The cabin was built entirely with wood from the farm. From the day I first looked at the lake, I knew it needed a cabin. There is a rise in the terrain just to the north of the lake in a woods I call the "Cabin Woods" because it is in this woods where the original cabin was located in the 1920's. It was my helpers, Lorelle and Lexi from Perth, Australia and Pete a local volunteer (as well as Paul and Nicole, from the US who joined in February) who encouraged me to start building in September. We fount two big downed red oak trees that we cut to size and dragged to the sawmill where we cut them into 2 inch beams to serve as the load bearing members. Then we found ash trees and cut them for rafters. By then it was winter but we kept building. By spring we hired a roofer to install the standing seam metal roof. Then we added vertical board and batten siding using ash trees. Then we added reused windows from another location that fit nicely into the 2-foot spacing between studs. About then we started to plan out how to design the inside especially the loft and attic and added the solar electric and thermal solar systems. The stairs to the loft had to take a 90-degree turn and a railing was added for safety. The kitchen was completed the refrigerator, sink (running water from the farm well), wood cook stove and cabinets. A "full" bath was installed including composting toilet and shower. Paul added the sign, "Eco Learning Center" to represent it as we intend it to be. The original solar thermal did not work so we added an in-line on demand propane water heater. Late that summer our first guests arrived, a pre-orientation class from Denison University. A year later, we added an outdoor patio and kitchen including wood-fired pizza oven, sink, fire pit and large grille.
Since then the cabin has been used for almost all of our regular events as well as parties, workshops, small conferences, family retreats, health retreats, cooking classes, and a place for peace away from the stress of life. It is offered you as a place for any of these activities.
Hipcamp is a website that brings together people who like to camp with farms that are willing to host them. As a member, the Flying J Farm has prepared three beautiful camp sites near the lake and in the woods, The cost is $30 per site for up to 6 people and one car per night.
Fishing, hiking, canoeing, kayaking, paddle boarding are available. The off-grid cabin has a composting toilet for campers to use but is not available at this time for sleeping.
In addition, the patio outside of the cabin has a full outdoor kitchen including a wood-fired pizza oven, open fire, and large wood fired grille.