New Blob Deck -
Construction of the new blob deck. Thanks to Joe Gregory for the use of his trackhoe and backhoe. Thanks also to Craig Young and Chris Little of Prosim Engineering, LLC for the engineering plans for the project, and local contractor John Smith, long-time friend and supporter of Doe River Gorge, who has helped in the construction of numerous projects since the early days of the ministry.
The lake is drained every year for cleaning, and this year a new deck for the BLOB will be constructed. The new deck foundation will also resolve a serious leak issue that developed last summer. A special thanks to John Maxwell of Johnson City for his volunteer help with the removal of the 23 year-old deck with the use of his Bobcat trackhoe.
Seven high school teens from Crossroads Bible Church of Grand Rapids, Michigan and their youth pastor and wife Max and Chelsea Garter are spending their Spring Break helping us get ready for summer ministry. A special THANKS to these awesome young people for driving 700 miles and giving a week of hard work for God's glory!
Golf carts and small all-terrain vehicles are very useful. God has graciously provided a Yamaha gas-powered golf cart by donation from Mr. Tyler Clark in memory of his father, Mr. Earl Clark of Corbin, KY. Shown in the photo are: Terry Maughon (president), Ted Rich (former board member), and Ted's grandson, Owen Peterson.
The Depot functions as the Outfitters Gift Shop as well as kitchen and serving area making it the most-used facility. A new ceramic floor is being installed that will serve for many years to come.
Cara graduated from Young Harris College in 2017 with a Bachelor's degree in Communication Studies. She is a native of Covington, Georgia. Her passion for ministry and people led her to work on summer staff as a counselor at Doe River Gorge for three summers after high school (2013-2014-2015) during her college years. That same passion led her back after college to work full-time. Cara joins the staff in the midst of camper registration activity. She will be the one to answer all your questions about signing up your children for "the best summer of their life!" She will also help schedule your group retreat or school field trip.
The Unimog (giant 4x4) was given a new paint job thanks to the generosity and expertise of Steve Wysong, a board member of Doe River Gorge Ministries. Steve owns Wysong Enterprises, a helicopter customization service, located at the Tri-Cities Regional Airport. His customization service involves high-quality painting and Steve has provided his services to repaint several Doe River Gorge vehicles. THANK-YOU to Steve!
A stone stairway has been installed between Mountain Meadows Lodge and the huge oak used for the Technical Tree Climb. This attractive feature will provide safety on the much-used sloping terrain at the tree climb as well as seating for those waiting their turn at the popular activity. Again, a special thanks to John Maxwell for his valuable time and skills with his Bobcat trackhoe.
It began in 1996 as the Fall Open-house. From 2005-11 it was the Fall Excursion with train rides into the gorge. The mid-October Sunday event grew into the Fall Family Fun Day from 2012-16 offering family-friendly activities and attractions, and in 2016 hosting the first annual Goliath at the Gorge race. This year, expanding to two days, the annual event began on Saturday morning with more than 350 runners in the Goliath at the Gorge race with summer-like conditions. The leaves were not as colorful as hoped for, but there was much to fill a day with great memories...train rides through the gorge, funnel cakes, crafts, brick oven pizza, Unimog rides, bloomin' onions, horseback rides, climbing tower, games, and cotton candy, and more!
Dwight and Carol Martin are our SOWER retired volunteers working here during the month of October. Dwight and Carol are from Hendersonville, TN and have served as SOWERs for 12 years. They are a part of a long list of wonderful, energetic retirees who travel the country pulling their RVs (for some, their only home) doing service projects for hundreds of Christian organizations. Doe River Gorge has benefited greatly over the years from countless hours of generous and valuable help of retired couples volunteering their time and skills.