September Newsletter

SaddleBack Equestrian Upcoming Events

Order SBE Merchandise online: starting September 20
LamBanks Show: Saturday, September 30
Sonrise Show: Saturday-Sunday, October 14-15
KJM Farm Show: Saturday, October 28
SaddleBack Halloween Party: Sunday, October 29
Cadence Show (Edmond, OK): Saturday, November 4
HJEO Fall Finale Show (Tulsa Fairgrounds): November 16-19

SaddleBack Equestrian News:

NEW SaddleBack Shop! Order SaddleBack merchandise online & have shipped to your home!
Have you always wanted a SaddleBack polo or hat?  Do you need a warm hoodie or fleece zip-up for the upcoming months?  You can now order & pay for these directly online through a link on our website! Two Socks Designs has been providing SaddleBack merchandise to us for years, but now has an online site to order directly from them instead of waiting for our seasonal merchandise orders. We also have a list of our current on-hand merchandise including t-shirt as low as $5. Go to the website link below to see what items we are currently offering and to order online. How easy is that?! 

SaddleBack Shop

SaddleBack Equestrian Lesson & Lease Fees:

  • 1.5 hr Beginner Group Lesson: $40
  • 1 hr Beginner Private lesson: $45
  • Boarder Group Lesson: $35
  • Boarder Private Lesson: $45
  • School Horse Jumping Group: $45
  • School Horse Jumping Private: $50
  • 1/2 LEASE School Horse: $275/month for 12 month (or $295/6 months; $325/3months); all bills paid except lessons & show fees

Contact Us (or text: 918-408-6446) to setup Private Into 1-Hr lesson for $45

Fall Show Season
Fall show season is in full swing! Sign-up sheets for the remaining September-November shows are posted on the tack room window. If you ride a school horse and have a favorite horse you want to ride in a show(s), sign your name and preferred horse up ASAP as they are assigned on a 1st-come-1st-serve basis if not leased. One of the many perks of leasing a SaddleBack horse is that you are ALWAYS guaranteed your horse for lessons and shows AND save on horse rental fees. If you have any questions about shows or leasing a school horse, please contact SaddleBack or ask your trainer. 

SaddleBack Halloween Party: Sunday, October 29, 3-4:30pm: Come join us for a fun afternoon of costume parade, painted pumpkin display, games and candy/treats.  The costume parade contest starts at 3:30pm in the Jumper Ring. Sign-ups will be posted on the tack-room window in early October.  Sign up early as we had over 20 people signed up & participate last year!  Bring your painted (not carved) pumpkin to display/be voted on, and we will later place the pumpkins around the arena and under jumps for all to enjoy during lessons the following week. We are offering prizes this year for the winning pumpkin and for each costume category! Hope to see everyone there!  

Congrats to SaddleBack Equestrian Riders at the River Run Show!

Congratulation to our riders on their accomplishments at the River Run Show! We had multiple Champion or Reserve Champion in divisions! Congrats to all! Highlights: 
Savannah/Tuffy- Champion Beginners
Katie/Payday- Champion AC Beginner Hunters
Laura/Kip- Reserve Campion AC Hunters
Deborah/Nate- Reserve Champion 2' Equitation
Katie/Payday- Champion AC Beginner Eq
Savannah/Tuffy- Reserve Champion Beginner Eq
Laura/Kip- Reserve Champion AC Beginner Eq
Grace/Bishop- multiple 2nd & 3rds in AC Beginner Hunter for Bishop's 1st hunter show & Grace's 2nd
Way to go ladies!! So proud of all our riders & horses! 

Congrats to our riders on a fantastic SummerFest show last month! Each of our riders took home at least 1 blue ribbon!!
Hannah/Winston: Champion in TIP Hunters, great ribbons in Mods
Deborah/Nate: won 2' handy hunter class out of 10, + multiple other ribbons for Nate's 1st show
Katie/Payday: won Eq flat class + other great ribbons
Emily/Shadow: won hunter round + multiple other ribbons at Emily's 1st show
Savannah/Tuffy: won hunter round + multiple other ribbons Sun after Savannah sitting out Sat due to injury.  
Way to go ladies, & a big thank you to our amazing horses who were troopers despite the heat!!

Congrats riders for SaddleBack Equestrian Summer Show!
The SaddleBack In-Barn Summer Horse Show held on Saturday, August 26th was a great success! We had a great turnout and for many of our riders it was their very first show!  Thank you to everyone that participated and came out to support.  A Big Thank You to Mary Beach for providing water, Gatorade and snacks to both riders & staff!

SaddleBack Summer Show - Saturday, August 26!

The date of our Summer Show is just 4 weeks away!  

What:   SaddleBack Summer Show 

Who:   Open to all SaddleBack riders; Leadline open to anyone (even if never ridden for us--ages 6 & under)

When:   Saturday, August 26

Time:   8:00am - 1:00pm (each division will have their own estimated start time)

Where:    SaddleBack Equestrian


  • Divisions consists of 5 classes (Division descriptions listed on attached Prizelist); We recommend riders compete in an entire division which include 5 classes consisting of:
    • 3 jumping or ground pole classes (Hunter I, Hunter II, Equitation Over Fences/Poles): each individual rider does the assigned “course” over 6-8 ground poles or jumps depending on their division.  Each class is placed individually (1st-8th place ribbons for each class).
    • 2 non-jumping/pole “Flat” classes (Hunter Under Saddle & Equitation on Flat):  together, riders, walk, trot (and canter only for those in the cantering division) both directions of the ring.  Each class is placed individually (1st-8th place ribbons for each class).  
  • Ribbons awarded for EACH class, plus Champion & Reserve Champion Ribbons for EACH Division

 Costs: (Estimated Costs for Each Rider, excluding Leadline): 

    • Division (includes all 5 classes in Division):  $75
    • Trainer Coaching (for Trainer to coach rider through warm-up & all their classes):  $35
    • Office Fee (per each rider):  $10
    • School Horse Rental (for using one of SaddleBack's school horses instead of own horse):  $30
    • Total Cost:  $150 per rider for Entire Division* (5 classes) w/School Horse, Trainer Coaching & Office Fees 
      • *If you are showing your own horse or leased horse then Total Cost is $120 instead of $150 (no school horse rental fee)

Leadline ONLY Class Cost:

  • Leadline: for ANYONE 6 years of age or younger. Does NOT have to be a SaddleBack student—can be siblings, friends, neighbors, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, etc. These young riders will be led via leadline on one of SaddleBack’s school horses, walking only. 
    • Total Cost for Leadline:  $25; SaddleBack can help to arrange someone (trainer or helper) to “lead” school horse around with rider, SaddleBack will provide helmets, horses & equipment; riding attire is NOT required
    • 1st place Blue Ribbons awarded for EVERY rider that participates in Leadline class

Sign-up Sheets for this show (w/school horse reservations) are now posted up at the barn on the Tack Room window.  Please sign-up ASAP to reserve your preferred school horse as they are on a first-come-first-serve basis.  A $50 non-refundable deposit w/entry form is needed to reserve horse—refundable only if date change due to weather. 

*School Horses Available (12 total): Belle, Penny, Lily, Payday, Mac, Charlie, Brady, Bishop, Shadow, Beau, Kip, Nim. Each of the 12 school horses can do 2 divisions PLUS leadline. 

A Prize List with schedule/info and Entry Forms are posted at the barn or you can Email Us for a copy and we can email you pdfs of both.   

Please feel free to contact us with any questions.  We’re looking forward to a wonderful show and hope everyone can participate!  

August Newsletter SaddleBack Equestrian

SaddleBack Equestrian Upcoming Events

SaddleBack Fall Lesson SessionAugust 28 - November 26
River Run Show: September 10
Cadence Equestrian Show (@Edmond): September 17-18
LamBanks Show (@ Whispering Willow): September 24
Sonrise Show: October 1-2
Farewell Show: October 15
KJM Farm Show: October 29
Cadence Equestrian Show (@Edmond): November 5-6
HJEO Fall Finale Show (@Tulsa Fairgrounds): Nov 17-20

SaddleBack Equestrian News

Fall Beginner Lesson Session Reminder!
Fall session begins the week of Sunday, August 28th! This is a 13 week session offered to beginner students 7 days a week. Benefits include weekly 1 hour lessons at discount rates! Sign up soon while spots are still available. Go to the website link below for more info, dates/times, and to sign up and pay online. How easy is that?! 

Fall Registration

KJRH 2 News recently covered a series on lesser known Olympic sports including Equestrian and chose to include SaddleBack and Ashley Zilmer along with a few students as part of the video footage for the story. The story made its debut on August 15th and a link to the story on KJRH's website is listed below. Newscaster Jeremy Muhui was even generous enough to include a special link to SaddleBack Equestrian's website in his online story! We are extremely proud to promote the sport and thank KJRH for giving SaddleBack staff and students this opportunity to represent our barn. Go team SaddleBack!!

A BIG thanks to all for coming to SaddleBack BBQ!
We want to give a BIG shout out to trainer Jessie Vallier and her husband, Trent for hosting the SaddleBack Summer BBQ! Also a HUGE thanks to everyone who came and brought food! It seems the chickens and Jessie's horse, Ghost, entertained guests and made new friends!! The food and company were wonderful! It was great to see SaddleBack friends meet and get to know one another! We hope everyone enjoyed this event! Perhaps we will have another BBQ event next year! :)

Upcoming Show Season
Fall show season is upon us! Sign-up sheets are posted on the tack room window. If you ride a school horse and have a favorite horse you want to ride in a show(s), sign your name and preferred horse up ASAP as they are assigned on a 1st-come-1st-serve basis if not leased. One of the many perks of leasing a SaddleBack horse is that you are ALWAYS guaranteed your horse for lessons and shows AND save on horse rental fees. If you have any questions about shows or leasing a school horse, please contact SaddleBack or ask your trainer. We wish all our riders a successful and fun fall show season!

Fall Merchandise
Fall merchandise orders will be going out soon. Be looking for order forms in the tack room. Items available for order this fall will be long-sleeve T-shirts, jackets, windpants, polos, and hats. Payments are due at time of order. SaddleBack accepts cash or checks ONLY for Fall Merchandise orders. We expect a faster turnaround time due to all items previously ordered last year.

Warm Welcome to Our New Trainer!
SaddleBack is excited to introduce our newest trainer to the SaddleBack team--Audra Glen! Audra is teaching new and existing students from beginner to jumping levels in schooling and rated shows. Click on the link below to view Audra's bio on our website. We are happy to have Audra on board!


School Horse of Month

Belle (aka Southern Bell) is a 13 year old, 11.1 hand, Welsh pony mare. Bay in color, Belle has a star and snip on her face, 3 white pasterns, and 1 white coronet. Before becoming a school horse at Saddleback, Belle was owned by another riding barn up in the Northeast. During her time there, Belle was used as a school horse, where she won several ribbons in the short/long stirrup division, including blues, and even competed in the Devon horse show! Her previous owners purchased her after her school horse days as more of a leadline horse for their two young daughters. Being a military family, they moved around a lot and sweet Belle always went with them. But, when it came time for the family to move to Fort Sill, Belle sadly needed a new home. We found her and knew she would be a perfect fit at Saddleback when her owners told us she would stand completely still and quiet in the cross ties while the two daughters painted her hooves with nail polish!

From there, Saddleback took her on as a lesson horse, retrained her to be a school horse again, and not just for the flat, but also for jumping lessons. Belle has been a pleasure to have at  Saddleback Equestrian. She’s taught many young riders the basics, taken a few over their first fences, and continues to be a favorite among all ages. Belle is currently available for lessons, short/long stirrup showing, and lease options. 

Riding Tip Corner


As fall show season is quickly approaching, a good reminder for all riders is this - it’s not just about the ribbons. The goal for most, if not all, riders is to leave a horse show with only blue, or first place, ribbons in hand. However, shows have so much more to offer than just shiny blue ribbons. Competing in horse shows can help you and your horse develop confidence, gain show experience, and learn what you can improve on for the next time you’re in the ring. Shows can be nerve-racking for riders of all ages and the only way to overcome the show day “jitterbugs” is to become confident in the ring. You might be overwhelmed by the more-experienced riders, the schooling ring packed with trainers yelling and everyone doing their own thing, or maybe even the thought of riding without your trainer walking you through every step of the way scares you. These fears, however, help develop deeper bonds and trust between horse and rider. When you’re afraid of all that a show entails, you have to trust that your horse will take care of you, and they learn the same from you. Creating this bond between you and your horse also helps both of you to feel more confident in the show ring. All the little details become less “scary” and you begin to relax, knowing what to expect, and that all you can give is your best. There are many factors that go into how well, and if, you place in a class or division. You are only in control of your attitude and actions throughout the show day. You can do numerous horse shows, performing consistently throughout the season, and still place all across the board. The overall placings are up to the judge. Instead of deciphering why you didn’t get first place for that one class or division from the show, try sitting down and talking with your trainer about what you did well in each round and where you can improve for the next round or horse show.



SaddleBack Equestrian Upcoming Events

SaddleBack Beginner Camp:  July 18-22
SaddleBack Summer BBQ: August 14, 6:30-8:30
SaddleBack Fall Lesson Session Begins: August 15
SummerFest Show (@Claremore Expo): August 20-21
River Run Show: September 10
Cadence Equestrian Show (@Edmond): September 17-18
LamBanks Show (@ Whispering Willow): September 24

SaddleBack Equestrian News

SADDLEBACK EQUESTRIAN LAST SUMMER CAMP FOR SEASON! Sign up now for SaddleBack's last camp of the summer.  We added a new 1/2 day option to some of our beginner camps this year. We have fun-filled learning activities involving daily riding lessons, hands on horse care (grooming, bathing, etc), water balloons, crafts, games, trivia, and much more!

  • July 18-22 (Beginner Camp) = $300 full day, 5-day camp; *½-day option for $195

CLICK HERE for Summer Camp Info & Registration!

LOOK FOR SADDLEBACK ON CHANNEL 2 NEWS!!  KJRH 2 News is doing a series on less well-known Olympic sports and equestrian is one of them. They chose to interview SaddleBack and Ashley Zilmer, owner/head trainer, and also videoed footage of one of Ashley's group jumping lessons. The newscaster found the equestrian sport so intriguing that he got on and learned to ride with the students cheering him on!  It was so much fun!  Channel 2 said they'll be airing the segment right before airing equestrian footage during the Olympics in a couple weeks and in a nightly news cast before the Olympics begin. What a great opportunity to promote our sport!!! 

Warm Welcome to Our New Trainers!  SaddleBack is excited to introduce two of the newest trainers to the SaddleBack team--Kristen Dagleish and Ashley Stevens! They are currently teaching beginner lessons to new and existing students and doing an amazing job. Bio's of both will be posted soon to our website. We are so excited to have them on board!!

SaddleBack Summer BBQ! Sunday, August 14th!  Trainer Jessie Vallier will be hosting our summer BBQ for all SaddleBack riders, boarders, families, and staff on Sunday, August 14th from 6:30-8:30pm! This will be a fun event to top off the summer season with yummy, potluck dinner, BBQ, games & fun! Sign-up sheets & directions will be posted soon on tack room window. Come join us to meet other SaddleBack patrons and staff and enjoy the beautiful scenery at Vallier Acres just a few miles from SaddleBack!

School Horse Partial Lease Specials: Did you know that you could lease one of SaddleBack's 14 amazing school horses? SaddleBack is currently offering a partial lease special $25 off each month. Sign a partial lease by August 1st and receive $25 off per month on a 3 month, 6 month or 12 month lease! (applies to new leases only)

  • Regular rates are as follows:
    • 3 months= $300 per month
    • 6 months= $275 per month
    • 12 months=$250 per month

Benefits of partial lease are ability to ride lease horse on your own outside of lessons, 1st option to ride "your" horse at horse shows, extra practice rides, and discounts on both lessons and horse shows!  Please contact SaddleBack at 918-408-6446, your trainer, or email for more details!!


Congrats to Sonrise Show riders/horses: Big Congrats to the SaddleBack Equestrian riders on a successful Sonrise Show last month! Highlights include:
Carsyn/Pete – Champion, Puddle Jumpers & Winner of the Jumper Classic!
Jamey/Oro – Champion, Long Stirrup Sunday & Reserve Champion Saturday
Courtney/Angel – Champion, Intermediates
Kristen/Lily – Champion, 2’3 Low Hunters
Marissa/Cappy – Reserve Champion, Thoroughbred Hunters
Courtney/Angel qualified for Year End HJEO Hunter, Emma/Karma earned multiple 2nds in jumpers, Abbie/Beau earned multiple 2nds & 3rd in OHJA Mini-Medal, & Ava/Payday won 2nd in her first show! Kenzie/AngelLauren H/CharlieSiera/Beau, & Emma/Stick all also earned 2nd place ribbons in their divisions along with numerous other ribbons! Lauren S/Payday earned multiple ribbons in AC Beginners coming back strong Sunday after challenging Saturday, & Annie/Jack had a wonderful debut earning ribbons in baby Jack’s first show! Congrats on great riding and the wonderful horsemanship/sportsmanship you each portray!

Reminder: SaddleBack Tack Now Open: SaddleBack Tack merchandise arrived! We have beginner packages available through our new shop SaddleBack Tack. Ovation Equistretch Chaps, Equistar breeches, and Equistar boots...ALL for $99 combined. If you are interested in new boots, helmets, breeches, chaps, crops, gloves, and show coats, please give Crystal a call or text at 918-636-9888!  Some common items such as boots, breeches, and chaps will be in stock. Other items can be ordered and shipped within 7 business days.  Consignment portion of the store is in the works & coming soon. With that said, if you have any equestrian apparel you or your child has outgrown and you would like to sell, SaddleBack Tack will sell it for you on SaddleBack Equestrian's website for a small commission of 20%.   

SaddleBack Equestrian Staff:

Ashley Zilmer - Owner / Trainer

Crystal Pirkle - Office Mgr, SaddleBack Tack Owner

Jessie Vallier - Trainer 

Kristen Dagleish - Beginner Trainer

Ashley Stephens - Beginner Trainer

Jose Barron - Barn Mgr