See below the following article for a listing of camp profiles…
Camp is God’s idea
by Jim Badke
I am always amazed at the level of loyalty that people have to their camp. Everyone seems to think that their camp is the best in the world, and is scandalized at the thought of attending another. As one who has served at a number of camps over the years, I am pretty sure that everyone is right about this—every camp is the best in the world. Here’s why: Camp is God’s idea.
From the Garden of Eden in Genesis to Heaven in Revelation, God shapes a concept that today we call “camp.” He calls us from the familiarity of our homes into a unique environment where he meets with us, provides for our needs and achieves some purpose of His that is best accomplished there. Whether it was at the base of Mount Sinai or the mount where Jesus preached his longest sermon, people had an experience with meaningful and lasting effect. Today’s Christian camp is a hybrid of the revival tent meetings of the 19th century and the outdoor schools of the early 20th, and carries traditions such as chapel speakers and archery instruction. But at its root, camp is still God’s idea.
What makes a week of camp so significant in the life of a child, teen, family or volunteer? Let’s take an ancient example, the Garden of Eden. Adam and Eve could have lived anywhere on planet earth (I think Vancouver Island would have been a good choice!). But God placed them in a garden, a place with every condition for their physical and spiritual health. It didn’t go so well—they were the first ones ever sent home from camp—but in the Garden they met with God daily, enjoyed the wonders of His creation and provision, and joined Him in his purposes for His new world.
Today’s Christian camps offer that kind of environment; one conducive to change, renewal, good attitudes, fun and release. In a temporary community of love and acceptance, campers meet with God, enjoy His creation and stretch their personal boundaries. For many campers, camp is a positive crisis of self-identity before a loving and holy God, and they make decisions that take them in a whole new direction. Ask any crowd of believers, and a large percentage will say that their most life-changing moments took place at camp.
Through God’s idea that we call “camp,” He removes us from our usual setting, relieves us from the usual pressures of everyday life, isolates us from the distractions and temptations of the world, provides optimum conditions for crisis and change, confronts us with our own condition and our need for Him, spends focused time with us, teaches us life-altering lessons and finds response, accomplishes something extraordinary that otherwise would not have occurred, sends us back into the world with new understanding and perspective, and causes us to long for the permanent community of heaven.
To parents who are considering the many opportunities available to their kids this summer, a week at a Christian camp should be top of the list. It is, after all, God’s idea.
Jim Badke leads Auxano, a gap-year discipleship program at Camp Imadene, and is the author of The Christian Camp Leader.
Eagle Bay Camp sits on 23 acres of shoreline of the beautiful Shuswap Lake in the BC Interior, about an hour’s drive from Vernon or Kamloops, BC. We offer eight weeks of summer camps for kids ranging in age from 7-17 yrs old. We have a motto at our camp. ‘Eagle Bay Camp is a Place Where Lives are Changed’. Once you come to Eagle Bay you will long to return. The reason for this is Eagle Bay Camp is all about relationships and creating memories with kids. We are about sharing Jesus with kids and creating a safe place that will forever change the lives of your child. We strive to create a memorable camp experience for your kids with amazing worship times, campfire, chapel times and of course tons of fun activities.
Eagle Bay offers great experiences like kayaking, archery, paintball, climbing tower, zip line, tubing, and of course our famous “water blob”. We also run an extensive month-long Leadership Training program for kids age 14-17 and regularly see our LIT graduates working for us or hired by other camps.
Our chef provides an outstanding variety of great meals and will cater to specific dietary need and allergies to help make your kids’ stay enjoyable. If you are thinking of coming west this summer for vacation and spending time in the Okanagan/Shuswap area, find out what many Albertans already know; Eagle Bay Camp is a place where lives are changed. Check us out www.eaglebaycamp.com or drop us an email firstname.lastname@example.org
Ric Cyr – Director, Eagle Bay Camp
Founded in 1951, Pioneer Camp Alberta has been operating ever since as a life-changing summer camp for children and youth. We are committed to seeing young people transformed by the love of God actively at work in their lives. We love kids! We love watching them develop life-long friendships and seeing them discover that they can do more than they realize. We love listening to their laughter and watching them grow and mature as they discover how much God loves them. We love welcoming them back to camp, year after year. Pioneer also offers an ideal retreat destination for groups who want to combine their own plans and goals for a retreat with a program facilitated by our staff. Our sites are perfect for church retreats, youth getaways, business meetings and family gatherings. We have two locations – Sundre and Rocky Mountain House. Both locations are ranches with horseback riding and we offer a variety of summer camp sessions for campers aged 5-18. For more information write, phone or email:
Box 660, Sundre, AB T0M 1X0
Phone (toll free): 1-888-511-2660
Pilots Sports Camps focus on developing leadership
Prairie College’s Pilots Sports Camps harness the pressure from competitive sports to develop leadership characteristics in their campers.
Hundreds of kids flood the Prairie campus in Three Hills each summer for three weeklong camps for teens – one in volleyball and two in basketball. This year there are also two multi-sport camps for kids aged 6-12.
The sports camps have instructors who teach skills at a high level to help kids improve in their sport, but Athletic Director Randy Stewart says, “We also want to help prepare them for life.”
With a strong emphasis on integrating faith and sport, Stewart says, “It comes down to not only knowing who they are, but Whose they are.”
Stewart himself played college basketball and explained, “When I was done, I had no idea who I was or who I was supposed to be. I had nothing left.”
He ended up enrolling in Prairie’s Sports Ministry courses and now teaches them.
Stewart encourages students and younger kids at camp to think about the reasons God may have given them this gift in sport and how they can use it to serve others.
“If your value or your worth is not based on your performance on the court…it’s so freeing,” Stewart says. “They just have so much more joy and I think it actually makes them a better player.”
Midweek through each camp, the coaches put the kids through “Intensity Night,” a circuit workout that Stewart says is a “breaking point” where they achieve something far beyond what they thought they could ever do.
“Typically after that night we see kids open up to knowing more about who Christ is,” Steward recalls. “We also see kids serving each other more and being unselfish.”
On the last night, Stewart or one of the coaches shares the Gospel message with the campers and a number receive Christ into their hearts.
Through their exposure to the camps, Stewart said a number of the participants end up deciding to study at the college.
With Christ at the centre of both the camps and the athletics program at Prairie, Stewart said, “The identity factor for us is huge. We always challenge the kids to look at what they can do today to become the person Christ has called them to be.”
This summer the two multi-sport camps will be held from July 9-13 & July 30-Aug. 3 for ages 6 to 12. The basketball camps are from July 15-19 (with an emphasis on shooting accuracy) for ages 11-16 and a complete player basketball camp Aug.19-25 for ages 14-19. The volleyball camp is held Aug. 13-17 for ages13-18.
More information can be found at www.prairie.edu/Bible-College/Sports-Camps.
Rivers Edge Camp & Retreat Centre is just 45 minutes from Calgary and 90 minutes from Red Deer. It is nestled on 320 acres of Alberta’s beautiful foothills amidst a breathtaking panoramic view of the majestic Rocky Mountains. Our mandate is to “invite diverse groups to experience Christ-centred life change.” Each summer we host family camps, children and youth camps, and a seniors’ weekend retreat. We have youth Horsemanship Camps, Adventure Camps and a June Grand Camp open to Grandparents and their grandchildren. In addition to our own programs we host guest groups from various church denominations, a variety of community agencies and organizations and many school groups during the remainder of the year.
Our Frontier Hall is a 44,000-square-foot building that houses our dining hall and chapel. We also have a gymnasium, high ropes challenge course, indoor climbing wall and a host of other exciting elements.
Our accommodations include our Country Inn (sleeps 52-75), Chalet (an intimate setting that sleeps 10-35) and 16 winterized cabins (12 beds each). The Country Inn is our most popular accommodation choice. This cozy lodge-style building accommodates up to 75 people with comfortable beds, a large meeting area and a “boardroom.” The Inn also has a common area that can comfortably sit 30 people at tables. Best of all, there is a fireside room with comfy couches, a great social atmosphere, and the view from the over-sized porch is truly breathtaking! Just a short walk from the main site, our R.V. Park consists of 38 spots in a private, wooded setting. For more information visit our website at www.riversedgecamp.org or call 403-637-2766.
Cremona, AB T0M 0R0
This is a camp for boys and young men. Affiliated with Christian Service Brigade, our purpose is to “win and train boys for christ.” We are an outdoor adventure camp where guys can be guys while learning about their Lord and Saviour.
Our activities are built for boys. Our training sharpens their skills and minds. Our staff are Christian role models who can become good friends. Our focus includes environmental conservation. And, we add a healthy dose of fun with mountain biking, hikes, projects, tubing, white water rafting, sports, rappelling, archery, shooting, tuck, morning devotions and evening campfires. Activities vary according to age and ability – we always ensure things are “age appropriate”.
Facilities: max 50 campers each week; six cabins, each with ten bunks and loft – bring your own sleeping bag and gear; hot showers; flush toilets; commercial kitchen with qualified cooks who provide Camp Teepee Pole’s signature meals each day. Our camps fill quickly, so register early.
We encourage your support – the Fundraising Banquet is on April 21st in Carstairs. We enlist fathers and other mature Christian volunteers, young and old, to serve as staff and cabin counsellors. Contact www.campteepeepole.org
For camps for girls, please contact www.AlbertaCampCherith.org
“Alberta Camp Cherith is a Christian camp affiliated with Pioneer Clubs. Since 1976 we have been committed to providing a high quality, fun-filled, Christ-centered camping experience designed especially for girls. We offer two separate weeks of camp fun for Grades 3 to 6 and grades 7 to 12. Some of our activities include: river tubing, canoeing, sleeping in a teepee, games, crafts, archery, nightly campfires and of course – great food! Our grade 7 to 12 campers are also challenged with rappelling, riflery and whitewater rafting! Our smaller camp size allows each girl the opportunity to develop life long friendships. Come to camp for a week of learning and adventure in the great outdoors. It’s an experience that won’t soon be forgotten and the memories will last a lifetime!”
For over 25 years, U.B. David & I’ll B. Jonathan (D&J) have provided a Bible-based correspondence program for thousands of children, youth and adults. The D&J program has helped to build godly character qualities, a deeper understanding of the Scriptures and to help each one to grow strong in their walk with Jesus. Many children are first introduced to the D&J lessons at camp and Backyard Bible Clubs run over the summer across Canada, many in Alberta, Saskatchewan and the North West Territories. Some camps choose to send home a D&J Bible lesson at the end of camp, or mail them out later in the year as a reminder of the things learned at camp. Several camps have chosen to also use the D&J colourful booklets as their daily camp devotionals. What a wonderful opportunity to encourage a child to continue to build their relationship with Jesus Christ even after camp.
Our lessons have been available in the past only on paper and are now also available online. We have them in English, French, Spanish, and are currently working on a Chinese translation. Find out how you can help support or volunteer in this vital ministry. You can find us at www.ubdavid.org.
Welcome to awesome summer adventures at Camp Silversides! At each camp, kids hear life-changing stories from God’s Word as they explore His creation. They choose from a wide range of camps and activities: boating, wake surfing and waterfront sports, volleyball and basketball, arts and crafts, bouldering wall, lowropes course, archery, paintball, zipline and more. Fun-filled days often conclude with special theme suppers, wide games, campfire chapels and worship. We have camps for all ages from 6 years old to 17 years old. We also offer two Family Camps. One on the July long-weekend and the other on the August long-weekend. Campers are supervised by trained and caring staff who provide a safe, encouraging and exciting environment for them. Camp Silversides also provides year-round facility rentals. Situated on Gull Lake just 15 minutes west of Lacombe on Hwy 12, Camp Silversides is a ministry of One Hope Canada and a member of both the Alberta Camping Association and Christian Camping International. For more information and online registration, visit our website at www.silversides.ca
Box 182 Bentley, AB T0C 0J0 • 403-748-2689
Pine Lake Christian Camp is nestled on 32 acres combining lakefront, woodlands and a developed recreational area, located on picturesque Pine Lake in Central Alberta. This year Pine Lake is celebrating 75 years of camping at this location for Children, Teens, Young Adults and Families. Camps are packed with fun and rewarding activities that promote spiritual development, friendship, confidence and self-understanding. Campers enjoy swimming, canoeing, archery, team sports, crafts, music and many other activities to strengthen the body, mind and spirit. The facility is also available for rental opportunities such as retreats, family reunions, outdoor education, Band camps and other group functions. On April 21, Pine Lake Christian Camp will be hosting a fine dining experience and auction as a 75th anniversary fundraiser to support ongoing projects at the camp. For more information on camp options or the fundraiser contact Cal 403-886-4661 or visit www.pinelakechristiancamp.com.
Pine Lake Christian Camp, 36341 Hwy 816, Red Deer County, AB T0M 1R0