Business beat: Fort Dick Stables

October 09, 2007 11:00 pm

Christine Walters

Lorie and Pat Barrington bought Fort Dick Stables eight years ago and have expanded it to include riding lessons and horse training as well as boarding. Lorie takes care of the day-to-day business at the stables, located at 2002 Morehead Road.

Q: What do you do and how long have you been doing it?

Lorie: We've been here for eight years. We board horses, anywhere from eight to ten. We feed and shelter the horses, and clean the stalls. I take care of the day-to-day stuff and make sure the horses are in good health everyday. The owners are still responsible for the vet, grooming and riding. I also do riding lessons, mostly Western and a little bit of English. I do a little bit of training. I've started a couple of colts.

Q: What inspired you to go into this line of work?

Lorie: Just the horses. It was real convenient when we moved back up here because this was already an established business. Marie Scuffeda built it and ran it for a long time. I had three little kids, so moving back up here, that way I didn't have to pay for daycare and go find a job. So it was real convenient moving in here.

Q: What training or education did you need?

Lorie: I went to Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo and was an animal sciences major concentrating in horses. I was a two-year tech student and received an AA degree.

Q: How has your business changed over the years?

Lorie: When we first started out, we just did boarding. Then I moved into the lessons and then I moved into doing a little bit of training. So I'm slowly progressing.

Q: Is your family involved in the day-to-day operation of your business?

Lorie: My husband Pat is my maintenance man. He builds, fixes, and constructs—anything I need done. I do the day-to-day business stuff. My three daughters also help out. Casey is my oldest and she has cleaned stalls for me. Clancey and Taylor help feed the horses.

Q: Who are your competitors?

Lorie: I wouldn't call them competitors. We're all friends and we refer people to each other.

There are several other boarding places in town.

Q: How do you distinguish your business from your "competitors?"

Lorie: It used to be because we had the indoor arena, but now there are a few others in town as well. I do lessons, which I'm not sure anybody else does.

Q: What are your goals for your business? What are you doing to reach those goals?

Lorie: Just to make it better everyday. We keep upgrading and improving little bits at a time.

Q: What advice could you offer to budding entrepreneurs?

Lorie: Make sure it's something you love to do, day in and day out. When I have to get up and feed when it's pouring down rain, I think it makes a job much easier if it's something you love to do everyday.

Reach Christine Walters at This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it