Oconomowoc, WI – April 20, 2020 – Trainers Kathleen Caya and Natalie Hansen of Integrity Farm in Oconomowoc, Wisconsin, have been doing their part to support others during the shut down of many business due to the pandemic, which includes the cancellation of equestrian competitions across the country, tentatively until May 3, 2020. Although Caya has taken a financial hit from closing her training business to the public, she continues to think of others and finds creative ways to support the community.
Caya, 38, has been doing business at Integrity Farm for ten years. The farm caters to hunter and jumper riders who train to compete across the country. During the lockdown, customers have not been allowed to come out to ride their horses, which means there is no lesson income for Caya and Hansen. Caya has picked up the task of keeping all the horses exercised and in shape so they are ready to compete once the restrictions are lifted. Other sources of income have been cut as well such as horse sales, leases and training at competitions.
“It is what it is,” said Caya. “We want to do our part as responsible citizens until the virus situation slows but we also hope it will end soon. We can’t wait to get back to our regular routine but we are making the best of the lockdown time.”
The farm workers have helped to spring clean the facility and keep the horses on their regular routine. Caya includes the clients by sending them photos and videos of their horses, who are wondering where their owners have been. Tyler Brigham has been helping Caya with the extra riding load while Hansen is due to have her second chid at the end of the month. Usually, the barn is filled with activity and laughter but is now unusually quiet like many other equestrian businesses. Even though the doors are closed, the expenses keep coming, from feed and bedding for the horses to payroll for the staff needed to care for the them.
Caya reached out to support the local businesses. When her clients shopped at local businesses, purchased gift cards or made donations to the local food pantry, Caya matched their efforts with free lessons or discounts on board.
She encouraged and rewarded random acts of kindness with gifts sporting the Integrity Farm logo such as hats, shirts and coffee mugs for those who posted the good deeds on her social media. The coffee mugs are even from a local pottery vendor, Stone Pony Pottery.
Caya also started a Lockdown Halter Challenge, similar to the Ice Bucket Challenge, with donations going to the Show Jumping Relief Fund to aid workers and professionals in the equine industry that are out of jobs during this time. The challenge is to jump a horse with only a halter instead of a bridle, with each rider making a video of it with their own twist and posting it on social media. The participants get to challenge another rider, who then also makes a donation to the fund. Her fellow professional friends have joined in on the challenge.
“We just wanted to find a way to stay connected with our friends and have a little fun while helping a good cause,” added Caya.
While time away from competitions and clients is difficult, Integrity Farm is doing their part to support others, staying optimistic, and looking forward to the end of the lockdown.
Integrity Farm Winter Wins
Before the Coronavirus took over everyone’s world, Integrity Farm had a great start to the 2020 show season, racking up ribbons and championships with their clients at the World Equestrian Center (WEC) in Wilmington, Ohio and at Ledges Sporting Horses in Roscoe, Illinois. Listed below are some of the highlights.
“Congratulations everyone and stay safe, we will be back at it soon,” said Caya.
Riveting owned by Nancy Whitehead and ridden by Kathleen Caya
Champion Baby Green Hunter Dec. WEC
Champion Baby Green Hunter Jan. WEC
Champion Baby Green Hunter Feb. Ledges, WEC
Vida De Roca owned by Melissa Hirt and ridden by Kathleen Caya
Champion Performance Hunters 3’3 Dec. WEC
Primus Rex owned by Izabelle Quadracci ridden by Kathleen Caya
Reserve Champion 3’ Green Hunters Dec. WEC
Champion 3’ Green Hunters, Dec. Ledges
Won Green Hunter Challenge & Incentive
Reserve Champion 3’ Green Hunters Jan. Ledges
Primus Rex ridden by Izabelle Quadracci
2nd in M &S Classic, won WIHS Classic Dec. Ledges
Zorro owned and ridden by Kathleen Caya
Res. Champion Performance Hunters 3’6” Feb. WEC
Just Kidding owned by Sweet Oak Farm and ridden by Kathleen Caya
Res. Champion 3’3 Green Hunters, Jan. WEC
2nd in Green Incentive
Won Green Hunter Challenge Jan. Ledges
Res. Champion Green Hunter Feb. Ledges
Mckieran owned by Keri Viehe and ridden by Kathleen Caya
Res. Champion USHJA 3’ Hunter Jan. WEC
Res. Champion Non Thoroughbred Hunter Jan. Ledges
Res. Champion Non Thoroughbred Hunter Jan. Ledges
Mckieran owned and ridden by Keri Viehe
Won M&S Classic Dec. Ledges
Won M&S, WIHS, NAL Classics Jan. Ledges
Champion Adult Hunter 36 and over Feb. Ledges
Calvin owned by Mckenna Nagy and ridden by Kathleen Caya
Res. Champion Performance Hunter Jan. Ledges
Calvin ridden by Colleen Nagy
Res. Champion Mod. Adult Hunter Jan. Ledges
Scirocco ridden by Mckenna Nagy
2nd in Junior Hunter Handy Feb. WEC
Reno Runaway owned by Emily Slotwinski – ridden by Callan Slotwinski
Res. Champion Modified Child Hunter and
2nd in Children’s Classic Feb. Ledges
Roc A Bye owned by Melissa Hirt and ridden by Madeline Adair
Champion Interm. Child Hunter & Equitation Dec. WEC
Cilke Quality SC owned and ridden by Halle Quadracci
Champion High Child Jumper Dec. WEC
Ursa Major owned and ridden by Halle Quadracci
Res. Champion Low Jr/AO Jumpers Feb. WEC
Genesee owned and ridden by Mary Grossman
Champion Mod Adult Hunter Dec. Ledges
Balizo Z owned by Halle Quadracci and ridden by Bella Setzer
Res. Champion Puddle Jumper Dec. Ledges
Champion Puddle Jumper Jan. Ledges
Zeldenrust Z owned by Natalie Hansen and ridden by Emily Peterson
Reserve Champion Puddle Jumper Jan. Ledges
Tipperary Hill owned and ridden by Izabelle Quadracci
1st in Med. Jr/AO Jumpers Jan. WEC
2nd in Futures Prix Feb . WEC
3rd Futures Prix Mar. WEC
Ensor Van Het Moleneind owned and ridden by Elizabeth Brock
Res. Champion High Adult Jumper Jan. WEC
Won High Adult Jumper Feb. WEC
Joplin ter Doorn owned by Anna Deubel ridden by Kathleen Caya
5th in Futures Prix Mar. WEC
About Integrity Farm
Integrity Farm has two locations in Oconomowoc, one on the north side of town on Mapleton Road and one on the south side of town on Golden Lake Road. Both facilities have large stalls, heated indoor arenas, wash stalls, large outdoor arenas, spacious tack room and lounge areas and ample turnout. Integrity Farm provides lessons, training, boarding, horses for sale and lease, and summer camps.
Contact Integrity Farm for more information on their services and facilities.
Kathleen – (608) 217-4805
Natalie – (414) 698-1934
N87W36615 Mapleton Road, Oconomowoc, WI 53066
1327 Golden Lake Road, Oconomowoc, WI 53066
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Press release from Marketing4Equestrians