Ocean Riders offers a variety of opportunities for children and teens to experience the value of connecting with a horse, the natural world, our local history, and each other while learning leadership skills and raising awareness of essential wetlands and land stewardship


  • Interactive and fun learning experiences about our local watershed and its inhabitants promote an appreciation for nature in hopes of inspiring future stewards of the land
  • Facilitated interactions with horses, both on the ground and in the saddle, teach essential leadership and interpersonal skills including confidence, self-awareness, empathy, assertiveness, clear communication
  • Participants experience being responsible and contributing members of the local ecosystem and a “green horse-keeping” stable that uses Best Management Practices to protect water quality and conserve water
  • All programs emphasize the interconnectedness of all living things and our responsibility for taking care of the land that takes care of us and our horses

Ocean Riders is proud to partner with the following not for profit organizations to offer a variety of Equine and Nature Guided Growth and Learning programs and workshop to both youth and adults.

  • Pickleweed Community Center ( a Canal Family Support Service Kids Club; Each program host up to 15 fourth and fifth graders from the Canal District in San Rafael
  • Women Helping All Women (WHAP) Scholastic Academy, an alternative school in Marin City to support growth and learning for low income and under privileged children
  •   HPP provides poor and homeless families the ability to end childhood poverty.  Workshops with Ocean Riders, it’s horses and the local environment help develop interpersonal skills, assertiveness, and mindfulness, using didactic experiential and group learning to help develop a strong and supportive team 
  • Sausalito/Marin City Boys and Girls Club after school programs

We are grateful for our ongoing collaboration with the Golden Gate National Park Conservancy Youth Outreach Programs who help us with scheduling and transportation for some of the under resourced communities.   

Support for our programs to under resourced communities is provided in part through a grant from the California Coastal Conservancy.


Horses as Healers
The Golden Gate Dairy Stables is home to Equinicity Marin, the Equine Facilitated Psychotherapy (EFP) private practice of Jessica Pinto, LMFT. EFP is a dynamic form of experiential psychotherapy that involves a collaborative effort between the client, the horse, and a mental health professional. Developing a connection with a horse takes patience, courage, self-awareness, and the same interpersonal skills required for successful interactions with other humans. With the horse as a teacher and the therapist as a guide that connection will cultivate life skills such as confidence, centeredness, energy regulation, assertive leadership, empathy and perspective-taking to improve overall functioning and enjoyment of life. For more information go to

GUTS – Girls Utilizing Their Skills – an equine leadership group for girls: Stephanie Holdenried, certified (CEIP) equine facilitated educator, offers this workshop empowering girls to be leaders in their families, their communities, and their world with the help of horses.  Exploring new intentions, setting healthy boundaries, improving communication, and developing authentic leadership skills is part of this program.  To learn more:

Executive Coaching and Team Development
Judith Forrest, Vice President of the Board of Directors is co-founder of, a Bay Area  consulting firm that works with start up leaders and their companies.   Judith is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and a Certified Equine Interaction Professional, providing individual coaching and team sessions with clients and horses.  Personal experience and research in the emerging field of Equine Facilitated Learning shows that horses are remarkable teachers for helping humans learn how to communicate congruently and to develop and refine their leadership skills.


  • Community Day: An annual event for local children to have one on one experiences with our horses, dissect owl pellets from resident barn owls and learn about and appreciate the history of the culture of the valley where they live
  • Muir Beach Barn Owls: A community based youth program to experience ranch life, inspire a love of horses and future equestrian activities in nature; as well as teach responsibility and accountability through shared ranch chores and horse care
  • Future Stewards Summer Day Camp: A morning program that shares the history of the Golden Gate Dairy Stables and our horses, our watershed, owl habitat, and cycles of life through manure management and composting to grow organic vegetables
  • Tails and Tires: In collaboration with the Marin County Bicycle Coalition (MCBC), and Marin Horse Council, we offer workshops to promote safe trail etiquette to local high school mountain bike teams and their coaches to better understand the biology of the horse and the circumstances that trigger fear responses in both horse and human
  • Volunteer Mounted Patrol for California State Parks: Ocean Rider members are trained to assist other trail users, report trail hazards and conflicts, and promote safe trail etiquette for all users

Currently we can only offer seasonal programs that depend on good weather.  Your generosity and support to help us build a COVERED ARENA will help us provide and expand programming for all our target audiences on a year round basis.  

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