In 1945, a heavily forested property in southwest Dallas County was gifted to the Dallas Baptist Association for the creation of a youth camp. Symbolic of scripture and the site’s dramatic ranges in elevation, the camp would come to be known as Mt. Lebanon Baptist Encampment. Today, this 500-acre property, centrally located between Dallas and Fort Worth, is frequented by over 350 church congregations. Mt. Lebanon offers visitors a unique opportunity for a contemplative spiritual journey while immersed in a spectacular natural setting. As the population in North Texas has exponentially increased, the services provided by Mt. Lebanon have expanded beyond summer camp to include adult retreats and private events catering to secular fellowship, college ministries, and both private and public schools. Consequently, the aging but loved facilities need to be updated to meet the needs of their growing constituency.
MESA was tasked with creating a multi-phased Vision Plan that would guide the camp’s facility and program development through a strategic and environmentally sensitive process of growth. Recommendations for the future success of Mt. Lebanon were determined through a combination of site visits, geographic mapping tools, and several work sessions with the camp director and staff.
Conclusions gathered from the inventory and analysis process were instrumental in guiding the development of Mt. Lebanon’s long-term plan. The resulting three-phase Vision Plan was proposed to Mt. Lebanon’s ambitious leadership, prioritizing proposed improvements beginning with short-term, easily attainable improvements having an immediate impact and mapping out a comprehensive vision that is uniquely responsive to the site’s opportunities. This comprehensive Vision Plan now serves as an informative tool which responds to the site’s characteristics, programming needs, and prioritized growth strategy. The owner has since used the plan as a guide for Phase 1 improvements as well as the basis for a comprehensive capital campaign study.