Welcome to the Luthersprings Environmental Education program.

Lutherock consists of 753 acres on the south slope of Sugar Mountain in North Carolina with facilities ranging from hotel style rooms to cabins. Lutherock has a luxurious 26 bed retreat center. Cabins can accommodate 120 in bunk beds in cabins. Lutherock features miles of hiking trails, high ropes courses, rockclimbing, a disc golf course, group interaction course, and much more.

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Meeting Spaces & Lodging

The Kuehner Conference Center has meeting and dining space for up to 150 people. The center also offers a comfortable lounge with a gas fireplace, a large screened in porch with rocking chairs with a great view of the woods and laundry and restroom facilities. This retreat center can accommodated several types of groups including retreat groups, week-long youth camps, families, older adults, college groups, singles and single parents, and more.

Kuehner Conference Center includes the St. Peter House, Fair Haven, and St. Stephen Houses. The St. Peter House is comprised of six hotel-style rooms, each room is carpeted, heated/air-conditioned, has a queen bed, bunk bed and private bath. Fair Haven and St. Stephen Houses are the newest additions to Luther Springs. These three units (including the St. Peter House), have a total of 18 rooms that can accommodate up to 48 people at a time in high comfort facilities. Bed and bath linens are provided for guests. Connecting these two buildings is the Schmertmann Meeting Room. A full online gallery will be coming soon.

The Morgan/Westfall Pavilion is a large covered area ideal for worship, meetings, games and day use. The concrete floor is appropriate for all occasions. The addition of a shuffleboard and four-square area, canteen and rest rooms make this a great facility for any group outing.

Morgan Village is an area of 4 cabins with sleeping accommodations for up to 11 people. Each cabin is carpeted and has heat/air-condition and restroom facilities; one cabin is fully handicapped accessible. The four cabins surround a centrally located fire ring and picnic tables. Bed and bath linens are available for an extra charge. Morgan Village is a great place for larger groups to stay during the summer season.

The Schmertmann Meeting Room is perfect for a small groups or breakout sessions.




Meals

Luther Springs provides all guest groups with meal service. Our dining services staff can accommodate special diets and needs and is open to working with you to plan menus to make your stay as perfect as possible. at Luther Springs.




Local Attractions

Paynes Prairie State Park is biologically, geologically and historically unique. More than 20 distinct biological communities provide a rich array of habitats for wildlife and livestock, including alligators, bison, horses and more than 270 species of birds. The park offers a 50 foot observation tower, eight trails for hiking, horseback riding, and bicycling. Trails include a 16 mile paved Gainesville-Hawthorne State Trail. Fishing and canoeing are also available on the lake.

Florida Museum of Natural History: one of the nation's largest and fastest-growing natural history museums. Permanent exhibits allow you to explore butterflies at the butterfly rainforest (or indoor exhibits), research, Florida fossils, energy, and regions of Florida.

The Butterfly Rainforest: is a living exhibit that is a part of the Natural History Museum. It boasts free-flying butterflies and birds from around the world along with an assortment of other animals including turtles and fish! The lush landscape is planted in tropical trees and colorful flowering plants amid waterfalls and a walking path. Skilled interpretive staff are available to help answer questions and provide visitors with a personal and highly engaging experience.

Curtis M. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts: is a performing arts theatre in Gainesville on the University of Florida campus. The center presents some of the most established and emerging national and international artists on the main stage.

The Blue Ridge Parkway: The Blue Ridge Parkway is designed as a recreational motor road connecting the Shenandoah and Great Smoky Mountains National Parks. The Parkway winds 469 miles along the Blue Ridge Mountains through North Carolina and Virginia. A drive down any part of the Parkway will provide the visitor with a cross-section of Appalachian mountain history. And ask our staff about different local hikes that can be found along the Parkway.

Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings Historic State Park: celebrates The Yearling for which Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings won the Pulitzer Prize. Visitors to the homestead can walk back in time to 1930s farm life where Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings lived and worked in the tiny community of Cross Creek. The home has been restored and preserved as it was when she lived there and wrote The Yearling.

 

Living Lab Outdoor School

Living Lab Program partners with your classroom in a single day trip or a 3-5 day residential environmental education experience. Build community together in a discovery based program exploring God's creation. Our interdisciplinary approach applies classroom learning with hands-on experiences... and FUN!

Living Lab Courses developed by Luther Springs

Quadrant Study: an ecosystem is selected such as wooded, field, bog (but not water). Students mark off a designated area. An organized study is done of this natural area to learn what plants and animals can live together. A plant and soil profile is completed. Plant identification is made. Weather study of the area taken each day of stay. Students working in groups allow for the development of team work and the distribution of work.

Lake Zonation: a study of aquatic life and how it fits into the web. Introduces students to the life of a lake, life in and surrounding the lake and the needs and uses of a lake. Physical factors-water temperature, turbidity, pH, and test for other substances present. Collect and identify plants and animal life in the lake and along the shore.

Orienteering: learns the skill of finding your way in the out-of-doors with a compass (pace and taking bearings). Utilizing several courses, students will put this knowledge to use in the fields/forests of Luther Springs.

Cinquain Poetry : write poetry using nature as the subject.

Leaf I.D. : recognize likenesses and differences of leaf structure (shape, margins, tips) necessary for identification.

Nature Scavenger Hunt

Adaptations: invent an animal that is camouflaged from its environment. Using materials given the animals are place in the environment and teams switch and search for the hidden animal.

ASE (Action Socialization Experiences) : this challenge course consists of a number of situations which require students to work as a group. Some of the situations (elements) are Spider Web, Climbing Wall, Island and Whale Watch.

Nature's Camouflage : to show how color helps a plant or an animal adapt to its environment.

Stump Scouting/Study of a Rotten Log

Gopher Tortoise: a study of actual tortoise burrows