An equestrian center in Forest Hills has been sold to a nonprofit organization that offers horseback experiences to individuals young and old with special needs.
GallopNYC has purchased Lynne’s Riding School at 88-03 70th Rd. — between Ursula Place and Sybilla Street, and a short trot from Forest Park — for $3 million in a deal that Keller Williams NYC’s ReisNYC Team brokered.
The 10,000-square-foot site has been renamed GallopNYC Forest Hills and will be used to provide therapeutic equestrian programs for individuals with autism spectrum disorder, cerebral palsy, visual impairment, Down syndrome, learning disabilities and other physical and cognitive challenges.
The nonprofit group operates three other locations in Queens, Brooklyn and the Bronx. Prior to the transaction, GallopNYC had been renting horses from Lynne’s Riding School for its therapeutic programs. GallopNYC has certified instructors and trained volunteers who provide riders with lessons designed to build physical strength, develop problem-solving skills and improve social skills.
“Serving an average of 500 riders each week and rising, the acquisition of the new site will allow us to double the number of our riders within two years,” said James Wilson, GallopNYC’s director of operations. “This is a game changer and transformative to our organization. More New Yorkers with disabilities waiting for lessons can now be served. We couldn’t have expanded had it not been for this purchase.”
Along with closing the deal, Dr. David Reis (who’s also a cardiologist with 27 years of private practice) and Raymond Reis III of ReisNYC Team agreed to donate 100 percent of their commission to GallopNYC, and Keller Williams NYC provided a matching donation.
“We, along with the ReisNYC Team, are honored to assist our communities throughout the New York City area,” Lezley Schad, team leader of Keller Williams NYC, said. “The donations from our agents and company showcase the heart of Keller Williams culture in action.”
Lynne’s Riding School began as the Parkside Riding Academy in 1947 and moved to its current location in 1960, according to a 2013 published on Brownstoner, a sister site of QNS. The school’s students utilized a riding trail leading from the school into and through wooded sections of Forest Park.