Training Program

Avalon believes that to be successful with any equestrian endeavor, learning should take place in a positive, encouraging environment.  


At Avalon strengths are emphasized and weaknesses appropriately challenged in order to build a greater level of confidence for rider and horse.  All goals are respected and no goal is too small: whether a client simply wishes to have a better understanding of their horse or wants to show at a competitive level, we are committed to providing clients and their horses with the best teaching, training, and care possible.

Training programs are individually tailored to suit each client’s goals. Please contact us for more info on our program or to get a tour of the barn.

Meet the Trainers

Owner & Trainer

Jeannie Scalise grew up on the East Coast, training with several highly accomplished professionals. As a young rider she learned the fundamental skills required to prepare and ride horses successfully in the hunter, jumper, and equitation show rings with an emphasis on the horse’s welfare. After moving to Southern California Jeannie had the opportunity to train and ride with Bernie Traurig. During this time Jeannie mastered the techniques required to execute technical jumper courses, and learned the skills required to bring along young, green horses.


Jeannie opened Avalon Hunters & Jumpers in Del Mar, California in 1995 and quickly grew into a respected, competitive, A circuit show barn. Upon moving to Northern California Jeannie spent time fine tuning the hunter ride under the tutelage of John French; working on the importance of riding in the moment, staying focused, calm and confident in order to achieve a softness to the ride, thus helping the horse jump it's best.


Today Jeannie co-owns, operates and trains horses and riders at Avalon.

Owner & Trainer

Liz Hutchinson grew up in Jacksonville, Florida competing on the “A” circuit under the tutelage of Andrew Lustig. She catch rode in the Ponies, Equitation, and Junior Hunter divisions with much success at some of the most prestigious shows in the country.


Liz moved to Southern California in 1996 to work for Dianne Grod and Mary Tyng. She then opened her own program, Stellar Farms Inc, guiding her students horses to numerous Zone and National awards. Her students have qualified for the the Eisers/Pessoa USEF Medal Finals, the ASPCA Maclay Finals, the USET Medal finals, and the North American Junior & Young Rider Championships (NAJYRC). 

Liz Hutchinson moved from Southern California at the end of 2012 to partner with Jeannie, and now co-owns, operates, and trains horses and riders at Avalon. Her emphasis is on the show minded rider and she loves to help horse and rider achieve their highest potential.

Zoe McCarthy is a Bay Area native who grew up riding at the Portola Valley Training Center where Avalon is now located. Since starting her professional career in 2007, she has worked throughout California for such trainers as Nicole Bloom, Peter Breakwell, Lise Quintero, and Rebecca Bruce. In 2011 Zoe opened her own program in Santa Barbara, guiding her students to numerous local championships and awards. In 2015 she decided to relocate back to her home and family in the Bay Area.


Zoe works as Avalon’s assistant and barn manager, running the day-to-day operations and ensuring that the clients and horses all continue to receive excellent care and training while Jeannie and Liz are at shows.

Assistant Trainer & Barn Manager

100 Ansel Lane, Menlo Park, CA 94028

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