Blog | Horizon Structures

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Blog By Nikki Alvin-Smith


After eons of keeping horses on our own farm and experience through our training and clinic giving at barns big and small worldwide, I’ve seen my fair share of tack and feed rooms. Fantasy feed rooms with rows of feed bins, well-organized shelves stacked with every conceivable supplement and space to dance a Viennese waltz, tack rooms that sparkle with expensive tack and smell deliciously of well-kept leather and emote the feeling that you have found yourself in a tack shop not a tack room are fine and dandy. But a useful tack room...

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July 19, 2019 posted by Content Admin

Oh no. I can almost hear it. Can you?

It’s coming.

Those two little words no parent wants to hear as the citronella-scented days of summer descend upon us…

Bored Kids

I’m b-o-o-o-o-o-r-e-d!”

N-o-o-o-o-o!

How? Why? Seriously? Summer JUST started!

I don’t know about you, but I sure don’t want to spend the whole summer micromanaging every minute of my kid’s days. No way! I’d much rather bask in the smell of sunscreen and bug spray while I leisurely read...

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July 2, 2019 posted by Content Admin

Blog By Nikki Alvin-Smith


Like most good horse owners, you’ve probably considered the need for shelter from the sun, wind, rain and snow for your horse. The humble run-in shed offers a flexible and inexpensive solution for horse housing that enables your equine partner to seek cover when it feels the need.

Horses are surprisingly adaptable to weather changes especially when we don’t over manage their needs. In winter our desire to “take care” of them by...

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July 2, 2019 posted by Content Admin

Blog By Nikki Alvin-Smith


Horse stall

A simple way to decrease stress on your horse is to provide plenty of turnout. Horses simply aren’t designed to stand 24/7 in a box stall for our convenience. The innate need for equines to have access to grazing and their preference for constant movement aids their digestion, keeps their joints loose and soft tissues elastic. Horses that are boxed up in solitary...

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June 28, 2019 posted by Content Admin

Meditation. Mindfulness. Thinking time. Daily reflection.

Whatever you want to call it, there is loads of research pointing to the many benefits of spending a little bit of time every day in quiet contemplation.

Schools are adding meditation for kids to their curriculums because it improves mental health, behavior, and brain power, too.

Silence is an important daily practice in many religions that helps cultivate deeper personal faith and self-reflection.

Kid rests in Grass...

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June 15, 2019 posted by Content Admin

Blog By Nikki Alvin-Smith


Cupolas are a common sight on agricultural buildings and horse barns are no exception. So, what are cupolas? Their role is more important than an aesthetically pleasing addition to the roof ridgeline. Your horse’s wellbeing is directly related to their presence and the cupola is more than a crowning glory to your building.

Cupola

Free circulation of fresh air is needed in horse barns to keep humans, horses and hay in good health. Passive...

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June 11, 2019 posted by Content Admin

Blog By Nikki Alvin-Smith


Building plans and permits are an important part of your new horse barn purchase. While some towns don’t require any plans or permit applications submitted for an agricultural construction project, many regions are increasingly requiring property owners to apply for permits to protect both themselves and their neighbors from unsightly or unsafe buildings.

Compliance

While at first these requirements may seem unnecessary, the ordinances are...

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May 27, 2019 posted by Content Admin

Blog By Nikki Alvin-Smith


Whichever side of the fence you find yourself, dog owner or dog boarding business owner, the idea of placing dogs in a kennel requires some serious thought.

For the dog owner who travels for holiday or business, works long hours away from home and has limited personnel resources for care of the family pet in their home, the trip to put their beloved canines in a kennel can be an anxious time. Not to mention an expensive outing.

I recently took a two-week visit home to England to visit with my elderly parents. For decades...

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May 21, 2019 posted by Content Admin

Patio

A macro shot of gorgeous pink and cream flowers, sparkling with dew droplets. A yawning pair of golden retriever puppies sprawled on the lap of a model, reclined on an equally stunning outdoor furniture set soaked in Caribbean afternoon sun.

Browsing Instagram can be a double-edged sword. By scrolling the endless rows of snapshots, witty captions, and hashtags, you can find amazing inspiration and motivation for...

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May 10, 2019 posted by Content Admin

Blog By Nikki Alvin-Smith


Whatever your budget and whatever your new barn design, orchestrating a new barn build is an exciting time. However, that excitement makes it is easy to overlook important details during the purchasing process. Here are some tips to help you stay on track when shopping for the perfect barn.

Tip # 1

Buy Good Quality

The longevity of your barn will depend on good craftsmanship in the build and top-quality materials being used for its construction. Horses dish out some serious abuse on stall walls...

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May 6, 2019 posted by Content Admin

It’s no surprise that most kids love to swing. There’s something magical about that feeling of flying through the air, wind in your face, toes reached out into the sky trying to tickle the clouds.

Swing Set

But research suggests that swinging may not only be fun, but also help children develop important brain-body connections that they’ll bring into adulthood.

The Vestibular System: Your Child’s Sixth Sense.

You know those five senses we learned about in school: sight, smell,...

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May 6, 2019 posted by Content Admin

Blog By Nikki Alvin-Smith


Whether you are expanding your boarding operation or starting afresh with the first horse barn on your property, the possibilities for barn design and style can be overwhelming. Considerations of the use of the structure, size and layout of stalls and ancillary rooms for tack and feed supplies, choice of fixtures and fittings, budget and timelines all contribute to the important decision of what to build. One of the most versatile and most desired options in style is the High Profile horse barn, and there are many good reasons why....

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April 19, 2019 posted by Content Admin

Blog By Nikki Alvin-Smith


The crowds came out at the PA Horse World Expo, held February 28th through March 3rd, 2019, at Harrisburg, PA, to witness the conclusion of the 2nd Annual 90-day challenge to bring a horse from Rescue to Stardom. The culmination of a journey between rescue horses and trainers, the final competition drew a large audience and was an extremely popular event. The ultimate winning combination was trainer Jeff Michaels, and a horse named RPM (Rescue Performance Machine). The handsome black gelding was rescued as a stallion by Kelly Smith of...

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April 9, 2019 posted by Content Admin

Blog By Nikki Alvin-Smith


The rise in popularity of rustic, casual barn weddings has expanded to include using a similar setting for all types of events.

Casual Barn Weddings

As a barn building company, we regularly get calls from creative entrepreneurs inspired to purchase one of our modular barns – sans the equine-related accoutrements such as stalls, chew guards, barred windows...

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April 8, 2019 posted by Content Admin

Hello! If you’re just joining us, feel free to start with Part 1 of “What Should I Put Under my Backyard Playset” in which I cover the pros and cons of grass (or dirt), sand, and pea gravel.

As a parent of rambunctious littles, I am keenly aware of the importance of safety when it comes to looking for a backyard playset...

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March 31, 2019 posted by Content Admin

Blog By Nikki Alvin-Smith


It is important to every horse rider to spend the maximum amount of time training and riding their horses versus taking care of the mundane issues like re-painting or re-staining a barn, worrying over missing shingles on the roof or cleaning stalls saturated from rain and snow run-off.

Horse Care

While a horse barn needs to be functional and well designed, it is also an advantage if it is low maintenance. The choice of...

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March 31, 2019 posted by Content Admin

Blog By Nikki Alvin-Smith


Hay is probably one of the most expensive items on your horse care budget list. Amazingly, there is a simple way to minimize your dollar spend on this forage commodity the outdoor equine hay feeder.

Horse Hay Feeder

Scientific studies suggest that you can save a whopping 30-40% of your hay spending just by utilizing a horse hay feeder. This fact does not just apply to the use of large round bales or large squares bales of hay, it also...

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March 23, 2019 posted by Content Admin

Blog By Nikki Alvin-Smith with Lisa Steele


A few years ago I went to visit a chestnut gelding I’d sold to a nearby trainer. As I entered the center aisle barn I was greeted by the amusing vision of a chicken perched on the poll of his beautifully chiseled head. The horse, named Casablanca, was quite content with his barn buddy’s location, and both chestnut colored chicken and chestnut colored horse looked in my direction and offered their individual vocal greetings. So, are chickens and horses barn animals that can live together? The answer is a resounding YES...

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March 11, 2019 posted by Content Admin

When I was five years old, I broke my arm.

My friends and I were playing in our neighbor’s backyard trying to jump from a picnic table to one of those T-shaped metal clothesline poles which we’d swing from like acrobats.

Kids, amiright? Also, where were the grown-ups?

Anyway, I missed.

The clothesline happened to be mounted on a large slab of concrete instead of grass like all the other ones in the neighborhood (WHAT WERE WE THINKING?).

Fortunately, my arm was the only casualty. As a parent, I now understand how much worse that could have been....

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March 2, 2019 posted by Content Admin

Blog By Kathy Tyler


If you love to entertain, you probably have an outdoor patio that you use in the summer. A patio is a great way to extend your house and entertainment area outside. The trick is decorating it, so the outdoor entertainment area catches eyes and turns heads. Here are some simple, fresh decor ideas for your outdoor patio.

Gazebo With a Swing

Seating is an essential element for your patio. Your guests need a comfortable place to...

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March 2, 2019 posted by Content Admin

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