Farming goes downtown with Reunion Farm, a farm with soul in the heart of Plympton
Rick and Geraldine Burnet could finally see their dreams coming true, when in 2006, the cupola on was placed on the roof peak of the new indoor riding arena of their Reunion Farm. Right at the center of things in Plympton Village at the Town Green, Geraldine knew then she and her daughter Macaela would carry on as the fourth and fifth generation of horsewomen.
Macaela’s fiancé, Brian Mello, handcrafted the weathervane atop the cupola, especially for the Burnets. “The design is fashioned after my horse logo on the Reunion Farm signs,” Geraldine pointed out.
The eight-acre farm had been her dream for a long time. It has 20 stalls where horses are boarded, and lessons for both horse and rider are given in hunt seat equitation.
The indoor riding arena, built by husband Rick, measures a generous 152 feet long by 70 feet wide. The space is used for indoor lessons, scrimmages between equestrian teams, and training. It has also given a home to several community events, including a barn dances and a fund-raiser last fall for the new Plympton Parks.
In October, Reunion Farm hosted the Interscholastic Equestrian Association Point Show, an event well-respected among equestrians.
With the mild weather of the past few weeks, Geraldine said they were happy to still be able to ride the outside jumps and courses. She is active in many local programs, and coaches the Bridgewater State University Equestrian Team.
“I teach my students that they must learn with their eyes and legs, however steering the horse is when their hands come in to create the ride, “she said.
In a recent Saturday lesson, Burnet reminded the young rider that she was the pilot – she was in control.
When horse and rider communicate well, Burnet explained, and the horse learns to accept the rider’s making the decisions, the horse learns to become compliant and the two work as a unit.
Burnet’s family traces back to County Wicklow in the eastern part of Ireland, where, she said, a long line of relatives raised Hunters, were trainers, instructors and lovers of the great stallions.
Her daughter Macaela is also a trainer and barn manager.
Over the dozen years that the Burnets have grown their business, the farm buildings and home have evolved into the corals and outbuildings there now. Starting with an old chicken barn at the center of the structures, Rick began to construct and connect new stalls with existing buildings, making the viewing area and the indoor arena. A wing off both sides of the original building joined the barns together.
The Burnets have rescued two dogs and maintain their separate complementary businesses: Rick builds “Buildings by Burnet” when he isn’t farming hay. His recent project is the big red barn on Center Street at Sauchuk’s Corn Maze.