It was raining, it was pouring, and a lot of old men were likely snoring…but Lauren Smith of Mack Hill Riding Academy was not letting a few raindrops stop her from doing what she loves. Thanks to an indoor riding arena, the show must always go on, and horseback riding lessons are able to be conducted rain, snow, sleet, or shine.
Mack Hill Riding Academy is located in Historic Amherst and is an original home and farm now used as a riding school; even the fencing is true to the style of it’s original time period. Four instructors conduct English and Western riding lessons and currently have several exceptionally-trained (translates to “very safe”) horses to help them do the job. The Riding Academy has been located at Mack Hill for eight years, where they relocated after an expansion. They work with individuals age four to adult and with skill levels that range from basic beginner to advanced and offer between 50-60 lessons per week. One thing you quickly learn when riding horses is that there is always more to learn. At Mack Hill, they are committed to building a strong foundation for safe riding.
Let’s take a look at what I learned from talking with Lauren, the Assistant Barn Manager at Mack Hill about what she loves most about her job and the community she serves. She started riding at age four in pony camp and grew up knowing that she wanted to ride; she now spends her days doing what she loves most –riding and instructing others to do the same confidently and successfully.
What Do You Love Most About Living/ Working in the Souhegan Valley?
Doing business in Amherst has allowed them to attract a wide variety of clients, all of whom are interested in new and extracurricular experiences for themselves and their children. The people they work with are fantastic! The location in downtown Amherst is quintessential New Hampshire, complete with the working clocktower in the center of the village. Lauren also enjoys that living in this part of the state affords her the ability to easily and quickly get to many local attractions while still being tucked away and remote at the same time.
What Do You Like Most About Being a Chamber Member?
The Chamber has been helpful for the Mack Hill Riding Academy in bringing in new people by helping to promote the Academy. Their membership offers visibility and being able to rely on the local community as a resource whenever needed.
What is Something that You Want People to Know About the Riding School?
One of the claims to fame of the Mack Hill Riding Academy is their flexible, year-round schedule which is able to accommodate riders of many situations from home-schoolers to mothers, to working adults alike. With their full-time staff, they offer classes to individual and group riders seven days a week.
If you’re a beginner looking to learn how to ride for the first time, or getting back in the saddle after some time away, don’t trot…GALLOP to Mack Hill Riding Academy for a safe, stable (pun intended) learning experience. The instructors at Mack Hill love what they do so much that going to work never feels like a task which makes for a great environment for cultivating that love within the students whom they interact with as well!