About Us

Innovative programs

We offer recreational riding lessons, therapeutic riding lessons, summer camp opportunities, equine assisted psychotherapy sessions, speech and language therapy incorporating horses, as well as creative and unique corporate training and leadership programs. 

Horses as teachers

We believe in the power of horses to bring hope, healing and transformation to people of all abilities and ages. At Bright Star Equestrian Centre, our trained instructors help people with special needs, and individuals recovering from emotional trauma improve physically, mentally, and emotionally through encounters with horses in a safe and supportive environment.

Helping people find a purpose

Every one wants to find a purpose, a way to contribute more fully to their families, schools, organizations and community. It is our privilege to play a part in helping people work toward that goal.

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Becoming a Bright Star supporter is as easy as a click of the mouse! 

About Our Programs

Therapeutic Riding

therapeutic horseback riding

The cornerstone of Bright Star is our riding program for disabled and special needs children and adults. With our PATH® Certified riding instructors and trained volunteers, we are focused on creating a safe and encouraging experience for our riders.  

Our program for individuals with special needs works to improve  physical, mental and emotional health through interactions with our horses and instructors, as they learn horsemanship and riding techniques.

Recreational Riding

Recreational Horseback riding lessons

We also offer private and group lessons for recreational riders of all ages and riding skill levels work with one of our  qualified riding instructors.

Some of our recreational riders are family members of riders in the Therapeutic Riding program.  We really encourage everyone to get in on the fun (and learning!) alongside their family member. 

Silver Stars Riding for Senior Citizens

senior citizens horseback riding program

We offer group events starting at 4 people, and customized programs for senior citizens. Group events can include "Barn Brown Bag Lunches", arts and crafts and horsemanship. Programs are modified for meeting the unique goals of each group.

Experiencing the interactions with horses is a wonderful way for older adults to stay vital and engaged in a physical activity, whether they simply brush a horse or learn to ride one!

For details, please call Dana 

at 217-502-3390.

Veritas Equine Therapy

veterans equine therapy

When our military Veterans return from the combat zone, we ask them to quickly transition from soldier to civilian, and as a nation we are becoming aware of the terrible cost of this expectation as we read about the jump in suicides, depression, and other psychological trauma caused by their experience in war. The same situation applies to the men and women in our communities who serve as first responders to sometimes trauamatic events. Veritas Equine Therapy was developed to change the statistics. To make a difference for Veterans and first responders in our communities. 

The non-judgemental presence of horses can bring about powerful thoughts and feelings that turn confusion into clarity, and isolation into connection.

For more information on how to enroll, call Dana at 217-502-3390.

Polaris Equine Assisted Behavioral Health

Polaris equine therapy

Using the EAGALA® model, we offer programs for hope and healing of emotional trauma for clients, either as a referral from your mental health provider or through our team of certified specialists.  

Using horses to help people with eating disorders, depression, PTSD, emotional trauma, as well as other mental health challenges, our program integrates with our client's traditional behavioral health therapies and can help toward overcoming barriers and to jumpstart progress.

We partner with Pastures of Hope to offer workshops, retreats and seminars for improving mental and emotional health. 

For more information on how to enroll, call Dana at 217-502-3390.

Functional Futures Therapy for Speech & Language Help

speech therapy for kids

Our equine-assisted speech therapy sessions are uniquely designed to enhance traditional therapy techniques by engaging students with horses. 

Kimberly Grotts, MS, CCC-SLP, leads the program. Kim is a licensed Speech & Language Pathologist and Early Intervention Trained Therapist & Evaluation Specialist who has completed Level 1 and Level 2 Hippotherapy training through the  American Hippotherapy Association. "Hippotherapy" is an evidence- based treatment acknowledged by the American Speech Language Association as beneficial and effective.

Call Kim at 309-313-2428 to enroll.