What Type of Horse Boarding Is Right for You?

What Type of Horse Boarding Is Right for You?

Whether you own a polo pony, a dressage horse, or an endurance horse, you want to make sure your horse is boarded in a good barn. Most horse owners don’t have the space or resources to board their own horses, so they board at a local barn. But if you’ve never boarded a horse before, you might not know what to look for in a barn. Brush up on the different styles of horse boarding to decide what’s right for you.

Pasture Board

Pasture boarding is a great way to save money on horse boarding. The facility provides your horse with feed, water, shelter, and room to roam. Pasture boarded horses are kept outdoors with grass to eat, water to drink, and a run-in shelter in case of bad weather. The barn owner will keep an eye on your horse to make sure he’s safe and healthy.

Self-Board

When you self-board a horse, you’re given a stall in the facilities. The rest is up to you. You’re responsible for feeding your horse, mucking the stall, turn-out, and scheduling appointments with the vet or farrier. Self-boarding gives your horse the benefits of barn boarding, but takes more time for the owner than other types of boarding.

Part-Board

If you can’t afford to buy a horse, part-boarding is a good option. When you part-board a horse, you pay a portion of its boarding fees in exchange for using the horse. What’s included in part-boarding depends entirely on the terms laid out between you and the owner in the contract.

Full Board

Full board is a good option for horse owners without a lot of free time. Boarding includes the necessities, plus a stall with full turn-out. Some full board contracts also include training, equipment, use, specialized feed, and vet or farrier appointments, while others include these on a pay-as-needed basis. Full board allows horse owners to provide their horses with good care without visiting daily. The flip side? It’s more expensive than other boarding options.

Chukkar Farm offers unique, high quality horse boarding in Alpharetta.

Ride Off into the Sunset with an Equestrian Wedding

Ride Off into the Sunset with an Equestrian Wedding

Your wedding brings the most important people together and share in your joy, toast to your love, and cement a lifelong place in your wedding photo album. But not every cherished member of your life is a person. Your horse has been there through it all, giving you a sense of freedom, joy, and companionship. Why leave him in his stall? A Chukkar Farms equestrian wedding lets you give your beloved horse a place of honor on your special day.

4 Ways to Incorporate Horses into Your Wedding

  1. Get hitched on horseback. Julia Roberts might have given horseback nuptials a bad rap in “Runaway Bride,” but as long as you choose a well-trained horse and keep your feet nice and warm, his hooves will stay firmly planted while you exchange vows.
  2. bride on horsebackBrides and their bridles. Capture that perfect wedding photo with the help of your horse. Arrange your train, grab your bouquet and your bridle, and prepare for the perfect bridal photo to grace your mantle.
  3. Bust open the barn. Brides love barn weddings for their rustic charm. Instead of keeping the guests relegated to the dance floor, why not decorate the horse stalls, braid flowers into the horses’ manes, and let guests wander through? Just make sure all guests know how to behave around the horses. Nobody wants nipped fingers on the night of your nuptials.
  4. Ride off into the sunset. Capture that fairytale moment. Saddle up with your new spouse and ride off into the sunset.

Your dream of an equestrian wedding is within reach. Call Chukkar Farms to tour our rustic Alpharetta wedding venue.

Bride on Horseback

The Definitive Guide to Polo Match Etiquette

The Definitive Guide to Polo Match Etiquette

Polo is an ancient sport with a long and illustrious history. And that doesn’t just go for the horses and players. We’ve had centuries to hone the art of watching polo. Do you know the proper etiquette for polo spectators?

Polo Match Etiquette

With the chic attire, the buzz from the crowd, and the thrill of watching 1,000+ pound horses moving gracefully under the hand of their riders, attending a polo match is often just as much fun as playing polo. Once you’ve mastered the rules of the game, you may think it’s simply a matter of catching the action. But there’s a certain etiquette to attending a polo match that you should know.

  1. queen elizabeth ii - polo matchSpectate safely. You wouldn’t think you’d be prone to distractions when there are eight massive horses thundering around the field, but you’d be surprised. Don’t get so distracted discussing the finer points of the game that you put yourself in harm’s way. Keep an eye out for stray balls, mallets, and horses.
  2. Learn the lingo. You’ve mastered the basic terms of polo, now it’s time to show off your knowledge. A few well-placed words can make you look like a polo pro, whether this is your first match or your 50th. Want to impress a first time guest? Share the knowledge that Chukkar Farms is named after the segments of a polo match, which are called chukkars.
  3. Dress to impress. A wide-brimmed hat will keep you cool under the hot Alpharetta sun, while a simple, sophisticated ensemble gives polo matches a classic, relaxed feel. Ladies, leave the heels at home! You don’t want to wobble around the sidelines while your stilettos sink into the soft earth, and heels put a damper on the traditional “stomping of the divots.”
  4. Be on your best behavior. Polo etiquette for the audience falls more in line with a golf match than a football game. Celebrate good plays, but take care not to startle the horses. Enjoy the game standing on the sidelines or spread out a picnic blanket and enjoy a relaxed afternoon as you take in the action.

The start of polo season will be here before you know it. Visit Chukkar Farms to watch polo matches in Alpharetta.

10 Polo Terms to Know

10 Polo Terms to Know

Polo is a sport with a long and illustrious history. In fact, there’s evidence that polo may have originated in Persia as long ago as the 6th century B.C.! With such a storied past, it’s no wonder that polo is a popular sport across countless countries. Want to become part of the rich tradition of playing polo? Chukkar Farms offers polo lessons, polo matches, and space to horse around (excuse our pun) during polo season. But before you get started, check out these terms to know.

10 Polo Terms to Know

  1. polo gamePolo pony. A well-trained polo pony makes it easy for players of all experience levels to get into the game. Most polo ponies are thoroughbred, although some may be quarter horses or have other breeding.
  2. Clipped mane. Clipping the horse’s mane prevents it from getting tangled as the player maneuvers the reins.
  3. Braided tail. Braiding the horse’s tail prevents it from getting caught in the mallet.
  4. Polo martingale. A leather bridle of unique design, a polo martingale prevents the horse’s head from jerking up and hitting the rider.
  5. Breast plate. You may feel like you’re riding your horse into battle, but this breastplate is designed to keep the saddle from slipping.
  6. Bell boots. Encircles the horse’s ankle to prevent the horse’s hooves from over reaching.
  7. Polo wraps. Bandages wrapped around the horse’s legs to prevent scrapes and bruises and provide added support.
  8. Polo boots. Your horse wears boots, and so should you. Polo boots protect the player’s legs from injuries due to stray balls and mallet strikes.
  9. Knee pads. Like polo boots, knee pads protect the player’s legs from injury.
  10. Mallet. A long, thin striking stick reminiscent of a croquet mallet, a polo mallet is what players use to strike the ball.
5 Things to Know Before Boarding Your Horse

5 Things to Know Before Boarding Your Horse

Horses are every inch loving and beautiful creatures. They are also graceful, spirited, and unique in their own kind of way. Whether you’re a casual rider, a show horse trainer, or a polo person, it’s very easy to love horses. But just because you’ve saved up to buy a horse doesn’t mean you can afford the land to board it. If you don’t have a barn in your backyard, you’ll want to find one nearby that will care for your horse, keep him well fed, and give him room to stretch his legs. Before choosing where to board your horse, you’ll want to keep these things in mind.

5 Things to Know Before Boarding Your Horse

  1. horse haltersBarns have personalities. They could be laid back, stylish and professional, or cater to a particular specialty. You’ll want to find a barn with an atmosphere that matches your personality and that of your horse.
  2. Some barns have a focus. They may cater to horses of specific breeds or disciplines.
  3. They feed differently. Research the barn to see if they have free access to hay bales and grass, or if they have a more structured feeding program.
  4. The cost isn’t everything. Some barns may include add-on services like changing blankets or holding horses for the farrier, while others include it in the cost of board.
  5. Their barn, their rules. Make sure you know what the rules are (and whether you can live with them).

Chukkar Farms is a polo club in Alpharetta with plenty of land to roam. Want a unique horse boarding opportunity for your horses? Chukkar has it all!

Your February To-Do List for a Fall Wedding

Calling all brides! Does the thought of celebrating Valentine’s Day with a new ring sparkling on your finger leave you all fluttery inside? Leave the elaborate V-Day date to your fiancé. Your mission, if you choose to accept it: channel the power of love into fall wedding planning!

5 Essential February Tasks for a Fall Wedding

  1. wedding couple with horseGet engaged! If you’re not already The Future Mrs., your boyfriend may be planning to pop the question this Valentine’s Day. After all, nothing says romance like February 14th! Time for a manicure . . .
  2. Insure your ring. You may love your ring so much it’s basically glued to your finger, but a little insurance goes a long way. You never know when you’ll show off that bling, only to find a setting has come loose. Be smart and protect that work of art!
  3. Choose a venue. There’s one crucial choice a couple needs to make before finding a caterer, shopping for wedding dresses, or even choosing a color scheme for the wedding: the venue. Your venue will set the tone (and the date!) for your big day. Book wedding venue tours early on to guarantee a great spot.
  4. Pick a dress. Most wedding dress shops need 6-8 months to stitch your wedding dress, plan for fittings, and make any necessary alterations. Wedding dress shopping is one of the first things you should do after choosing your venue. The good news? Dress shopping means lots of love, lots of laughs, and that powerful “Say Yes” moment.
  5. Plan your honeymoon. Plan your honeymoon suite, all-inclusive resort, or backpacking adventure well in advance to make sure you get the best location (and the best price). Book flights early and renew your passports now if you plan to travel internationally.

February is National Wedding Month, which makes it the perfect time to plan a fall wedding. Let Chukkar Farms help make your wedding everything you dreamed it would be.

Start Your Life Together without These Wedding Trends

Start Your Life Together without These Wedding Trends

laughing bride and groomWedding trends come and go, but photos are forever. How can you ensure your wedding pictures are as timeless as your love? Be bold, be yourself, and be real about which wedding design trends are on the way out.

4 Wedding Trends to Leave Behind

  1. The bride pays. We love tradition. Family traditions, Southern traditions, and personal traditions you share as a couple all deserve a place of prominence at your wedding. One tradition that’s outlived its use? The bride (and her family) footing the bill. In an age of working women and the occasional house-husband, it’s time to leave this antiquated tradition behind and start your partnership before the I Do’s.
  2. Clashing themes. Pinterest can be a lifesaver when it comes to planning and organizing your wedding. But there are times when it’s all too much. After all, you love rustic weddings, but movie-star elegance has its appeal too. Neutrals look beautiful against a classic backdrop, but bold colors are making a comeback . . . Pick your wedding theme, plan it around your venue, and stick to the plan, or your wedding will be a hot mess of competing styles and colors.
  3. Food trucks. We know, it’s a cute trend. Food trucks make wedding catering fun, casual, and wonderfully inexpensive. But before you book a food truck for your wedding, ask yourself whether you really want brightly colored vehicles in the background of your wedding photos. Wedding trend analysts predict that 2017 catering will move back into the realm of elegant, plated dishes. If you love family-style dining, limit it to one area of the dining area, like hors d’oeuvres or desserts.
  4. Pleasing other people. Wedding trends come and go, but your love is forever. In the end, it doesn’t matter what designers, friends, or even your parents say. Choose something that will make you happy!

We’d love to help you plan an Alpharetta wedding. Call Chukkar Farms for wedding planning tips, scheduling guides, and a tour of our facilities.

5 Things To Know About Rustic Weddings

5 Things To Know About Rustic Weddings

There’s something about red doors, a dusty barn and a beautiful countryside that we love so much. Rustic themed weddings have been the craze these days, and we can’t help but be on board. Every wedding has it’s similar timeline to plan, but there’s a few things specific to rustic weddings you should might want to keep in mind…

rustic wedding

  1. Check for heating and air. Barns allow for beautiful indoor receptions and ceremonies, but if your wedding is in the dead heat of summer or the harsh cold of winter, you might want to look into heating and air conditioning! It wouldn’t be fun for guests to sweat or freeze their butts off would it? Fans, space heaters and more can be options for all weather conditions.
  2. You’ll need a food prep area. A downside of barns is that they’re often small; so make sure your caterers have any area to prep the food! Be sure to ask for more information at the venue when you’re booking.
  3. Plumbing and electricity. These are two things we take for granted, but two of the most important things to ask about when booking your venue! Ask if they have plumbing and if they don’t, try renting out portable bathrooms. And power is always a must, especially if you’re thinking about including string lights in your barn wedding.
  4. Check the floors. The floors at rustic weddings and barns can go one of two ways; it’s usually either very polished or very unfinished. It’s something to consider for your shoes, the material of your dress (if it might snag), etc. Ask these types of questions while booking!
  5. The weather. We can’t control the weather, but you can control how the venue reacts to it. Some barns suck in a lot of moisture, and some don’t. This is something to consider depending on seasonality!

We’d love to host your wedding here at Chukkar Farm! Our green barn venue gives it some flair, and we are incredibly flexible! Take a look at our gallery, or see our testimonials.

You’re Engaged! Now What?

You’re Engaged! Now What?

It finally happened. The moment of a lifetime. Your beloved dropped onto one knee (or you did—hey, you’re a modern girl) and asked you to share a lifetime together. The world dissolved into sunshine, hazy daydreams, and questions. Endless questions.

Keep your eye on the prize. These are our best tips for what to do when you get engaged.

6 Tips for the Newly Engaged

  1. couple's hands - engagement ringEnjoy it! Yes, your parents want to talk budgets, your relatives are clamoring for a wedding date, and your friends want to know who’s going to be in the wedding party. But this is your special moment. Savor it with your spouse-to-be.
  2. Pick a venue. Before you can choose a date, you need to choose a place. Tour wedding venues around Alpharetta. Ask about availability in the upcoming year, and decide how flexible you’ll be on your desired wedding date.
  3. Set the tone. Your flowers, centerpieces, catering, and even your wedding dress all work together to form a cohesive theme. Before you place a single down payment, determine your dream theme for the venue you found.
  4. Set a budget. Be frank in your discussion with family, friends, and of course, your fiancé. After all, every wedding planning decision hinges on this one.
  5. Register. The sooner the better! People will be celebrating you for months to come. You’d be surprised how many guests give gifts before the engagement party. (It’s a Southern thing).
  6. Make it official. Plan an engagement photoshoot at Chukkar Farms, solidify your guest list, and mail your Save the Dates. It’s official! You’re getting married!

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas from the Chukkar Farm family! What a wonderful year it has been here in Alpharetta, GA. We have hosted so many beautiful weddings, enjoyed exciting concerts, played thrilling polo chukkars, and that’s just the start of it. We hope that you’ve enjoyed the year here following along with our events as well. Here’s a round up of your favorite blogs from the last year:

What to Look for in a Wedding Venue 

When you’re looking for a wedding venue, the choices can be overwhelming. There are so many beautiful outdoor wedding facilities in north Georgia, it’s hard to choose. When you start looking for a wedding venue, there are a few key items that will help you narrow down your choices.

4 Ways to Promote Your Fundraiser

Are you trying to get as many people to your non-profit fundraiser as possible? Then make sure that you are leveraging all of the channels possible, and using them in the most effective way. Chukkar Farm has years of experience hosing fundraisers and helping our charities reach out to their network to raise attendance (and therefore increase their event profit goals). Here are a few great tips to abide by.

Love for Cara

Cara Cashin impacts everyone she meets. Her inviting simile, kind words, and selfless attitude make you feel as if you’ve known her for years, even if this is your first afternoon touring around the farm with her. Cara is one of the Cashin daughters that has dedicated her life to family, polo, and running  Chukkar Farm. If you’ve ever come by to see the facility for an event, learn about polo lessons, or even just come over to enjoy a Sunday afternoon of polo, chances are, you’ve met Cara, and you haven’t forgotten her.