About Us

Sunnyside Farm is our family homestead located in the quaint town of Vermilion, Ohio. We offer over 5 acres of peaceful agri-tranquility. Our family feels called to share our land and its four-legged inhabitants to assist others to be their very best and reach beyond their limits.

Our farm has acres of pasture, natural flowing Brownhelm Creek passing through, Riding Arena, Picnic Pavilion and other amenities to make your retreat experience productively peaceful.

We host immersive half-day (approx. 4 hours) experiences for individuals and groups in leadership roles in all facets of life. We welcome anyone interested in learning more about themselves through equine interaction.  The following is just a sample list of the many retreat experiences we offer at Sunnyside Farm, LLC.

  • Corporate Leadership Training

  • Board Leadership Development

  • Team-Building

  • Strategic Planning

  • Improving Communication

  • Spiritual and Renewal

We are not a riding program, therapy service, or mental health organization. Our program caters to those without previous horse experience.

Philosophy & Mission

Leadership is too often synonymous and interchangeable with personal ambition. Without understanding how we communicate, we are unable to truly inspire others in a unified purpose.

It is our mission to provide a unique and meaningful retreat experience for all our guests. Horses are mirrors and can help us see deep inside ourselves. During all of our retreats they are the instructors.

We consider interacting with  1,000 pound animals and earning their trust to be a privilege.  It is a profound experience that we wish to share with others.

Services & Goals

Using my personal Unexpected Path to Sunnyside Farm as a guide, we use equine interaction, reflection, discussion, and journaling to inspire a deeper understanding of ourselves.

Our goals are to improve our relationships with others, identify our unique gifts and strengths, and improve our interpersonal communication skills. Together, we will learn how to nurture a deep relationship of trust within ourselves and with our peers (Human and Equine alike).

Our ideal group size is between 4-8 individuals, but we are able to accommodate larger groups as needed. We provide refreshments and will work with you and/or your group on meal options depending on the time of day your retreat is scheduled.

All retreats will involve a planning meeting prior to the retreat day to establish goals, discuss activities and schedule and coordinate other special needs. Every retreat is customized to fit the individual or group in attendance, so that each experience is personal and unique.

Instructors – Our Horses

Sinpae (Little Fox)

He was part of our original group of three rescued and brought to our farm. His Uncle Buff (Buffalo Hunter) and father Buck (Buckaroo) were the others. Buff and Buck passed away, but were my original teachers and they will forever be remembered by me. Sinpae is the greenest of our horses in terms of training, but also the smallest in stature. One would say he is the lowest in rank in the herd, but he is also the oldest.


We adopted Dude from a program in Erie, Pennsylvania. Dude is roughly 22 years young. He spent most of his time as a pleasure riding horse at a Christian Camp in the Alleghany Mountains. Dude is kind of a been there, done that horse. Don’t let his laid-back style fool you, the Dude abides on his own terms.


Oreo is our sole mare. She is the queen and diva of the herd. She too came from Pennsylvania with Dude. She is our largest horse in terms of stature and is about 20 years old. Oreo often needs time to warm up to strangers and requests. Her three boyfriends protect her very well and she loves their attention.

Thunder (Chocolate Thunder)

Thunder is our youngest horse around 15 years of age. He’s the alpha male of the herd. He came to us via Beach City, Ohio. Thunder would be enjoying a successful career on the show circuit but unfortunately, he has a bone chip in his front knee. He is the ideal trail riding horse and has many great years ahead of him. He’s always thinking and you would be surprised the many locks, latches, and doors he can open on his own.


Mike Gocsik

Former private school administrator and development professional.

He has served on many non-profit boards, facilitating strategic planning initiatives and advancement plans. Mike has over two decades worth of experience working for non-profit organizations, and has held a myriad of titles throughout his multi-faceted career.

However, he prefers his latest, most challenging, and most satisfying title: Husband & Father

Email:  mgocsik@neo.rr.com