Our Desert Home
With nearly 1.3 million square feet of competition and riding space, the Desert International Horse Park is one of the largest equestrian facilities in North America. Offering 15 weeks of world-class competition from October through March, the facility is a destination location for thousands of equestrians, their horses, family and friends for several months annually. Competitors from all over the world travel to Thermal, CA to not only compete but to enjoy everything the desert has to offer.
Surrounded by the beauty of picturesque mountains, the Desert International Horse Park is close to Palm Springs, Desert Hot Springs, La Quinta, Coachella and more unique places to discover. The area is known for its resort lifestyle with a selection of fine dining, art & film festivals, golf & tennis, outdoor adventures, and wonderful warm, dry weather in the winter months. As the Greater Palm Springs Convention & Visitors Bureau claims, come #findyouroasis in the desert.
Finding a fantastic team that puts horses first, while having a keen focus on the rider, trainer, owner, and sponsor experience, is a key aspect of our vision. Welcoming a mix of fresh and familiar faces, our goal is to bring in individuals who specialize in creating an excellent show experience.
Having just begun to make our vision a reality in August of 2019, we now have a core group of experts to kick our plans into gear. The Desert Horse Park International team continues to grow as we seek to achieve our goals for an excellent customer experience. This section will continue to grow as our desert team comes together.
President & CEO
A horseman and a rider himself, Steve Hankin starts with a “horses first” philosophy when it comes to the horse park. He and his wife have been avid participants of the sport on both the East and West Coasts, and he is eager to transform the equestrian community on the West Coast for the better.
Corporate Sponsorship and Customer Experience
Anyone who has spent time showing horses in the desert has had the privilege of meeting Chris Mayone. From VIP hospitality to coordinating championship events such as the USEF Junior Hunter Championships, North American Youth Championships, Longines FEI Nations Cup™ and Longines FEI World Cup™ qualifying events, Mayone has nearly two decades of experience under his belt.
From boutique events on the West Coast, including Franktown Meadows and The Menlo Charity Horse Show, to decorated events on the East Coast, such as The American Royal and the popular series of CFHJA shows in Tampa, Phil DeVita brings a host of accolades and experience to the DIHP. He has also worn many other ‘hats’ in the sport, including as a competitor, course designer and judge.
Stabling and Scheduling Manager
Skyler comes to DIHP as our Stabling and Scheduling Manager, bringing 15 years of equestrian experience with him. He has worked in various roles within the equestrian industry, including operations and management. Brittner approaches his work with horses first and is always aiming to create a fantastic show experience for our exhibitors.
Show Office Manager
Known for customer service with a smile, Brett Waters comes to the desert with experience from some of the country’s top horse shows, including Devon Horse Show, Hampton Classic and The Vermont Summer Festival. Waters will lead a team of experienced office staff who have served customers in the Desert for many years
Show Office Manager
Ashley has been in the horse industry for over 30 years as a trainer, rider, and as horse show staff. She has shown all over the country and earned USEF AO Hunter of the Year in 2006. Keeler’s experience in and out of the horse show arena help her understand all the details that go into a horse show and to better serve our exhibitors.
For Immediate Release THERMAL, Calif. – March 18, 2021 – Don’t miss a second of the action for the $100,000 West Coast Hunter Spectacular on Friday, March 19, 2021. Access the link by heading to Deserthorsepark.com and click on the “Watch live” tab. Commentary by...
For Immediate Release: THERMAL, Calif. – March 18, 2021 – The Desert International Horse Park (DIHP) hosted the first FEI class of the week as the riders in the $5,000 FEI 1.40m, sponsored by Human Touch, took to the newly landscaped grand prix arena for some great...
For Immediate Release THERMAL, Calif. – March 18, 2021 – World Championship Hunter Rider Week honored the West Coast’s top hunter riders as championship titles were awarded in the professional hunter divisions at the Desert International Horse Park Week VIII. The...
From her amateur-owner hunter rounds, equitation rides, and her jumper classes, Lexie Looker is one busy girl. She has devoted her life to horses and enjoys every second of it. Growing up, her parents rode and that sparker her interest from the very beginning. She has...
For Immediate Release THERMAL, Calif. – March 17, 2021 – Competition kicked off FEI week at the Desert International Horse Park Week VIII, loaded with four FEI classes featuring the $250,000 FEI CSI4* 1.55m Grand Prix which takes place on Sunday. Jumper action this...
WCHR Week Excitement Begins With Professional Hunter Divisions at the Desert International Horse Park
For Immediate Release THERMAL, Calif. – March 17, 2021 – World Championship Hunter Rider Week (WCHR) kicked off at the Desert International Horse Park (DIHP) Week VIII, the final week of the Desert Circuit. The highlight of the week features the $100,000 WCHR West...
Week VIII Is Here! (with no rain in sight☺) It is hard to believe that Desert Circuit Week VIII is here. When the skies opened up and we started hearing about COVID-19 for the first time twelve months ago, who would have predicted what was to unfold? Against all odds,...
For Immediate Release: THERMAL, Calif. – March 14, 2021 – On the final day of competition during Desert Circuit VII, hunter riders had another opportunity to compete in a derby. The 2’6”-2’9” Child/Adult Hunt & Go Derby, sponsored by Struck Apparel, highlighted...
For Immediate Release THERMAL, Calif. – March 14, 2021 – It was Classic Day across every ring at the Desert International Horse Park as the grand prix arena featured the Junior/Amateur Owner Jumper Classic 1.35m sponsored by Charlebois Farm, the Junior/Amateur Owner...