Sunburst Stables: A Place to Remember

In a quiet town, nestled in the north Georgia mountains, there is a small business that has been committed to their customers for years.

“Sunburst Stables has been open for almost 24 years, and in these 24 years, It has been more rewarding than I ever expected,” says Becky Elliott, co-owner of Sunburst Stables. “People tell us every day how much they will remember their time with us.”

Sunburst Stables is a small business that provides activities such as ziplining horseback riding and boating tours on Lake Rabun. They have expert staff that are trained on the activities and on information about the area. This combination of well-crafted tours and expert guides creates an experience that attracts thousands of people a year.

“We are always looking at our property and trying to find new things to add and expand what we can offer,” says Mark Elliott, co-owner of Sunburst. “Everytime we add something new, it’s always rewarding to have customers tell us that they enjoyed it. It makes it worth it.”

Sunburst started as a small horse stable that did the odd tour every so often, but mainly held on by housing local’s horses for boarding fees. Mark and Becky Elliott then bought the land and transformed the business.

“I first found Sunburst when I went to their kids camp,” says Savannah Roper, a current employee. “After coming back over and over I decided to apply for a job. I figured, I love it so much I might as well work here.”

The staff begins their training by shadowing a senior employee in their daily tasks. Then they are passed through the gauntlet of learning all of the procedures. Then finally, the employee must learn how to treat customers of all types. This allows the employees to be equipped to handle any situation and calm even the most anxious people.

“I remember one tour I was on. There was a little kid and he was terrified to zipline,” says Roper. “His parents had tried to help but he was set on not going. So I sat and talked to the kid for a minute and asked him if he would go with me on the first one. We went down together, and on the next line, I asked him if he could see if he could go first and that I would come down after. We had a blast on that tour. He cried when we got back to the barn because he wanted to go again.”

The future of Sunburst is still changing. New activities are always on the way, and new memories are always being made. The sky’s the limit, and the owners and employees at sunburst are ready to make dreams come true.

“There is one story that will last for me,” says Mark Elliott. “A very old woman came one day. She brought her daughter who was still older than me, and I’m not young. The two of them wanted to go on the ATV tour, but the old woman was too weak in her arms, so she couldn’t drive the vehicle. I could tell that she was very disappointed. I could feel the weight of it, so I went and got a work vehicle that we use to repair the trails. I loaded the two women in and I drove them on the entire tour. When we got back, the older woman told me that she had just finished the last thing on her bucket list, that she wanted to ride in an off road vehicle. She then told me that this had been her favorite one. These are the people that we did this for, the reason we love our jobs so much.

Sunburst is open year round and are always avalibe to give information or book activities. Visit Sunburststables.com or call at 800-806-1953 or 706-947-7433

Sources:

Becky Elliott- sstable@windstream.net

Mark Elliott- Doesn’t know how email works – 706-768-4692

Savannah Roper- savannahlee.trimmer@gmail.com

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