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Mark Boyd summarizes summer at N-Sid-Sen

N-Sid-Sen’s staff were new people from Russia, Turkey, Ukraine and the United States and the former campers, said Mark Boyd, managing director, in a recent report on the summer camping program.

A few new groups were at camp. Casting for Recovery uses fly fishing to help women walk through breast cancer. They will return next year.


A UCC youth groups from San Jose. Calif., and University Congregational UCC were among new groups at camp.

PNC camps began with the Senior High from Pilgrim Firs traveling to visit their new summer camp site at N-Sid-Sen. Both Senior High and Junior High camps at Pilgrim Firs will come to N-Sid-Sen in 2018.

“The visit was informative. There was grief and eye-opening experiences,” Mark said.  “Pilgrim Firs campers talked about their feelings of loss. N-Sid-Sen campers shared their  understanding of what it meant to welcome many new campers at once and how camp was going to change.

“Both groups saw how welcoming others means more than saying hello. Staff realized the invitation was only the beginning.  Intentional process and thought must begin,” he said.

So N-Sid-Sen and Pilgrim Firs have formed a transition team with four adults and two youth along with Mark: Todd Kamp counselor and member of the Outdoor Ministries Task Force, Jan Shannon, associate pastor at Westminster UCC in Spokane, Nick Wright, counselor and member of Bellevue UCC, Kristen Almgren, youth worker at Fauntleroy UCC, Idaly Hernandez, camper and member at Richland Shalom UCC, and Lindsey Miller camper and member at Wayside UCC.  The team will meet Oct. 21 to 22 at N-Sid-Sen.

A substitute camp fire

In July, N-Sid-Sen welcomed Kids camp, Family Camp 1 and two family reunions.  In August, Junior High and Intermediate Camps were followed with Family Camp 2.

“Overall we saw a slight drop in UCC numbers,” Mark noted.  “Some was because of late school endings and some because of date changes. We anticipate more next year.

“Outside user group numbers increased slightly helping balance that out,” he said. However, two groups canceled events for late August leaving some spaces for churches looking for a time to come to camp.”

N-Sid-Sen is looking to upgrade an old water system and \plan for long-term management of its forests, streams, meadows and waterfront with the Outdoor Ministries task force and the N-Sid-Sen Advisory Board.

With a high fire danger during the summer, there were no campfires, so campers improvised.  Some flashed flashlights to concentrate light.  Some tied colored streamers to a fan.  One group made the letters to LOVE with tea candles in glasses.

For information, call 208-689-3489.

Campers rest on new mattresses at both camps

The PNC Fund a Mattress campaign for N-Sid-Sen and Pilgrim Firs beds has succeeded in raising funds for new mattresses on all beds at the two camps and conference centers.

Based on original estimates, they set a goal of raising $75,000, but bargain hunting by the camp directors, all mattresses were able to be replaced with the $25,000 that was raised.

Mark Boyd, managing director of N-Sid-Sen, said Wade arranged with Good 360, an organization that works with nonprofits to put together truckloads of merchandise.  He arranged for purchasing 250 mattresses in two truckloads, one with twins and one with twins and doubles for both camps for less than $9,000.

N-Sid-Sen purchased 130 mattresses for the bunks in the cabins and Spirit Lodge that are narrower than twin mattresses.  Platforms for several lower bunks in Spirit were replaced as part of work camps.

Pilgrim Firs’ mattresses are all twin beds, not bunks.

The camps are a vital resource to PNC church communities and provide retreat space for other groups in the wider community, too.

Donations came both from church members and others who use and love the camps.

For information, call 208-689-3489 or 360-876-2031.


Pacific Northwest United Church News © September-October 2017


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