775 Hermitage Road, Wirtz, Virginia 24184 | 540-721-2759

The W. E. Skelton 4-H Educational Conference Center at Smith Mountain Lake is an ideal location to consider for your next event. This beautiful 120 acre lakefront property offers spacious and modern meeting facilities, on-site catering, dormitory and hotel style lodging options, and a wide selection of recreation opportunities, including facilitated team building programs. An experienced on-site Conferencing Department will work diligently to ensure that your group is offered a variety of planning options guaranteed to lead to a quality and enjoyable event.

With 23,000 square feet of meeting space, your group can choose from over fifteen indoor conference rooms. Main conference rooms are located in the Auditorium, Taubman Conference Center, Reid Jones Jr. Lodge, and JOCO Learning Center. Each has a kitchen or kitchenette and restroom accommodations.

Outdoor shelters include an Open Air Pavilion, Willard Pavilion, and the Willard Amphitheatre. All of these facilities have restroom access and offer ample seating.

Skelton 4-H Educational and Conference Center is strongly committed to providing dynamic, research-based hands-on learning experiences for children of all ages. The Center supports and creates a multitude of educational and team building events to better the lives of young people as well as their families throughout the area.

4-H empowers youth with the skills to lead a better lifetime through fun and education. Skelton hosts a residential Summer Camp as well as many other 4-H sponsored activities.



The W. E. Skelton 4-H Educational Conference Center is committed to providing dynamic, research-based, and hands-on learning experiences. Not only are the local 4-H youth catered to, but there are programs for other youth and also adults. These programs are created with the goal that it will help to guide each participant to become self-directing, contributing and productive members of society.

  • 4-H youth programs
  • Other youth programs
  • Adults (organizations, professional groups, businesses, churches, colleges/universities, governmental units and other groups which can benefit from the programs and services offered by and through the 4-H Center).

Originally named the West Central 4-H Educational Center, there were limited facilities in the early days–a far cry from the spacious and modern meeting, lodging, educational, and recreational facilities that encompass the Center’s grounds today. Through the various transformations, updated facilities, and re-naming ceremonies, one thing remains true: the 4-H Center’s focus is providing a safe, child friendly facility which is capable of providing high quality programs for youth from throughout our region and beyond.

Through generous contributions from many supporters, the center continues to grow as facilities are added and upgraded. State-of-the-art equipment and technology is being implemented to provide the best learning tools for our youth.



The facilities are all-encompassing and versatile enough to support practically any event. The 120-acre site can accommodate business retreats as well as week-long summer camps. There are multiple lodges, meeting spaces, learning centers and performance areas. No matter what the occasion, Skelton’s staff can help you create a fun and educational experience for groups big or small.

  • LODGING FOR EVERYONE – The Smith Mountain location hosts two hotel style and three dormitory style facilities.

  • BUSINESS & EDUCATION – Skelton has multiple locations for meeting as well as educational functions.

  • ENTERTAINMENT – There are several means of entertaining for your event. Make use of the outdoor amphitheater, indoor stage, or many recreational facilities.

Hear what previous vistitors to Skelton have to say…

“Everything was perfect this weekend.  Everyone loved the large size of the rooms for the accommodations.  The food was great and filling at every meal.  The few items that I called the 24hr service about were fixed promptly.  Each of the break out areas were well set-up according to the request.  The group really enjoyed being able to use the entire space of the property.  Even with the other groups there, the groups were kept separate each with their own activities that it often felt like we had the entire camp to ourselves.  Thank you for all the work and coordination.”

Mt. Pisgah UMC in Greensboro, NC
Dale Parris was looking for a place to take her full-time staff to focus on leadership training and development work. Their visit to the Skelton 4-H Conference Center started out with formal training in classroom settings. The participants then broke into smaller groups, with some choosing hiking, some canoeing, and some enjoying archery and shooting.

Dale is enthusiastic about the results. “We hiked, laughed and played and just had a great time together that day. We ended our day around the campfire just sitting around sharing stories of our experiences of why we all work at the YMCA, and why we all like to come together in a space that gives us an opportunity to exchange great ideas.”

Dale highly recommends that corporations consider the Skelton 4-H Conference Center for team-building, staff retreats or off-site meetings. “At least go tour it, look at it, and see what they have to offer. Because I think that once you go there and look at what they have to offer you’ll definitely want to take your employees there.”

For Dale’s full comments, watch her video…

After Byron held his first conference at the Skelton 4-H Conference Center, the experience completely changed his mind. He now tells students and staff to expect facilities and food similar to a top retreat center on a university campus or major city. He admits that he had initially thought, “…we were going to be in cabins and bunk beds, and that the food was not going to be the absolute best.” But he was wrong.

Byron’s conferences typically include group sessions held in a variety of different rooms and meeting spaces at the facility. He works closely with Skelton’s on-site professional staff, and uses the dining facilities plus many of the Center’s materials. In the evenings, he explains that his groups typically hang out in one of the lounge rooms near their bedrooms to sit, relax and build relationships.

He says, “for professionals our age who have been working in higher education as long as we have, the facility matters. The staff has always been amazing.” There’s a reason why Byron and his staff have consistently hosted their conferences and meetings at the Skelton 4-H Conference Center. He sums it up by saying, “it allows you to be in a comfortable space, and there is no reason we would not return year after year.”

For Byron’s full comments, watch his video…

Bianca was looking for a facility to host their division’s team-building event. She wanted a place where employees could get out of the office and have some fun. But more importantly, her company wanted to teach some new critical thinking skills to improve their bank’s effectiveness as a business team

Bianca was searching for meeting facilities when she came across the Skelton 4-H Conference Center. She said “…it seemed to be the perfect opportunity we were looking for. The whole key to the event was not only just the opportunity to laugh and enjoy each other, but go back to how we work together.”

Near the end of their event, Bianca scheduled a beautiful catered dinner at the Center’s pavilion by the lake. The breath-taking view and the wonderful food was the perfect ending to a successful event. She spoke enthusiastically about her experience. “Where the Skelton 4-H Conference Center was extremely nice is that it lends itself to a more relaxed environment. It gives you more of an escape feeling, and more than that, the team is together as a collective. The dynamic of having an outdoor stage is beautiful.”

Her conclusion? “If you really want more of an escape, relaxed environment where you focus more on each other and less on the stress of day-to-day activities and business, the Skelton 4-H Conference Center is what I would recommend.”

For Bianca’s full comments, watch her video…


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775 Hermitage Rd, Wirtz, VA 24184

Phone: 540-721-2759

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