MBA’s property at Long Mountain, Tennessee, was a tremendous gift to our school community. Approximately 150 acres of pristine land set on a beautiful mountain top among beautiful woodlands it is the school’s new mountain retreat. The property is situated within a 1300 acre tract of land purchased by several alumni who have both an interest in environmental protection and mountain residential living. The developers have carefully planned the property so that much of the land will remain in pristine condition. Already two lakes have been built on the mountain top. A great variety of trees and wildlife exist in this setting. Many of the studies of the Cumberland Plateau have called this area a biological gem.
MBA has built an observatory at this location because the altitude and dark skies make it very favorable for astronomical observations and imaging. The observatory was completed in 2011. The school has put into place the infrastructure and a site development plan so that little of the natural area will be disturbed. Additional information about the observatory can be found on the website
set up by Mark Manner.
Plans are for two cabins to be built at this site so that student groups, parents, and alumni can visit the area as well as use the new observatory. The observatory will allow remote study of the stars and skies. Future expansion plans include the building of more cabins so that larger student groups can visit the site. Our hope is that the area will be a wonderful retreat center for the entire MBA community. We also believe that it will allow a great retreat from suburban life so that MBA friends and constituents, as well as other groups from the Nashville area and beyond, can enjoy the natural beauty of this area. The accompanying photos provide pictures and images of this area as well as design plans so that you can see the obvious potential in this mountaintop retreat.
Several student groups are already using the property, and MBA has built a beautiful lake with a dock and canoe rack, an irrigated athletic field, and a large camp site for weekend camping. Our Environmental Science classes have worked hard to clear trails and develop a tree walk with 40 different tree and shrub species identified with permanent markers. Climb Nashville has identified several areas along our part of the escarpment which will be ideal locations for rock climbing and bouldering, and construction of an 800 ft zip line is currently underway. The opportunities for outdoor learning and leadership activities are simply unlimited at this unique part of MBA.