Keep BLF Safe!

In light of the recent increase in COVID cases in youth programs in Berkshire county, we urge all of our riders to revisit and adhere our protocols including disinfecting your space and tools before and after riding and cleaning shared tack.

It is absolutely essential that anyone with children or siblings that attended any programs with a positive COVID case self quarantine for a minimum of 14 days and get tested prior to returning to BLF. We appreciate your adherence to our protocols and those of the state. We can get through this together if we keep BLF a safe place!

Everyone knows these are unprecedented times. We are all learning as we are going. At the farm we already had some protocols in place but with new state mandates and phased reopening of Western MA, we have expanded the protocol to include the following. Please keep in mind that these guidelines may have to change as we move forward through the summer.

  1. All people arriving and departing must use the mandated, electronic guest book available through the QR codes available at gate and barn entrances. Use your phone to open link to the log. You may also use this link to log in.
  2. Anyone that is sick should stay home. Anyone confirmed to have COVID-19 or a household member with COVID-19 should inform Lisa immediately so state mandated protocols can be followed. ALSO anyone with a household member who has been placed on a post-exposure self-quarantine must notify Lisa immediately and remain home for the duration of the household quarantine.
  3. Riders must come wearing masks and gloves. While riding gloves or work gloves may not keep germs from our skin, it helps to keep us from touching our faces. Hand washing and sanitizing will still be necessary and part of our routine. Masks may be removed while riding in outdoor ring but should be kept in pocket to put on upon dismounting.
  4. Riders will remain at least 6 feet from other people at the farm, both in the barns and outside the barns. Riders that cannot maintain a safe distance from others will be asked to leave until further notice, no refunds will be available.
  5. Wash hands frequently. The main barn has a bathroom with sink and hand soap. Hand sanitizer will be available in all of the barns. Riders are encouraged to carry their own personal hand sanitizer.
  6. Latches, doorknobs, tools and bathroom fixtures will be disinfected multiple times a day.  The chore chart will be updated to include daily disinfectant times by staff. Help is encouraged. Everyone should disinfect what she/he has touched after use. All tack must be wiped down with leather soap after every use.
  7. Only one person at a time will be allowed in a tack room. Do not congregate near grain bin in main barn.
  8. Horses will be groomed and tacked up in the stall or outside, NOT in aisles on cross-ties.
  9. Riders will bring their tools, helmets and gear with them each day. Tack trunks belonging to lesson or lease riders must be taken home until further notice. Backpacks or string bags are plenty big enough for grooming tools.
  10. Each rider will only use her or his own grooming tools. If the rider does not have any, she/he will be assigned a set while at the farm. Any assigned sets will be sprayed with a disinfectant prior to assignment. The rider is responsible for bringing equipment daily.
  11. Helmets will not be shared. Ideally, riders will arrive with helmets and boots. If a rider needs to borrow a helmet or boots from the swap shed, it will be disinfected before use and should be arranged before lesson.  BLF equipment will be the responsibility of the rider for the time at the farm, will be taken home daily and returned to before final departure. For equipment, contact Dover Saddlery, Latham NY [(518) 690-9461] or Whitman’s Feed, North Bennington VT [(802) 442-2851].
  12. Anyone bringing food or drink from home will carry in and carry out so we can avoid having excess touching of garbage can lids and trash floating about the yards.
  13. Because of the need to limit the number of people at the farm at one time, those who own or lease will have very specific times to be at the farm. It is important that everyone sticks to the schedule to ensure safety and accessibility for everyone.
  14. THOSE UNABLE TO FOLLOW PROTOCOL MAY BE SENT HOME WITHOUT REFUNDS.

COVID-19 Protocol at BLF

Everyone knows these are unprecedented times. We are all learning as we are going. At the farm we already had some protocols in place but with new state mandates and phased reopening of Western MA, we have expanded the protocol to include the following. Please keep in mind that these guidelines may have to change as we move forward through the summer.

  1. All people arriving and departing must use the mandated, electronic guest book available through the QR codes available at gate and barn entrances. Use your phone to open link to the log. You may also use this link to log in.
  2. Anyone that is sick should stay home. Anyone confirmed to have COVID-19 or a household member with COVID-19 should inform Lisa immediately so state mandated protocols can be followed.
  3. Riders must come wearing masks and gloves. While riding gloves or work gloves may not keep germs from our skin, it helps to keep us from touching our faces. Hand washing and sanitizing will still be necessary and part of our routine. Masks may be removed while riding in outdoor ring but should be kept in pocket to put on upon dismounting.
  4. Riders will remain at least 6 feet from other people at the farm, both in the barns and outside the barns. Riders that cannot maintain a safe distance from others will be asked to leave until further notice, no refunds will be available.
  5. Wash hands frequently. The main barn has a bathroom with sink and hand soap. Hand sanitizer will be available in all of the barns. Riders are encouraged to carry their own personal hand sanitizer.
  6. Latches, doorknobs, tools and bathroom fixtures will be disinfected multiple times a day.  The chore chart will be updated to include daily disinfectant times by staff. Help is encouraged. Everyone should disinfect what she/he has touched after use. All tack must be wiped down with leather soap after every use.
  7. Only one person at a time will be allowed in a tack room. Do not congregate near grain bin in main barn.
  8. Horses will be groomed and tacked up in the stall or outside, NOT in aisles on cross-ties.
  9. Riders will bring their tools, helmets and gear with them each day. Tack trunks belonging to lesson or lease riders must be taken home until further notice. Backpacks or string bags are plenty big enough for grooming tools.
  10. Each rider will only use her or his own grooming tools. If the rider does not have any, she/he will be assigned a set while at the farm. Any assigned sets will be sprayed with a disinfectant prior to assignment. The rider is responsible for bringing equipment daily.
  11. Helmets will not be shared. Ideally, riders will arrive with helmets and boots. If a rider needs to borrow a helmet or boots from the swap shed, it will be disinfected before use and should be arranged before lesson.  BLF equipment will be the responsibility of the rider for the time at the farm, will be taken home daily and returned to before final departure. For equipment, contact Dover Saddlery, Latham NY [(518) 690-9461] or Whitman’s Feed, North Bennington VT [(802) 442-2851].
  12. Anyone bringing food or drink from home will carry in and carry out so we can avoid having excess touching of garbage can lids and trash floating about the yards.
  13. Because of the need to limit the number of people at the farm at one time, those who own or lease will have very specific times to be at the farm. It is important that everyone sticks to the schedule to ensure safety and accessibility for everyone.
  14. THOSE UNABLE TO FOLLOW PROTOCOL MAY BE SENT HOME WITHOUT REFUNDS.

COVID-19 Barn Procedures

Hello,

We are hoping everyone is safe and healthy. The state has allowed lessons to start this week and requires new regulations that need to be followed in order for the farm to open for Phase 1 and hopefully progress to Phase 2, allowing summer programming. We have compiled a list of new protocols that must be followed for BLF to remain open. PLEASE, read the information and include any younger riders in reviewing the information.

BLF will have a QR Code that needs to be scanned with your phone camera to open the electronic guest book that will allow us to stay in compliance with the state’s mandated arrival and departure log. Riding times remain scheduled to 2 hour slots to control the number of people at the farm in accordance with the state’s regulations.

Riders must remain 6 feet apart and wear masks. The only time masks can be removed is just prior to mounting in the outdoor ring. They must be replaced after dismounting.

We are also asking all lesson and lease riders to take tack trunks home until further notice. Since nothing can be shared and we are mandated to keep equipment separate, riders who have their own grooming tools should bring them to and from the farm daily, along with helmets. The BLF string bags or back packs should work. Be sure to mark your things and bring a water bottle with you daily.

These are some of the most significant change but the attached documents have more information. Please let us know if you have any questions. We anticipate that the protocols may have to be changed as we move forward and will do our best to keep everyone informed.

PROTOCOL & INFO SHEETS

WNE-PHA Year End

A number of BLF riders celebrated the end of the show season at the Annual WNE-PHA Banquet, taking home ribbons, prizes, raffle baskets and BIG SMILES. It was the culmination of a fun year of showing with a lot of personal growth and improved horsemanship and equitation. We would be remiss if we did not mention the support of parents and families who help our riders in their progress. The BLF Family is proud of all of our rider’s accomplishments this past season and we look forward to another year of growth and FUN!

Enjoy some Banquet photos. (Thank you to Amie and Jen for photos – luckily they didn’t have the stomach bug!) Thank you to those involved in organizing the event and running the WNE-PHA. We appreciate all the work you do to keep this organization running.

Grateful for these parents!!

Happy New Year!

Thank you for a great 2019. Be sure to sign up for the WNEPHA Award Ceremony in February if you plan to attend.

2020 will bring some new friends, as a number of riders joined us at the end of the 2019 show season. It should be a fun show year. Keep in mind, we will be looking at the show schedules and need to identify as a farm, what shows we will attend. Please start speaking to Lisa now if you know you plan to join the GMHA, Northampton or other multi-day shows.

If you plan to lease for 2020 or for the summer of 2020, please let Lisa know immediately. Leases impact the number of spots available for the summer programs. We like to plan ahead.

Our summer program schedule is in the works and is dependent on the WNEPHA and other show schedules. Be in touch.

If you are looking to join spring lessons, please be sure to contact us in April to be sure to get on the schedule. The fall lesson schedule was extremely busy. Unfortunately, spots are not guaranteed.

Clinic 8/27 and Horse Vacation

What a great summer!! Thank you to all of you who participated in our summer programs.

PLEASE NOTE: NO regular lessons August 24 to September 2. The horses are on vacation after such a busy summer.

INSTEAD – TUESDAY 2 hour CLINICS (8-27) for 9AM and 11 AM (advanced only at 11). Check in with Lisa to be sure to get on the list.

FALL LESSON SCHEDULE – Be sure to contact Lisa with your preferred lesson times and we will do our best to make things work.

Riding, Boarding and Lessons in the Berkshires