Grosse Pointe Hunt Club becomes Grosse Pointe Equestrian

By: Maria Allard, | Grosse Pointe Times | Published October 10, 2017

GROSSE POINTE WOODS — As rain fell gently on Grosse Pointe Equestrian’s grounds Oct. 6, Federation Equestre Internationale dressage trainer Jesse Collins was inside the arena training atop a Lusitano horse.

Collins, who also competes in the sport, has been tapped to teach dressage instruction at Grosse Pointe Equestrian, formerly known as the Grosse Pointe Hunt Club.

Collins is just one of the many additions to come to Grosse Pointe Equestrian since the Krueger Family, of Grosse Pointe Shores, which includes 10 children and 15 grandchildren, purchased the Grosse Pointe Hunt Club for an undisclosed amount. The acquisition of the 14.3-acre site was announced Aug. 31.

The Grosse Pointe Hunt Club, which opened in 1911 as a hunter-jumper barn, will now be known as Grosse Pointe Equestrian. The facilities will undergo a number of renovations and changes under new ownership and the new name.

Lynne Krueger, who had been a member of the Hunt Club, with family members including son Chad Krueger, will oversee the projects and the new facilities. According to the family, the hunter-jumper discipline will continue, along with the expansion of dressage. Horse owners can still board their horses in the 50-stall barn.

Chad Krueger said changes will include the renovation of the indoor tennis courts to become a dressage arena. Renovations also will include the removal of the club’s swimming pool and outdoor tennis courts, he said. A second-floor refinished lounge will eventually oversee two arenas.

Other projects planned include adding a small tack shop, improving track rooms and wash stalls, repaving the asphalt, and repairing fencing on the grounds. Chad Krueger anticipates the projects will be done in about a year’s time.

Some staples will remain, as Grosse Pointe Equestrian will offer horseback riding lessons, clinics and competitions. All will be available during the facility improvement process. The Kruegers also will continue to work with the Foxheads Foundation, a therapeutic riding program for children with special needs.

“We’ve retained all the staff,” Lynne Krueger said. “We have five full-time people, plus four trainers and five part-time employees.”

Along with Collins, main instructors Greg and Jessica, of Clarkston, will provide hunter-jumper training for show jumping. Karen Negendank will instruct basic English riding and jumping for children and adults.

Lynne Krueger is especially excited to expand dressage, which is near and dear to her. Dressage is a highly skilled form of riding in which the horse and rider perform a series of movements before a panel of judges. The judges rank the performance by using a graded scale.

“It’s an individual sport. It’s a lot like dancing,” Lynne Krueger said. “There are test patterns as you work your way in the shows. Dressage is very similar to ballet on horseback. There’s no jumping involved. It’s a very advanced type of riding. It’s very specific.”

“It’s the art of (the trainer) getting the horse to do what you want,” Chad Krueger said. “It’s how well you can control your horse.”

Lynne Krueger began taking dressage instruction 15 years ago.

“There’s so much to learn. You have to learn it in small increments over a long period of time,” Lynne Krueger said. “I find it very rewarding. It’s often done to music. There’s a name for everything. The rider stays very quiet and still. You’re thinking every second. There are so many pieces of  your body you have to learn to control.”

Owning and running a horse training and boarding facility wasn’t something the Krueger family predicted, but horses have always been a part of Lynne Krueger’s life.

“I was one of those kids that was horse crazy,” she said.

She didn’t have a horse as a kid, but as soon as she got her first job — earning $1.75 per hour in a pickle factory in Croswell, Michigan — Lynne Krueger set aside her salary for horseback riding lessons. A few years later, she purchased her first quarter horse, named Dan’s Lightning, for $400.

Grosse Pointe Equestrian is located at 655 Cook Road in Grosse Pointe Woods. For more information, call (313) 884-9090, email info@gphuntclub.com or visit www.gphuntclub.com. Grosse Pointe Equestrian also has a Facebook page.