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TELLING OUR STORY

 

THE HISTORY OF EAGLE’S NEST FOUNDATION

1927

Mrs. Oppenheimer (Bailey) purchases Eagle’s Nest Camp and moves it from Eagle’s Nest Mountain, Haywood County, NC to our current site in the Little River Valley. The program was only for girls and closed due to WWII.

1945

Dr. Alex and Hannah Waite purchase Eagle’s Nest and open camp for boys and girls the summer of 1945 with the war still ongoing in the Pacific.

1946

Polio outbreak in Florida causes quarantine for the entire camp for two weeks.

 

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1950

Chartered as a 501(c)(3) educational, charitable organization with John D’Albora as President.

1968

Carolina’s Camp for Children with Diabetes opens with help from Duke University on the Eagle’s Nest campus. This partnership with the American Diabetes Associations of North and South Carolina and Georgia continued until 1984.

1973

Hante has its first Adventure on the Appalachian Trail.

1973-2

1977

Helen Valentine Waite becomes director of Eagle’s Nest Camp and Dr. Alex Waite retires.

1980’s

“Off Season” programs for adults including yoga retreats, bike treks, canoe adventures.

1992

Birch Tree Programs providing transformational experiences for school groups officially opens and operates until 1999.

1992

oa-start-2

1993

Eagle’s Nest Camp becomes Eagle’s Nest Foundation overseeing Camp, Hante, The Outdoor Academy, and Birch Tree.

1994

The Outdoor Academy officially opens thanks to the vision of Helen Waite. Ted Wesemann is the founding Head of School.

1995

The first OA students arrive in Pisgah Forest for Semester 1.

2000

Noni Waite-Kucera becomes Executive Director of Eagle’s Nest Foundation

2001

Eagle’s Nest purchases 125 acres from P.H. Glatfelter Company including the horse pasture and most of the watershed.

2002

The Traditional Arts Center (Wayah and Cheoah) opens thanks to the generous donors of the Roots and Wings Campaign.

 

85th-anniversary-logo

2014

Eagle’s Nest Board of Trustees set Centennial Action plan with four overarching priorities: Empower a community of educators; Cultivate and celebrate our sense of place; Share our Story; Build Financial Resiliency

2016

Protected in perpetuity:  Eagle’s Nest places 76% of its land – 143 acres- under a conservation easement in partnership with Conserving Carolina and the North Carolina Land and Water Fund.  Eagle’s Nest Camp begins working to restructure some of the camp “tribal” system.

2019

Eagle’s Nest partners with Niambi Jaha-Echols to conduct a Trans-cultural agility assessment and draft a Transcultural Commitment Statement for the Foundation.

2020

The COVID-19 pandemic forces summer camp to close for the season.  The Housing and Office Building is completed and opens for use.   All programs update gender inclusion provisions including housing participants and staff with gender with which they identify.

2021

Eagle’s Nest publishes a Land Acknowledgement Statement to acknowledge that the land upon which Eagle’s Nest sits is the ancestral land of the Cherokee people past and present.  Eagle’s Nest Camp updates the community system formerly known as tribes to become Kindreds and makes other changes to remove names, symbols, and activities irreverent of Native American peoples and culture.