Our Focus Today
While Lake Oswego Hunt’s public programs have evolved since our creation in 1936, we are still true to our original purpose of fostering charitable enterprises, improving individuals’ wellbeing through equine sportsmanship and providing public facilities for equine activities and care.
We continue to focus on community outreach, public educational programs and preservation of our historic landmark facility.
LOH promotes our community outreach by sponsoring:
- LOH Summer Horse Trials
- LOH Summer Dressage Show
- Nancy Wild Medal Series
- Hop at the Hunt
- Educational Clinics
- Schooling Shows
- Barn Tours for Students
- Historic Tours for the Public
Both our Horse Trials and Dressage Show are the longest continuously running competitions of their kind in the Pacific Northwest. The Horse Trials are a series of confidence-building equestrian events, popular with both riders and the general public. The Dressage Show is also a popular and well-known equestrian event in the Pacific Northwest. It typically pulls in several hundred spectators over its 3-day run. Both of these events are open to the general public and surrounding community at no charge.
For several years, LOH has also hosted the Nancy Wild Medal Series. Our annual hunter/jumper competition was created in honor of our former trainer Nancy Wild. The proceeds from this series are donated to breast cancer research.
Most of the events at LOH are free to spectators and are advertised to attract community interest. The numbers of spectators have ranged from up to a hundred for small shows to almost 5000 for our larger events. The barn is open daily to school tours and parents bringing children in to see the horses. Recently a nearby college brought by several students who had never seen a real horse, only pictures.
LOH sponsors several different educational opportunities including:
- Guest Speakers on horses and horse health issues
- Riding Academy
- Equestrian Camps
- Therapeutic riding instruction
- Various public events and clinics educating riders and non-riders alike about equine topics
- Bringing Pony Club (an international organization providing education about horses and horsemanship) back to LOH
Our Riding Academy is open to the public and is non-discriminatory by policy. Its curriculum emphasizes the proper care of horses, developing competent riders and engaging the public in equestrian sports. The Riding Academy, in addition to its regular classes, offers week-long day camps during spring break and summer vacation. Since its inception, the Riding Academy has instructed over 4,000 students, averaging around 200 students annually.
The Riding Academy program is supplemented by advanced training programs in Dressage, Hunter/Jumper and Western disciplines. This array of equestrian programs provides a positive and supportive environment for youth and teen-agers, specifically teen-age girls who comprise a large portion of our riders at LOH. Advanced training programs include competitions as an important facet of learning.
These educational programs enable LOH to connect with and help support the larger equine community in the Pacific Northwest, providing a meeting place for competitions and for organizations supporting our educational mission.
In 1987, LOH was listed on the National Register of Historic Places. This national recognition established the importance of LOH’s historic and social role in its surrounding community, the unique architectural structure of its buildings, and LOH members' desire to preserve this living history for the community. LOH is the only non-residential facility in the Lake Oswego, Oregon community with historic status that is still in its original use.
The preservation and restoration of LOH”s historic facility as a working, riding venue is an ongoing activity, and complements the educational activities about current horse care and the changes in norms from the early 20th century to today.
Periodic historic tours describing its role in the community, and its architectural and historical uniqueness, contribute to the educational role of LOH.
1936 – 1980's
Lake Oswego Hunt was originally formed as a non-profit corporation in 1936, and built a wooden barn, stables, inside riding arena and polo field on donated land. The 1936 Articles of Incorporation stated the LOH purposes at that time to be to:
Since its early years, LOH has been an important part of the community life of Lake Oswego, Oregon, with regularly scheduled polo matches drawing attendance of the public, and many other horse-centered activities and shows for its members and the surrounding community. The Clackamas County Sheriff's Posse, formed during WWII to patrol Oregon’s coastline for U-boats, were members of LOH.
1980's – Mid 2000’s
In the 1980’s LOH began a therapeutic riding program for handicapped and disadvantaged individuals. This program was the first of its kind in the Pacific Northwest. We also hosted the Oregon State Games for Special Needs – Equestrian, making our facilities and grounds available for this state sponsored event.
In 2004, LOH began hosting local high school equestrian team practices. From 2004 until 2008, LOH hosted the Iron Mountain Vaulters and an equestrian vaulting program. Vaulting is an equestrian sport that involves balance, coordination and a strong human-horse connection.
LOH also continued use of its facility for boarding horses, for hosting shows and events, and providing a venue for education activities of other charitable groups. In May of 2005, LOH hosted a tribute to "Ideal"
, a local stallion, which was selected for national recognition. In the same month the City of Lake Oswego recognized the facility's historic status with the presentation of a plaque.
LOH’s purposes expanded from their original form to:
- The education of the general public and its members in the humane care, training, and showmanship of equines through the conduct of its facility and equestrian riding school, Lake Oswego Hunt and the LOH Riding Academy, and through continuing education and clinics;
- To offer comprehensive equitation programs for children and adults (horses and equipment supplied) from beginning riding and equine care to upper level programs in the following disciplines: Dressage, Eventing and Hunter/Jumper. These educational courses, classes, and clinics to be structured in design and content to affect a decrease in the neglect and cruelty to horses through education of the general public, with a specific emphasis on instruction in humane horsemanship to youth and teens (see Rules for Humane Treatment of Equines);
- To provide a healthy, instructional and supportive environment to youth and teens in which to promote equine sport and further the human and horse connection; and to thereby affect a decrease in juvenile delinquency.
- To foster abused, neglected, and/or abandoned horses whenever space and resources permit;
- To maintain, preserve, restore and protect the historical significance and structural integrity of all physical structures and grounds.
- To provide exhibitions open to the public, throughout the year, creating opportunities for the surrounding community to enjoy and appreciate this nationally significant historical property (listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1986).