June 14, 2007

CONTACT: Debra Judd, (908) 527-4930
Tom Plante, (908) 527-4746


Beginners Are Encouraged to Learn Horseback Riding
 With Union County’s Watchung Mounted Troop

Ten-year-old Julia Washburn of Summit leads Dozer into the barn after her horseback riding class at Watchung Stable in Mountainside. Julia is among 500 other children who participate in the Watchung Stable Troop Program in the Spring and Fall. Watchung Stable, a facility of the Union County Department of Parks, Recreation and Facilities, is administered by the Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders. For more information regarding other programs offered, please call (908) 789-3665, or e-mail questions to

MOUNTAINSIDE, NJ – Autumn will be here before we know it and Union County’s Watchung Stable is busy preparing for the start of riding lessons.

“Horseback riding in the Watchung Reservation is a real treat,” said Freeholder Chairwoman Bette Jane Kowalski, liaison to the Union County Department of Parks, Recreation and Facilities. “Our lesson program at the Watchung Stable is a great way to learn how to ride. It has been in existence since 1935, and I am proud to say that more than 40,000 girls and boys have participated in this wonderful program!”

All applicants must be nine years of age or older. Class and troop assignments are based upon riding ability as determined by the Stable management. Applicants with previous experience may be asked to demonstrate their riding ability in order to be placed in the appropriate class. Riding classes are held Tuesdays through Saturdays. Fall Troop will last for ten weeks beginning Sept. 4, and will culminate with the Fall Troop Horse Show.

Watchung Stable offers adult lessons too, for people 18 years of age and older, also beginning the week of Sept. 4. Classes for adults are available on Sundays at 12:45 p.m., Tuesdays at 10:00 a.m. and Wednesdays at 7:30 p.m. Adult lessons are an eight-week program on Sunday and Tuesday morning and a six-week program on Wednesday nights. Beginners through advanced lessons are available on all three days.

The cost to participate begins at $210 for ten classes, and varies
with Union County residency status and troop assignment.
Uniforms and helmets are required and must be provided at the rider’s expense. Registration forms and fees must be submitted in-person beginning July 5 at the Watchung Stable, which is located at 1160 Summit Lane in Mountainside. Office hours are 9:00 a.m. – noon,
and 1:00 – 4:00 p.m. daily.

For further information, and to obtain registration materials,
call (908) 789-3665 or email