Meet the Herd

Visit this page and get to know all of our beautiful & intelligent horses who live for their work. These amazing creatures have been working wonders for years.


Aladdin, better known as “Big Al,” was born in 1996. He is a palomino Miniature Horse gelding. At 9.1 hands Al is a quite tall for a mini. He has his own carriage, which he enjoys pulling.  Al’s best friend is Smokey, the two of them are thick as thieves and have been known to take down fence rails in their paddock to sneak out and eat grass in a neighboring pasture.


A five year old chestnut Quarter Horse, this little mare is the youngest member of the High Hopes herd.  Petite at 14.1, Baby is an ideal mount for our youngest riders.  Calm, level-headed and wise for her age, Baby is open to new experiences and ways of working.  This very dear little horse lives up to her name in cuteness and defies it in maturity.


Bella came to High Hopes in the fall of 2011, and quickly became a favorite of staff, volunteers and participants.  She was trained to be a reining horse, a western discipline that requires the horse to be smart and agile to perform specialized movements.  She has retired from reining at the young age of 12, and is happy living a slower lifestyle at High Hopes.  Bella has smooth, slow gaits that are easy to ride.  She is happy to carry our littlest riders.



Blessing came to High Hopes in 2012 from East Haddam, where he was enjoying work as a pleasure driving horse.

Blessing was born and raised to be a racehorse who pulls a carriage on the track – called a “pacer.”  Blessing raced until he was 6 and earned nearly $40,000 in his career.


Although Buddy is one of the largest horses in our herd he is very gentle.  He has a sweet little nicker that you wouldn’t expect to hear from a horse his size. You’ll notice that Buddy’s tail is docked as is customary for Percherons.  He also has a very thick mane and shoes the size of dinner plates!

As you can imagine Buddy loves to eat, and he likes to be fed at exactly the same time each day.  He will stand at the gate waiting for you . . . so don’t be late!


Candy is a Clydesdale/Hackney cross born in 1995. Her skill as a driving horse brought her to High Hopes, where she is the anchor of our Driving Program.  Candy’s summer coat is stunning, dark and glossy. She doesn’t have a bit of ego even though all the geldings admire her when she passes by. Candy has shared a pasture with many of our horses at different times and she quickly becomes best buddies with each of them.


Chip came to High Hopes in the spring of 2011 from another barn in CT where he worked teaching students to jump! Chip has to wear sunscreen on his nose in the summer – otherwise he gets a sunburn!

Chip is very social, he loves to nicker at passers-by and has become fast friends with his pasture mates!



Fanny is a 16.1 Hand Paint and Percheron cross mare who was born and raised in Massachusetts.             Most recently, Fanny was owned by a Connecticut family who rode her on long trail rides with their grandchildren. Fanny’s laid back attitude and comfortable gaits make her a popular choice with our riders and instructors. Plus, she’s very pretty!


At 21, Gavin is confident and sure-footed.  A 16.0 Warmblood gelding, he brings extensive education in a wide variety of disciplines to our herd.  He is a school master, well-versed in his training and confident in his work.  A talented, natural athlete, Gavin is pleasant to ride and a delight to watch move.


Gracie is a paint mare who came to High Hopes in the winter of 2010. She is one of the youngest herd members, born in May of 1999. Gracie’s gentle, sweet and friendly nature makes her a perfect fit for High Hopes.  She has a big bouncy trot which helps our riders learn to post.

Half Pint

Half Pint is an Irish Sport Horse born in Ireland and imported to the United States to work as a Fox Hunter.  His registered name is “Bally Foran.” Half Pint is a big bodied horse but is quite short.  He is a sturdy mount with a great work ethic, though he’ll give you a run for your money out in the paddock when it comes time to bring him in.



Hummer arrived at High Hopes in the spring of 2010.  Before coming to High Hopes, Hummer enjoyed going on hunter paces with his owner.  He also enjoyed jumping.  Hummer’s big heart and quiet demeanor makes this gentle giant a great horse for people to learn riding skills on.

Hummer enjoys spending time outside.  He is particularly interested in watching our driving horses Al and Candy pull their carriages.


Was born in 2000 and is an American Warmblood.  Her background is in dressage, and that serves her well in our arena as she moves in a rhythmic and steady fashion.  She has a great work ethic and really loves having a busy schedule full of her favorite riders!  Even though she appears to have a black coat, she is actually a dark bay which means her body color is a shade lighter then her mane and tail.  Either way she is very pretty!


Latino came to High Hopes in 2000 from New York where he had been enjoying fox hunting, hunter pace and dressage. He is known best for his calm, cool, and collected demeanor.  Although is one of the largest horses in the herd he is extremely gentle, patient and kind.

Latino is also known for his lack of speed in the arena.  He is an easy going mover who does not like to exert too much energy to go any faster than he thinks necessary.


A Dutch Warmblood gelding, Neon was imported from Holland in 2000.  16.2, this handsome bay has four stockings, a star, a strip and a snip. With an extensive history of travel and competition, Neon, at 19 is a calm, sage, social horse who enjoys human attention. Much beloved by his owner Neon has become a sought-after barn buddy here at High Hopes.


Nifty came to High Hopes in 2002 from a farm in a neighboring town.  He has performed as a show horse in English, Western and Reining competitions.  He has a lovely smooth, slow trot and is our best horse for our participants to learn to canter on.  His gait makes him a perfect Hippotherapy horse.

Nifty has a very unique coat color which makes him really stand our in our herd.   He was the 2010 High Hopes Horse of the Year!


Is a pony gelding Born in 1994 and is 13.2 hands tall.  Oliver previously lived on Long Island, NY where he taught young riders to jump. Now enjoying a slower work pace, he is happy to teach our riders the ins and outs of riding at the walk, trot and canter. Oliver’s coat color is known as a chocolate palomino, meaning his body color is dark grey to almost brown while his mane and tail are blonde. He is very handsome!


Petra is a Norwegian Fjord mare born in 1995. She is a brown dun with a dorsal strip. Her mane is “roached” to show off her two-toned coloring. She serves High Hopes’ participants by being one of our most stoic, reliable and tolerant horses. Petra is exceptional for many reasons…she came to work at High Hopes at the very young age of four years old!


Smokey came to High Hopes in the summer of 1998.  He previously lived as a companion pony with several large horses.  He is one of the smallest members of our herd.  What he lacks in height he makes up for with his flowing mane and tail and his outgoing personality

Smokey is a certified Delta Society Pet Partner.  He very much enjoys visiting people at the senior center or making special appearances in the community as a representative of High Hopes.  He has even appeared on TV Channel 12.



Is a Clydesdale mare born in 2001. She is the same breed as the Budweiser horses and has the classic Clydesdale color and markings including the long white hairs on her legs known as “feathers”. Summer came to High Hopes in 2016 and is ridden by many of our adult riders who are learning to steer and to post the trot!


Taylor came to High Hopes in the summer of 2009.  During his career as a show horse before coming to High Hopes, Taylor was the Connecticut Horse Show Association Quarter Horse Hunter under Saddle Champion!

Taylor enjoys socializing with his friends and he loves to go for rides on the trail.  Regardless of where he is being ridden, Taylor appreciates a soft touch.


Teddy, born in 1998, is a high-spirited 14.2 hand Bay Morgan gelding.  Teddy is full of personality and likes to work hard. Teddy is a “people horse” and genuinely becomes sad when he has a day off! Teddy was born at the University of Vermont in their world famous Morgan breeding program. His previous careers include extensive trail riding.


Vixen joined the High Hopes herd in the Spring of 2011.  Vixen is one of the youngest horses in our herd at only 9 years old!  She has a great sense of humor, and is known for escaping out of her paddock to eat the grass on the other side.  She is friendly and curious, not to mention fun to ride!


Is a Belgian gelding born in 1998.  He is the largest horse in our herd and is very slow and steady.  Whibley is pure joy to be around.  He is sweet and friendly and even though his size can be intimidating, he is very patient and tolerant of new riders and handlers.