Holiday Barn Tour returns

Published 10:09 pm Friday, December 3, 2010

The Seventh Annual FENCE Holiday Barn Tour will be held tomorrow, with seven private equestrian facilities on this years self-guided tour, presented by Carolina Storage Solutions. Guests will visit two states while touring facilities in Campobello, Columbus and Mill Spring.

For the past six years the FENCE Holiday Barn Tour has attracted more than 7,000 people from upstate South Carolina and Western North Carolina for the annual tour of some of the areas most beautiful and unique equestrian barns.

Judy Warden, a FENCE volunteer, started the FENCE Holiday Barn Tour in 2003. Since then the barn tour has grown in popularity, hosting more than 7,000 visitors in only seven years. Visitors come from all over upstate South Carolina and Western North Carolina for the chance to tour equestrian barns in the area.

Joining this years barn tour are Spiegel Farm, Long Shadows Farm and Born Free Farm, all in Campobello; Hulinn Dalur Farm and Still Creek Farm in Columbus, and Terra Cotta Farm and the Ring Farm in Mill Spring.

Visitors will enjoy a Pony Club exhibition of dressage and cross-country riding at Long Shadows Farm in Campobello, where lunch will also be available for purchase between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. Long Shadows, the former training barn for three-day eventer Michael Pollard, occupies the site of the Blackwell farm, once 500 acres in size and a well-known stop on the carriage and cattle trail taking livestock to market.

For many years Blackwell ran a country store at the familys homestead where travelers could stop along the way to pick up supplies. Stonework from the original Blackwell home is incorporated into the present main house, while sweeping views of the Foothills and the Pacolet River Valley can be enjoyed from Long Shadows 14-stall barn. Visitors to Long Shadows during the barn tour will enjoy a demonstration of dressage and cross-country riding.

Still Creek Farm in Columbus will offer a demonstration of equine aquatic therapy designed to help injured horses and those preparing for vigorous competition build up muscle and bone mass.

Also on the tour this year is Terra Cotta Farm in Mill Spring, whose farmhouse with a view of White Oak Mountain rests on a foundation dating from the mid-19th century. Terra Cottas shed row barn, built in the early part of the last century with many subsequent additions, is a typical Tryon-area hunt box and is clad with wood siding cut from timber on the property.

HulinnDalur, owned by Sara Lyter and Larry Greenspon, is another stop on the tour. The farm, originally known as Mollywood, has been undergoing restoration to house the owners Icelandic horses. Mollywood was a prominent center for horse sport for many years. Many of Mollywoods original structures have been preserved, including the original 10-stall barn, now joined by a new 200-foot-long covered arena.

Also on this years tour is Born Free Farm, which occupies the site of the stables for the former Fairview Farms, an important training center for race horses during the last half of the 20th century. It was managed for many years by Tony Wallace, whose former office now serves as the main barns tack room and lounge. Many of Fairview Farms most famous race horses, hunters and show horses are buried on the hill behind the main barn.

Completing this years self-guided barn tour are Spiegel Farm in Campbello and Ring Farm in Mill Spring.

Tickets can be ordered online at www.fence.org or by calling 828-859-9021; they are also available at a number of local merchants.

Proceeds from the holiday barn tour support nature education and outdoor recreation programs offered throughout the year by FENCE. Tickets can be purchased in Landrum at The Farm House and The Hay Rack; in Tryon at The Book Shelf; and in Saluda at The Purple Onion.

Tickets are also available at FENCE during normal business hours and on the FENCE website. For further information, visit www.fence.org or call 828-859-9021.

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