The Pond Outdoor Retreat Center
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The Pond Retreat Center Video

What is The Pond Retreat Center? Seven acres of landscaped gardens,  meadows and woodlands that are owned by artist and author Lee James Pantas. The retreat center does not include the residence of Mr. Pantas which is located on the property but does include the spacious front porch and the sitting area under the house.

Where is retreat center located? In Fairview, North Carolina, 15 minutes from downtown Asheville.

What is the purpose of the retreat center and is it affiliated with any organization or religious group?  The purpose is  provide a peaceful, beautiful and inspiring place for small groups or individuals to gather for self-guided retreats, meetings or nature observation. The Pond Retreat Center is made available by Mr. Pantas, is non-denominational and welcomes individuals and groups of all faiths, traditions and points of view, both religious and secular.

What activities are prohibited? The Pond Retreat Center is not a "party" venue. Alcohol is permitted but drunken or excessively noisy behavior will not be tolerated and guests or groups exhibiting such behavior will be asked to leave. Fishing or hunting is strictly prohibited and making of fires other than in designated firepits are not allowed.

When is the Retreat Center available?  April 1 through November 30

How large can our group be? Up to 30 persons (possibly larger but must be discussed with Mr. Pantas) The primary limiting factor is parking space. Carpooling is encouraged.

Is there an age limit? Yes, only children 14 or older are allowed at the current time. I have a new dog that is adjusting to younger children. By 2022 hope to allow younger children

Are pets allowed? Yes, dogs and other pets are welcomed as long as they are on a leash.

Will our scheduled time slot be shared with other groups? No

Can individual persons use The Pond Retreat Center? Yes, but they must reserve a period of time like any group would.

How large is the retreat center? Seven acres of level and gently rolling grass, meadow and  woodlands.

What are the qualifications for my group to reserve time at the retreat center? To qualify for use of the retreat center, the intent must be to hold a spiritual, family or secular retreat, writer or artist's workshop, or a gathering or meeting for small family groups, environmental or compassionate nature-centered organizations, or educational or business organizations. Hunting and fishing groups do not qualify.

Is there a fee to use the retreat center? There are no set fees for use of the retreat center but a donation from your group is expected to help with grounds maintenance, porta-potty fees, insurance and other costs. Without some financial contribution from retreat guests, The Pond Retreat Center could not be possible.

Is spiritual guidance or retreat direction available? No. All groups are self-guided.

Is the retreat center available for overnight stays? No

Are meals provided? No. Retreat groups are encouraged to bring their own food, drink and eating utensils and supplies. Running water is available. There are two outdoor charcoal grills available.

Are there bathroom facilities? Yes. A Porta-Potty is located near the Swallow Garden.

What happens if heavy rain is scheduled for the day of our retreat? Just cancel and reschedule.

What happens if there is a rain shower during our retreat time? Shelter in the main Swallow Garden and under or on the house front porch, is provided, as well as umbrellas for guest use.

What happens if a thunderstorm with lightning occurs during our retreat? Retreat guests can seek shelter  under or on the front porch of the house or in their cars until the danger of lightning stops.

Are there covered shelters for rain and sun protection? Yes, a large outdoor shelter, gazebo and pergola.

Where is the main gathering area? The Swallow Garden, a former basketball court converted into a raised flower bed garden, is the centrally located main meeting spot on the retreat center grounds.

Is smoking allowed? No

Are alcohol or illegal drugs allowed? No

Is fishing or hunting allowed?: No

Are there mosquitoes or gnats? Mosquitoes and gnats are not a problem.

Are bathrooms available? A handicapped accessible porta-a-potty and adjacent outdoor sink are on located next to the main Swallow Garden

Are cooking facilities available? Yes, a charcoal grill and outdoor sink with running water are located in the main Swallow Garden area. There is also a charcoal grill, firepit and picnic table in the Bamboo Grove.

If our group wishes to use the charcoal grills or firepit, is charcoal or wood provided? No. Groups must bring their own charcoal or wood.

Is there handicapped parking? Yes




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Lee James Pantas: 828-779-1569


The Pond Retreat Center
18 Garren Mountain Lane
Fairview NC 28730

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