CD Kansas Regional Gathering

Stormwalker Ranch and Northeast Oklahoma were well represented at the Cowboy Dressage Kansas Regional Gathering in November. SWR took eight riders and seven horses to the Kansas State Fairgrounds in Hutchinson, Kansas and entered 32 rides. The show was a great success for Stormwalker Ranch as every rider learned something about themselves, their horses, and their partnership.

  • Quincie Walls and Mindy’s horse, Rooster, further developed their partnership and were recognized with the Youth Walk Jog High Point Award
  • Mia Merciez and Gunner did an excellent job demonstrating their partnership and were recognized with the Youth Walk Jog Reserve High Point Award
  • James Johnstone and Blue were High Point in his class, Partnership Under Saddle Walk Jog
  • Valerie Eshleman and Jazzy danced their way to the Open Walk Jog Reserve High Point Award

While our riding program does not focus on attending shows, we have found that “showing” provides great opportunities for personal development among our riders. For all students, youth and adults, showing provides a learning experience that requires problem-solving, goal-setting, and organizational skills. The rider must face issues as they arise and determine how best to resolve them, whether it relates to the horse, logistics, or time-management. Our riders all juggle a lot of personal responsibilities. Our young riders are often juggling school, homework, and other extracurricular activities along with riding lessons, the accompanying duties — i.e. feeding, grooming, and preparing for competition — as well as travel time, and, of course, the actual show. Showing requires incredible attention to detail down to tack, appearance, and performance. So, the ability to prioritize and execute — often under pressure — is vital. Working with our instructors, our riders are required to set goals and determining the rider’s best course of action. The process of preparing for and competing in a show can help refine a competitive spirit and instill confidence in even more reserved personalities.

Stormwalker Ranch chose Cowboy Dressage® as its showing discipline largely due to the show community and the benefit to the horses. The people involved in Cowboy Dressage® are bound together by a handshake, and they honor that handshake at each gathering. This larger community helps contribute to the development of each of our riders. 

Stormwalker Ranch will be hosting several Cowboy Dressage® Schooling Shows in 2019 and returning to the Cowboy Dressage Midwest Regional Finals, hosted by Kansas Cowboy Dressage Association.


Spring Schooling Show
April 20, 2019* –
Stormwalker Ranch

Summer Schooling Show
June 1, 2019* –
Stormwalker Ranch

Fall Schooling Show
Oct 19, 2019* –
Stormwalker Ranch

Cowboy Dressage
Midwest Regional Finals
Sept 5-7, 2019 – Lincoln, NE

*Dates subject to change

Mindy Stewart
Program Manager


Trust the Process – Grooming with God

But now, O Lord, you are our Father; we are the clay, and you are our potter; we are all the work of your hand. — Isaiah 64:8

You are God’s amazing creation.  Just like the horse, He wants to continually work in you and through you. As you yield to Him and allow Him to take the lead, the results will be very exciting! For every vision or dream in your heart, there is a process to get there. I encourage you to be determined—no matter what happens—to trust God through the process.

I am a visual learner, and recently the Lord spoke to me about the process I go through while grooming horses.  For instance, preparing for horse shows.  I cannot just show up and take a few minutes to groom my horse right before they call my name and the gate opens.  This process actually begins long before show day, and it should be as much a part of a horse’s everyday routine as is feeding. A regular grooming regiment isn’t just for show horses but should be for every horse…


From the Horse's Mouth

Hello, my name is Bueno Sackett.  And my name is Peppy’s Bullion.

You may know us as Sackett and Peppy. We are horses in the lesson program here at Stormwalker Ranch.  We are a couple of the older horses here on the ranch. We love our jobs here at the ranch. We get to teach all the beginners how to ride. Sometimes that is a bunch of lessons in one week, so on occasion, we can get a little cranky. We don’t mean to be, but as humans, it happens. 

Some of you may have noticed that the two of us have been off work for a while. Ms. Valerie decided to give us a vacation after the last Schooling Show here at Stormwalker Ranch. It was very clear that we needed one. We worked hard all summer and fall, and just like humans, we need a break to just hang out and not have to work, recharge our bodies and minds. It has been a great Vacation so far; no one expects anything of us so all we do is eat and rest. Sometimes weather permitting, we take naps in the sun on the warmer days, naps are the best.

We have missed you all and look forward to coming back to work in January.  2019 is going to be a wonderful year here around the ranch.

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” – Matthew 11: 28-30


Blythe & Reese

Blythe and Reese Murray have been riding with Stormwalker Ranch for just shy of a year now. These sisters, in addition to horseback riding, love to sing, dance and perform in musical theater. Together, they performed with Theatre Tulsa in the production of Lion King Jr. at the Tulsa Performing Arts Center. Blythe also performs with the Tulsa Youth Cabaret, with whom she recently sang the National Anthem at a Tulsa Oilers game at the BOK Center. Both girls additionally dance for the Cass Barrington Academy of Irish Dance out of Texas. They enjoy celebrating their heritage through these traditional dance forms. These girls love the flexibility of being home-schooled so they can enjoy doing the many things they love. Stormwalker Ranch has quickly become one of their favorites!


Horsemanship is an Art

Byron Hogan – Riding Instructor

A good friend and fellow horseman told me that “horsemanship is an art and not a science.”  I’ve never forgotten that.  We are all trying to paint our own picture when it comes to horses.  Everyone has an idea about what is best for horses and horsemanship.  I’m not sure I can give you the standard for what is best, but below are three things I focus on for myself and students alike.

Firstly, when it comes to horsemanship, I think the biggest thing to focus on is having fun.  I’ve seen tons of people both hobbyist as well as professionals that get burned out quickly because they are not able to have fun with their horsemanship.  I think we can be serious and not sacrifice fun.  If you take a step back and look at our industry, 90% of people involved with horses are doing it as some form of entertainment, so why not be entertaining.


LESSONS RESUME: Monday January 7th. 
Four full weeks of January lessons, weather permitting.

SWR’s Generation Ride: riding lesson programs for 5-80 years old, beginners through advanced. Our instructors are among the best in the field and have a great command of both disciplines. We teach riding from the standpoint of implementing a posture of “soft feel” and “light hands” as opposed to mechanics and fear.



Lana DunlapArtist/SWR Rider


Sheriff Earp, Virgil Earp!

Naomi Walls, Barn Mom

Join me in welcoming Stormwalker’s newest team member: Virgil Earp, a good ol’ barn cat. 

If you ask me, every barn needs a barn cat and when we found him, Virgil was in need of a home. A win-win. As it happened, Barn Manager Val, found a stray black and white kitten hunkered down in the corner of the barn after accidentally being locked in the barn overnight. Although he was not initially fond of the idea of being domesticated, this once-orphan kitten has found his “forever home”.

Three reasons every barn needs a cat: 1) they deter and or kill mice and bugs, 2) they are low maintenance, and 3) they make the barn an even happier place.

When adding a cat to your barn, it is important for them to be in good health. An annual trip to the vet for their vaccinations – including rabies – and monthly flea/tick and de-worming medicines will help them live a long happy and healthy life. 

Always spay or neuter! This will help keep away feral tomcats. When you are ready to add a feline friend to your barn, remember to visit your local pet shelter 🙂


Jan 07 – Karan: Happy Birthday to our Snack & Lunch Lady
Jan 07 – Quincie: Happy 15th Bug
Jan 10 – Joseph: Happy 14th Birthday, love Drifter <3
Jan 10 – Sierra: Happy 14th to our special ROCK friend
Jan 10 – Sarah: Happy 17th Birthday, love Drifter <3
Jan 12 – Juniper: Happy 7th Birthday
Jan 13 – Emma M: Happy 14th Birthday
Jan 15 – Trevor: Happy 14th Birthday
Jan 15 – Mindy: HBD SWR Program Coordinator
Jan 26 – James: Happy 17th Birthday
Jan 28 – Emma P: Happy 12th Birthday


Phyllis Scott
Executive Director

Happy New Year from SWR

New Years is a time for resolutions. A New Year’s resolution is a promise a person makes for the new year. Regardless of what resolution one commits to, the goal is to improve life in the coming year. Stormwalker Ranch is no different as we look into the new year and we make promises to ourselves, to our community and to the students we serve. This year we are committed to providing all of our team members chances to improve themselves through clinics and workshops. We are committed to making every effort to get more involved in the community, and we are going to do our best to keep our lesson program going all year long.

Last year we had to cancel our lesson program the majority of the summer to accommodate for our summer camp programs. This year it is our hope to host our summer day and overnight camps, our weekly adult programs, and our lesson program. Our lesson program grows each and every week of the year with people committed to Stormwalker Ranch. We want to thank them by keeping lessons available through the summer. 

In order to be able to run all of these programs at the same time we need the following…

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