LEARN 2 RIDE at High Hopes

Individual lessons will be conducted on December 8, 9, 10, 11 and 16.  Group ( 1 hour) or Private (1/2 hour) for $60 per lesson.  Lesson Series are also available during the year.  Contact Courtney Bernard at cbernard@highhopestr.org, (860) 434-1974 ext. 118 to learn more.

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Shop smile.amazon.com this holiday season!

This holiday season shop for gifts through our Amazon Smile link and Amazon will donate 0.5% of your purchase to High Hopes!

High Hopes Therapeutic Riding
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High Hopes 2015 calendar – great holiday gift!

This 13-month calendar contains full color photographs of some of our hardworking herd.  Calendars can be purchased in the High Hopes lobby and at selected locations in the area for $10 or ordered here online for $15 which includes shipping and handling.  Proceeds benefit High Hopes programs and participants.

2015 Calendar Order Form

Complete this form to order yours today!
  • Price: $15.00 Quantity:
    $10 per calendar plus shipping and handling.
  • $0.00
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#Giving Tuesday – High Hopes is participating!

Join us in celebrating #GivingTuesday, a global day dedicated to giving back.  Pick up a #Giving Tuesday sign at the front desk or download one here and tell us why you support High Hopes.  Then take an “unselfie” photo of you, or with your family or with your friends holding up the sign.  Email the photo to Rachel at rmoser@highhopestr.org or drop off a copy at the front desk.  We’ll post them on Facebook and around the building between now and December 2nd to tell the world why High Hopes is worthy of our support.

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High Hopes Holiday Market

2,000 people attended the High Hopes Holiday Market yesterday!  Thank you volunteers, sponsors, vendors, staff and attendees for making this a great day.  And oh yes, donations to the Shoreline Soup Kitchens totaled over 2,400 pounds in time for the holidays.

Click here to see more photos on CTNow.com -




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High Hopes Film Festival

The High Hopes Winter Film Festival will present three films this winter.  The first, Riding My Way Back, will be shown at the Holiday Market on November 16th.  The Festival will also include a showing of Musical Chairs, a full-length feature film directed by Susan Seidleman,  and a 60-minute documentary Håstdans på Hovdala.  All film showings will be at High Hopes in Old Lyme.  Admission is free but donations to support High Hopes programs and herd will be welcomed.

RIDING MY WAY BACK –to be shown at the Holiday Market on Sunday, November 16, 2015 at 1:30pm and 2:30pm.

Riding My Way Back is the story of one soldier’s journey back.  Shown in honor of Veteran’s Day, this half hour documentary chronicles one soldier’s journey back after he returns from multiple deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan with traumatic brain injury (TBI) and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

Here is a link to the trailer:  http://www.ridingmywayback.com/trailer/

MUSICAL CHAIRS to be shown Saturday, January 17, 2015 at 4:00pm.

Musical Chairs is a romantic tale of two New Yorkers, Armando from the Bronx, and Mia from the Upper East Side, who come together through their love of ballroom dancing. When a tragic accident puts Mia in a wheelchair, Armando, aided by a group of colorful misfits at the rehab center, dedicates himself to helping Mia dance once more by introducing her to the world of competitive wheelchair ballroom dancing.

Here is a link to the trailer:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hKFOSNNDZkU&noredirect=1

HÅSTDANS PÅ HOVDALA to be shown Saturday, February 28, 2015 at 4:00pm.

Håstdans på Hovdala is a film about a unique creation process those who saw Dancing with Horses when they performed at High Hopes will particularly want to see. In July 2013, the American dance company, The Equus Projects, spent three weeks in a Swedish forest creating an evening length theatre work that brought together four dancers, four horses and a cast of Swedish performers with autism.  Filmmaker David Fishel follows the progression of the creation process, the equine training, and the deepening connection that develops between the human and equine performers. The film premiered at Lincoln Center in February 2013.

Here is a link to the trailer:  http://youtu.be/De1TMq2l1m0

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Congratulations Liz Adams!

PATH International has a new Master Instructor! Congratulations to Liz Adams, High Hopes Program Director, on the successful completion of this challenging process. High Hopes is fortunate to have her talent and commitment within our ranks!! Liz, along with Kitty Stalsburg, is one of only 28 Master Instructors in the country.

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Subs Needed for Last 3 Weeks of Fall

We need volunteers to help us wrap up the last three weeks of our Fall Program.  Please check out the sub needs below and call Megan at (860)434-1974 if you can help!  Sub Needs are now posted weekly on the “Current Volunteers” link of our webpage.  Click here to access them and bookmark the page!Sub Needs Fall '14 Week 10-11

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Morning Yoga Practice at High Hopes

Creating Self Awareness through breath, movement, and mindfulness

Where:  High Hopes Classroom

When: Tuesday Mornings 8-9am

Fee: $10 per person

Bring a mat, water bottle, and a blanket for relaxation. ALL LEVEL class with modifications to serve individual needs. COME JOIN THE FUN!!!!

Contact Tracy Blasioli, Kripalu-RYT for more info.


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Volunteer Appreciation Event 2014

We had a blast playing softball, enjoying a potluck supper, and showing our appreciation for our amazing corps of volunteers at the Annual Volunteer Appreciation Event on September 27th, 2014.  Even if you were not able to attend this year, we thank you for your service and the spirit you bring to High Hopes.  You make a difference with every hour you support the High Hopes mission!

We want to improve this event in future years.  Please take this quick survey to tell us what type of event you would like to see next year.

The following awards were announced at the Volunteer Appreciation event Sept. 27, 2014.

 Office Volunteer – Judith Rothenberg 

  • Volunteer Since 2012
  • Weekly Hours:  3.8
  • Total Hours:  355

As an office volunteer, Judith’s warmth and bright energy shines through every time she is at High Hopes.  She is a true wordsmith, and has been the behind-the-scenes genius behind many of High Hopes’ most influential communications.  She is willing to help in any way, from filing to creative projects, and she brings the same dedication to every task.  If you noticed the beautiful hand-drawn signs welcoming volunteer back for fall and inviting you to this event, you have appreciated Judith’s artistic talent!  Judith always has a smile and a warm hello for the staff, other volunteers, and her fellow riders.  She truly embodies the spirit and values of High Hopes.

Nancy Cash Program Volunteer – Suzy Bolduc

This award is dedicated to the memory of program volunteer Nancy Cash, whose incredible volunteer spirit will always be with us.

  • Volunteer Since August 2011
  • Weekly hours: 4.5
  • Total Hours:  Just hit 500!

Suzy volunteers in multiple departments including riding program, feeders, special events, and committees.  Suzy is at High Hopes for one role or another almost every day of the week!  She is a skilled sidewalker who builds relationship with riders and fellow volunteers alike.  Suzy’s presence has been a key factor in the success of riders like Cody, who at first was afraid to mount but with Suzy’s patience, warmth and gentle support, (and repeated renditions of “5 little monkeys jumpin’ on the bed!”) now rides weekly with a huge smile on his face.  She has also been valued member of the Volunteer Committee for two years, where she shares fresh perspective and energetically coordinates hospitality volunteers.  She was instrumental in designing and executing this past year’s volunteer appreciation week displays, and she has even gotten involved in auxiliaryevents such as MidSummer Festival, the Lyme Horse Trials, and the Lyme Hunter Pace.  Suzy loves to be at High Hopes, shares her joy with all around her, and is committed not only to the horses and riders, but to the entire organization.

Barn Volunteer of the Year – Paul Kotowski

Juanita, our Barn Assistant who nominated him, “Paul has been coming to feed the horses on Saturday morning for over 5 years. He comes faithfully every week no matter how brutally cold, blistering hot, or inclement the weather may be. He is very helpful to the staff and works really hard. He knows what chores need to be done and cheerfully does them. He willingly does whatever is asked of him whether it be throwing hay down, loading the spreader, cleaning up the runway, fixing fences, or just holding a horse who is having his mane pulled. It is not unusual for him to stay beyond the time he intended to help with a task that needs to be done. He oftentimes will take a young inexperienced volunteer under his wing to help them learn the ropes. Every week when he is thanked for coming and for all his hard work, his reply is always the same – “It’s been a pleasure.””

Davison Youth Service Award-  Lydia Marie Harvey

This award is only given periodically.

Awarded to a person who:

-is 18 or younger

-volunteers in any capacity

-demonstrates exemplary service, above and beyond other volunteers in similar roles

-has contributed significantly in terms of time or service

-shows a commitment to the mission and values of High Hopes

-demonstrates maturity, leadership, or compassion beyond expectations

  • Volunteer Since: June 2010
  • Weekly Hours: 2.5
  • Total Hours: 405

Lydia has volunteered at High Hopes since she turned 12, and has always been a strong and positive addition to the youth volunteer corps.  Over the years, she has grown in her equestrian skills, maturity, and citizenship, and she is now our go-to choice for leading new horses, supporting timid riders, and working independently in the barn.  Instructors have been known to ask for Lydia by name because of her calm, assertive energy.  Though Lydia is quiet, she leads by example; she shows new youth volunteers how to be dependable, thorough, and safe.  Lydia subs or volunteers extra time when asked, and assists not only in riding program but in camps as well.

1000 Hour Pin Recipients: (28 active volunteers have over 1000 hours!)

Barbara Longo

Enjoy these photos from the event!




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