Almost since the beginning of the Society, it was recognized that we
needed a research center for the pursuit of origins studies from
a creationist perspective. Unencumbered by operation within a prejudicial,
evolutionary-oriented government or state university, it had long been
felt that an independent creationary research center, which was dedicated
to quality field and laboratory research, could effectively challenge
the evolutionary establishment through the pages of the Creation
Research Society Quarterly (CRSQ). Nearly twenty years ago the first
steps in this direction were taken with the purchase of land in North
Central Arizona. Over the years, this property was slowly developed
as funds allowed. We were committed to pay as you go type
financing, so development was slow. A little more than seven years ago,
the Jay and Betty Van Andel Foundation provided the funds to buy additional
property and to develop a facility, which carries their name. We now
have a beautiful and functional Research Center which is providing a
growing number of papers for the CRSQ.
The Van Andel Creation Research Center is located on five acres fronting
U.S. Highway 89, five miles north of Chino Valley, Arizona. This well-situated
property is in the desert grasslands of the upper Sonoran biological
province and the geological transition zone of Northern Arizona. It
is surrounded by a large number of interesting volcanic features and
is located close to the heavily-mineralized areas of Mingus and Bradshaw
Mountains. The Mogollon Rim, eight miles to the north, marks an abrupt
change from the Colorado Plateau to the transition zone of North Central
Arizona. The property is about a mile from the confluence of several
major drainage areas and the headwaters of the Upper Verde River.
The main research building is a 3,000 square feet frame structure with
a large porch, which provides protection from the Arizona sun (Figure
1). It is composed of two offices, a reception/library room, a biology/chemistry
lab, an electronics lab (which houses the Stardust meteor observatory),
two wet labs, a workshop for fabrication and repair of equipment, a
visiting scientists quarters, and a small kitchenette.
1 - VACRC Main Research Building
The new research greenhouse is designed with two separate rooms, each
with independent environmental control systems. It will be used for
studies relating to intelligent design characteristics in plants and
for projects evaluating the limits of the Genesis kinds in the modern
plant world. This building is a 1,100 square feet structure with polycarbonate
glazing (Figures 2 and 3).
Figure 2 - Greenhouse (Color
3 - Environmental Controls
The new Publications Building provides room for all aspects of our literature
outreach (Figure 4). It currently stores all back issues of the CRSQ
(about 40,000 copies) and all creation books and tapes that we handle.
Last year we shipped materials to twenty different countries. Considerable
expansion of CRS publications outreach is now possible. The building
is divided into three separate rooms. One is for book and journal storage;
one is a packing and shipping room; and one serves as a double-car garage/storage
area for larger items.
4 - Publications Building (Color Photo)
In addition to the visiting scientists quarters, we have facilities
available for two long-term recreational vehicle hookups for visiting
scientists and workers. A new motel is being built in nearby Chino Valley
and can provide for additional short-term housing as needed in the future.
Major research equipment at the Research Center includes a Hewlett Packard
gas chromatograph, various light microscopes, a scanning electron microscope,
microscope slide preparation equipment, a modestly-equipped electronics
shop, a partially- equipped mechanical shop, an analytical balance,
and a lab rock crusher. We also inventory various types of centrifuges,
lab ovens, computers, and an astronomical telescope for educational
purposes (Figure 5). Our research library includes more than 3,000 technical
scientific works and 500 reprints, written both from the creationary
and evolutionary presuppositions. We also have a fine collection of
past creationist works of great historical and scientific value. A recent
donation from a church mission group has provided seven additional shelving
units which will be a great help in the library.
5 - Astronomical Telescope
Some of the current projects under development at the Van Andel Creation
Research Center include the Stardust meteor observatory, currently collecting
data on an average of 3,000 meteor falls per day (Figure 6). Our stalactite
research project will undergo considerable redesigning this summer and
should be fully operational by early fall (Figure 7). A number of plants
are currently under cultivation in the greenhouse in studies relating
to taxonomy, limits of the Genesis kinds in the modern world, and intelligent
design characteristics in the plant world. Continuing studies on ring
muhly grass and lichen growth rates are being conducted on undisturbed
areas at the Research Center.
7 - Stalactite
research project (Color Photo)
Future projects will likely include the influence of carbon dioxide
enhancement on plant growth, the genesis of thermoregulation in honey
bees, fossils of the Coconino sandstone, biochemistry and taxonomy in
pine trees and the genesis of multiple yearly tree rings of bristlecone
The Van Andel Creation Research Center is strategically located in or
near a very large variety of biological and geological areas of great
importance to the creationist position. The Grand Canyon, just two hours
to the north, is perhaps the most geologically interesting area in the
U.S. A wide variety of biological habitats is relatively easy to access
from the Research Center. Both high altitude montane communities and
Sonoran Desert Saguaro cactus communities are within a two-hour drive.
A growing number of school and church groups are visiting the Research
Center (Figure 8). While we are not a museum, we can provide an exciting
look into the ongoing research projects which relate to scientific and
Biblical creationary studies.
The Research Center now represents a creationist asset of great significance.
With the Lords guidance, we have assembled an outstanding facility.
While we are always short on equipment, our next major challenge will
be to staff the Van Andel Creation Research Center with full-time scientists
and technicians to face the challenge of evolutionary teaching in the
next millennium (Figure 9).
a more detailed description of the Research Center, available facilities
and equipment, accessible field research sites, and potential projects
please write, e-mail, or telephone us.
In funding the Van Andel Creation Research Center buildings, Mr. Van
Andel said his goal was to give creationists a fighting chance.
With his generosity and the partnership of hundreds of creationists
from all walks of life, this is being done. As we face the future together,
we invite the support of a growing number of creationists to partner
with us in one of the greatest enterprises of the coming millenniumto
challenge the theory of evolution at the technical level, to develop
a positive creationist model of origins, and to use this as a basis
for world outreach through creation evangelism.
Since this is a spiritual battle, we covet your prayers and personal
encouragement. Since scientific research is expensive, we need your
financial support through regular giving and through planned gifts,
trusts, and wills. Since we are involved in technical research, we need
the assistance of highly-trained scientists who are dedicated to the
Creator and His work.
For those preparing for retirement, we remind you that the Prescott
area is usually listed as one of the top retirement hot spots in the
U.S. We can provide opportunities for significant, meaningful, volunteer
technical work for those scientists and others with vital skills who
may retire to this area.