Often as part of my teaching horse riding on the weekends, I’d find that I was to spend a couple of hours focused on half a dozen or so kids (sometimes up to ten) that had come along for a pony party.
Dependent on the age of the children, the size and number of your mounts and riding capabilities, you can generally cater for two types of parties:
– One where the time is split up between led pony rides – two ponies can be tacked up and the kids rotate around, getting a couple of goes on each – and where one to two games are played in between pony rides
– Another where the attendees are actually each mounted on a horse (this sort would require limiting numbers for safety) and get to play games on horseback where perhaps prizes are awarded
If you had a small amount of land in an area that was highly populated, I think this could be something horse related that would be a lovely little income earner on the side.
It’s easy to incorporate normal party games with a horsey theme between led pony rides; for example pin the tail on the donkey/horse, pass the parcel with horsey gifts, a colouring comp related to horses, word finds/cross words for the really horse mad, musical ‘horses’ and much, much more. The imagination’s the limit.
It’s also relatively easy – especially for those who rode as kids or have kids that ride – to work out a list of different games on horseback that can be used for a birthday party. Bending races, slowest/fastest pony, What’s the Time Mr. Wolf?, Around the World races and I’m sure plenty of others.
What would you need?
– Half a dozen ponies if you plan on providing parties where each child has a mount otherwise 2-4 would suffice. Personally I’d be picking something cob like rather than the little grumps that are Shetlands
– A store of a dozen up to date safety rated riding helmets
– An arena or closed off area that is safe to ride in
– Large collection of prizes/party game props
– Whatever is needed for riding games – cones, poles
– A couple of extra hands to help with leading the ponies
Pony Parties are something that can be very popular, especially in suburban areas where horse contact isn’t common and perhaps it’d be a cheaper alternative for those who have only a small amount of land but want to work with horses and generate an income.
“Here is one little girl who would rather wear chaps than a party dress…”