Nestled in the woods of New Jersey, just 45 minutes by ferry to NYC, is a 500 acre historic farm that was once home to one of NJ’s biggest social events: the Haskell Hunt. Thousands of people would gather for the event, followed by a decadent ball afterwards. The original mansion burned down, twice, and what remains are the original stables and homes such as a pool house, the garden house, etc.
The property is now run by the fabulous Lancaster family, who also have a location in Colts Neck. With several USHJA trainers working there, they run a program that provides lessons, leases, trail rides, sales of horses, and more. The also host a show series. Today I had the pleasure of taking photos at this event. It is a local show focused on building up the kids in the area, getting them used to the show environment, getting their horses and ponies used to the environment, and just having a great time. There are also higher level classes, such as the Marshall & Sterling which riders can accumulate points for finals in.
The facility is rustic, whimsical, and beautiful. You drive up a long gravel driveway, symmetrically lined with large trees, and running beside you are large fenced in meadows full of horses. You’d think you were in Switzerland, not NJ. The barn is enormous, and features amazing details such a cedar tack rooms, hand crafted water spouts, and all of the original features left untouched. It’s not uncommon to find a beautiful vine of flowers growing up any given fence post or pillar. It is the perfect place to ride horses and get in touch with your peaceful side.