Horseback Riding in Weston
The town of Weston has a long history of recreational horseback riding dating back to the estate era. Annual riding events included the fall trail ride and the spring horse show. These events took place at the Saddle and Bridle Club ring on Conant Road until the riding club closed in the 1950's. The fall trail ride and spring horse show resumed after a new 4-H Riding Ring was built in 1963 off Concord Road. The 4-H Riding Ring (which remains today) is dedicated to Ruth B. Dickson, an avid rider, horse breeder and long-time resident of Weston.
Weston was also well known for its 1747 Farm Horse Show which took place at the Woodworth property at 412 Highland Street. The show was so popular in the 1960's and 1970's, its organizers leased land from Regis College on the east side of Wellesley Street, to expand the event. It is estimated that over 3,000 people attended the 1747 Farm Horse show in September 1964. The three-day show with more than 100 classes, had many events lasting well into the night under lights.
During the 1970's, the Jericho Forest Pony Club was founded and used the Regis College riding ring. The club not only taught people how to ride, it also hosted dressage, show jumping, and cross country competitions. Several club members went on to compete at the national and Olympic levels (1).
The number of horses living in Weston has decreased significantly since the 1970's. Much of the open land in Weston has since been developed, including the Regis College riding ring. However, a small number of Weston residents have kept horseback riding alive and well in Weston. Beechwood Stables and Equestrian Center recently acquired the neighboring 20-acre Anza Farm property and will be building a new horse boarding barn as well as a pick-your-own orchard according to their Facebook page. 2-H Farm on Sudbury Road was sold in 2021 but continues to have horses on the property and has been renamed Fairy-tale Farm. Horses also continue to live at Weston's historical Dickson Farm on Love Lane and Gateways Farm on Wellesley Street. There also remain a few other homes in Weston with backyard horse barns.
The Tierney Equine Foundation is a non-profit organization, founded by Dr. Jack Tierney, in order to preserve open land and equine sports in Weston, Massachusetts. The Tierney Equine Foundation is proud to maintain the Ruth B. Dickson Riding Rings, and is revamping the horse show and trail ride following a pause due to the Covid pandemic.
(1) Fox, Pamela. Farm Town to Suburb: The History and Architecture of Weston, Massachusetts. 2nd ed., Peter E. Randall Publisher, 2020.