Mountains, Montreat, Maggie Valley, and Making Memories

Rebekah and I made good time Tuesday, heading to our Western North Carolina retreat, so we decided to give our two eldest grandchildren their first taste of PC(USA) Valhalla. Yes, I’m talking about Lake Susan and the Montreat Conference Center just east of Asheville.

At first David and Beks were like, “That’s an interesting stone entry gate… But so what…?” Until we drove on, in through the picturesque town, parked by Lake Susan, walked them into Anderson Auditorium, perused the SERVE gift shop, and took in the views around the lake.

Then it was, “This place is really cool, Grandaddy.” And, “Maybe we can come to a youth conference when we’re teens?” You can bet on that, grandmama and I will absolutely make sure you both get that experience.

Their first glimpse of the mountains, motoring along I40 heading west, was everything we had hoped for. Then, as we climbed up to the pass before heading down into Black Mountain, they could hardly contain themselves. Calling their parents, writing in the vacation journals we are not suggesting but requiring, taking photos, making little video “shorts.”

The destination, a small house overlooking Maggie Valley, also elicited all the “wows” and the “this is incredible” responses as if on cue.

I am looking forward to Wednesday’s adventures. Stay tuned, I will try to help you all keep up!

In awe of God’s wonderful creation – DEREK


  1. Chuck and I have attended Montreat Worship & Music Conference with members of our church bell choir several times. What a beautiful place and fantastic music and worship experiences we have been privileged to enjoy. Have a great time with the grands!

    Liked by 1 person

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