Open to the public since 2009, the Little River Canyon Center is a Jacksonville State University building located in Northeast Alabama that adjoins the Little River Canyon National Preserve in the city of Fort Payne. With a portion leased to the National Park Service and the staff of the Little River Canyon National Preserve, the facility features a Grand Hall, HD movie theater, gift shop, natural history library, exhibits, classrooms, back deck, outdoor amphitheater and trails for both education and adventure. It is available to rent for meetings, social gatherings, corporate retreats and other special events.
The Canyon Center features a regular schedule of programs that include concerts, workshops, hikes, lectures, and other activities for students of all ages. The building itself is educational as it is LEED (Leadership for Energy and Environmental Design) Silver Certified structure that utilizes geothermal heating and cooling, recycled materials, added insulation and many other innovative and sustainable design elements.
Every October, Jacksonville State University and the Little River Canyon Center hosts a half marathon, possibly one of the most scenic half marathons in the country, which starts and ends at the Little River Canyon Center.