Appalachia: Unearthed


On this journey the Great Smoky Mountains provide a stunning backdrop for personal development. You’ll engage with social impact organizations addressing conservation and sustainable farming in the region. Enjoy unforgettable southern hospitality with exceptional farm-to-table meals on a journey you won’t soon forget.

june 25-28, 2018

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ENVIRONMENT // Learning about and contribute to conservation efforts for the wildlife, forests, lakes and rivers of the Great Smoky Mountains - the most visited National Park in America. Groups will interact with local leaders who have launched inspiring programs related to food security and sustainable agriculture.

OUTDOORS // We take full advantage of the invigorating setting of the Smoky Mountains and pack the experiences with opportunities to take in the great outdoors. With group hikes and projects tied to conservation - you will leave inspired by the natural beauty.

FOODIE // Savor true southern hospitality - enjoy amazing cuisine including farm-to-table dinners and some of the top foodie spots in Knoxville. Plus, see where your food is coming from while engaging first-hand with sustainable farming practices.

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- Registration Closed -

This experience is exclusive to Bain Summer Associates (and significant others) assuming a minimum of 8 confirmed travelers.

COST: $2,500   //   Bain will cover the costs of Bain Summer Associates which includes all in-country meals, lodging (assuming double occupancy - single room upgrade available for $450), transportation, activities and primary trip excursions. Fee does not include cost of international flight. The same price is available to significant others or spouses. Contact us for payment options.

connect, inspire & transform during 4 unforgettable days


Ignite staff will greet you at Knoxville’s McGhee Tyson airport (TYS). A short 15 minute drive and you’ll arrive at our beautiful lodge that will serve as your home base and oasis for the journey. Stop by our hospitality room for a welcome drink and snacks while informally connecting with other travelers. Depending on your arrival time, relax by the Koi pond, take a leisurely walk through the wooded paths around the campus and get a good night’s rest. (Travelers will arrive throughout the afternoon and evening - dinner on your own at the lodge.)


Our journey officially begins with breakfast and an introduction to the unique shared meals and table culture of the Appalachian region. The lodge’s award-winning chef will share his story and discuss the inspired meals that await us. Then we’re off to visit a ranch recognized for its sustainable farming practices and their efforts to help end hunger stemming from rural poverty. Our group will contribute to the farm’s current planting, harvesting or food security initiative, then spend the afternoon at a local lake for some exploration, team building and surprises. After an amazing family style meal, close out the evening with s'mores or a craft bourbon accompanied by our favorite banjo player at the outdoor fireplace.


Start the day with optional yoga on the front lawn and enjoy a hearty breakfast - you’ll need the energy as we head deep into the Great Smoky Mountains. Our introduction to the work of some incredible conservation organizations will be followed by a team project helping to restore trails or conduct citizen research on the ecosystem. We’ll then head back to the lodge to clean up for our night on the town and a multi-course meal at one of the finest restaurants in Knoxville. Stay downtown to check out a local band or head back to the lodge for night cap.


Our final day includes a powerful local story with and a memorable hike that will leave you inspired. We’ll end the journey as we started, around the table for an incredible mid-day feast while we celebrate highlights, share insights and commit to actions that influence our personal and professional lives for years to come. Ignite will get you to the airport with in time to catch your flight home (late afternoon/early evening).


Stay for the weekend for some additional hiking or white water rafting. We are happy to provide you with a recommended package - contact Dominyka.

Book your round trip flights to Knoxville’s McGhee Tyson Airport (TYS) to arrive anytime Tuesday afternoon or evening and depart on Friday (5pm or later) based on your specific trip dates. If driving, plan to arrive anytime Tuesday evening and depart after 3pm Friday. Feel free to contact Dominyka for sample flight itineraries or recommended routes. Considering arriving early or extending your trip? Contact Dominyka and we'll share some great suggestions with you.

Experience Ignite Journeys Leadership Development Retreats Appalachia Smoky Mountains


Enjoy your stay at a lodge at the foot of the Great Smoky Mountains with 5-star cuisine and comfortable amenities.

Experience Ignite Journeys Leadership Development Retreats Appalachia Smoky Mountains

our community Engagement

The natural beauty of the Appalachian outdoors provides the backdrop to learning about and contributing to conservation efforts for the wildlife, forests, lakes and rivers of the Great Smoky Mountains - the most visited National Park in America. Groups will interact with local leaders who have launched inspiring programs related to food security, sustainable agriculture or the opioid crisis. A contribution to our cause partners is included with your trip fee.


Registration ends April 25, 2019 or as soon as the journey is registered in full. This experience can accommodate a maximum of 20 participants. We encourage you to register as early as possible to ensure that you have plenty of time for preparations. Our journeys fill up quickly. The same price is available to significant others or spouses. Contact us for payment options. Ignite reserves the right to cancel journeys with less than 6 confirmed individuals. If the journey does not reach this threshold we will either refund your journey fee or credit it to a future journey.

What is included in the fee? The journey fee includes all expenses including airport transport, meals, lodging, in-country transportation & transfers, core activities and excursions, plus a philanthropic contribution to our cause partners. The journey is priced assuming double occupancy. Want your own room? Option for $450 upgrade included at check-out.

What is not included in the fee? The fee does not include the cost of your ground transportation or flights to Knoxville - arriving and departing from Knoxville’s McGhee Tyson airport (TYS).

Not ready to sign up yet, but want to stay in the loop on this experience and others? Leave us your info here.

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