Equestrian Programs

Learn about horses and riding in a fun and safe atmosphere

In our state of the art equestrian facilities, campers learn empathy, leadership, listening, and awareness as they grow in confidence as a rider, care for their horse, all while making new friends. Accredited by the Certified Horsemanship Association and the American Camp Association, there is no safer place to ride.

Mission

Character building on horseback

Building character in the equestrian program starts with the relationship between horse and rider. Every horse in our herd has its own personality and preferences, as does every camper. By tapping into this unique relationship, we teach our campers how to read and respond to non-verbal feedback, how to understand the ways actions and behavior affects others, and how to build a successful partnership with those different than you. The equestrian program strives to teach the following values: listening, empathy, leadership, and awareness.

  • Listening

    90% of human communication is non-verbal. Learning to read a horse’s non-verbal cues provides excellent practice for campers striving to communicate more effectively with people.

  • Leadership

    Great leaders help others succeed. As campers learn to read a horse’s honest feedback, they learn when to be assertive, when to back off, and how to lead their horse through a successful ride.

  • Empathy

    Is the horse scared, excited, bored, or hungry? Understanding how a horse is feeling goes a long way towards understanding a horse’s behavior. Learning to empathize doesn’t just help us build better relationships with horses. It helps us build better relationships with people.

  • Awareness

    Riders must constantly be aware of their environment to ensure both the rider and the horse stays safe. Tuning into these environmental factors and looking out for the safety of their horse give campers practice thinking beyond themselves.

Safety
There’s no safer place to ride a horse

With rigorous safety protocols and certifications from trusted organizations, Camp Tecumseh provides a safe environment to stretch beyond your comfort zone, learn new skills and techniques, and enjoy riding.

Safety gear

Every rider wears an ASTM/SEI certified helmet no older than 5 years of age that properly fits their head in addition to long pants and closed-toe shoes.

Safety checks

Before every ride, a proper safety check is performed that checks the rider, the horse, tack, the environment, and the horse/rider relationship.

Expert instructors

Our director is a Certified Horseman’s Association instructor. In addition, all of our counselors and instructors go through a week long training modeled after CHA’s instructor certification training.

Certifications

Camp Tecumseh is proud to be certified by the American Camp Association (ACA) and the Certified Horseman’s Association (CHA). Our site and safety practices meet all ACA and CHA guidelines.

Equestrian Camp

For boys and girls ages 11 – 15 who love horses

A partner to our Overnight Camp program, Equestrian Camp helps campers grow in faith, trust, friendship, joy, responsibility through a mix of equestrian programs and traditional overnight camp programs. With both Western & English lessons, equestrian campers ride every day according to their skill level, learn to care for their horses, all the while making new friends. Girls attending Equestrian Camp live in one of our female equestrian cabins. Boys attending Equestrian Camp are mixed in with traditional overnight cabins.

  • The right horse

    Camp Tecumseh’s stable includes over 60 horses, and our expert staff knows each and every one of them. Every camper is paired with a horse that is compatible with their personality, ensuring success for both the rider and the horse. In addition, each camper is intentionally placed with the instructor that fits their personality best.

  • English & Western

    Equestrian Camp features lessons for both western riders and English riders. For campers staying two-weeks, campers may choose to ride one style the first week, then switch styles the following week. Riders will choose their preferred style when talking to the Equestrian directors at the beginning of the week.

  • Incredible lessons

    All of our talented instructors, in addition to equestrian experience, go through a rigorous week long training modeled after CHA’s certified instructor training. With a 1:4 ratio in classes and lessons campers receive lots of individual attention while lessons plans based on riding level help each camper grow at their own pace.

  • Overnight Camp

    In addition to equestrian activities, equestrian campers are an important part of the overnight camp experience. Equestrian campers get to take part in chapels, aquatics time, meal times, evening programs, campfires, and devotions, while making friends and taking part in activities with campers in overnight camp cabins.

Mornings on horseback
  • Grooming & Tacking

    Campers begin their day by grooming and tacking their horse. Brushing, cleaning, picking feet, saddling, and bridling are all part of the morning routine before riding.

  • Early morning trail rides

    Once a week, campers take an early morning trail ride. Rising with the sun, the early morning trail takes campers through the Oak Forest. Afterwards, they had back to the barn and eat breakfast.

  • Lessons

    Every morning, campers participate in a high-quality hour long riding lesson. Based on their skill level, riding lessons give kids practical experience

  • Barn responsibilities

    In addition to grooming and tacking horses in the mornings, campers are responsible for keeping the barn clean. From sweeping out horse stalls, to picking up around the arena, campers learn to take responsibility for themselves, their horse, and their space.

  • Ground school

    In addition to riding lessons, campers take part in activities like the barn Olympics, the Amazing Horse Race, career day, arts and crafts, climbing, and team building, in addition to spending time in the classroom learning more about horses.

Levels Program

Camp Tecumseh’s levels program helps pair campers to lessons best suited to their riding ability. Upon arriving at Camp, campers are interviewed by one of the equestrian directors to gauge the child’s riding ability. There are six different levels ranging from brand new riders to riders who regularly show and ride at home. In addition to riding ability, each level includes instruction on parts of the horse, general horse knowledge, and understanding horses’ non-verbal signals.

After passing both a written and riding portion of a skills check, equestrian campers receive a bolo tie signifying that they have mastered the skills at that level and are ready to move to the next level.

  • Colt

    Understands basic practice of leading a horse. Can describe a safety check. Can mount with assistance. Can ride confidently at the walk.

  • Yearling

    Can perform a safety check. Mounts and rides the horse with balance and basic control while walking and trotting.

  • Mustang

    Shows increased independence in executing basic horse care procedures. Demonstrates control and effectiveness while trotting and is beginning to produce a canter.

  • Bronco

    Shows increasing independence in executing basic horse care procedures. Demonstrates leadership in assisting other campers. Shows increased balance and control while trotting. Can produce and maintain a canter at will and on the correct lead.

  • Junior Wrangler & Wrangler

    Shows initiative in assisting staff. Shows balance and control while walking, trotting, and cantering. Is familiar with the purpose and use of lateral suppling aids and uses them to make positive improvements in the horses’s way of going, while maintaining balance and an independent seat.

Afternoon Clinics

In addition to mornings at the barn, every equestrian camper spends two afternoons at the barn taking part in clinics. Representing some of the most creative riding experiences available, clinics provide kids with an opportunity to meet new friends, try new things, and experience the possibilities of what horses can do beyond traditional events like jumping and reining. Campers choose four clinics each week. Camper favorites like driving put kids behind the wheel of a cart pulled by a mini horse. Medieval archery allows kids to fire bow and arrows from horseback, and broom polo pits teams against each other as they work together to push a yoga ball across the arena to score points. Additional clinics include bathing, cowboy mounted shooting, broom polo, race relays, pony club games, and pony round up, and more. *Not all clinics are available every week and not all clinics are listed

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    Driving

    Grab the reins of a horse cart pulled by one of Camp’s miniature horses.

    https://camptecumseh.org/wp-content/uploads/2024/05/Camp-Tecumseh-Equestrian-Camp-Equestrian-Camp-Horse-17.jpg

    Driving

    Grab the reins of a horse cart pulled by one of Camp’s miniature horses.

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    Medieval Games

    Transform into a medieval knight with activities like jousting and mounted archery (with foam toys).

    https://camptecumseh.org/wp-content/uploads/2024/05/Camp-Tecumseh-Equestrian-Camp-Horse-Camp-Horse-18.jpg

    Medieval Games

    Transform into a medieval knight with activities like jousting and mounted archery (with foam toys).

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    Bareback

    Learn to ride a horse without using a saddle.

    https://camptecumseh.org/wp-content/uploads/2024/05/Camp-Tecumseh-Equestrian-Camp-Horse-Camp-Horse-20.jpg

    Bareback

    Learn to ride a horse without using a saddle.

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    Clipping/Braiding

    Care for and dress up a horse’s mane and tail.

    https://camptecumseh.org/wp-content/uploads/2024/05/Camp-Tecumseh-Equestrian-Camp-Horse-Camp-Horse-21.jpg

    Clipping/Braiding

    Care for and dress up a horse’s mane and tail.

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    Drill Team

    Learn to march in time and in line with a team of riders.

    https://camptecumseh.org/wp-content/uploads/2024/05/Camp-Tecumseh-Equestrian-Camp-Horse-Camp-Horse-24.jpg

    Drill Team

    Learn to march in time and in line with a team of riders.

  • https://camptecumseh.org/wp-content/uploads/2024/05/Camp-Tecumseh-Equestrian-Camp-Horse-Camp-Horse-25.jpg
    Mounted Trail Obstacles

    Learn to ride a horse through an obstacle course.

    https://camptecumseh.org/wp-content/uploads/2024/05/Camp-Tecumseh-Equestrian-Camp-Horse-Camp-Horse-25.jpg

    Mounted Trail Obstacles

    Learn to ride a horse through an obstacle course.

Horsemanship

For overnight campers who want more time with horses

Horsemanship is the perfect option for campers who love overnight camp but want to spend time with horses. Taking up one clinic period during the mornings, horsemanship allows campers to choose two other morning clinics and take part in all afternoon and evening overnight camp activities. Upon arriving at the barn, campers will be fitted with a helmet, receive a ground lesson, and head out to the arena for a riding lesson where their horse will be tacked up and ready to go. Horsemanship campers go on an extended trail ride through the pine forest led by our qualified barn staff. On Saturday at check-out, families are welcome at the barn to meet the camper’s horse.

Horsemanship Levels Program

Camp Tecumseh’s levels program helps pair campers to lesson plans best suited to their riding ability. Upon arriving at Camp, campers are interviewed by one of the equestrian directors to gauge the child’s riding ability. There are four different levels ranging from brand new riders to riders who regularly show and ride at home.

  • Nighthawk

    Independently walk, stop, and guide the horse.

  • Ranch Hand

    Begin trotting their horses, learn to sit and post the trot, learn to steer their horses at a faster gait.

  • Trail Guide

    Adds the challenge of cantering our horses and learning the diagonals at the posting trot while fine tuning steering through arena figures.

  • Trail Master

    Shows increasing independence in executing basic horse care procedures. Demonstrates leadership in assisting other campers. Shows increased balance and control while trotting. Can produce and maintain a canter at will and on the correct lead.

Trail Rides

Get a taste of life on horseback

A relaxing ride through the pine forest, trail rides are a great first-time riding experience and a great way to see Camp in a different light. A nice walk on a flat gravel trail led by Tecumseh staff provides a memorable experience. Trail rides during the summer cost $10 and are deducted from a camper’s trading post account.

Register for EQUESTRIAN Camp

Your Camp Tecumseh adventure is right around the corner.

The summer is closer than you think. Browse our calendar to learn more about session dates, session availability, and current pricing. If a session is available, we have a spot for your child! If it is waitlisted, it has already filled. However, join our waitlist and you’ll be notified of availability as spots open up. If you wish to join our waitlist, please fill out our registration form. We can’t guarantee spots will become available for campers on the waitlist.

We want the Tecumseh experience to be available to all. With the generous support of donors through our annual fund, endowment, and our Tecumseh Society, we provide partial and full camperships to those who qualify. Apply for a campership today.

Special NoteRegistration for Overnight Camp 2025 will open Wednesday, September 18. This is a change from previous years where registration opened June 1. 

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Boys Overnight Summer Camps (ages 8-15)
Boys Overnight Camp Week 1June 9-15Closed$850
Boys Overnight Camp Week 2June 16-22Waitlisted$850
Boys Overnight Camp Week 3June 23-29Waitlisted$850
Boys Overnight Camp Week 4June 30-July 6Waitlisted$850
Boys Overnight Camp Week 5July 7-13Waitlisted$850
Boys Overnight Camp Week 6July 14-20Waitlisted$850
Boys Overnight Camp Week 7July 21-27Waitlisted$850
Boys Overnight Camp Week 8July 28-August 3Waitlisted$850
Boys Overnight Camp Week 9August 4-10Waitlisted$850
'24
Girls Overnight Summer Camps (ages 8-15)
Girls Overnight Camp Week 1June 9-15Closed$850
Girls Overnight Camp Week 2June 16-22Waitlisted$850
Girls Overnight Camp Week 3June 23-29Waitlisted$850
Girls Overnight Camp Week 4June 30-July 6Waitlisted$850
Girls Overnight Camp Week 5July 7-13Waitlisted$850
Girls Overnight Camp Week 6July 14-20Waitlisted$850
Girls Overnight Camp Week 7July 21-27Waitlisted$850
Girls Overnight Camp Week 8July 28-August 3Waitlisted$850
Girls Overnight Camp Week 9August 4-10Waitlisted$850
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Boys Equestrian Summer Camps (ages 11-15)
Boys Equestrian Camp Week 1June 9-15Closed$950
Boys Equestrian Camp Week 2June 16-22Available$950
Boys Equestrian Camp Week 3June 23-29Available$950
Boys Equestrian Camp Week 4June 30-July 6Waitlisted$950
Boys Equestrian Camp Week 5July 7-13Waitlisted$950
Boys Equestrian Camp Week 6July 14-20Available$950
Boys Equestrian Camp Week 7July 21-27Waitlisted$950
Boys Equestrian Camp Week 8July 28-August 3Waitlisted$950
'24
Girls Equestrian Summer Camps (ages 11-15)
Girls Equestrian Camp Week 1June 9-15Closed$950
Girls Equestrian Camp Week 2June 16-22Available$950
Girls Equestrian Camp Week 3June 23-29Waitlisted$950
Girls Equestrian Camp Week 4June 30-July 6Waitlisted$950
Girls Equestrian Camp Week 5July 7-13Waitlisted$950
Girls Equestrian Camp Week 6July 14-20Waitlisted$950
Girls Equestrian Camp Week 7July 21-27Waitlisted$950
Girls Equestrian Camp Week 8July 28-August 3Waitlisted$950
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Boys CILTs (Campers in Leadership Training) - ages 16-17
Boys CILT Session 1June 9-22Closed$1,800
Boys CILT Session 2June 23-July 6Waitlisted$1,800
Boys CILT Session 3July 7-20Waitlisted$1,800
Boys CILT Session 4July 21-Aug 3Waitlisted$1,800
'24
Girls CILTs (Campers in Leadership Training) - ages 16-17
Girls CILT Session 1June 9-22Closed$1,800
Girls CILT Session 2June 23-July 6Waitlisted$1,800
Girls CILT Session 3July 7-20Waitlisted$1,800
Girls CILT Session 4July 21-Aug 3Available$1,800
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Adventure Trips (ages 13-17)
Whitewater Rafting 2June 23-29Available$1,300
Whitewater Rafting 3July 28-August 3Waitlisted$1,300
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Day Camp (ages 5-12)
Day Camp Week 1June 17-21Waitlisted$195
Day Camp Week 2June 24-28Waitlisted$195
Day Camp Week 3July 1-5Waitlisted$195
Day Camp Week 4July 8-12Waitlisted$195
Day Camp Week 5July 15-19Waitlisted$195
Day Camp Week 6July 22-26Waitlisted$195
Day Camp Week 7July 29-August 2Waitlisted$195

Sign up and get ready for Equestrian Camp

Equestrian Camp: $890/week Horsemanship: $85/week (in addition to Overnight Camp fee)

Register for Equestrian Camp

Prepare for Camp

From registration forms, to packing lists, to check-in day, there is a lot to get ready. Don’t worry though, we make it as easy as possible to prepare for your child’s week at camp.

Prepare