Around the shores of Jordan Lake, a squad of outdoor enthusiasts works to cultivate environmental stewardship in youngsters through discovery-based classes and events that disguise education in a cloak of fun. Codirectors Eleanor Herr and Denise Nelson both possess a passion for nature, degrees in early-childhood education, and the creativity to combine the two into exciting programs.
Lessons and field trips designed for public- or home-schooled children instill a love of nature while adhering to the Common Core State and North Carolina Essential Standards for education. Events for kids and their families, such as a full-moon night hike with a campfire, encourage bonding that can strengthen telepathic communication during future potato-sack races. Weekly nature camps for ages 6–11 keep young brains blossoming in the summer. Jordan Lake Environment Education also hosts birthdays, replete with themed activities, coloring books, and free time for any self-provided cake and refreshments.
The museum is home to more than 150,000 artifacts that represent six centuries of North Carolina's history. Current exhibits include Behind the Veneer: Thomas Day, Master Cabinetmaker, featuring the nation's largest collection of furniture made by Thomas Day, a man of color who owned and operated one of North Carolina's largest cabinet shops prior to the Civil war, a recreation of Day's parlor and workshop, and talking portraits. Opening March 4, The Photography of Lewis Hine showcases a selection of photographs documenting the plight of child workers in the state’s textile mills a century ago. Either membership includes invitations to events such as Frolic at the Museum on April 16, celebrating the newest exhibit, The Story of North Carolina, an artifact-packed chronology covering 20,000 square feet.
Tim Langdon and his wife, Renee, founded Camp Flintlock, Inc. on a simple concept: people learn about history best if they live it. The Langdons know firsthand: they live on the property in an 18th-century-style log home that Tim and his friends built by hand. To immerse visitors in their colonial world, the Langdons host overnight camping trips where visitors can sleep in colonial-style tents, fire muskets, and string together Native American–inspired necklaces. At residential summer camps, guests even don colonial garb and participate in daily chores, such as splitting firewood and looking over their shoulder for the British. For those who just want a taste of colonial living, school field trips and day camps include activities like making beeswax candles and playing colonial games.