Sleeping Giant

About Sleeping Giant

The United States Pony Clubs, Inc., develops character, leadership, confidence and a sense of community in youth through a program that teaches the care of horses and ponies, riding and mounted sports.

A little history on Sleeping Giant.... 

We are riding out of Sperry View Farm in Bethany,  Connecticut.

Sleeping Giant Pony Club was established in 1974 with Shirley Smith Winer as our original DC. Along with Diana Cooper, Ann Lehman, Joan Wolfson and Gaynor Coassin as the adults who got it started. During the first years of SGPC we had around 30 members! The high number of members settled down to around 26 and was at that level for many years. Shirley had her first "camp" at her farm in Massachusetts in 1974. It was a lot wilder than it is now, with less equipment, a smaller house and no electricity at all. We used the Cooper's Bethany property for many events and ratings, and we had a pretty extensive cross country course there for 25 years. We also used Heritage Farm and the old Yale Farm, which became Somersett, then River's Edge and now is Sperry View Farm. (SVF is now owned and operated by original member Liz Doering). We also had members in Wallingford, Orange, Milford, and in New Haven at the Yale Polo barn. We used farms in those towns for lessons etc. to reduce trailering. An annual event was our Mock hunt in Bethany. Shirley Winer was DC until 1993 when she moved to Massachusetts. Literally hundreds of kids have spent part of their youth as SGPC members. We have produced quite a few B's and only two A's in all those years: Tremaine Cooper and Kirsten Lee. Tremaine is a world renowned cross country course designer and builder, and Kirsten is a professional trainer and instructor. Tremaine, Kirsten, Sherry Languerand, Liz Doering, Megan Schulz, Mary Ann Rudolph, and Cathy Languerand are professionally involved with horses; most other former members have ridden and kept horses as adults. Some of our earliest members are now in their 50's! Pony Clubs have fewer members these days. But USPC's mission still includes producing excellent horse people along with excellent adults and leaders.

-Shirley Smith Winer

Thank you Shirley for providing us with such a great history! 

USPC Pony Clubs and Riding Centers are assigned to one of 41 geographical regions, which are administered by a volunteer Regional Supervisor (RS) and other appointed and elected officers. Regions offer additional activities and opportunities for members and support for the club and center leaders under their administration. Sleeping Giant Pony Club is part of the New York/Upper Connecticut Region. Visit the region's website for the contact information for the Regional Officers.

Visit the Pony Club website to learn more about the Pony Club educational program, national events, activities and opportunities for members.