HUNTER SPRING FARM
1514 Stoltz Rd., Bethel Park
Online Lesson Booking Website: Hunter-spring-farm.square.site * Facebook Page: Hunter Spring Farm * Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Tuesday: 3-9 p.m.
Wednesday: 10 a.m.-7 p.m.
Thursday: 8 a.m.-8 p.m.
Friday: 8 a.m.-4 p.m.
Hunter Spring Farm offers riding lessons to those age 2 ½ & up, Summer Camps, pony birthday parties, and limited boarding at their family-friendly location in Bethel Park. They also sell farm fresh eggs! Their riding program emphasizes all aspects of horse care from ground handling, to grooming and tacking a horse, to riding skills with an emphasis on safety as their top priority.
Seventeen horses are at the farm ranging from minis through full size. “Our horses have a variety of skills from excellent beginner horses for new riders to horses that compete at high-level circuits and jumping,” said Farm Owner Elizabeth Pagano. “We strive to have a facility that makes everyone welcome. Growing up in the equine industry, I saw the opposite, so I encourage my students to be supportive and make everyone feel welcome.”
With a diverse array of students, Pagano encourages individuals of all ages and skill levels to feel at home in her barn.
Elizabeth competed throughout her life in both English and Western riding. “My heart is in English Hunter/Jumper and that’s my primary focus, but I teach both,” she said. “I also offer interested students the ability to compete, and I have a dozen who go to shows all summer long.”
MORE ABOUT PAGANO
Elizabeth grew up in Bethel Park at her horse farm. “My mom (Rene’ Relosky, also a Bethel Park graduate and resident) ran this barn until she passed away in 2009; I then took over management,” she said. “I’ve been teaching people to ride since I’ve been in my teens; and now, I teach 50 hours a week.”
Extensively trained and extremely experienced, Elizabeth has been riding since she was a small child and was taught by her mother.
Three years ago, Elizabeth quit her job and reopened her family barn. Now, she teaches and runs the barn full-time and also serves part-time in the U.S. Airforce where she has for the past nine years and loves it.
Throughout her riding career, Elizabeth has amassed numerous state and world champion riding titles and has placed in the top five nationally across multiple disciplines. She also has a strong 4-H background having competed throughout her childhood and really loves the positive principles of the organization.
“They encourage youth to do everything in a safe way and I model my teaching after that. I love their pledge and I love being able to share 4-H with my students now!”
THE JUNE 20, 2018 FLOOD
“Three years ago on June 20, my whole farm flooded the second day after I reopened it full time. I had a foot of water in barn, had to evacuate the horses, my arena was destroyed, and I lost my farm equipment as well,” said Elizabeth.
But with an extremely caring community that helped her rebuild, she was back up and running in about three weeks.
“These caring individuals from the community helped me rebuild, clean, fix, and set the barn back up as well as helped me get my horses back home,” she said. “I’m extremely fortunate to live in a community that came together for me like that. Dozens of people came each day to help and I’m extremely grateful.”
And, what seemed like it would destroy her ended up being a blessing.
“The flood seemed like it would ruin my farm; I thought it was worst day of my life, but it ended up being the best day because in the days that followed, I saw the incredible support of the Bethel Park community as they helped me rebuild…in fact, rebuild better than before!” said Elizabeth. “And all of the publicity from the flood turned into a blessing because so many people heard about us and that’s helped us to stay busy to this day!”
Those age 2 ½ through adults getting back into riding or learning for the first time are welcome. Hour-long private lessons, ½ hour private lessons, group lessons, and pony sessions for youngest riders are available. Call for pricing information.
Summer Camps are also going on with the next one opening in Bethel Park July 19-23 for those age 5 and over. Camps follow CDC guidelines including outdoor activities, social distancing, frequent hand washing, and equipment sanitization. Camp includes hands-on horse care such as grooming, saddling, bathing, feeding, daily riding, crafts, a camp T-shirt, and fun farm chores! No experience necessary. The cost is $400/week.
WHAT ELSE WOULD YOU LIKE BETHEL PARK RESIDENTS TO KNOW?
“I feel blessed to live and have my business in Bethel Park as well as raise my family here where I grew up,” said Elizabeth. “It’s the best community around and I’m so grateful for what the community has done for me and I’m happy to give back and teach individuals to ride and have fun!”
One of the things that stood out to Elizabeth was how many of her mother’s former students attended her viewing and funeral to pay their respects. “It was touching to see how many people my mother impacted through her horses, and I hope to do the same thing,” she said.
Elizabeth has a 5-year-old son, Chase, who’ll be attending Ben Franklin this fall for kindergarten. “He loves to ride and compete on our horse, Strawberry Shortcake, and he also enjoys our other lesson ponies, Dolly and Diva,” added Elizabeth.