Rockmont is making significant enhancements in 2020!
After multiple conversations with families, campers, and staff that helped us learn more about the activities and opportunities that are motivating our campers and driving our mission, we decided that it was time for Rockmont to invest in our facility, our program, and our staff. We offer this update because it is a considerable investment for us, and we know that Rockmont is an important investment for your family.
Rockmont is on the move in 2020, here’s an update on the steps we have taken!
Since the 2019 season ended . . .
We completed a Pump Track* for our Mountain Biking program, and we are now ready to move to the next phase of our expansion of that program with a new Mountain Bike Shop. This shop will create space for indoor instruction in bike mechanics on rainy days, house a new fleet of bikes for skills and for trips, and serve as the base for a renewed program. The site is adjacent to a gate that leads to new trails that will be carved on a side of the mountain most conducive to learning and enjoying mountain biking.
Mountain Biking is an exciting and healthy way to explore the world around us, but it is not easy. We want our campers to enjoy this skill, and that means finding just the right terrain, so that every camper can climb the hills feeling strong, and descend through the trees with confidence and care. We look forward to enjoying this new site with staff and campers soon!
*A pump track is a continuous loop of dirt berms and “rollers” that can be ridden without pedaling. The rider uses a pumping motion in his or her upper and lower body to move around the track – thus the name. Pump tracks are not jumps designed for thrill-seekers; they are challenging but accessible courses designed for all skill levels.
Other Program Enhancements
Look for reports next month on our new Grill Skill and our new Hand Tool Woodworking Skill, which will be part of the Appalachian Arts Village. Both are in design, and we are eager to get started!
We want all of Rockmont’s facility to reveal the beauty of the land that has been given us here. We recognize that this is a spectacularly beautiful place, and it’s a gift to be here. It is “The Rockmont Way” to build excellent facilities, and keep them in top condition.
Mountain Camp Shower House
Showers are an important and sometimes overlooked part of the camp experience. A good shower is a great gift after a full day of running, swimming, and playing outdoors. But the place needs to be inviting and spacious. There needs to be adequate space for campers to change and keep their clothes clean and dry. There needs to be room for privacy. Since the 2019 summer ended we have enlisted a contractor who will begin work on our new Mountain Camp shower-house after our last off-season group leaves. Our older campers will soon have two shower-houses devoted just to them. We are building this facility to last for generations!
Hickory and Hemlock Hill
We have also begun a major project to bolster the foundation of the historic cabins on Hickory Hill. Cabins 13-18 include the first cabins that Rockmont built after the camp was purchased from Black Mountain College in 1956. We are digging new foundations to secure the historic cabins for future generations to enjoy. While we are in Deer Camp, Cabins 19 and 20 will have new covered porches to enhance and expand the stay of those campers. We enjoy building porches because Rockmont has some of the most scenic porches anywhere. The Hemlock Cabins have their own unique feel. We can’t wait for them to be filled with campers.
Other Facility Enhancements
Speaking of Porches: Our new Zip Line Porch has just been finished, and this brings to a completion a Zip Line project begun last year. It included new zip lines, two new stair-cases, and now perhaps the most exciting porch at Rockmont!
If you ask a Rockmont veteran what made camp great for them, chances are they will tell you a story about a staff member.
The key to any excellent camp is its staff. Beautiful facilities, scenic grounds, and exciting programs are all great, but the staff make the camp.
This year we have added 2 members to our Year-Round Staff, including the hire of Mike Peckham as our new Summer Camp Director.
You can read about Mike’s Return to Rockmont Here
This month we also added Chuck Flournoy to the team, returning to Rockmont as our Program Director. Chuck is a longtime friend of us all, a hall of fame camper and then tribal director, and he has extraordinary educational and leadership experience. Here’s an article including an interview on his return to Rockmont.
There is palpable excitement at Rockmont these days. We finished two new offices for our expanding staff, and planning meetings are filled with excitement, productivity, and FUN. Our sessions are filling as the leaves around us are changing shade. We’re excited to keep you in the loop during this compelling season in Rockmont’s story.
We can’t wait to see you on the road and see you back here in 2020!