Blue Ridge Institute Activities and Events

The activities at BRI are planned to enhance the conference week’s experience.  Through activities, members connect in non-traditional settings that build lasting relationships.  Family members are welcome and encouraged to participate when possible.  Some require pre- reservations, others you will sign up for at registration on the first day of the conference.

Many of the activities outside of the conference sessions are held throughout the beautiful park.  It is helpful to have transportation as most of them are not within walking distance from the Inn or the cabins.  However, Blue Ridgers are great at sharing rides to activities and will make sure you don’t get left out if you don’t have transportation while you are there.  While hiking, boating, golfing, and swimming are favorites at the park, there are plenty of people who also enjoy sitting by the lake or having deep conversations or even a much needed nap.

There are many activities also offered at the park outside of the scheduled activities like golf, swimming, fishing, picnics, horseback riding, hiking, ping pong, zip lining, and more.  Click here for the Fontana Village Brochure Activities & Events.

Here are some of the regularly scheduled activities that Blue Ridgers look forward to each year.

Tai Chi/Yoga
Morning Warm-up

Start each morning off right with an energizing warm-up exercise.  Bring a mat, towel, and water.

When:  Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday at 7:00 am

Disc Golf

Fontana Village Resort grounds includes an enjoyable Disc Golf Course.  This beautiful disc golf course layout was conceived and installed in the summer of 2007 by Pat Farrell, of DiscConcepts. This pay-to-play course features significant distance from the blue tees (6805′) , moderate elevation, and many high risk/reward situations. There is a reasonable mix of trees and open holes, as well as, balance between left, straight, and right turning holes. Plan to bring appropriate equipment.  Click here for the Course information.

Mountain Biking & Hiking

Fontana Village Resort maintains over twenty miles of hiking and mountain biking trails in the mountains surrounding the Village. The trail system at Fontana Village Resort also connects to USFS trails in the Nantahala National Forest and to the Appalachian Trail. In addition to being home to the Appalachian Trail, the Resort is also crossed by the Benton MacKaye Trail which traverses some of the most rugged terrain of the southern Appalachians. Check it out here.


Enjoy tennis together with other tennis enthusiasts on the tennis courts on the State park grounds.  Bring all necessary equipment to play.  Carpooling is recommended as the courts are not in walking distance from the Inn.

Softball Game

A favorite each year, the softball game is a fun time for all ages.  Cheerleaders are also welcome and encouraged.  Bring gloves and any other equipment you may have to share.

Talent Show

Each year, the talent show is a highlight of the week both for the performers as well as the lively audience.  Performances have ranged from solos, instrumental performances, skits, and more.  Individuals, groups, families, children, state groups, and anyone willing to take to the stage are encouraged to participate.  Bring music, instruments, props, costumes, etc.  Sound equipment is provided as well as a piano keyboard.  All participants will meet for a “rehearsal” the day of the show.

Sign-up by Monday to participate.

Dance Lessons

Another favorite activity each year is learning the newest line dances from one of our BRI members.  Old favorites are also “practiced” in preparation for the President’s Ball.

President's Ball

The President’s Ball is held each year to honor the presiding President of BRI.  Each year the theme is customized for that president.  The evening includes a delicious meal, libations, a program honoring the President, and bop-til-you-drop dancing.  A separate program will be offered for children for this evening.

One ticket to the ball is included in registration, additional tickets may be purchased for guests for $50.

Group Photo

Each year the participants and their families gather for a group photo that becomes a treasured keepsake.  The photo will be available for download from the BRI website following the conference. Check the activity schedule for the time of the photo so that you and your family don’t miss out on being part of the BRI history.

Other things to do in the area

There is a wealth of other opportunities available at the park as well as in the surrounding communities.  The park has a recreation center that is run by the Resort and is open to guests for activities ranging from crafts and nature walks to arcade games. There are outdoor swimming pools, a couple of small stores and laundry facilities.  There are abundant hiking trails as well as cycling trails.  Check out their website for more information.


The park is very large and many activities are not in walking distance.  Plan on driving your car to activities within the park.

BRI Events
  • Annual David Letterman Talent Show Skit.
  • Pre-Conference Rafting Trip
  • The Rockin' 5K and Fun Run
  • Group Hike in Fall Creek Falls
  • Park Sign to Piney Falls