Gentle Barn in Santa Clarita, California and Knoxville, Tennessee
The Gentle Barn was founded as a way to help visitors heal from traumatic experiences by bonding with animals. Individuals in the Gentle Barn’s Peace Enhancement Program (who range in age from kindergarteners to adults) can walk horses, work in the vegetable garden or take hikes around the property.
“Whether our guests are staying for our ten-month program or just a few hours, they get to hug cows, cuddle turkeys, give pigs tummy rubs, and get to fall in love with animals you would not normally get to meet,” says Ellie Laks, founder of the Gentle Barn. “It’s an adventure for children to practice confidence and gentleness at the same time. And it’s a way to meet animals so different then ourselves, yet discover the similarities between us all.”
California’s Gentle Barn features large horse and cow pastures, a red and white barnyard for the smaller animals, an organic vegetable garden and a panoramic view of mountains in Santa Clarita, California. More than 170 rescued animals reside at The Gentle Barn. Since its inception in 1999, The Gentle Barn has been home to hundreds of animals and has hosted more than 400,000 people.
The Gentle Barn California is open to the public on Sundays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The Gentle Barn asks for a donation of $20 per adult and $10 per child.
The Gentle Barn’s Knoxville, Tennessee location is home to four rescued horses that live in a barn. The Tennessee outpost is open on Saturday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Tickets cost $20 per adults.