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Blog by Nikki Alvin-Smith


Don’t let your dream indoor arena become a nightmare because of lack of knowledge or poor planning. There are many pitfalls you need to avoid so here are the Top Ten Tips on how to build an indoor arena that will save you heartache and help make your dream indoor arena a reality.

1. A Place for Everything

The location you choose for your arena will directly affect the price of site preparation. Select an area that is as level as possible to avoid extra costs for soil removal, rock...

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February 9, 2018 posted by Content Admin

Blog by Cass Wright


For many people, especially the Amish, horses are an essential part of daily life. In fact, the American horse population was at 9.2 million in 2003, and it is very likely that the number has risen since. This means that there are millions of Americans with horse barns, and if you own a horse barn you may be wondering how to make it look a little nicer.

From making sure that the barn ...

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January 18, 2018 posted by Content Admin

Blog by Nikki Alvin-Smith


The Story Begins

Once upon a time, in a land far, far away from Atglen, PA, there lived a young woman named Helen Whittier Woodward.  Helen’s father, Max Whittier, had moved West from Maine to sunny California to drill for water. Instead he found oil, and thus the dynasty “Rodeo Land and Water Company” began.

Helen Whittier Woodward

Helen was born in...

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December 22, 2017 posted by Content Admin

Blog by Nikki Alvin-Smith


When considering various features of a barn, (regardless of whether you are going prefabricated, pole barn or stick built), it is important to carefully question the builders under consideration for the project as to which features are included in the price and which features you will be charged extra for.

1. The Outside Spectacle

When...

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December 22, 2017 posted by Content Admin

Blog by Nikki Alvin-Smith


When I arrived in America from Great Britain eons ago, I was soon engrossed in everything horse. In fact, it only took me a few months to purchase my first USA horse and put him in livery. My first and only boarding barn experience was at Caumsett State Park Stables, Lloyds Harbor, NY at the previous estate of Marshall Field, the American entrepreneur and founder of Marshall Field of the Chicago-based department stores.

The majority of horses were stabled in the new forty stall metal structure comprised of two long aisles with...

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December 19, 2017 posted by Content Admin

Blog by Nikki Alvin-Smith


As a kid growing up in England most horse housing in my Buckinghamshire neighborhood was some version of a shed row design. The traditional use of the shed row horse barn offered a less expensive and very serviceable stabling option. Frequently the configurations were in a square with a central yard.  This layout is ideal for tacking up, mounting and bathing horses with protection from the wind. The older stable blocks would be built of brick, the newer ones made of wood.

...

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December 12, 2017 posted by Content Admin

Blog by Nikki Alvin-Smith


November temperatures in Springfield, MA are usually mild but the Equine Affaire (November 9-12,2017), was certainly an exception. While troops of people dashed between the well-heated buildings at the Eastern Exposition Center, those outside were definitely challenged by temperatures in the mid-teens and the biting cold wind!

Attendees arriving dressed for the weather, quickly found themselves carrying heavy jackets in addition to their shopping bags as the temperatures inside were stifling.  Laden down but undeterred, plenty of...

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November 29, 2017 posted by Content Admin

Blog by Nikki Alvin-Smith


“Absolutely fabulous!” says Vincent DiCicco DVM, of the commercial kennel that he and his wife Anna, also a qualified vet, selected from Horizon Structures. The purchase was for their son Marc and his partner Steven Cordoba’s K9 training business 203K9, based in Stamford, Connecticut.

Commercial Kennel

The team at Horizon Structures loves to hear dog kennel reviews from clients and learn how the new structure they purchased is...

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October 31, 2017 posted by Content Admin

Blog by Nikki Alvin-Smith


You may think that blanketing your horses or having the cover of trees in your pasture eliminates the need to worry about providing shelter with a run-in shed. If you turn your horse out for just a few hours at a time and are present to bring him in should the weather turn bad then perhaps this is true.
Horses in snow
However, many of us like to turn our horses out for several...

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October 18, 2017 posted by Content Admin

Blog by Nikki Alvin-Smith


I learned about hay early in life thanks to my wonderful grandfather, ‘Pop.’ As a child growing up in rural Buckinghamshire, England, I was blessed to live on a property with horses, paddocks, fields and super bridleways that weaved through 500 year-old oak trees, with sandy loam soils underfoot and lots of galloping fun.

My grandfather grew up a farmer’s son in the small village of Mentmore. He delighted in sharing his knowledge of everything animal and farming. One day when I was just 11 years old, he took me into one of our...

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October 3, 2017 posted by Content Admin

Blog by Nikki Alvin-Smith


Did you ever look at a horse barn and stare in amazement wondering, “Why on earth did they put it there?”

I have. There is more to placing your barn on the best site possible than you might think. Here’s our top ten list of barn location mistakes folks make and a few horse barn tips on what to avoid doing yourself.

1.I put it right next to my house so I could see my horse’s face peeping out in the morning.

Well who wouldn’t want to see their horse from the kitchen window while...

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September 12, 2017 posted by Content Admin

Blog by Nikki Alvin-Smith


To board or to buy? There are many good reasons to do either but if are considering building a barn for horses in your own backyard then be sure there are no foibles in your plan. Here are a few horse barn tips things to think about before you start.

Size Matters

I have a friend who built a beautiful horse farm replete with 50 stalls, additional carriage houses for guests and a superb home. When he and his wife retired they placed their property on the market. Where it sat. And sat. And still sits. Why...

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August 27, 2017 posted by Content Admin

Blog by Nikki Alvin-Smith and Jill Siragusa


Part 2: The Differences Between Prefabricated and Pole Barns

In Part 1 of this post, we wanted to get you thinking about how an “apple” – i.e. prefab/modular horse barn is different from an “orange” pole barn in order to help you can make an intelligent comparison between the two and an informed decision when purchasing a horse barn.  In Part 2, we continue the discussion with an explanation of some additional, equally important advantages of prefabricated structures over stick-built ones when buying a horse...

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August 4, 2017 posted by Content Admin

Blog by Nikki Alvin-Smith and Jill Siragusa


Part 1: The Differences Between Prefabricated and Pole Barns

As a horse owner, the delights of having your own horse barn need no explanation and the excitement of bringing your horse(s) home cannot be overstated.  Before you make the financial commitment to build your barn, there are a few points you might wish to consider to ensure you make the right choices.

Take a look at the differences between a prefabricated or modular structure and a pole barn build.  Because many folks don’t compare “apples to...

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August 4, 2017 posted by Content Admin

Blog by Nikki Alvin-Smith


Part 8: After the Sale

After The Sale - prefab barn

We’ve all been there. Purchased something, worked with it and found there is something wrong. Maybe what you received is not what you ordered? Perhaps it was received later than promised. The whole pleasurable shopping experience is suddenly a distant memory, as you now need to consider...

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July 29, 2017 posted by Content Admin

Blog by Nikki Alvin-Smith


 

The design of a horse stable door or entrance to a run-in shed is of great importance to the safety of yourself and your horse. Even multi-million dollar college facilities still manage to get it wrong, implementing narrow aisle ways and “skinny” doors in an attempt to add more stalls to the space.

Bad Stall Doors

The result of a bad design in the doorway can result in damage to the horse’s stifles, hips,...

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July 10, 2017 posted by Content Admin

Blog by Nikki Alvin-Smith


Most horse owners are dog owners too. Smart horse owners know that having dogs around their equine facility provide more than companionship. Dogs are an early warning device announcing the arrival of visitors to the farm and can provide a level of security, they chase down vermin, and are of course a great source of amusement with their antics providing a de-stress therapy treatment. A dog is a multi-faceted talent and consequently many of us have more than just one.

But dogs can also be an issue. Here are the top five...

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June 22, 2017 posted by Content Admin

Blog by Nikki Alvin-Smith


Part 7:  Delivery

Shed and stable delivery

 

Horizon Structures Delivers on ‘Delivery ‘.

 

The keenly anticipated delivery day for your beautiful Horizon Structure has arrived. No need to be nervous because the driver and Amish carpentry team that bring your building are all experienced at handling both large and small delivery equipment, from a mule (no, not the equus variety!), a F550- type truck, or a tractor...

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June 6, 2017 posted by Content Admin

Blog by Nikki Alvin-Smith


There is a lot more to haymaking than 'Making Hay While the Sun Shines' though that is a necessary start. Sadly each year horse barns and farmers storage barns burn down, horses become sick from respiratory disease and colic and a myriad of other diseases such as Cushings. Many of these situations are avoidable so here are, in my opinion, "The Seven Deadly Sins of Horse Hay Making," in no particular order.

1. Hay Moisture.

 

Baling hay that shows a moisture content of over 14% can...

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May 19, 2017 posted by Content Admin

Blog by Nikki Alvin-Smith


Part 6:  Construction

There are myriad advantages of prefabricated structures over traditionally built barns. Take a look.

We all know that weather can play havoc with building schedules and damage building materials. At Horizon Structures most of the build is undertaken indoors. Not only does this mean that the building process stays on schedule. It also means quality control is efficient and the sincere craftsmanship from our wonderful team of Amish carpenters can be completed without the stress of high winds, rain,...

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May 15, 2017 posted by Content Admin

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