YMCA BLUE RIDGE ASSEMBLY

Group Programs

Whether you are with a school field trip, church retreat, family reunion, YMCA, or another group, we can design a program agenda tailored to fit your group’s needs. Enrich your Mountaintop experience with staff-led programming to meet your group’s goals and objectives. All of our guided program options are listed below. To give you an idea of what your tailored program agenda might look like, check out a sample program agenda here.

Achieve on our Challenge Courses

We have one of the largest and most comprehensive challenge course facilities in the country, featuring eight different low ropes and high ropes climbing facilities. Our challenge courses promote physical activity, develop trust and encourage communication to bring your group closer together.

Alpine Tower

Fifty-foot tower with over nine challenging ascent routes. Good for individual climbs with team support.

Sessions: 3 hours
Ages: 4 – Adult
Participants: 18 – 45

Carolina Straight Wall

Fifty-foot vertical climbing wall offering six access routes over varying angles. Best for individual climbs with team support.

Sessions: 3 hours
Ages: 4 – Adult

Giant Swing

An exhilarating “free-fall” experience. The team pulls and the individual releases and swings through the air from up to 30 feet.

Sessions: 3 hours
Ages: 7 – Adult
Participants: 10 – 30

Diamond Extension Courses

Linear High Ropes Course (40’) offering ten elements for individual or partner-oriented challenges.

Sessions: 4 hours
Ages: Middle School – Adult
Participants: 16 – 30

Watts Family Odyssey Course

This course offers a great opportunity for large groups wishing to participate simultaneously in a high ropes course. Dual Level (22’ & 33’) linear high ropes course offering six elements, including a zipline, for teams of two and eight.

Sessions: 3 hours
Ages: Middle School – Adult
Participants: 24 – 60

Indoor Climbing Wall

Recreational climbing wall offers seventeen routes, good for individual climbs with team support.

Sessions: 3 hours
Ages:  4 – Adult
Participants:  12 – 100

Indoor High Linear Course

Linear High Ropes Course (20’) offers nine challenging elements for individual and partner events.

Sessions: 3 hours
Ages: Middle School – Adult
Participants: 16 – 32

Explore our Adventure Programs

Our selection of adventure programs allows your group to experience our scenic mountain property with one of our guides while learning new skills, sharing time together, and being active in the outdoors.

Team Development:
Group Initiatives and Games

Experience a mix of thought-provoking team-building activities with fun and energizing group games.

Sessions: 1.5 or 3 hours
Ages: Middle School – Adult
Participants: 12 – 48

Team Development:
Low Elements Course

Solve mental and physical problems using slightly-elevated cables, platforms, ropes and wooden beams.

Sessions: 1.5 or 3 hours
Ages: Middle School – Adult
Participants: 12 – 48

Archery

Participate in basic shooting and scoring techniques on our woodland or open field ranges.

Sessions: 1.5 hours
Ages: Elementary – Adult
Participants: 6 – 24

Burma Bridge

Construct a primitive suspension rope bridge as a team.

Sessions: 1.5 hours
Ages: Middle School – Adult
Participants: 6 – 24

High Windy Hike

Embark on an intensive three-mile trail to the summit of our mountain that overlooks spectacular views of the Swannanoa Valley and the Great Craggies.

Sessions: 3 hours
Ages: Middle School – Adult
Participants: 6 – 24

Mountain Biking

Explore Blue Ridge on our two-mile trail. Mountain bikes, helmets, water, and maps are provided for the ride.

Sessions: 1.5 or 3 hours
Ages: Middle School – Adult
Participants: 6 – 12

Learn in our Outdoor Classroom

We host children, youth and teens of all ages for day, multi-day or week-long stays with our comfortable lodging and meals at affordable package rates. Many of our outdoor education programs meet North Carolina education standards. Please ask if you’d like information on another state’s standards.

We offer affordable pricing including complimentary chaperone packages. Per person cost depends on the number of students, program sessions, chaperones, meals, nights, and room arrangements. Also ask about our financial assistance program!

Mountain Stream Discovery

Explore the mountain streams around Blue Ridge to discover aquatic creatures in their natural habitat, and to determine water quality and other environmental conditions.

Sessions: 1.5 hours
Ages: 4 Years – Adult
Participants: 6 – 24

Predator-Prey

Participate in an ecological simulation game demonstrating predator-prey relationships, survival, and the food web through a strategic game of tag in the woods. Action-packed and lots of fun!
Sessions: 1.5 hours
Ages: 9 Years – Adult
Participants: minimum of 15

Survival in the Woods

This wilderness survival class involves creative problem solving, survival information, group decision-making, and leadership skills as we learn two of the most basic survival skills, shelter building, and fire building.

Sessions: 2 hours
Ages: 9 Years – Adult
Participants: 6

Interpretive Nature Hike

Explore Blue Ridge’s ecologically-diverse hardwood forest on an interactive and informative guided hike. The route can be modified to fit the group’s abilities and time availability- a shorter hike on our lower trails, or a more intense hike to the peak of our mountain.

Sessions: 1.5 or 3 hours
Ages: 5 Years – Adult
Participants: 6 – 24

Night Awareness Hike

Utilize a range of sensory experiences in a fun and interactive evening hike in a dark, but safe, nocturnal setting.

Sessions: 1.5 hours
Ages: Elementary – Adult
Participants: 6 – 48

Create in our Craft Room

The beauty of the Appalachian Mountains has inspired artists and craft makers for generations and continues to connect spirit, mind and body. People of all ages and abilities will find enjoyment in creating tangible memories of experiences on the mountain, expressing the inspirational beauty and relationship with our creator, and having fun in creating together.

The following sessions can be incorporated into your group’s agenda with advance notice, at least 3 weeks prior to your arrival.

Open Crafts

The Craft Room can be scheduled during your group’s free time. Participants may visit on their own and pay for their own craft, or the group can allot a specific per-person project cost. Craft Room projects range from beginner to advanced level, are priced from $2-$25, and can take anywhere from a few minutes to a week to create.

Open crafts include painting and ceramics. 

Sessions: 3 hours
Ages: Elementary – Adult
Participants: 5 – 20

Scheduled Group Craft

Groups pre-select a single Appalachian craft activity. All materials and specific organized instructions are provided.

You can schedule a session for the following crafts: candle-making, bead jewelry, painting, tie-dye, paint-on wood, or ceramics.

Sessions: 3 hours
Ages: Elementary – Adult
Participants: 5-35