Our FacilitiesThe Killingworth Equestrian Center sits on over 26 acres in the town of Killingworth, Connecticut - just 30 minutes south of Hartford. This picturesque farm is home to many wonderful animals and the owners who enjoy them.
The main barn houses 13 stalls, a heated tack room and a heated bathroom with full shower facilities. A laundry, feed room, farrier's stall and heated wash rack with hot and cold water complete the amenities of the main barn.
An additional five stalls are located in another barn attached to the facility's indoor arena. An additional tack room and heated wash rack are also available for our clients use. There is a heated indoor observation lounge with kitchen for our client's comfort. A kid's corner keeps our younger visitors occupied during their time at the farm. Both barns are wired with fire detection systems to protect our valued clients.
The Killingworth Equestrian Center is also home to Hilltop Therapeutic Riding Program. Hilltop TRP seeks to bring the physical, mental and emotional benefits that engagement with a horse in both a non-riding and riding relationship can provide. Some benefits are muscle development, improved balance, feelings of accomplishment, enhanced self esteem and great enjoyment. For more information please visit www.hilltoptrp.org
Meet the Owners & Staff
Barbara and Brian FitzsimmonsBarbara and Brian Fitzsimmons bought the property now called Limerick Farm and established Killingworth Equestrian Center, LLC in mid March 2007.
Both Barbara and Brian are mental health professionals. Barbara is a psychiatric social worker whose career has been devoted to persons with chemical dependencies, psychiatric illness, HIV/AIDS, and persons with dementia and Alzheimer’s.
Brian is a clinical psychologist, a Diplomate of the American Board of Professional Psychology. His efforts have focused on children with disabilities, persons with serious psychiatric illness and the chemically dependent. For the past 14 years he has been the Senior Vice President of Saint Vincent Catholic Medical Centers with responsibility for the institution’s psychiatric and chemical dependency services in New York City and Westchester County.
Brian has been actively involved with horses for the past 25 years, and has shown competitively for the last 12. He owns, breeds and competes with the American Saddlebred.
Through their experiences, Brian has seen the benefits, physically, cognitively and emotionally of equine activities. Two athletes (rider and horse) work together to accomplish a common goal – whether that is a leisurely ride or competitive event.
Brian and Barbara’s goal is to bring the benefits and enjoyment of equine activities to others. They aim to ensure that the experience for all riders, whether a beginner or an accomplished competitor, is one that encourages learning and sharing and engages family members in a joyful experience.
Brian and Barbara, with the very able support and direction of Johnna Chenail, seek to maintain a beautiful, safe physical environment as well as a general farm atmosphere that truly supports horse, rider and family in their pursuit of joy.
Johnna Chenail has been the head trainer and instructor at the Killingworth Equestrian Center since it opened its’ doors in March 2007. She grew up with ponies on the family farm and started formal instruction at a hunter-jumper facility in her childhood. Johnna entered an essay competition at the age of fifteen and was awarded a weanling colt that introduced her to the world of Morgans. After receiving her B.S. in animal science from the University of Connecticut, she took the position of Trainer for Bradvue Morgans. 1993 saw her first world championship with Bradvue’s Legacy. Johnna is a big proponent of the Morgan sport horse and promotes the Morgan horse at hunter shows throughout New England.
Professionally, Johnna is a member of the United States Equestrian Federation, United States Hunter Jumper Association, American Morgan Horse Association, American Saddlebred Horse Association, New England Morgan Horse Association, Connecticut Morgan Horse Association, Connecticut Hunter Jumper Association, and the Connecticut Horse Shows Association. Johnna has served as a director or officer of the Connecticut Morgan Horse Association for the past fifteen years and is currently the manager of the Connecticut Morgan Horse Show. Johnna was honored by the American Morgan Horse Association in 2001 as the National Youth Person of the Year and was the Connecticut Morgan Person of the Year in 2000 and 2006.