About Painted Dreams Horse Farm

Painted Dreams Farm Sign Located on 35 lush green acres in beautiful Bucks County, PA, Painted Dreams Horse Farm students learn not only riding skills but emphasis is placed on horsemanship skills that develop riders into safe, responsible, and educated equine enthusiasts. Through our lessons and summer camps, we strive to create riders that understand equine instinct and behaviors -- a skill that will allow them to become excellent communicators with their mounts, even as a beginner. We are not a competition barn, and strive to create enhanced self esteem in our riders. We value teamwork and sportsmanship. At Painted Dreams Farm, safety is our highest priority. We place great emphasis on matching the rider with his/her mount to create the most beneficial learning environment. Three riders on a trail ride.We teach many disciplines of riding lessons including English (Hunt Seat and Jumpers), Western Pleasure, and Dressage. Children and adults can choose one lesson discipline or may sample all of them. Give us a call today to take a tour, schedule a horse riding lesson or to learn more about our summer camps. Our summer camps start in June and run through August and are a great way to introduce children into horse back riding. ph: 215.598.7370Download our Brochure

 

Owner of Painted Dreams Horse Farm

Maria Mendonca-Collito has been a part of the local equestrian community for over 26 years, and has owned, managed and directed Painted Dreams Farm for the last 15 years. Through lessons, clinics, camps, and even scouting events, she has introduced literally hundreds of children and adults to the world of horsemanship and riding.    

Receiving her BS at Boston University and one of her master’s degrees in Medicine at Yale School of Medicine, Maria practiced medicine from 1991 until recently, when she decided to retire and focus her attention on her loves…Her children Andrew and Morgan, and her horses.  Her successful journey has taken her from the APHA Reining arena early on, through the Hunter ring, and over the last decade, to her true passion, Dressage. 

Maria is a United States Dressage Federation Bronze Medalist, well on her way to her Silver Medal. She aspires to receive her USDF “L” judge’s certification soon. Maria has a special interest and attends many classes and clinics in equine saddle fitting, nutrition, conformation, and movement.

Maria has recently been named the Head Coach for the Interscholastic Equestrian Association Middle School and High School Dressage Teams in Bucks County. Here she is able to introduce the concepts of Dressage to students in the Hunter, Jumper, and Western worlds. Her team will compete throughout New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania.

Maria is also the proud owner of PDF Hanoverians, and has bred two top class foals from the Grand Prix stallion Devon Heir, out of her elite mare Whisteria Lane. We look forward to seeing these youngsters in the Dressage arena in a few years. 

Maria built and created PDF as a way to make riding accessible and enjoyable to all types of riders with a wide range of goals and dreams in a judgment free atmosphere. Maria has built her business based on honesty, respect, and communication.  She is articulate, patient, and compassionate.  She values teamwork, sportsmanship, and responsibility in her students, a combination she feels creates not only self esteem, but lifelong sense of accomplishment.

She hopes to be able to share the success that Dressage training provides, not only to those headed down centerline, but to students of any discipline. 


Painted Dreams Trainers & Staff

Sharon Stroh
Sharon’s love of horses started at age 12 when she began competing in Equitation and Hunters. Throughout high school she competed at many shows, including a prestigious East Coast Circuit, earning Reserve Champion of the Year in Hunt Seat!

She attended Wilson College in Chambersburg, PA where she majored in Equestrian Studies. It was during this time she trained extensively with Col. Alfred Kitts, International Dressage judge and R Jumper judge. She continued to train and compete under his tutelage for several years after college in Dressage, Eventing, and Jumpers up to 4 foot. She worked for USET Dressage rider Ellin Dixon and trained with Event trainer Jane Cory.

Throughout this time, she was an active member of The United States Pony Club, and passed with the difficult C-3 rating. This rating required excellence and proficiency in both mounted exercises and horsemanship skills for Jumpers, Dressage, Combined Training, and Polocross. Because Sharon believes that students should have strong Horsemanship skills, she continues to be a very active USPC leader.

Throughout the 90’s, she was the Head Trainer and Coach for both the Varsity and Jr. Varsity Equestrian teams at the prestigious George School Preparatory Academy, guiding both teams to many local and district Championships in Hunters, Jumpers, and Eventing. After the birth of her 2 daughters, she decided to leave the demanding schedule of an instructor to spend more time with her girls, and took a position as a Manager and Director of a 22 horse show facility. There she tended to all the daily needs of her clients horses.

In addition to the Jumper rings and Event fields, Sharon enjoys competing in polocrosse. Polocross is an exceptionally fast paced game on horseback that is often described as Lacrosse on Horseback!! She recently attending a tournament where she won best player and her horse, Vegas, won best horse!

Sharon is certified by the American Riding Instructors Association (ARIA) in both Dressage and Combined Training. She is also licensed under the Certified Horsemanship Association (CHA) in both English and Western disciplines for Safety and Instruction.

Sharon loves sharing her passion for horses with others and enjoys helping them to achieve their goals, whether it is for pleasure or competition! She is looking forward to again developing young all around horsemen.



Nikki Serge
USDF Bronze & Silver medal
Dressage Trainer

It is a privilege as well as an exciting opportunity for Nikki to head the new Dressage program at Painted Dreams Farm. She brings over 20 years of experience training people and horses alike in Dressage.

Her passion for equines started when she was six years old growing up in Radnor, PA, prime horse country. After graduating college she pursued an equestrian career full time. She partnered with long time dressage trainer Nina Benninghoff to form Holly Tree Dressage Center in NJ. Holly Tree was the biggest full service dressage training and boarding facility in Southern New Jersey for over a decade. During this time, she showed her Oldenburg sport horses at Dressage at Devon with much success. She rode her Arabian stallion KZ Second Chance, as well as her Oldenburg, Golden Opportunity, in many young horse and dressage competitions. During this time she trained with Major Jeremy Beale, Marilyn Payne, Nancy Polozker. Soon after, she made the difficult decision to leave Holly Tree to relocate for the opportunity to train with Grand Prix trainer and rider Silke Rembacz full time.

Over the next five years she gained experience traveling to Wellington Florida in the winter, and competing Ellen Morrison's Limax at third and fourth levels, placing at BLM Championships, qualifying for Region One Dressage Championships in New Jersey during the summer. She also competed Eileen Scheineman's Obelix, completing her USDF Bronze and Silver medals, riding at Dressage at Devon, the NEDA Fall Festival, and Region 8 Championships in 2012.

She currently enjoys competing her horse Obelix at the Prix St Georges and Intermediare I levels, while training her 3 year old Oldenburg for the young horse classes in 2014, under the tutelage of Grand Prix trainers Michael and Vera Barisone. She is currently the Head Dressage trainer at Cream Ridge Equestrian Center in Cream Ridge, NJ.

It is Nikki's goal to use her passion and experience to provide correct training to every horse and rider in a way that meets each individual need.



Maia Barnes

Maia is a FEI trainer and rider, USDF Bronze and Silver medalist, with half of her Gold medal scores completed.

Maia has been riding horses for most of her life, but seriously began to focus on dressage in 2015. Since then, she has moved quickly up the ranks and become a serious young professional.

In the 2017 show season in the Region 8 Championships Maia was: 4th level Regional Champion, rode 2 horses in the Prix St. Georges Championships finishing as Reserve Champion and 3rd place. After these major regional achievements, Maia went on to her first ever Dressage at Devon, where she won her first 4th level class, placed 2nd the next day, and won overall Reserve Champion of 4th level. Last of the 2017 season was the U.S Dressage Finals, where Maia became 4th level National Champion, and placing in the top 5 of the Prix St. Georges National Finals.

Maia has experience in showing multiple horses throughout the season, ranging from training level through Intermediare 1. Currently in the 2018 season, she competed 2 horses at Prix St. Georges and Intermediare 1, one horse at 2nd level, and has qualified them all for Region 1 Championships.

As a trainer, Maia focuses her horses and riders on mastering the basics in order for both horses and riders to move up the levels with ease, and a clear understanding of the mechanics of dressage. Maia has experience in training horses of all ages, sizes, and types; and is always up for a challenge!

Please contact PDF to schedule a lesson with Maia on one of our fabulous lesson horses.



Painted Dreams is now a US Pony Club Center
Painted Dreams Farm has been chosen as a National United States Pony Club Center!  
For more information, click here


Painted Dreams Riding Horses

In Memory
of Cactus

Charlie

Chester

Fluffy

Romance

Looking Good Cody

Megan on Ollie

Mikey Goes Western

Morgan, Tori and Dolly

Rocky

Romance With Me

Spirit

Buzz

Tonka

Cato and Morgan

Harley

Morgan and Rue

Ridge and Morgan

Tiffany and Kodak

Big Rocky and Sophie

Charlie Cross Country

Jess and Duchess

Jazzy

Katelyn on Frodo

Taylor on Pedro

Betty

Leah on Fiona

In Memory
of Cactus

Red