Several of the horses at Mesa Farm can trace their roots to the 1970's on the farm Dale grew up on in Minnesota. Ginger and Gypsy were fourth generation Perkins Farm horses when they were born on that farm while Dale was just starting college. Ginger's three offspring added another generation and have been integral parts of Mesa Farm and the Dale Perkins Horse Show. Later, Jake and Judy, also came from that Minnesota farm of Dale's parents.
GYPSY is a full sister to Ginger, foaled in 1983. She maintains an occasional, but reduced role as a beginning rider lesson horse or trail ride horse even at her advanced age. She is a quiet, gentle horse and a long-time favorite among the inexperienced riders at Mesa Farm. Like Ginger, she was born on the same farm where Dale was raised and has the same Belgian work horse sire. Gypsy was always the choice horse to go to for a beginning rider as well as to hook in harness to the grain grinder performing draft horse demonstrations when Dale worked at Overlook Farm. She has done vaulting performed throughout the DPHS show: Chariot, drill team, trick riding, and Roman riding through the fire jump.
SAGE is a gelding out of Ginger and a Welsh Cob stallion, foaled in 1997. He is a powerful, independent-minded animal with a can-do attitude. Although bold, he responds well to consistent handling and, in spite of his nickname, “The Monster”, he is a solid riding and driving horse even for beginners. He is a “journeyman” in the show, being used wherever needed: Chariot, vaulting, drill team, liberty, dressage, trick riding, and Roman-Riding including the fire jump. One of his specialties was galloping to Dale to pick him up, completely unguided, at the end of the show. His participation as a show and lesson horse has been reduced due to age and tendon challenges.
JACQUI was foaled in 1997. Dale purchased her in April of 2003 from a horse dealer as a “green-broke” horse and she developed rapidly, already performing in the show that June. Jacqui was foaled in Canada and is part Clydesdale, part Paint horse, and part unknown. Jacqui has a remarkably sweet disposition which is making her popular among the young riders on the farm but experienced riders also love riding her. In the DPHS she pulls the chariot, is used in drill team, Roman-riding, and trick riding. Jacqui is also a favorite horse used by the garden crew to pull the cultivator each spring and summer. She added other contributions to the herd: Derby, in 2006. followed by Charlie, foaled in 2013, and then Tucker, foaled in 2015.
SHAMMI is a Belgian/Quarter Horse cross that was foaled in 1994. He was purchased by Dale and Ann in Canada in 2004. He is a nice moving horse who responds well to consistent handling and enjoys jumping although he requires a somewhat experienced rider.
DERBY was born at Mesa Farm in 2006 to Jacqui and a Welsh Cob stallion. He is extremely good-natured as also got long legs from Jacqui’s Clydesdale genetics. He serves as a reliable lesson horse and participate in the circus act, Roman-riding, and drill team on the DPHS. He has a affable personality which adheres him to everyone.
DIXIE was born to 24-year-old Ginger in 2006 and is out of the same Welsh Cob stallion as Derby. Dixie has a sweet disposition and is especially sensitive and clever. She apparently didn’t get the “extra-tall” genes that Derby has, so many of the young riders at the farm see her as their ideal pony mount. She’s also an excellent riding and vaulting horse for those that want a smaller mount. She’s the go-to horse when in need of a safe animal for pony rides. In the DPHS she participates in the circus act and drill team.
JAKE, foaled in 2003, and JUDY, foaled in 2004. These 2000 pound siblings were born at the Perkins’ farm in Minnesota out of Belgian mare and a Percheron stallion owned by an Amish neighbor. They were given to Dale and Ann in 2007 when Dale’s dad decided he was too old to train them. These gentle giants are used primarily in the Mesa Farm lesson program as vaulting horses, but are also occasionally ridden and used for farm work. They are also used as Roman-riding horses in the DPHS.
DAVINCI is a 14-hand Hanovarian/Quarter Horse cross born in 2006. He came to Mesa Farm in 2010 for training and ended up staying. He is especially curious and personable, loves jumping, and requires his rider to “stay in the moment”.
TOPPER is a Thoroughbred mare that was born in 2005 and adopted by Mesa Farm from a rescue organization in 2012. She was born and raised on a farm raising race horses, but didn’t get far with any training and was surrendered to the rescue in early 2012. She is an especially sweet and sensitive horse.
SIMON is a miniature horse that was given to Dale and Ann in 2014. We're not sure how old he is; but he was probably born around 2005.
Dale wasn't overly fond of obtaining a horse that couldn't be ridden but Ann convinced him "the program kids will love him" and she was right, of course. When new kids are here and a little nervous about being around large animals Simon always wins their hearts over.
CHARLIE was foaled by Jacqui in 2013 out of an Oldenburg stallion. His birth was awaited with much anticipation by many of the young riding students at Mesa Farm. Not one to disappoint, he’s a sweet-natured horse who loves people and attention. He’s learning a number of jobs, from trick riding to driving, and will eventually play a larger role as a lesson horse at Mesa Farm.
TUCKER is Charlie’s full brother! He was born in 2015, and is a sweet, nice moving horse who is undergoing riding training and also does a good job of teaming with Charlie as a driving pair.
SADIE came to Mesa Farm in May of 2019 via Ohio, through friends (and DPHS crew members from long ago) Therese Spaulding and Kate Calvert. Sadie is a cross between a Belgian and a Thoroughbred and has proved to be a steady and dependable addition that easily transitioned to the various roles she’s been asked to play.
ALLIE the donkey was born in 2004 and came to Mesa Farm in 2010 from a donkey-rescue organization. Her main rôle is to guard the sheep from coyotes, although her gentle nature has made her popular among the people and visitors Mesa Farm. She has also learned to ride and drive. She is a steady mount for pony rides and has a very important role in the annual Live Nativity at Mesa Farm.
BLOOPIE 1990? – 2020 Bloopie was the resident goofy pony with a fun-loving personality on the farm. He'd been given to Ann shortly after she became a widow in 2002 because he needed a place to be and she needed something to cheer her up. Later, using the "Since he's here we might as well plut him in the show
philosophy", he became a crowd favorite as part of the circus act and added excitement to the Roman riding race. He formed a special bond as a trail riding partner with a number of students and, as a lesson pony, he taught a lot of kids how important it is to "choke up on the reins" and "stay in the moment" with their horse.
GINGER 1982-2018 Ginger was born on the Minnesota farm where Dale grew up. Her dam was a mare named Dixie, whose dam was Dolly, whose dam was Babes; all horses owned by Dale’s family. Ginger’s dam was a small Quarter Horse with a touch of Welsh pony and her sire was a working, Amish-owned, Belgian draft horse. Ginger was Dale’s first trick horse and performed with her sister, Gypsy, as the only horses in the horse show from the mid-80’s until Sage joined the herd in 1997 when he born at Overlook Farm in Massachusetts while Dale lived and worked there. Ginger was a sharp, sensitive horse; extremely responsive to cues. She was the smoothest riding of Dale’s horses and performed the liberty trick routine in the show for many years. She also spent many hours performing farm work and hayrides in harness with her sibling. Her show and work role diminished as she reached her 30’s yet she was still an eager partner giving riding lessons for beginning students. She gave birth to Dixie at age 24 and was also the dam of Sage and Sam.
SELENA 1997-2013. Lovely Selena’s main role at Mesa Farm was as Elizabeth’s competitive jumping horse. She was part Thoroughbred and part Lusitano.
SAM, 1998-2009, was Sage’s full brother, foaled in 1998. He had a clever “pony” disposition and was quick to test the unaware rider when he saw an enticing mouthful of grass along the trail. His playful nature made him an eager student for trick training and he was the type of horse that threw in his own ideas from time to time. He and Sage made the team most used for pulling the walking plow or for hay and sleigh rides on the farm. Like Sage, Sam was used in almost any part of the show needed: Chariot, drill team, trick riding, Roman-Riding and he had his own trick routine.
COMANCHE 1973-1998, was Dale’s first horse purchased for $120 in 1976 after Dale had outgrown his pony, Dan. He was 3/4 quarter horse and 1/4 Arabian. He arrived as an unridden strong-willed horse that had little respect for people. Dale survived training him and, in the process, learned a lot about patience and the need the build trust with equine partners. The pair successfully competed, primarily in gymkhana, for many years in 4-H and a show circuit in Central-MN. He was semi-retired when Dale moved to MA in 1990 until Dale brought him East in 1994 and gave him to friends, Mark and Ann Tripp, at Mesa Farm where Ann used him as a pleasure riding horse. He, coincidentally, is buried in the same area of Mesa Farm where the rest of the horses reside as Dale moved to Mesa Farm in 2006 when he married Mark’s widow, Ann.