Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Equine Apprentice Internship

 Painted Bar Stables is proud to offer our apprentice internship program. This Program is fast paced and filled with educational opportunities only gained by working in the industry. 

A leader in the trail riding industry in the Finger Lakes Region, Painted Bar Stables is a 125 acre ranch and stable located on Seneca Lake in the beautiful Finger Lakes Wine Country. We maintain roughly 30 head of well trained and versatile trail and lesson horses along with mares, babies and our stallion.

Internships will be catered to the interest and future goals of each intern. Focuses could include: Equine Schooling and Training, Instruction and Lesson Planning, Tourism Industry and Client Care, Public Relations and Marketing, Breeding and Young Stock Handling, Veterinary Care, etc...

As an intern you will have the opportunity to work in the training, breeding and general management divisions of the farm. Every day duties will include feeding, checking horses, saddling and warming up horses for training, grooming, guiding trail rides, teaching novice lessons, helping to head Girl Scout and 4-H camp programs, and maintaining a clean professional working environment. 

Depending on the ride schedule and time of year, interns will be involved with trail rides, clinics, hunter paces, overnight guiding, horse sales prep, foal handling, routine medical care such as worming, vaccinations, farrier and dentist scheduling. If the opportunity aligns with breeding season, Interns will be able to foal out a mare and participate in the care of the mare and foal after parturition. They will also be able to assist with the breeding activities of our stallion such as live cover breeding on the farm as well as semen collection at Cornell University. Additionally, interns will see office and client management, record keeping and marketing practices as well as become familiar with required legal and insurance logistics associated with owning and operating a stable or ranch. And above all else, Interns will be able to further develop their own riding and training skills while riding available horses at the ranch.

Typical Seasonal Jobs

  • September - November
    Foliage and wine tourists, boost in our lesson program, organizing for winter
  • December - February
    Schooling and training of horses, incoming training clients, winter maintenance, winter trail rides as requested, lessons focused on bareback riding and technical riding .
  • March - May
    Reboot of our lesson program, usually a spring horse show, steady increase in trail riders, breeding of our stallion.
  • June - AugustSummer Camps, tourism trail rides, youth programs

Because Summer (July - August) is our busiest season as well as the highest demand for internships, we usually do specific interviewing for internships at that time in March. All other seasons have lower demand for internships because most students are at university. 

This is a full time commitment. We provide shared furnished housing on the farm in our intern apartment and a weekly allowance of $100. 


  • Individuals must be quick and proactive learners, energetic, optimistic, reliable and professional. 
  • Capable of interacting with clients and the public on a regular basis, extroverts preferred 
  • Must be 18 years or older. 
  • Must be able to lift an 80# bag of grain unassisted.
  • Must have a valid drivers license and we suggest having a vehicle of your own
  • Must have a cell phone with text and email capability.
  • Computer skills required

Preferred Skills and Abilities include: experience in tourism businesses, public speaking, marketing and public relations, driving manual transmission automobiles, operating tractors, advanced computer skills, and experience designing and implementing projects. 

Minimum Commitment: 4 Weeks 

Riders of all skill levels accepted as riding skills can be taught and improved; however, assigned duties with the horses will vary based on proficiency with horses. Preference is for accomplished riders as a main benefit of the internship is the opportunity for unlimited schooling. 

We do not allow personal horses to accompany interns as past experiences have proven them to be a distraction from the learning benefits of working with a multitude of different horses within our stables.

For More information about our program please contact me by email or visit our website, 

If you would like to apply, send a resume, references and a short video of you riding and/or pictures by email. You can also follow us on our Painted Bar Stables facebook page.

Friday, December 18, 2015

Membership Leases

Our membership leases are for intermediate to advanced level riders who are capable of riding our horses completely independently without instruction or support. To be at a membership level riders must be able to prove to us that they can ready a horse without assistance, ride with independence, and control a horse at the trot and canter without undue burden to the animal or safety risk. 

While similar to a typical lease in that riders get to ride a certain amount, our program differs in that each of our members is assigned a herd of horses instead of just one horse. This allows flexibility in terms of scheduling, as specific horses may also be required for lesson or trail programs. It also allows riders to develop multiple relationships with horses to work on various skill sets and to have spare horses available to them if one horse is lame or unfit to ride at any point. 

This is a great program for the independent skilled rider who is not in a position to own a horse as it allows a good amount of freedom. Members usually ride alone, however some do jump in our scheduled trail rides when available to the general public to pull up the rear so that they don't have to go out completely alone. We also always strongly suggest that members take lessons in conjunction with their membership in order to keep tabs on their skill sets and receive advice and support, as well as get help from us for any problem solving needed in specific relationships with their herd. 

Monday, December 7, 2015

Benefits of Equine Interns over Stable Help

Many barn owners have commented on the many problems they have recruiting and keeping staff for barn support. Stories range from no-shows and excuses, sudden quitting, sloth and laziness, and ineptitude right on up to utter drama. While some of these complaints are decently dramatic, the truth is the whole is pretty par for course because of a number of reasons. 

1) This is a low pay profession. It's hard to be a horse person and feed yourself. 

2) But let's be honest this isn't rocket science. It's mostly waste management: feed in and poop out. But also because it isn't rocket science it tends to be uneducated individuals participating in these jobs. Not that education is necessary, but typically one who has invested in education is more of a personality type that understands commitments. 

3) Equestrian Romanticism: many people don't realize that people who run barns almost never ride for fun. They are honestly surprised it isn't super fun most of the time. 

4) Millennials are probably who you are working with. An amazing and motivated generation but they are are keen to make themselves move into a career by jumping from job to job on the ladder upwards. Furthermore, keep in mind that many are mostly motivated by "making an impact/difference" and "leaving their mark" and leave the second they feel a glass ceiling "squashing their creativity."

5) plain and simple burnout. 

I developed an internship program. This program recruits young professionals to work at my stables and to do more than just muck stalls. They not only completely run my chore shift but they all must have a personal project to leave their mark on the stables while also developing a portfolio for their future employment. In addition they are integrally involved in all of the "cool stuff" such as veterinary appointments, schooling sessions and field trips. 

In return they get to live at the stables for free and get $100 a week stipend. They also get complete access to all of my horses for riding, as long as they provide benefit not burden to the animals. 

The benefits of this program has been outstanding: 

A) Short Term Employees who are running a sprint and not a marathon. They are only here a short time so they don't burn out and usually work harder as a result. 

B) Constant stream of fresh ideas and fresh vigor. 

C) Multi-national perspective in our stables!!

D) Super affordable labor.

E) Higher caliber of individuals. Many of the cream of the crop can't commit to staying as a barn hand forever, but they sure are happy to dive in for 3-6 months before becoming Lawyers and Veterinarians and more!

F) Extreme benefit to the individual in terms of resume building: letters of recommendation, leadership experience, hands on training, opportunity to ride and work with many horses, and more. 

They work long hours because their personal projects must be on self-budgeted time in between chores. They are driven and committed to the stables and all of them tend to keep in touch years later as they go on to bigger and better places.

Saturday, December 5, 2015


If you treat people like they are intelligent, you give them the opportunity to actually be intelligent. 

If you treat them like they won't understand, even if they don't understand currently, you set a low standard for them to live up to. 

This applies to horses, too. 

Be patient and kind, but don't belittle intelligence.