks etc.
Lesson Type: 1h - 1h 30min small group lesson (depending on the # of riders) with Lindsay!  (We will group riders into lessons based on skill level).  We will be working on the skills needs to ride courses effectively.  We will also have a lesson on how to course walk over lunch!
Cost: $80.00/rider ($10 less if you own/lease your own horse).

Come both days and save - $150.00 for both days :)  If you are interested in participating or have any other questions, please email Nikki - info@raynhamstables.com.  Times will be posted on the blog Tuesday, December 31st.

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Important Updates for Banquet Tickets and Fundraisers

Banquet and Fundraiser Updates

So far we have a great turnout for this year's Holiday & Awards Banquet! Thanks to those who've purchased tickets. If you've ordered tickets but haven't paid please leave your cash or cheque (payable to Raynham Show Team) in the payment box at the barn. There is still time to get your ticket...email me at robin.johnson@rogers.com. Looking forward to a fun night celebrating the Holiday Season, amazing accomplishments and good friends.

Some GREAT news! North Country and MacMillans orders have been extended until November 25! That gives you 3 extra days to sell! GET OUT THERE AND HUSSLE!

Friday, November 15, 2019

Show Team 2020!

Hey Raynham Riders,

Show Season 2019 may have ended less than a month ago but it's already time to start preparing for the 2020 season!  At this point, we are looking to gather information on who is interested in competing in 2020.  If you think you'd like to show, please fill out this google form.

We have not finalized the details for 2020 trailering/coaching fees, part board rates, etc. but it is unlikely to change very much from this year.  Please send me an email if you would like the 2019 show package sent to you.

Many of our talented and beloved school horses that have given us years of show opportunities are getting older and close to retirement. We are actively looking for some new horses for the show program and would like to offer riders the opportunity to get in on the ground floor.  By paying your yearly part board/lease upfront, we will horse shop together to find a great horse for the show program and for you! If this is something that interests you and would like further details, please let us know.

We are looking forward to wrapping this season up with a bang at our 11th Annual Holiday Banquet.  It's open to ALL riders - we hope to see many of you there!

Please let us know if you have any other questions!

Nikki, Lindsay & Caryn

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Tack Up Area Renovation Fundraisers

Hey Raynham Riders!

We are excited to announce that we are having our tack-up area renovated!  It will be enclosed and insulated with additional doors to keep it warmer for our horses and riders while tacking up and untacking!    It is a BIG undertaking so we would greatly appreciate any support you can give.  We are running a few fundraisers to help offset the cost, details are below.  We have also added a heater in the big arena over the bleachers to keep parents warm while spectating and the heat is on in the small arena viewing lounge as well.

Meat & Treats Fundraisers!

Both order forms are due on Monday, November 25th and delivery will be on Friday, December 13th. There are also paper forms available to be picked up in the riding school tack room if you prefer.  Completed forms can be dropped off in the cheque box in the tack-up area. Please make cheques payable to "Raynham Show Team" (the account we use for fundraising).

North Country Meats

We have done fundraising with North Country for our show team for years and have very impressed with the quality of their products!  Barn favourites include chicken breasts, chicken fingers, steaks, salmon, and ribs!


We tried MacMillian's for the first time last year and it was a hit!  The muffin and cookie batters are delish and so are the soup mixes and ready-to-bake appetizers!

11th Annual Raynham Holiday & Awards Banquet!


The Banquet countdown continues!  We are now 1 week away from the close of ticket sales.  Don’t delay, get your tickets today!! (yes I know that rhymed).

Date: Friday, November 29th
Time: Doors open @ 6pm, Dinner @ 7pm, and all night long: FUN, FUN, FUN!

Adult Ticket $75.00
Child Ticket $40.00 (12 and under)

For tickets please email: robin.johnson@rogers.com
Cash or Cheque (payable to Raynham Show Team) can be left in the mailbox in the tack up area.


As in previous years, we will be running our exciting silent auction at our Holiday and Awards Banquet. The funds raised will help to offset both banquet costs and a facility upgrade that will benefit all riders (and parents) by providing them with an insulated tack up area that will keep them comfortable all year round!

This year we would like to present a special opportunity to get in on the auction anytime, anywhere! If you want to pre-bid or can't make it to Banquet but want an item, this is your chance. We are offering some of the items donated this year for your bidding online! Perhaps you know someone outside of Raynham who would be interested? Share this opportunity with them!

The online auction site will be live from November 15th at 12:00 pm until the evening of Banquet, Friday, November 29th at 9:30 pm.  If you are attending Banquet, you can bid on these online items by visiting one of the online bidding stations. If you are not coming to Banquet, no worries, you can continue biding until close! Go to 32auctions.com/rsb to view and bid. Please share the link with friends and family as well!  More items will continue to be added throughout the next two weeks so keep checking back. There will also be additional items to bid on that will only be featured at the Banquet!

Want to donate an item?

Thank you to everyone that has already donated items to the auction already.  Many have told me of the fantastic items would still like to donate.  Please bring them to Raynham, and leave them in the camp trailer, at your convenience.  We would love to collect all the items by November 18.

If you would like to help by donating an online auction item, it is not too late and would be very much appreciated! Items can be added to the online auction as late as November 25th by 6:00 pm. Email: Robin Johnson at robin.johnson@rogers.com and please include a photo of your donation. 

Thank you for all of your support, we look forward to seeing you at the banquet!

Winter Riding Tips!

Hey Raynham Riders,

Winter has decided to arrive early and with a bang! Here are a few tips for staying comfortable and warm in the colder weather:

  • Dress in layers and make sure your base layers are moisture-wicking. Thermal long underwear designed for skiing is ideal! Once you are riding you will warm up quickly, so be sure your top layers have zippers so they can easily be removed when mounted.
  • Head, hands, and feet lose body heat quickly. Wear winter boots with ski socks, warm gloves or mittens, and a hat when tacking up. Snow pants or sweatpants over your breeches are a good idea for chilly days. You can remove the extra layers and switch to riding boots and gloves right before you get on.
  • When riding, a headband can fit under a helmet or a cozy helmet cover is also a great option. 
  • Winter riding boots (some options include: Greenhawk or Pleasant Ridge) and gloves are awesome for staying comfortable during the winter months.  
  • If you can’t purchase riding-specific gear, your regular winter boots may be fine. They need to have a ½” – 1 ½“ heel, not too chunky treads and the foot needs to be narrow enough to fit into the stirrup. Ask your instructor to check if you are unsure. 
  • For those really cold days, hot packs (www.littlehottieswarmers.com, sold at Costco, Marks Work Warehouse, Canadian Tire, and many other places!) in gloves and boots are a great way to stay warm

Horseback riding is a year-round sport, but we do live in Canada so please remember to dress appropriately so you can enjoy riding throughout the winter :)  

Monday, November 11, 2019

Monday, November 11th - Classes ARE running

Hey Raynham Riders,

We have decided to run classes this evening as they are just forecasting light snow for our area.  Some of our riders later this evening are coming from Toronto - if the commute is a total mess, and you would prefer to reschedule, please let us know via email. There are some openings on Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday morning this week. 

Nikki & Lindsay

Inclement Weather Cancellation Policy

Hey Raynham Riders,

Winter has sure arrived with a BANG!  We wanted to remind everyone of our inclement Weather Policy, below.  If you ever have any questions about our riding school policies or procedures, they can be found on our website.

Inclement Weather Policy

Lessons will be canceled if the temperature is below -12c before the wind-chill or during unsafe driving conditions (such as heavy snow or icy rain).   Please remember to check the blog or our Facebook page to ensure classes are running.  Any cancellations will be posted by 7:30 am on weekends, 1:00 pm on weeknights.  

During the winter session, students do NOT need to book a make-up for inclement weather cancellations, so there’s no reason not to continue riding over the winter :) For the winter session, we bill for one less class so if we have to cancel a class, we are square.  If we have to cancel any additional time(s), riders will have the option to schedule a make-up or deduct the class off of the spring session fees if you prefer.   If we have to cancel a class in the Fall or Spring sessions (very unusual), we do ask that riders reschedule their class and we will offer an additional day for make-up classes if needed.

Please let us know if you have any questions!  As always, we are constantly working to make Raynham the BEST place to ride!