Whistlejacket Farm is located on 60 acres inside Manning’s 4M Farm in Johnson County Texas; 20 miles south of downtown Fort Worth just outside the town of Alvarado.
The facilities consist of:
- A state-of-the-art training barn (40 stall capacity) and connected indoor riding pavilion
- Gathering areas inside the riding pavilion for members to be at home away from home
- Outdoor riding arena
- 4 beautifully fenced grazing pastures
- 2 large beautifully fenced turnout paddocks
- 6 beautifully fenced daily turnout paddocks
- Access to over 200 acres of riding trails
Manning’s 4M Farm – A History
Whistlejacket Farm sits on approximately 60 beautiful acres carved out of a larger parcel that is Manning’s 4M Farm. This land was originally acquired in the early 1950s by Travis Dean, Ralph Manning and Laura Manning High’s grandfather on their mother’s side. Travis was a lawyer, member of the Texas House of State Representatives and an oil man and he farmed this land. Their mother Susan Manning grew up going to this Farm. The property was eventually sold and reacquired by the Manning’s Grandmother; Lenora Dean and then by Ralph and Laura’s parents Susan and L.M. Manning Jr. in 1980. L.M. owned and operated another horse farm close by but when the opportunity came to relocate to the old farm L.M. sold that farm (Bonnie Wee Croft) and the operation was moved to the old Dean homestead.
The “Farm” or sometimes the “Ranch” as its affectionally known is where Laura and Ralph continued their equestrian pursuits at a very young age. L.M. built a new barn and new indoor and outdoor arenas so they could train year-round. Ralph and Laura both recall many of their best memories growing up at the farm. We learned so much “recalls Laura Manning High”, about horses, riding and horsemanship, and life which is just what our parents intended.
The Farm is a special place for our family and our extended family because it has served for decades now as a place on weekends and special holidays for the entire family and friends to gather. A third generation is now enjoying growing up at the Farm and includes Laura and Kirk’s 3 girls (Katie, Reagan and Olivia) and Ralph and Krista’s girls Millison and Mary Kate. In 2003, Ralph and Krista held their rehearsal dinner at the farm in a beautiful tent overlooking the lake; just one example of the many memories that have been made here.
Today the farm is still family owned by Susan, Krista and Ralph and Laura and Kirk. Ralph stated “The decision to open the farm up to Whistlejacket Farm was made in the spirit of creating a place where more people can enjoy what we have enjoyed for so long especially young riders. We want the farm to realize its fullest potential and to have a unique purpose. To be a refuge where people can escape and find solace while experiencing the wonderful world of the Arabian horse and equestrian sports”.