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Pine Mountain State Resort Park is located 15 miles north of Middlesboro, Kentucky and overlooks the Kentucky Ridge State Forest. It became Kentucky's first state park in 1924 and the first Mountain Laurel Festival was held in 1935. This celebration is held in the Laurel Cove Amphitheater on the last weekend of May each year when the mountain laurel is in full bloom. It features concerts, fireworks, dancing and the Mountain Laurel Queen's crowning. This 1,519-acre park offers golf, miniature golf, hiking, swimming, naturalist programs, picnic areas, special events and more.

The stone and wood Herndon J. Evans Lodge has thirty rooms with private patios or balconies for guests to enjoy the mountain views. It also has two lobbies with cozy stone fireplaces. The upper lobby has a large assortment of antique knives that are displayed in three showcases. Various Kentucky handcrafts and souvenirs are for sale in the gift shop. The 216-seat dining room serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner and there is also a 20 seat private dining room. The Ray Harm Room is located in the lodge as well and can accommodate up to 70 banquet guests. Additional meeting space is found at the C. V. Whitney Convention Center. It can accommodate groups of 20 to 300 guests and complete food service is available.

Rustic charm exudes from the twenty cottages available for overnight guests. Nine of them are one-bedroom log cabins with private decks and stone fireplaces. The other eleven have two bedrooms and porches or decks that look out into the surrounding woods. Grills are furnished to cabin and cottage guests. An upgraded pool that is completely A.D.A. accessible is located adjacent to the lodge for the exclusive use of the park's overnight guests.

A 36-site primitive campground does not offer utility hookups but does have a central service building with showers and rest rooms. Grills, picnic tables and a picnic shelter are also available.

Hiking the 8.5 miles of self-guided trails will lead outdoor enthusiasts to points including Chained Rock and the Hemlock Garden. Other trails are named Honeymoon Falls, Rock Hotel and Living Stairway. Park naturalists offer year-round interpretive programs on plants, animals, and history relating to the area. They also offer summer recreational activities. The miniature golf course is open between April 1 and October 31. An 18-hole regulation golf facility that has undergone major renovation and expansion is scheduled to reopen in 2001.

For more information write, Pine Mountain State Resort Park, 1050 State Park Road, Pineville, KY 40977-0610.