Mary Jo Zanolli

CEC Instructor

Mary Jo began riding over 30 years ago- beginning at an area 4H horse club, moving on to the open horse show circuit, and then a local eventing barn. 

For her adult life  dressage has been her discipline of choice - which she credits to the years spent as a young adult being a working student for Jennifer and Beth Baumert. Currently she has a 10 year old Hanoverian mare she bought as a 10 week old filly, started herself, and hopes to eventually compete with at the FEI level. MJ also has a young Oldenburg filly as an up and coming prospect , which she is super excited about!


In winter of 2016 MJ and Ella spent 6 weeks in Wellington FL on a scholarship from The Dressage Foundation to work with USDF instructor/faculty member Annie Morris. In 2017 they returned to FL for season, working with USDF instructor/judge Jennifer Sappington Truett, and again in 2019 to work with Marsha Harford Sapp. MJ found all three experiences invaluable and inspiring both to her partnership with her mare Ella, and also to her training system for her CEC students back home. 

MJ enjoys introducing kids and adults to horsemanship and riding basics, developing their abilities so they can confidently ride out in the xcountry field, on the trail , over a small course of xrails, through a dressage test, or simply around the arena safely and correctly. She also has a lot of fun developing summer programs and making CEC a fun place for horse crazy kids! Besides teaching beginners , MJ  has a passion for teaching dressage concepts to riders of all ages and levels so that horse and rider can be harmonious and balanced. A detailed list of programs available for riders of all ages and experience levels can be found here: KIDS PROGRAMS

Mary Jo can be contacted at or 860-752-3964.

Call us

to learn more

Barn: (860) 742-1900

Athene: (860) 942-3942


220 Talcott Hill Rd.,

Coventry, CT 06238

  • facebook-square

Socialize with us

© Connecticut Equestrian Center