Lionel’s passion for ponies began at age 3 when he was given his first pony. This continued through his teenage years until he enlisted in the Second World War. Upon returning he worked with his dad selling Real Estate. It was there that he met his wife Rita.
After they married, Lionel left the Real Estate business, so he along with wife Rita, could and did develop the skills required in the breeding, raising, showing and selling of Shetland Ponies. They showed throughout the province of Ontario and into parts of the North East United States.
In addition to breeding and showing Shetland Ponies , in the mid 1960′s, their efforts were underway to have Children’s Birthday Parties and School Tours visit the farm and interact with the ponies for the purpose of kids agriculture entertainment and education. Through their business and social activities in the community, occasionally, people looking to re-home their pets would ask if they would take them in at the farm. From this beginning, along with breeding and raising these animals, the concept of Lionel’s Farm was established.
Lionel’s activities with various community based organizations such as, Scarborough’s planning board, Agincourt Lions Club, Historical Society, Scarborough’s Entertainment committee and many others, served to establish the beginning of a working relationship with community and corporate events. With this, Lionel’s farm could be found at a number of different community, corporate and school events.
Lionel’s personal interest in horse drawn buggies, carriages, sleighs and period props started as a hobby. As time went on he began to develop a ‘Rare and Classic’ collection that caught the eye of the Film, Television and Commercial industry. Specifically, Lionel’s collection has been seen in Film and Television Productions such as; ‘Anne Of Green Gables’, ‘Road To Avonlea’, Little Men’, ‘Reign’ and the now popular CBC production MURDOCH MYSTERIES and so many more. This classic collection has been sought after for Weddings, Retail Store Displays, Window Displays and Parades. To see these ALL in one place is a sight like many have never seen before.
In 1981 the Farm Family business moved to its current location on McCowan Rd in Stouffville.