Taylor Thompson

Certifications: Certified EAL Facilitator, Masterson Method of Equine Bodywork 2 day graduate.

Taylor is owner and head facilitator of Starting Gate - where you can      open the gate to unforgettable learning! Certified in Equine Assisted      Learning through Equine Connection, Calgary Alberta Canada.

Taylor received her Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with an emphasis in Small Business Management from Union College in Lincoln, NE as the Small Business Management Graduate of the Year. Taylor has always had an interest in the individuality of different people and how to create environments where different people

can work together. This combined with her passion for showing the world that horses till have a place in modern society have blended beautifully in Starting Gate. Taylor founded Starting Gate in 2017 and loves sharing her small farm and the horses with those that choose to Open the Gate. Starting Gate is a place where anyone ages 8 and older can come learn and improve on important life skills such as communication, leadership, empathy, negotiation, trust and more all in the unique environment of a horse arena. These special programs are one of a kind in the Lincoln market. Horses have been a sacred part of Taylors life since she first stepped foot in the barn for horse camp in Minnesota when she was 9 years old. She knows first hand how a horse can change a persons life with even just 90 minutes working side by side with them. It is her joy to share her horses with those that visit Starting Gate.


Mare (Female)

Breed: Quarter Horse

Born: 2005

Height: 15.2 Hands
Verse: Hebrews 12:13-14 


Mika's history is a bit of a mystery. She was dropped off at an auction heavily drugged to disguise the fact that she could barely walk and wanted nothing to do with humans. She met Taylor in 2015 after a kind woman bought her at the auction then realized her physical state.

Mika spent 4 years recovering physically with the help of chiropractic and physical therapy care while building a relationship of trust from the ground up with Taylor. Mika made it clear that while she was vet cleared to be a riding horse, she did not enjoy it at all so was retired from riding in 2017. She hated being 'unemployed', and has found a new job as a teacher at Starting Gate. Mika is a tough girl who has overcome a lot. She doesn't like nonsense and can be sassy when she wants to be. Show her she can trust you though, and she will be a quiet, gentle friend for life.   


Gelding (Neutered Male)

Breed: Quarter Horse

Born: 2007

Height: 15.3 Hands

Verse: Psalm 138:8

Skat came to Starting Gate after a rough couple of years. He was formally a show horse, being hauled to competitions across Nebraska and yet calm enough to give beginner riding lessons when he was at home. 
Unfortunately he was sold to someone who did not care for his back properly and Skat became so physically broken that the decision was made to put him to sleep. But his former owner stepped in and took him back, rehabilitated him and ultimately saved his life. He spent some time as a trail horse before coming to Starting Gate to start his career over as a teacher for our programs. 
Skat is a goofy horse who makes us laugh everyday. He adores Mika and enjoys being with people. 



8am - 4pm

By appointment only​


Call to arrange yours!


11700 S 5th Street
Roca, NE 68430

By appointment only please!

T / 218-213-8167


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We have been trained by the world renowned Equine Connection - The Academy of Equine Assisted Learning Inc, who certify all over the world through the Academy of Equine Assisted Learning BuildingBlock™ course. You will see Equine Connection instructors in the videos provided, these will give a better understanding of the value of our programs and workshops.

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