Summer Camp

Grovespring Farm offers a number of different camp options throughout the summer. Started in 2003 the summer roster offers 6 weeks of Adventure, Riding (full day) and Riding (half day) camps.

Camp at Sweet Briar College

This camp is a riding intensive boot camp for intermediate to advanced riders. The camp is geared to be highly educational with a heavy riding focus. Horses are shipped to the Sweet Briar College riding facility where they spend the week with their riders. Campers sleep in the dorms and spend the entire week on the Sweet Briar Campus, learning and continuing their riding education. All meals are provided by the Sweet Briar College dining hall and horse shipping is provided by Hogan Horse Transport. The following article gives an outline as to how the camp has been run in the past.

sbc bareback in indoorIn the equine world, summer means Show Season. Hoses and ponies are delivered from circuit to circuit; riders brush off the cobwebs of winter and dive into competition. For Grovespring Farm owner, Susan Deal, the beginning of summer means the annual Camp at Sweet Briar College.

Started the summer of 2013, Mrs. Deal’s summer Camp at Sweet Briar College (CSBC) provides an intensive education focused week of riding and critiquing. With a background in Hunt Seat Equitation, Mrs. Deal has combined a love for young riders with an uncanny ability to teach.

The CSBC enables weeklong immersion training. Camper ride twice a day, one session with Mimi Wroten, director of riding at Sweet Briar College and one with Mrs. Deal. The lessons have different focuses allowing the campers a broader range of intense education. Lessons are video taped and reviewed later in the day in order to study the progression of each rider and their horse. This review allows campers a visual of their own riding which gives them the ability to see the change needed.

While the majority of the camp is riding focused, horse management and care is not forgotten, campers do all barn and horse work from mucking stalls to cleaning tack. Campers and chaperones live on campus for the week, they eat in the dining hall and live in the dorms, and take advantage of the indoor pool and miles of bike trails.

The camp is reserved for intermediate to advanced riders. There are 12 available slots.

Adventure Camp

This co-ed outdoor week long adventure camp features horseback riding, canoeing, hiking, fishing, arts and crafts, drama, orienteering and group games including Frisbee golf, sardines, and soccer. Adventure camp has been a staple for many children’s summer, kids return summer after summer to learn more and enjoy time spent with friends.

With a number of camps to choose from, Adventure Camp boasts the best of both worlds. While focused on nature and getting campers active and outside, the camp is designed to teach a variety of skills from canoeing to horse back riding.

Adventure Camp was created to give children an active immerse outside summer experience. With so much emphasis put on video games and social media distractions, Mrs. Deal wanted to showcase the beautiful, natural world. By providing a safe environment and educated staff, Grovespring Farm is able to put on a terrific camp season.

Campers take part in special activities throughout the weeklong camps. They make arts adventure_camp_july_2003_115and crafts, learn how to canoe and even partake in a campout on the farm.  Camp mother Sara Hogan reflects on her children’s experience “it’s just an awesome way to get the kids outside, learning about themselves and others. Susan’s environment gives me peace of mind, knowing they’re safe, and ultimately having a blast.”Throughout the week, campers work on projects for ‘giving day.’ This day, usually held the same as the campout, is a way to give back to other campers.


Campers are provided a broad palette of materials and project ideas and encouraged to create crafts or special gifts for their ‘giving day person’ assigned at the start of camp. This camp_outencourages reflection on relationships and a way to say thanks.Adventure Camp has been a hit over the years. Children have repeated the camp many times, coming back to bond with friends made from the previous summer. The camp runs from 8:30 A.M to 3:30 P.M Monday through Friday.



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