GAINESVILLE – Children who want to learn to ride a horse are invited to attend one of the North Central Texas College Equine Department’s Youth Mini Summer Camps in June.
The camps, for children ages 8-15, are limited to six campers per session and cost $175 per camp.
The Beginner I camp will run June 10-12, the Beginner II camp will be June 17-19 and the Beginner III camp will run June 24-26.
The Beginner I camp is for children with no previous riding experience or who have a fear of riding. The Beginner II camp is for riders who are very confident walking and/or somewhat confident trotting. The Beginner III camp includes riders who are very confident trotting and/or ready to lope.
Enrollment should be based on the comfort level of the rider in performing camp activities listed and not on whether a camper has already participated in a camp in prior years.
Students will study horse theory, parts of the horse, parts of the saddle, equine nutrition and much more.
Camps will be taught by NCTC Equine Science instructor Bill Kaven. Along with his teaching duties, Kaven coaches the college’s IHSA Equestrian team. He also has over 20 years of experience as a horse trainer, breeder, clinician and judge. He has helped horses and riders achieve top honors in numerous events, and has shared that knowledge through the vast clinics he has given worldwide.
“Our summer riding camps for youth have proven to be extremely popular for many years,” Kaven said, “giving participants the opportunity to learn the fundamentals of riding and horse behavior and to become familiar with basic tack and related equipment.” They also learn how to care for horses and, most importantly, how to be safe around them.”
A parent or guardian must accompany each youth participant the first day to fill out paperwork, and there will be an informational meeting after the paperwork is completed.
“We will supply nice gentle horses for the camps, as well as saddles and all the rest of the tack and equipment needed,” Kaven said. “All campers are required to wear a certified riding helmet. We recommend that students provide their own, but if this is not possible, the college has a limited number to borrow.”
Participants may use their own horses with instructor approval. Jeans are recommended, and footwear should have heels. Boots are recommended but not mandatory.
For more information on the summer camps, contact Bill Kaven at 940-668-7731 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can download registration forms at www.nctc.edu/AgricultureHome/EquineCenter.