Camp Brookside was built on a 32 acre island in the New River, and originally opened in 1947 as a children’s summer camp for the employees of Union Carbide in Alloy, WV. For years, campers enjoyed activities such as swimming, sports, and arts and crafts. During the 1960's, the plant opened the camp to family vacations and reunions. The site was purchased by the National Park Service (NPS) in 1993 and has been renovated to serve as an overnight facility and environmental education center for the park and surrounding communities. Camp Brookside EEC can house up to 38 overnight guests with seven cabins, including a fully accessible one with its own shower, a wash house with showers, and a large mess hall with a commercial kitchen.
Camp Brookside EEC is dedicated to becoming a premier destination for research, citizen science, and environmental education to create the next generation of park supporters and advocates for public lands. To help operate the center, and to provide other support to the NPS, the community has re-established a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, Friends of New River Gorge National River, Inc. We have taken the lead in fundraising and developing future operations of the center. Annual memberships are available and the group also accepts donations. To learn more, www.facebook.com/friendsnewrivergorge/.
A variety of FREE events have been offered at Camp Brookside EEC such as yoga, stand up paddleboarding, bird walks, and night hikes. A calendar of future events, as well as more information about the center is at www.nps.gov/neri
The center is also available as a rental facility for events such as reunions, weddings, retreats, or field study classes. Additional amenities include WiFi throughout the premises, a reading library, and field study tools. The center offers scenic views of the New River and Brooks Falls, a class III rapid. To learn more about the leasing program, call 304-465-6508.