To register for excursions, you can click directly on the event name in the schedule below which will take you to the registration page.  You can also download this PDF, Trail and Town Excursions, MST Gathering of Friends 2020, and use the embedded links to reach the same registration page.  Full descriptions of each event are included on the registration page and on the document version.

Most events require registration.  You do not need to register for the reception at the Missiles and More on Friday Night or the Saturday Annual Meeting as these are included in your overall registration for the Gathering.  Please make sure not to double book yourself for a time slot. Also, some excursions have a limited number of slots available, so please take care in signing up only for the events that you will attend.  If you register yourself for something, and find that you cannot attend, email Betsy so the slot can be opened up to someone else.

Pender County Tourism is hosting a concierge service to help with any arrangements while you are in town.  Stop by to get all your questions answered.

  • Friday 12:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.  @ Surf City Community Center (201 Community Center Drive, Surf City)
  • Saturday from 8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. @ Surf City Community Center (201 Community Center Drive, Surf City)


Thursday, March 26th


  • Trail Workday in Turnbull Creek Educational State Forest


    We will put the finishing touches on a new section of trail connecting Jones Lake State Park and TCESF. This new section of trail is featured in the new day hike guide and includes a new bridge over the Jones Lake Drain and TCESF's Naval Stores forestry exhibit.

  • Early Bird Dinner and Reception


    Join local trail builders and trail angels Tim and Cathy Supple for dinner at Daddy Mac’s from 6:00 to 7:30 PM, and head over to the Welcome Center around 8:00 PM. While registration for the Early Bird Dinner is limited to 20, all are welcome to join in at the reception at the Welcome Center. If you don’t arrive in time for dinner, consider grabbing take out nearby and joining the group at the Welcome Center.


Friday, March 27th

Friends Events

  • Welcome Reception


    Topsail Island Mayor Steve Smith welcomes all attendees for drinks and heavy hors d'oeuvres at the historic Missiles and More Museum and Assembly Building.

  • Retro Night: Skate and Putt Putt


    The brave can go for a skate at the 1960's era Topsail Island Rollerskating Rink and the smart can have a go at mini golf at the original 1950's Putt Putt, Patio Playground.


  • FULL - Camp Lejeune Conservation Tour


    TOUR IS FULL. WAIT LIST REGISTRATION ONLY. At 246 square miles with 11 miles of beaches, Camp Lejeune is the largest Marine base in the Eastern US. All this land and water has made the base a conservation leader in North Carolina – restoring natural habitat and protecting endangered species in the Onslow Bight. Our guides will be Craig Ten Brink, Camp Lejeune\'s Wildlife Biologist and Tim McCurry, Camp Lejeune\'s Community Plans and Liaison Officer.


  • Stones Creek Game Lands Hike


    Join Casey Phillips, NC Wildlife Resource Commission's Recovery and Sustainment Program Forester, to hike and learn about restoration efforts at Stones Creek Game Land.

  • Self-Guided Hike along Topsail Island


    Join others interested in hiking the entire 8- mile stretch along Topsail Island. This is all on the beach and will be group-guided.


  • Explore the Intracoastal Waterway


    We will traverse the Intracoastal Waterway with guide, George Howard, for a two-hour excursion. $36.50 fee per person for SUP or a kayak.


Saturday, March 28th