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Workshop Center

Highlander Wokshop Center

Highlander Workshop Center, Photo by Ariston Jacks

Highlander’s Workshop Center plays a vital role in our program of constructing democracy, creating democratic space, and base-building. Drawing on our 70-year history of support for social justice movements, the center provides a democratic “gathering place” where people can renew themselves and their organizations, address the issues that confront their communities, and lay the groundwork for a broad movement for social and economic change.

Located on our 106 acre farm near New Market, Tennessee, the Workshop Center serves a regional, national, and international constituency, providing a meeting place for activists and community leaders from Appalachia and the South, the nation, and world. At the Center, participants can

  • share stories of oppression and struggle from their communities, identifying common concerns across boundaries of race, class, language, gender, sexual orientation, and geography;
  • explore and validate their experiences by sharing them with others, building the trust and self-confidence needed to challenge injustice;
  • reconnect with the history of people’s struggles against oppression, finding inspiration in the example of these struggles and learning from them how to fight injustice and win;
  • share ideas and strategies for change, learning from each other to strengthen and enhance their own efforts;
    discover new allies and new ways to join forces to achieve their common goals;
  • create a culture of justice that can inspire their ongoing work in their own organizations and communities; and
  • construct a common vision of a world marked by justice and fairness for all that can provide the inspiration for a broad movement for social and economic change.

Meetings and workshops at the Center are an integral part of all of our other programs, including our Grassroots Think Tank, Pueblos de Latinoamérica, and The Young and the Restless. For more information on these programs, click on their names or follow the links at the left.


We also rent the Workshop Center for a modest fee to other organizations working for social and economic justice so they can experience the benefits of this unique space. If you would like to use the Center for a meeting or workshop, please see the following description of our facilities and reservation policies.


Meeting space – The main conference room, a large circular room with rocking chairs, can accomodate up to 35 people. It has a television and VCR and a large screen for overhead projections or slides. Smaller meeting spaces that can also be used by groups renting the Workshop Center include the Resource Center/Library, and if you enjoy meeting al fresco, the Carawan Cultural Pavilion.

Lodging – Overnight lodging space can sleep up to 35 people and consists of dormitory-style rooms (with up to 7 twin beds-some bunk beds) and four family rooms (with two twin beds each). We provide bedding and bath supplies (i.e. sheets, blankets, pillows, towels, soap).

Meals – Simple and nutritious Southern meals are prepared for groups on a pre-arranged basis. The dining facility can seat up to 35, with the option of eating outside on the patio if weather permits. Individual visitors are responsible for their own meals.

Childcare – Supervised childcare is available in our childcare facilities. Childcare must be arranged before your visit.


There is a fifteen person minimum for meals. Weekend use of the facilities requires a minimum two night stay. We require a 30% deposit twelve weeks prior to your scheduled visit to hold reserved dates. Cancellations must be received in writing eight weeks prior to your scheduled arrival to receive a refund of deposits.

Groups smaller than fifteen people should use the Horton House, which can accomodate up to eight people for multi-day meetings and retreats, and up to fifteen people for one-day meetings. (Click here for information about the Horton House.)

For more detailed information and fees, contact the Workshop Center at workshopcenter at or (865) 933-3443.


Click here for directions to Highlander.