About the Outdoor Education Area
Bent Twig Trails
The Bent Twig Outdoor Education Center on the campus of the University of Southern Indiana is an ideal place for family gatherings, school and scout outings, and other special events. We welcome groups to campus and encourage their use of the facilities in the Outdoor Education Center. The natural terrain in this area of campus is filled with many of the beauties and hazards that are inherent in wilderness areas. We caution guests to be attentive of these features (rocky cliffs, unpaved trails, and natural vegetation such as poison ivy). Adult supervision is required for children under the age of eighteen.
For safety reasons, the following information is required to confirm your reservation:
- Number of guests
- A complete description of your event or an agenda of planned activities
- A Certificate of Insurance extending your coverage to USI for the duration of the event and naming USI as additional insured on the policy
Fires are NOT permitted without prior permission; please contact Meeting Planner for approval. Permission to use the fireplace and campfire pit can be requested when confirming the reservation. The area is densely wooded and a spark from a campfire could create a situation that might be hazardous to your group. Current weather and ground conditions will be evaluated, and you will be notified about the use of fire. Please call 812-465-7080 or email Scheduling Services for rental information.
Paul Grimes Log Haus
The Paul Grimes Log Haus is typical of houses built by early Hoosier pioneers. The relocated Posey County house, homestead of the Clarence Kuebler family, was dismantled and reconstructed on campus in 1976 as a Bicenntennial project. Used for meetings and events year-round, it is named to honor the late Paul Grimes, USI's first physical plant superintendent. This two-story wooden structure includes two rooms upstairs, two rooms downstairs, a kitchen with appliances, and a small bathroom. The house has electricity, air conditioning/heat, and plumbing. Folding tables and chairs are available. There is a ramp leading up to the front porch; however, the house and its bathroom are not handicap-accessible.
Virgil C. Eicher Barn
The Virgil C. Eicher Barn is typical of the many pioneer structures found in the Appalachian regions. Its two enclosed areas and covered center make it a popular picnic area, regardless of the weather. Named to honor a naturalist who helped plan the Bent Twig Outdoor Education Center, it was moved from the George Schmitt Farm on Bayou Creek Road, then reassembled on campus. Furnished with electrical outlets and picnic tables, Eicher Barn is perfect for informal family gatherings. There are volleyball poles; however, a net is not provided. A small play area is located behind the barn. Outdoor restrooms are located in a shelter house next to Eicher Barn.
Westwood Lodge is a popular place for cookouts, meetings, and retreats. Many community groups use the lodge throughout the year. Named in honor of the Westwood Garden Club which has overseen the development of the Bent Twig Outdoor Education Center, it is situated on a steep, rocky incline. The rustic building has no heat, air-conditioning, or restrooms. It has electricity, a large double-sided fireplace, and tables and chairs are available. A rustic, outdoor amphitheatre is located directly behind the lodge. Nearby outdoor restrooms are available.