0 comments / Posted by Ann Wilt

Knollwood Families and Students,


The moment we have all been waiting for is finally upon us and we are reopening TOMORROW! Our reopening plan will take place over a series of four phases.



For Phase 1 of our reopening, we will only be offering private lessons.  Group lessons have too many people in the arenas, barns, and lounge areas at one time to be deemed safe.  Riders permitted back at this time are those who are able to ride independently in a safe manner. This means, no beginner riders, no tiny tot riders that require hands on from our instructors.  Safety is and always has been our top priority in introducing people to the amazing animal that is a horse.  Now with the added need for safety around distancing, we feel it is best to stick to more experienced riders at this time.  Instructors will be reaching out to you to schedule their lessons with you.  Your day/time may have changed and we understand that may be frustrating.  That is one of the reasons we have extended our private lesson hours to 8:30 pm most days.  Saturdays and Sundays will be 5:30pm. This also means that group lesson balances can be converted into credits toward private lessons.  If you were a groups only rider, feel free to reach out to your instructor inquiring about private lesson availability!



For Phase 2, we hope to be able to begin offering mini groups for independent riders and small camps for riders that can safely follow our sanitization measures in the barn.  This would be the time that riders can come back into the school barn and ready their own horses.



For Phase 3, we hope to be reintroducing beginner riding private lessons and Tiny Tot lessons, on a more limited schedule with assigned helpers for horse delivery, while continuing on with our regular scheduled private lessons.



For Phase 4, we hope to be back to full operating as normal, potentially without masks!  Horse shows in the barns and out of barns, summer camps and back to experiencing Knollwood Farm as we had been before the COVID-19 days.  


We are striving for Phase 4, but please keep in mind that all of these phases, protocols and schedules are subject to change based on the CDC and State government recommendations.  



Riders who qualify for Phase 1 of reopening have been notified by their instructor. If you think you qualify and have not heard from your instructor, please reach out to them.


Here's what you need to know to prepare for your lessons if you or your rider meet the Phase 1 qualifications:


Needless to say, things have changed.  Starting with social distancing and PPE/sanitization measures, the measures are not just to protect you, but to protect our staff who are so eager to see you all, but need to stay healthy to maintain our amazing school horses' care! 

  • We require that all students and parents who come into any of our facilities or are near our staff are wearing a mask.   Riders are able to pull down their masks while they ride. If you do not have a mask, you will be asked to remain outside our facilities.  If your rider does not have a mask, we have a limited supply of masks for purchase (subject to availability).  If there is not a mask available here for purchase, your rider will be asked to reschedule once they have acquired one.

  • We have provided some sanitization stations which will be regularly sanitized by staff.

  • We have also converted all of our lesson bridles into snap reined bridles so we can easily swap out and sanitize reins so no one is using previously used, unsanitized reins! 

  • We have provided spray and leave cleaners for the bathroom facilities and ask that all customers spray down the toilet handle and seat, sink faucet, paper towel dispenser handle and door knobs after their use of the bathrooms, but should feel free to do so before as well! 

  • If parents are in the lounge (which will be sanitized hourly) they are asked to keep masks on and maintain social distancing as much as is possible.  If parents are in the arenas we ask that you maintain social distance.  If in an indoor arena, it is asked that you keep a mask on.  If outdoor, you can pull your mask down, but please increase your distance from our staff.

  • We require that all Students over the age of 18 and Parents/Guardians sign our COVID-19 Liability waiver as well as an updated standard Risk Release Agreement. This means, when you or your student first comes back, a waiver will be brought out to you to sign in your car by your instructor or a helper.  Please make sure you stick around to sign these waivers rather than just dropping off your rider!  Your rider will not be allowed to ride if the waivers have not been signed by an adult.  Feel free to call the barn upon your arrival to let someone know you are outside and ready to sign! 262-367-2391


Our schedules are now staggered and extended, and staff have been assigned specific days to teach so that we are not ever over crowding the arena.  While we have two lovely outdoor arenas we intend to use during this gorgeous spring weather, we cannot schedule our lessons too far in advance based on the use of those arenas as they are weather and wetness dependent.  Instructors will be split each day with half teaching at regular times (3:00, 3:30, 4:00 and so on) and the other half teaching on the quarters (3:15, 3:45, 4:15 and so on) to keep from having any "shift changes" where there are a number of people in the arena at one time.


Another major change is that no riders will be permitted into the school or show barn at this time. Because of that, your arrival protocol has changed:

  • Please do not arrive any earlier than 10 minutes prior to your lesson unless you would like to remain outside of our facilities. 

  • Charts will now be posted on the door outside the school barn lounge and the show barn lounge.  It will show your time, your instructor, your assigned helper (who will be delivering and retrieving your horse), and which arena you will be riding in. 

  • Five minutes prior to your lesson, please go to your assigned arena and wait there for your horse delivery!

While we know this is a bummer as so much of our community loves spending time with our amazing school horses, this measure is to ensure the safety of our staff, our ability to control the number of people inside the barn at any given time, and limiting the number of things we need to be regularly sanitizing.  You and your students are permitted inside the show barn lounge or riding arenas to watch, but we cannot permit long periods of watching in the arenas or lounges as it may crowd the areas and make social distancing impossible for parents who have children riding at that time, or for students who are arriving for their lessons at the appropriate times.  We ask that anyone in the lounge is a parent of a student riding, a parent and student arriving 10 min prior to their lesson, or someone just using the restroom.


Our intention is to stringently follow recommendations on masks, cleaning, and limiting groups of people in our facility in the hopes of keeping our barn and community moving forward toward normalcy, instead of having to take steps backward into our homes and isolation.  We can't wait to see you guys back in the saddle! 


Stay Well and Stay #KnollwoodStrong



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