Estatoe Regional Center for Science and Crafts

Estatoe Regional Center for Science and Crafts

Estatoe Regional Center for Science and Crafts

The Estatoe Regional Center for Science and Crafts is a multi-purpose facility that highlights many of our region’s treasures:

  • The MCC Blue Ridge Star Park and Observatory focuses on the the wonders of our dark skies, providing educational opportunities about stars and galaxies for residents and visitors of all ages.
  • The EnergyXchange provides alternative energy sources for the greenhouses, office, and classroom space.
  • Project Branch Out grows native plants such as flame azaleas and rhododendrons.
  • Our Berkshire Pig project helps local high school students revive the tradition of families raising their own pork products.

We invite you to explore these pages to find out more, and if you would like additional information, please go to the Estatoe Center Contact page to send us an email message or give us a call.

Staff:

Brandon Pitman, On-site manager
Randy McMahan, Facilities manager

Visiting Hours and policy for after-hours:

Visiting hours to the Estatoe Center are Monday-Friday 9am-3pm. The gate closes at 4pm. Groups over 10 must contact us in advance of visiting. The College is in the process of developing a fee schedule for the site to help with personnel and maintenance.

Please note that visitors to the Estatoe facility, including the Star Park, are here at their own risk, and will hold Mayland Community College harmless in the event of an incident. The road to the Estatoe Center is steep and winding, and there may be large trucks on the way to and from the neighboring waste transfer station. You may hear noise from MCC’s firing range which is nearby. Be aware that we are raising pigs at the Estatoe Center.

If you visit for star-gazing at night, please remember that lighting is kept to a minimum so that we preserve our dark skies, so bring a flashlight and be prepared to walk on uneven terrain. If gate is closed, please park just outside the gate, without blocking the gate - it must be allowed to open. Walk around/ under the gate on foot, and use caution walking up the hill. The EnergyXchange parking lot is an ideal flat space for setting up telescopes.

Directions:

From Marion through Spruce Pine:

Travel to Spruce Pine via Hwy 221 north to Hwy 226 west.
Turn left onto Hwy 19E south toward Burnsville and travel about 8 miles.
Turn right onto Hwy 80 north and travel about 2 miles.
Turn left onto Landfill Road. Follow the signs to EnergyXchange.

From Asheville through Burnsville:

From I-26 West toward Tennessee take exit 9 (Burnsville exit).
On Hwy 19E north travel approximately 21 miles, passing through Burnsville.
Turn left onto Hwy 80 north and travel about 2 miles.
Turn left onto Landfill Road. Follow the signs to EnergyXchange.