The gates to Terrapin Horse Center opened in 2004. Our primary goals are to provide a fun, healthy, safe and relaxed environment for horses and people to learn, grow and simply enjoy each other's company. We offer 2 barns with a total of 23 stalls on 24 acres in "the friendly city by the sea" of Swansboro, North Carolina.
Our facility has 12' x 12' and 12' x 14' stalls in a large, naturally lighted, well ventilated barn. Also, a 90' round pen, 100' x 150' arena, wooded riding trails, and a half mile shaded riding track. Not to mention a big, old fashioned back porch on the barn. You'll often see someone napping or reading in the hammock after a ride.
We are also a foster home for USERL (United States Equine Rescue League). We fostered Sasha who found a home to call her own.
She came to us with poor feet and runny eyes. Look at her now! Happy, healthy and loved!
A biography, by nature elicits the past, some of the present and certainly none of the future, but that's not what we're about. Our future makes us smile.
Terrapin Horse Center (THC) was an eye gleam in 2002, a double helix romance interwoven around the same goal. As it goes with love based dreams, success and fulfillment stick their heads from the oddest of places and the flight of Terrapin Horse Center perched in Swansboro in 2003. Putting pencil to napkin we settled on a design with natural lighting and a large open aisle giving the horses the satisfaction of seeing the herd from each of their stalls. From the birds' eye, THC is shaped like Orion the Hunter, shoulders, hips and a thinner waste. The wooded trails that run across Orion's Piney chest are home to the deer and fowl year around, fireflies and turtles in the summer, Geese in the fall.
With the help of friends, we skid logs for milling and became world class wood stackers (in maybe the narrowest world class field ever). Pain stained smiles lit our faces; like happy ants we surrendered to our toils, and the barn climbed out of the ground.
Exhaustion and hilarity tracked us down like a pony sniffing treats, and more than once while beat down with band aids and pine tar someone would be singing "farm living is the life for me"… it was a sickness.
Thankfully, the exhaustive dreams of endless stacking morphed into those of happy horses; a pebble on our path of intent and a milestone in biographical content of Terrapin Horse Center that allowed the stain glass stories to come alive in 2004 with the clip clop of smiling horses.
"Zeus", the inspirational leader of all things Terrapin, his trusted buddy Doodle Bug, Foxy the track queen and Lily the princess (both of which came from a lovely old horseman/friend, Wilson Davis) lead the charge to the stalls. Justin and Star were also amongst the first to climb aboard what has been called "the arc on the hill". Tater was a college boy who must've finally dragged the wrong freshman to the pasture and like so many others, traded his higher education for a life on the farm… Mr. Ben lives in quiet anonymity as the bottom gelding, wishing only kind thoughts for the entire herd… at the bottom of the pecking order it's always preferable that things go well lest every horse treats you like the cause. Sasha is our USERL rescue and has the herd responsibility of tracking the gator at feeding time from the feed room to the barn. "Hurhrrrrhrhrhrhr" which usually means "give me a treat" or "something's going on over there" when said by Sasha means "here comes the feed"… sometimes I think it means "hurry up already".
Moved into their digs "the herd", a very kind bunch, live a story book life in a barn with a rope swing, a one legged chicken, a yard full of dogs, and enough cats to keep them in check, and with no mention of the giant turtle calling or the firefly reunion, our story is like many people's.