Low-cost, comfortable group or family lodging is now available at the Gretta Lane Hostel (The Manse), the three-story home that housed pastors and families from 1935 – 2012 for Barr Memorial Presbyterian Church in Norman, 9 miles south of Mount Ida. The central heat and air facility has two full baths, washer and dryer, four separate bedrooms, plus a large third story room, with space for up to 15 overnight guests (bring sleeping bags for six). Linens and towels are provided, or guests may bring their own. The fully-equipped kitchen with a dishwasher allows guests to plan and cook meals. The two gathering/meeting/family rooms with comfortable seating, one on the first and one on the second floor, invite group interaction, while the spacious grounds encourage group activities, with a fire pit for roasting hot dogs and making s’mores, and a creek for wading. The front porch off the second floor is a relaxing space and the two carports offer outdoor shelter.
Located on the Caddo River, Norman is a hub for enjoying the Ouachita Mountains – hiking, biking, canoeing, fishing, and hunting – while immersing in the history of the area: the Caddo Indian Memorial and the Caddo River Trail for Life, adjacent to the Caddo River, the Old Norman High School/Museum, the Library on the Square – all within walking distance – and nearby Crystal and Collier Springs Recreation Areas, created by the CCC in the early 30’s.
The Manse provides privacy, space and fellowship. With ample parking, the Manse is a beautiful place for retreats for churches, clubs, and family gatherings. Internet access and TV are available.