Talk Of The Town December
Although the threads of a city’s history tend to grow weaker overtime, it’s amazing how much the yesterdays of a century ago influence the todays. James Gibbins acquired more than two square miles of what is now north Arlington in 1863. The land passed to his son, Thomas Jefferson Gibbins and wife Martha, who grew the farm to 1359 acres. In 1923, Martha deeded the Gibbins homestead to Ollie Gibbins Rose, her daughter, who was married to William H. Rose, Mayor of Arlington from 1919-1923. William and Ollie left it to their two daughters, Berta and Margaret. The names change with marriage over the years but the family is still the same. As time passed much of the land was sold, and even some donated. In 1976 Berta and Margaret donated 200 acres that makes up River Legacy Park as the family wanted to “leave something for every generation”. Today only a fraction of the historic Gibbins Homestead remains.
On the north side of the homestead lays an impressive equine estate, a state of the art 48 stall barn equipped with 225 X 100 indoor riding arena, indoor round pens, new white sand footing, office and so much more. The arrival of Smallside Farm marks the first Hunter/Jumper training and breeding program at the historic Gibbins Homestead. Smallside Farm Owner, Jordan Mallard, says being at the Gibbins Homestead is “truly a dream come true.” Having a premier facility in the middle of the DFW metroplex will provide access to horses for thousands of people that would otherwise have to drive half an hour or more to reach such a training complex. The idea for Smallside Farm formed when Jordan realized the need for more competitive and higher quality ponies in Texas that could win on both Texas and national show circuits.
Jordan started riding at the age of 9 after a friend from elementary school invited her to go to her riding lessons. As a junior, Jordan often rode green, difficult or problem horses for her trainers and their clients. In college she rode for Texas Tech University’s IHSA team where she was named MVP in 2007-2008 Season. While at Tech she earned a Bachelors in Animal Science with a minor in Equine Studies-Business Cum Laude. In 2009 she officially started her equine training business and never looked back. She has sold ponies to top trainers and show homes all across the country, many of them going on to win top honors at Pony Finals. She is passionate about developing riders and horses to their full potential and being influential in young lives.
In a busy world full of electronics and screen time, Smallside Farm hopes to provide children and adults with a fun and rewarding riding experience. A place to get away from the daily hustle and bustle of city life and enjoy nature right here in your own backyard all within city limits. Riders will learn horsemanship, sportsmanship, and have the opportunity to show across the country on the exclusive USEF ‘A’ Circuit. Smallside Farm offers year-round english riding lessons for young children (starting at 4 years old) through advanced riders of all ages! For more information about riding lessons or horse camps please visit