Cross at Lake Junaluska

Transformational Gifts


Now, more than ever, Lake Junaluska is positioned to be the most welcoming and inviting place for personal renewal in our region and beyond.

Lake Junaluska depends on generous and faithful supporters who care deeply about providing a sacred place of renewal, a place set apart from an often hectic world, that welcomes everyone to connect with God and with each other. The following capital improvement projects are being funded directly through the generosity of charitable giving. As the result of an extensive strategic planning process, we are breaking ground on new projects, restoring and refurbishing beloved spaces and actively planning for future growth. We invite you to learn more about the following board-approved priorities and share your charitable gifts to make a lasting, transformative impact here at Lake Junaluska.

Preserving the Lake and Dam

The Lake Junaluska Dam, completed in 1913, is our oldest structure. We are committed to being good stewards of the lake by preserving the dam and the shoreline that surrounds it. Spanning 800 feet (550 feet of concrete and 250 feet of earth), the dam has undergone a series of upgrades and improvements throughout its history — in the 1970s, 1990s and 2010s.

Now over 110 years old, the Lake Junaluska Dam needs significant ongoing maintenance and timely infrastructure improvements. We must ensure that the dam is in pristine condition by refurbishing its spillway and gate controls. Thanks to recent transformational gifts from individual households and family foundations, Lake Junaluska has begun work on the dam’s control gates while mapping out long-range plans for infrastructure improvements.

Lake Junaluska Dam

Restoring Sacred Spaces: Lake Junaluska Cross

By far the most photographed, the most beloved and the most iconic spot at Lake Junaluska, the lighted Cross provides reassurance, hope and a daily reminder of God’s abundant love and grace.

Recent charitable gifts have funded a design phase in which a landscape architect has created a cohesive plan to restore the area. Plans include refurbishing and painting the Cross, repairing the stonework of the base, installing interpretive signage and reconfiguring the concrete and asphalt area at the foot of the structure to create a more welcoming and inviting gathering space.

Lake Junaluska Cross

Restoring Sacred Spaces: Stuart Auditorium

Since its construction in 1913, Stuart Auditorium has served as a gathering place in the heart of Lake Junaluska. The next time you step foot inside the historic space, take note of key improvements that have been made over the past year as the direct result of charitable support. New screens and projectors have been installed as well as new speakers. The back wall has been refurbished with new acoustical fabric. The audio/visual booth has been moved to the floor, opening up sight lines that were once obstructed. Future restoration work includes:

  • Refurbishing the stage
  • Addressing critical infrastructure needs, such as replacing broken doors, lights, seats and windows
  • Painting and staining the interior
  • Updating bathroom facilities
Stuart Auditorium

Restoring Sacred Spaces: Warren Center

Scheduled to open in 2024, the former World Methodist Council building is being transformed into a multi-purpose event venue thanks to the generosity of Anne and Mike Warren. As this artistic rendering conveys, the center will be able to host a variety of gatherings. Transformational gifts also have been received to restore the adjacent areas to the Warren Center, creating new ways for guests to enjoy spectacular views of the lake and mountains.

Because of the generosity of Wanda and Bill Musgrave, a lovely event lawn will provide outdoor gathering space at the lower entrance to the Susanna Wesley Garden. A paved walkway and scenic overlook have also been created through a combination of charitable giving from individuals as well as grant funding from the Haywood County Tourism Development Authority. Providing a connection to the Terrace Hotel, the winding pathway and the Chrissy Hill Scenic Overlook offer unparalleled views of the lake.

Artist Rendering of Warren Center expected to open summer 2024
Artist Rendering of the interior of the Warren Center, expected to open summer 2024

Strengthening Recreation Ministry

Lake Junaluska’s beloved Walking Trail and recreation areas provide safe gathering space for families, friends, nonprofit groups and churches to play and pray together. To strengthen this experience, plans have been developed to improve the outdoor recreation opportunities in the outdoor spaces adjacent to the J.B. Ivey Playground, shuffleboard courts, mini-golf course and pool.

In 2023, Walking Trail improvements began with the construction of a new raised bed along the Rose Walk made possible through a transformational gift. Additionally, a new sidewalk was added near the shuffleboard court and plans are actively underway for mini-golf upgrades and pedestrian pathway improvements in the Recreation Area.

Rose Walk at Lake Junaluska

Building Youth and Family Housing

Many people can trace their earliest memories of Lake Junaluska back to Shackford Hall and its surrounding area. Mountainview and Sunnyside Lodges were built to meet the needs of their time — offering dormitory-style rooms within close proximity of educational opportunities and outdoor activities. Today, those needs have changed. Groups still need to be close to sacred spaces and outdoor activities, but they require different types of room configurations.

Funds to support phase one of this project will be used to replace Sunnyside Lodge with a series of new, modern cottages that have been designed to foster community in a safe and welcoming environment. We are currently in the planning and design phase of this project, continuing to invite support for this exciting initiative.

Cottages at Lake Junaluska


To learn more about how you can be a part of these priority projects and special initiatives, contact the Lake Junaluska Development Office at 828-454-6680 or [email protected].


Lake Junaluska Assembly, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization. Gifts are tax-deductible. Our federal tax ID number is 56-0547461.