Pat Pierce never had any intentions to run a bed and breakfast or to raise a herd of sheep. Yet every day, she saddles up her horse and leads the sheep out to graze. She logs trees and cuts wood for the furnace to heat the house and the wood stove to cook. She also tends to her guests, who range from musicians and artists to foxhunters and their horses.
The Ragtime Bed, Barn and Breakfast sits on 160 acres in the heart of Camargo Hunt country in Northern Kentucky. Being far from the road, it is peaceful and quiet. Green rolling hills dotted with grazing sheep and horses make up the spectacular views through large glass windows.
Inside the three bedroom house, the rooms are furnished with antiques and decorated with paintings that owner Pat Pierce says creates an eclectic, artistic feel.
The barn for travelers’ horses contains four foaling stalls, one regular stall and a paddock with a shed.
Pat is a former huntsman of the Metamora hunt in Metamora, Michigan. During a joint meet with the Camargo hunt, a property came up for sale that would be a perfect project for her husband.
“We bought it not with intentions of being a B&B. We just wanted to renovate the farm, which was in rough shape. That’s how things got started,” Pat said.
Sadly, Pat’s husband passed away in 2006 and so did not see the project completed. Then when the economy tanked, Pat was concerned about leaving the property vacant.
“We had a lot of personal time in this project, so in 2010, after 20 seasons, I retired from the hunt and came down here to protect the property and figure out what to do. With the layout, sitting deep in the property, it’s very quiet and lends itself to being a B&B.”
Having traveled far and wide as a huntsman, Pat knew it was difficult to find a place where you could stay and put your horse up at the same time. She saw a need for adding a third “B” for barn to the Ragtime B&B.
Pat can accommodate foxhunters and their horses that are passing through or guest hunting with Camargo, which meets just two miles away. Travelers may also plan to visit the Elk Creek Winery, Oak Lake and the Kentucky Horse Park during their stay.
In the beginning, Pat wasn’t sure the B&B would be successful and decided the “land needed to do something.” Without any experience as a shepherd, she chose to raise sheep, which would be easier to maintain on her own and have less impact on the land than cattle.
“When I say it is a working ranch, it really is,” Pat said. “I do it the old fashioned way. I saddle up in the mornings and take the herds out where there is no fencing. I left the land open, so the sheep move and graze naturally. Health wise, they’re in great shape. And when I have the B&B booked, the sheep go in pastures where they’re contained and the horses get a couple of days off.”
Between the sheep and the B&B, Pat stays busy. “It’s quite different, but it’s very enjoyable.”
To learn more and book your own trip to the Ragtime B&B, visit www.ragtimebb.com.