Local Couple Taking the Reins of Attleboro Stable
A family stable and farm that had been run down in recent years has been revitalized under the management of a local couple.
Pine Valley Stables has been a part of John DesVergnes' family for years. His father, Roger DesVergnes, originally ran the 80-acre land where he was involved with the raising and racing of thoroughbred horses at the various local tracks.
However, as time went on, interest waned and there were fewer and fewer horses. At one point, one barn became used for storage. Then in 2008, the land was handed down to John and his wife, Andrea, who took to the task of renovating and giving it new life.
"I didn't want this to be developed," John DesVergnes said. "I didn't want this just to become another residential housing complex."
Over the course of the year the stables and surrounding area have been revitalized. The second barn has been completely redone and the stables are now home to 25 horses.
"If you looked at this last year, there were 11 horses, an empty barn and all the corrals were run down," he said. "It was really in shambles. In one year, it's come a long way."
The DesVergnes want Pine Valley Stables to become an elite equestrian facility and, as of now, that is their main focus.
To reach that goal they are looking at a variety of additions and improvements. The largest of which will be an indoor arena that would allow all of their riders — not just the so-called "diehards" — to come out and ride throughout the winter.
On most days you'll find Tammy Lewicki, an accomplished rider who rode with the late Christopher Reeve, providing riding lessons or tending to the horses. Lewicki is a Massachusetts licensed horseback riding instructor and a graduate of the United States Pony Clubs.
"We have a lot that we want to do," said Andrea.
"We're trying to get to the point where we're sustainable first, and then we want to expand," added John.
Don't let the name fool you, there is a lot more to do than ride horses.
Featured at Pine Valley Stables is a cranberry bog, which up until two years ago was being leased out to a grower from Ocean Spray, the popular beverage company that is known for its cranberry juice. It is currently in the process of becoming workable again.
There are also two ponds on the property, which have been stocked with bass and trout for fee fishing.
"We want this to be a place where the public can come and enjoy the grounds and enjoy the facilities," said John.
Their goal is to have a family friendly atmosphere, so parents and children can come and "make a day of it" by fishing or riding.
"We have lots of ideas, we're still growing, so we'll see where it goes," said Andrea.
The Pine Valley Stables are open seven days a week and located at 630 Lindsey St.