My 11 year old dd has been riding American Saddlebred for 3 years. We just moved to Lake County north of Chicago and she has decided she would like to try Western riding. She loves horses and loves to ride but doesn’t have much interest in showing. She thinks something like barrel racing might be fun at some point but right now we need somewhere she can have lessons with someone who enjoys working with kids. She is shy and a bit introverted but her eyes light up when we get anywhere near a horse. I’m having trouble finding a place as most stables here seem to be Hunter/Jumper. We are near 94 and could do from Vernon Hills North or even head west if we needed to. Any ideas?
Give Double W a call - they are in Gurnee. I think they do Western. If not, they may have a lead for you. I don’t love Timmerman’s in Island Lake but they have been around for-ever. Years back there was some scandal with them and the colored breed associations. Certainly not a farm I’d want to buy a horse from, but for lessons once a week, they’d likely be fine. My only advice would be to have your scam sensors on when dealing with them, just in case. Another option may or may not be Wedgewood Farm in Wauconda. I am not sure if they are English only or not…they connect to the forest preserve and used to do trail rides. Good luck and welcome to the neigh-borhood!
Jeff Lechner is west of Wauconda/Island Lake. A bit of a drive, west on 176, but a nice place and all Western. His number is (815) 342-2006
Meadowsweet Ranch in Spring Grove, IL does Western with a focus on natural horsemanship and trail riding. Students have the opportunity to go on trail rides at the ranch, or for off site trips. The farm is next to Chain O’Lakes state park, and has direct access from the property into the park’s horse trails.
They have pony camp during the summer, and during winter/spring school breaks. Family friendly environment.