Island Center Farm is a small horse farm on Vashon Island, an island in the Puget Sound just west of Seattle, WA.  We board horses and teach riding lessons.


Our Story: Horses

Julia and J.P.  bought Island Center Farm in 2014 with the goal to be able to keep their horses at home instead of boarding them.  Originally city kids it was a big step to move to the farm, but it fulfilled Julia's dream of one day living on horse farm.  While they lived in the city Julia taught riding lessons at a horse camp on the Eastside and boarded her horses at a public boarding facility.

Julia grew up riding horses. Whether it was out riding in the pasture or at the beach with her friends or taking lessons in dressage or jumping, it was by far her favorite thing to do as a child.  As an adult Julia has put most of her focus on Classical Dressage, studying with local trainers Karen Fitzgerald, Kellie Larsen and Ashleigh Rauen.  She has audited (attended) clinics with Buck Brannaman, Peggy Cummings, Beth Anderson Ness, Heinrich Johansen, and Gerd Heuschmann. Her primary focus when teaching is balance and harmony between horse and rider - perfecting the dance that riding horses really is.

In October of 2017 Julia finished her studies to receive certification from PATH International as a Registered Therapeutic Riding Instructor.  After years of working with children on the Autism Spectrum or living with learning or developmental disabilities, she decided to go ahead and become certified in therapeutic riding. 

"I don't want the horse to get trained, because training the horse is absolutely finite. But if you get the horse to operate as if to be your legs, an extension of you, you've far exceeded that whole training notion." - Buck Brannaman

Julia and Misty at some point in the 1970's.