Camp presents timeless truth, adapts to change
The challenge for Camp Spalding since 1957 has been to hold to its mission as a camp of the Presbytery of the Inland Northwest, while it adapts to the ever-changing culture.
"The truth of the Gospel is constant, but we need to present the timeless truth in a way that makes it relevant in the changing culture," said Andy Sonneland, who has been executive director for 28 years.
He said church camps still bring record attendance as they draw children and youth away to be with older, "cool" role models, talk faith with peers in the midst of a week that is "a blast" with many activity options and facilities that keep pace with expectations of youth today.
Activities at Camp Spalding on Davis Lake near Newport include boating, swimming, horseback riding, rock climbing, craft projects, camp games, new friends and new memories.
From June 9 to Aug. 19, campers come by age groups to regular or pioneer camps, arts camp and family camps.
More than 80 percent of Camp Spalding's support comes from fees from summer camps and guest groups through the year. Individual donors contribute $150,000, and four percent of its income is from churches.
This summer the camp has a new infirmary and is breaking ground for other projects.
Andy said the main change is that 20 years ago, two-thirds of campers were from families attending area Presbyterian churches. Last summer, 30 percent were from Presbyterian churches and 70 percent were from the community.
For information, call 509-731-4244 or visit campspalding.org.
Copyright@ The Fig Tree, June, 2019