music Camp

at the Summit Bechtel Reserve

Get ready for an acoustic experience in the heart of Appalachia!

If you love string music, pack your instrument and come to the beautiful Summit Bechtel Reserve from August 6-11, 2023. Renowned music teacher Gerald Jones and his talented instructors will host an inaugural Acoustic Music Camp, in the spectacular hills of West Virginia. You’ll receive world-class instruction in guitar, mandolin, banjo, fiddle, and bass. Get set for lively classroom lessons, daily improv sessions, plus a nightly instructor jam that will challenge and inspire students to new levels of playing! Gerald has led acoustic music camps for over twenty years and will now offer this gorgeous destination experience at The Summit.

Instrument class sizes are limited, so register soon! We welcome you to this foot-stomping, chord-riffing, finger-picking event!

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Registration only

*Tuition  & Food only – Affordable option if you live locally

Camp Registration

Base Registration: $995

Includes: Food and all music program 
*Note: Does NOT include Lodging

All Inclusive Packages

Stay at the Summit – “All inclusive”

The Bunkhouses

Starting at $1220

All Music Program

Share a room for $1220
(Double Occupancy)

Private Room for $1445
(Single Occupancy)

Yamagata Lodging

Starting at $1370

All Music Program

Share a room for $1370
(Double Occupancy)

Private Room for $1745
(Single Occupancy)

Glamping Tents

Starting at $1370

All Music Program

Share a room for $1370
(Double Occupancy)

Private Room for $1745
(Single Occupancy)

The adventures...

During your time at the Acoustic Music Camp, you’ll have the opportunity to choose from 3 different adventure packages during one afternoon. 

Sky High Adventures

Action Point Adventures



Includes: Gateway & Legacy Ziplines OR
Rock Climbing at Boulder Cove


Includes: BMX/skateboarding, Laser Shot virtual shooting gallery, Sustainability Treehouse tour
Add-on Hatchet & Knife throwing for $10 more


Includes: Stand-up Paddleboarding, Kayaking/Canoeing, Fishing

Meet the instructors...

Ned Luberecki

Steve Martin describes Ned luberecki’s playing as “an absolutely joyous, riveting, beautifully syncopated example of the beauty of the banjo. “Ned is one of today’s leading players and teachers: a master of the five-string banjo who is adept in both modern and traditional styles. In 2018 he was voted Banjo Player of the Year by the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA). He has taught hundreds of players at most every major banjo and bluegrass music camp in the world and his Complete Banjo Method, in three volumes from Alfred Music, and video banjo courses from TrueFire.com are garnering rave reviews.

Ned tours internationally witht he award-winning Becky Buller Band and in Nedski & Mojo, his duo with Sam Bush band guitarist Stephen Mougin. Ned counts as his influences not only the usual banjo heroes with names like Earl, J.D. and Tony, but also Eddie Van Halen, Stevie Ray Vaughn, Oscar Peterson and Dave Brubeck. These diverse influences emerge in his unique, sometimes whimsical approach that draws from rock, jazz and television themes(!) as well as bluegrass. Ned’s latest release is the critically acclaimed CD Take Five. Learn more about Ned at http://nedski.com.

Tim May

Flatpicker Tim May, has been working in the Nashville area for over 20 years as a sideman, session player, band member and performer. Higher profile projects have included touring with Patty loveless and John Cowan, and working as a regular on the Grand Ole Opry with Mike Snider. Tim was the solo guitarist on Charlie Daniels’ recording of I’ll Fly Away, which was nominated for the Best country Instrumental Performance Grammy in 2005, the same year he was session leader on the critically acclaimed Moody Bluegrass album (he later played on Moody Bluegrass II as well).

The Nashville Scene selected Tim the Best Instrumentalist category in their 2012 Reader’s Choice Poll. Tim is co-author of the eight volume course ‘Flatpicking Essentials’, The Guitar Player’s Practical Guide to Scales and Arpeggios, The Flatpicker’s Guide to Old Time Music, and The Flatpicker’s Guide to Irish Music. He has taught regularly at Camp Bluegrass, Kaufman Kamp, Colorado Roots Music Camp, Nashcamp, and the Swannanoa Gathering. He and his wife Gretchen are owners of the Musical Heritage Center of Middle Tennessee.

Gretchen Priest

Gretchen Priest divides her time between performing, teaching fiddle and running the Musical Heritage Center of Middle Tennessee (also known as the Fiddle and Pick) that she founded in 2008 in Pegram, Tennessee, just west of Nashville. Her school teaches traditional acoustic instruments with a staff of 35, many of whom are among Nashville’s leading recording and performing professionals.

Gretchen and her husband Tim May formed the band Plaidgrass by merging the traditions of Irish, old-Time, and bluegrass music and the instrumentation of fiddle, bouzouki, bodhran, bass, and banjo in a variety of configurations. Prior to opening the Fiddle and Pick, Gretchen toured with the bluegrass band Crucial Smith and the Celtic rock band, Ceili Rain. She is often a featured performer on the Grand Ole Opry, Mountain Stage, the Walnut Valley Festival in Winfield, Kansas, and many festivals across the country.

Alan Tompkins

BLUEGRASS TODAY calls Alan Tompkins “a true Renaissance man,” and the title certainly fits.  A native of the farming and coal mining country of western Kentucky, Alan grew up steeped in the sounds of classic country, gospel, and bluegrass music.  He performed in several bands in his home town of Madisonville, Kentucky before moving to Texas in 1983, where he earned MBA and law degrees at SMU. Alan was thrilled to produce and record his first album, No Part of Nothin’, released in 2012.  The album features a lineup of incredibly talented musicians and singers, many of whom are Grammy® or IBMA award-winners or nominees.  The list includes Sam Bush, Deryl Dodd, Kenny & Amanda Smith, Ron Stewart, Stephen Mougin, Gerald Jones, Greg Cahill, Ned Luberecki, Mike Bub, Randy Kohrs, Brad Davis, Nate Lee, Bobby Davis, and Steve Rhian.Alan is the founder and President of the Bluegrass Heritage Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to the promotion of bluegrass music in America.  The Foundation produced Fanning the Fire, an award-winning short film about bluegrass music that screened in more than 25 film festivals across the United States, in 2011.  He’s a 2009 graduate of the IBMA Leadership Bluegrass program and presently serves as the chair of the planning committee for the program.  Alan plays a Huber Banjo, some great, really old Gibson banjos, a 1961 Kay bass, a New Standard Cleveland bass, Bearddobros, and few other great instruments.
For more information about Alan, visit: AlanTompkins.com

Gerald Jones

Gerald Jones, a native Texan, has been involved with the performance, production, and teaching of music for more than 40 years.  He’s played live or recorded with Jerry Douglas, Mark O’Connor, Vince Gill, Sam Bush, Tanya Tucker, Grand Master Fiddle Champion Jim “Texas Shorty” Chancellor, Hank Thompson, Red Steagall, and many others of many genres.  Gerald edits Mel Bay’s web magazine Banjo Sessions and frequently contributed to Joe Carr’s web magazine Mandolin Sessions. Gerald is on the board of the Allegro Guitar Society, which presents classical guitar performances in Dallas, Fort Worth and Las Vegas.  He also writes and performs many Allegro Guitar Society outreach programs each year. He invented the Acoustic Plus electronic banjo pickup used by Earl Scruggs, Bela Fleck, Alan Munde, Bill Keith, and others. A multi-instrumentalist on banjo, mandolin, guitar, violin and dobro, Gerald has won banjos at the Winfield Banjo Championship.  Gerald co-founded the Frisco Bluegrass Festival and Acoustic Music Camp, an instructional institute for acoustic musicians. Plus he teaches at many other camps across the country each year.  For more about Gerald, see TheGeraldJones.com.

What will I learn?

Guitar Instructor

Guitar Classes
with Tim May

Creating Solos: How to come up with a solo, where to start, how to tweak and improve it

Improvisation: Anyone can improvise at any level and we will look at how to do it over any tune, even ones you have never heard

Maybelle Carter style: Maybelle’s style influenced ALL of our flatpicking heroes and we will look at how she combined rhythm and lead into one style

Crosspicking: Crosspicking is a great way to simulate a banjo roll and fill up the room without having to do too much scale work: we’ll look at the masters and how they did it: George Shuffler, Doc Watson, Clarence White

The Blues: All original American music styles incorporate the blues: we will look at the Minor Blues scale,  Major Blues scale and mixolydian

Harmonized Scales: These scales are made up of pairs of notes (‘double stops’) and are useful for more than just playing Jimmy Buffett music: we will look at how they can enhance rhythm AND lead

Rhythm: We spend most of our time in the real music world playing rhythm as guitar players; we will look at how to make it more interesting for you AND whomever may be listening: from Jimmy Martin’s ‘rumble rhythm’ to swing vs. not-swing and how to create different moods and dynamic interest’

Introduction to Swing: We will look at basic swing chords and how to survive soloing over a typical swing (jazz) chord progression

Fiddle Instructor

Fiddle Classes
with Gretchen Priest

Fiddle Basics: What makes fiddling exciting?
Rhythm is King and Melody is Queen! The bow is what drives good timing and what makes a melody sing! Learn tips on bow hold and flexibility for good tone. Slight adjustments make you play strong with less effort. Dress up a melody with bowings that rock, loop, drones and syncopation. We will touch on the “Fun”damentals of Time signature, strong & weak beats. Aim for the strong beats and the little ones find their own way! Listen and feel left hand frame for intonation in the keys (sound pattern vs finger pattern). We will cover a variety of OT tunes and we might learn an Irish tune too. Good hand position can lead to more double stops and cleaner drones.

Bluegrass Fiddle Class: Vocal Bluegrass vs Instrumental…
We will learn a variety of Instrumental “Fiddle” tunes; some with high-speed bowing and variations on the tune. Talk about how to play to the vocal songs. Vocal melodies on fiddle need more movement and tricks. Music theory simplified as we cover the “KEY issues” of the chord and scale patterns to know your harmony whether playing fiddle or singing. Learn How to improvise on the melodies of the Vocal Bluegrass Songs.

Identify the song form, the key and chord tones with scale and arpeggios. Add in that lonesome sound using bluegrass techniques: patterns that have blue notes. Sliding and Double stops. Less notes with more feeling vs many notes. Shifting up the neck can be simpler than you think.

Back up fiddle
Learn about different “chop” style back up, shuffle & long bow back up. Learn easy “One finger wonder chords”; cause you can do a lot with one finger!

Bass Instructor

Bass Classes
with Alan Tompkins

Learning to Enjoy Blisters: learning the right techniques to minimize them

The Nashville Number System: impress others by telling them what chord to play on the fly, in any key

How to Play Every Note In Tune without Frets: using your ears and eyes to get it right

Why A Little Music Theory isn’t So Bad: because knowing which notes to play is more fun than the alternative

How to Break Your Upright Bass: learning how to avoid it, while making the bass sound the way you want

Why You Should Never Use a Bow on a Bass: unless you want to play long smooth notes that fit some songs

Play and Sound Like a Pro: learning how to practice like a pro (and then doing it)

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes - Check out these menu options

  • Sunday August 6th

Breakfast- coffee, juice, water, pastries, seasonal fruit and berries, granola, yogurt, scrambled eggs served with shredded cheddar, salsa, and hot sauce on the side, hashbrowns, sausage, French toast served with maple syrup, fruit compote, whipped topping

Lunch-water, tea, lemonade, orzo veggie salad, build your own deli sandwich- turkey breast, honey cured ham, roast beef, ketchup, mayonnaise, mustard, horseradish aioli, selection of breads- wheat, white, wraps, lettuce, tomato, onion, cheddar, Swiss, pepperjack, kettle chips, variety of cookies

Dinner-water, tea, lemonade, garden salad with ranch and vinaigrette, dinner rolls with butter, beef tenderloin with mushroom gravy, mashed potatoes, smoked cheddar macaroni and cheese, country style green beans, bread pudding in a warm vanilla cream sauce

  • Monday August 7th

Breakfast- coffee, juice, water, pastries, seasonal fruit and berries, granola, yogurt, build your own breakfast burrito, home fries, bacon

Lunch-water, tea, lemonade, build your own taco bar- seasoned ground beef, spicy chicken sauteed peppers and onions, soft and hard-shell tortillas, black beans, Spanish rice, pico de gallo, jalapenos, shredded lettuce, shredded cheddar cheese, sour cream, tortilla chips: salsa, guacamole, and queso , variety of cookies

Dinner water, tea, lemonade, garden salad with ranch and vinaigrette, dinner rolls with butter, country style macaroni salad, potato wedges, build your own grilled burgers and hot dogs- bacon, sautéed onions, sauteed mushrooms, hot dog chili, coleslaw, lettuce, tomato, dill pickle, sliced cheddar, Swiss, pepperjack cheese, carrot cake

  • Tuesday August 8th

Breakfast- coffee, juice, water, pastries, seasonal fruit and berries, granola, yogurt, Denver scramble, hashbrowns, bacon, biscuits and gravy

Lunch-water, tea, lemonade, mustard potato salad, Asian chicken wrap, turkey blt wrap, kettle chips, variety of cookies 

Dinner water, tea, lemonade, garlic bread, Caesar salad, three cheese tortellini with sundried tomato pesto, chicken fettuccine alfredo, parmesan roasted broccoli, tiramisu

  • Wednesday August 9th

Breakfast- coffee, juice, water, pastries, seasonal fruit and berries, granola, yogurt, fresh vegetable frittata, potato wedges, pancakes-served with maple syrup, chocolate chips, blueberries, whipped topping

Lunch-water, tea, lemonade, garden salad: ranch and house vinaigrette, beef chili, white bean chili, build your own loaded baked potato bar- butter, sour cream, bacon, shredded cheddar, crackers, fried onions, green onions, broccoli gratin, cornbread, variety of cookies

Dinner- water, tea, lemonade, arugula salad with green apples, feta, cranberries, ranch and apple cider vinaigrette, dinner rolls with butter, rosemary apple chutney pork loin, dauphinoise potatoes, sauteed seasonal vegetables, assorted desserts

  • Thursday August 10th

Breakfast- coffee, juice, water, pastries, seasonal fruit and berries, granola, yogurt, scrambled eggs served with shredded cheddar, salsa, and hot sauce on the side, hashbrowns, sausage, maple pecan sticky buns

Lunch-water, tea, lemonade, BBQ pulled pork with slider buns, coleslaw, smoked cheddar macaroni and cheese, baked beans, potato wedges, variety of cookies

Dinner-water, tea, lemonade, Greek salad, sun dried tomato pesto couscous, garlic and artichoke hummus with pita points, herb chicken kebabs with tzatziki dipping sauce, flank steak with chimichurri sauce, grilled squash medley, rosemary roasted red skin potatoes, chocolate cake

  • Friday August 11th

Breakfast- coffee, juice, water, pastries, seasonal fruit and berries, granola, yogurt, Denver scramble, hashbrowns, bacon, biscuits and gravy

Yes, but only registered students may actually attend classes and instructor-led jams.

Bring the family! There are many fun activities at the Summit Bechtel Reserve and nearby, including America's Newest National Park - The New River Gorge.

Yes, but only with the permission of each individual instructor, and then only in a non-disruptive manner.

Yes. Children under 16 must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian. The parent or legal guardian is not required to attend class with the student but needs to be present to drop off and pick their child up each day. Children under 12 may be admitted on a case-by-case basis. Children, or any camper for that matter, must be well behaved and not disrupt classes or jams.

Yes, but within limits. We want to keep class sizes fairly small so everyone can get personal attention from the instructors. When you register for a class you have a reserved space in that class. If you want to sit in on other classes you may do so if the other class is not too crowded and the instructor doesn't object.

BEGINNER - A beginner is someone who has just started playing and or can not yet play at the tempos required to play in jam sessions. Beginner classes focus on rhythm and easy lead.

INTERMEDIATE - Intermediate players can change chords and play some solos at jam session tempos. These classes focus on rhythm, back up and solos for standard tunes.

ADVANCED - Advanced players are comfortable playing at jam session tempos. Topics include, special techniques, advanced backup, solo development, hot licks, etc.

Traveling to the Summit

Address for Google Maps or Waze: 
Summit Bechtel Reserve
2550 Jack Furst Drive
Glen Jean, WV 25846 

The Summit is accessible by bus or vehicle via I-77 and I-64 (via SR-19) just outside of Beckley, WV.

The closest major airport is Yeager Airport in Charleston, WV (about 1 hour 15 minutes from The Summit). Airports in Charlotte, NC and Pittsburgh, PA (3.5-4 hours) may also be an option. 

About the Summit...

Nestled in the wilds of West Virginia, the Summit Bechtel Reserve is an expansive 10,000-acre property boasting world-class facilities, scenic views, lodging, and recreational activities that are second to none. You are sure to have a “mountain top” experience when you host your next event at the Summit.  Strategically located close to major highways, the Summit is within 500 miles of 63% of the US Population and easily reached by all surrounding States.