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Camp managers anticipate improvements needed

In their report to Annual Meeting, Deeg Nelson, who has been managing director at Pilgrim Firs for 12 years, and Mark Boyd, who began as managing director at N-Sid-Sen in 2012, made the point that the camps belong to the members of the Conference.

deeg nelson and mark boyd

Deeg Nelson and Mark Boyd report on upcoming capital campaign which will raise funds for camps.

“If you drive by the camp stop by.  It’s your lake house,” Mark said.

“There are many opportunities to come to camp.  It’s not just for kids.  Come regardless of age and ability,” he said. 

Beyond opportunities to come free as counselors for youth camps, there are opportunities to come free to work camp.

Both camps have grown with volunteers putting time, money and energy into them.

lifeguard chair

Bob Boehmke tries out N-Sid-Sen’s new lifeguard chair.

This year at work camp, N-Sid-Sen replaced two showers in Spirit Lodge, added a floating dock and a lifeguard chair, lattice around two cabins, new sandbox area, painted two cabins and lot’s of trail clearing, he said.

In May, the Pilgrim Firs work camp helped with the peace garden, setting up outdoor seating and picnic tables.

Each described some of the projects that are needed to improve the camps as part of an upcoming capital campaign.

Mark said the campaign will make it possible to build a tunnel under the Highway 97. so campers can safely access 200 of the camp’s 270 acres on the east side of the road, which a Boy Scout camp north of N-Sid-Sen plans to do, too.  He also envisions tent platforms on that land.

In a hearing on the budget, Mark and Deeg spoke more about changes needed to help the camps grow and move into the future.

camp dates

Mark said there are two-year and five-year projects.  There is need for a new power boat, after one died.  This year, N-Sid-Sen will rent a boat for the aqua camps.

There are also plans for another lodge, because N-Sid-Sen turns away groups that do not want to be in cabins that are cold during the winter.

Deeg said that in addition to the peace garden, there is need to remodel the 50-year-old kitchen, to replace a vehicle and to create more outdoor space for seating for outdoor programs in a covered but open shelter that cam be used in rain in July.

Over the last five to six years, roofs have been replaced, but there is still need for new roofs on a cabin, a house and the manager’s house.

There is need for new vehicles and for replacing the shop, turning to current one into an art room.

Pilgrim Firs gets funds by logging every decade.

Mark is looking into taking advantage of carbon credits related to the forests.

"PNC campers pay a UCC rate,” he said, which does not cover the camp costs. There is a Gratitude Rate that does allow folks to pay more if they chose to do so. The costs are covered by non-UCC groups, Mark said.

Conference bookkeeper Michelle Doherty said 42 percent of overall conference income comes from the camps.


Copyright Pacific Northwest Conference United Church News © Summer 2014


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