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Camp MN offers meaningful summer experience amid pandemic

Camp MN offers meaningful summer experience amid pandemic

9/16/2021

After suspending operations in summer 2020 due to concerns related to the COVID-19 pandemic, Camp Minnesota returned in 2021 and provided 923 campers a meaningful experience while taking extra precautions to keep them safe.
 
“It was amazing to welcome participants back to camp in 2021,” said Keith Shew, Dakotas-Minnesota Director of Camp and Retreat Ministries. “Campers of all ages returned to their favorites spaces and activities, including swimming, boating, horses, group games, campfires, singing, and of course…s’mores!”
 
In light of ongoing COVID-19 safety concerns leading into the 2021 camp season, a return to offering camp programming was not taken lightly, Shew said. Significant effort and preparation went into helping ensure campers, staff, and guests stayed safe. Camp leaders partnered with local and state health officials, the American Camp Association, and the Centers for Disease Control to implement COVID-19 safety best practices specifically developed for overnight camp settings. They included keeping campers in small pods and spending as much time outdoors as possible, including for worship, meal times, and activities.

“And, we did it!” said Shew. “No spread of COVID-19 at your camps in 2021. Zero cases! The camp directors, their staff, and your central office camping team worked hard to ensure safety protocols were implemented and followed. We’re also grateful for the ways our camper families helped care of the camping community by adhering to pre-camp COVID-19 safety recommendations.”
 
Thirty percent of Minnesota United Methodist churches sent people to camp in 2021, and 38 percent of this summer’s attendees were from outside of The United Methodist Church—some without any church home.
Koronis Ministries this year received a $3,200 grant from United Methodist Camp and Retreat Ministries to identify and recruit more ethnically and racially diverse leaders. Koronis partnered with Brooklyn UMC in Brooklyn Center to bring children from the church and community to camp. A total of 33 campers came, most from Liberian and West African immigrant families; the grant primarily covered transportation to and from camp, and the Camp Minnesota office provided additional campership (camp scholarship) support to help each camper attend the camp of their choice. The campers had a phenomenal experience; they acquired new skills, learned about God, and when they left were already talking about returning next year. Two camper families are now worshiping at Brooklyn UMC because of this outreach.
 
Both Koronis in Paynesville and Northern Pines Camp in Park Rapids had fewer campers than in 2019, but only by about 30 percent, which felt like a win given the difficulties presented by the pandemic.
 
Leslie Hobson, Northern Pines Camp director, noted that some camps exceeded attendance expectations. For example, grandparent-grandchild camp welcomed 44 people, the most since she started at the camp in 2016.
When asked about a story from the summer that sticks out to her, she recalled a Teens camper with a disability who was at Northern Pines for the first time. The girl’s mom knew it would be difficult for her daughter to be away from home and said she hoped the teen might be able to stay at least two of the six-night camp experience before needing to be picked up. Not only did the girl make it the whole week, but she helped lead worship one night and did her part—exploring a specific scripture text—without any notes.
 
At both camps, COVID precautions made way for experimentation and innovation.
 
A junior high Christian Youth Camp led by Mike Solberg, youth and families director at Normandale Hylands UMC in Bloomington, has always included a dance. This year, the dance was outside so that campers wouldn’t be all together in a contained space, but the dilemma then became how to offer music without disturbing neighbors around the lake. Solberg brought wireless headphones for each camper that allowed them to tune in to one of three channels and listen to the type of music they preferred. Campers loved it, and even those who opted not to dance and instead engage in other activities were still connected with the rest of the group through the music.

Northern Pines also offered a drive-through check-in process for families that eliminated long lines from years past and will likely continue in some form even after COVID subsides. Each vehicle drove to several stations before dropping off the camper inside: one to provide paperwork, another to collect campers’ spending money and mail, and a final stop for a temperature/health check. 
Again this year, camperships (camp scholarships) enabled many kids to attend camp who might not have otherwise been able to do so. Camp Minnesota awarded $43,000 to 193 campers to attend the camp event of their choice.
 
Unfortunately, nearly all of Camp Minnesota’s offsite programs were not able to be offered in 2021. For example, the ever-popular Canadian Fishing Camps were forced to suspend their camps due to border-crossing issues. 
 
But fishing campers and leaders are eager to gather in 2022, and planning is already underway at both Northern Pines and Koronis for next year as well.
 
Camp leaders ultimately hope that the 2021 camp experience stays with attendees for a long time to come.
 
“I hope they realized that even in the midst of a non-typical year, they can still grow and develop relationships,” said Hobson. “I hope they saw that God is in the midst of everything and had a chance to reflect on that.”

September 16, 2021

By: Christa Meland

This article may also be found at the minnesotaumc.org website
Christa Meland is director of communications for the Minnesota Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church.


Camp MN to welcome campers this summer with extra safety protocols

Camp MN to welcome campers this summer with extra safety protocols

1/14/2021

“Summer is better with camp,” says Keith Shew, the director for Dakotas-Minnesota Camp and Retreat Ministries. “We’ve missed you, and we can't wait to see you this year at Northern Pines Camp, Koronis Ministries, and Kowakan Adventures!”

The Dakotas-Minnesota Camp and Retreat Ministry team is ready for you to return to camp this summer and preparing to keep campers safe while giving them an opportunity to experience Christ, creation, and community.

“We're excited to let you know we decided to move forward with plans for summer 2021 at each of our Dakotas camps!” said Shew. “Your Dakotas and Minnesota Area camp staff have been actively planning programming options with the hope of being able to offer safe and impactful camp ministry experiences in 2021.”
 
Safety is top priority

Each camp will strictly adhere to COVID-19 safety protocols that meet guidelines set by each state as well as the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. For now, the safety precautions include requiring masks and social distancing in common areas, limiting space in individual bedrooms to family groups, minimal to no contact with other onsite groups or staff, reducing group sizes as needed, and maximizing time outdoors when possible. Adjustments will be made as necessary to safety protocols, following state health guidelines and the American Camping Association protocols. 
 

Campers boating at Koronis Ministries in Paynesville.

"We’ve learned a lot about how to run a safe, exciting, and energetic program even in the face of COVID-19,” said Koronis Ministries Director Dan Ziegler. “We’re already coordinating our screening, disinfecting, and distancing protocol to keep the kids safe, and we believe we can do it without compromising most of the joy and energy of our camp programming. Of course, we know that outdoors already represents one of the safest ways to be together, and we’ll be moving an already strongly outdoor-based program even further in that direction. A cornerstone of our approach will be to limit mixing by organizing into cabin group ‘bubbles’ of about eight campers and two staff, who go through the camp day experiencing all of the great activities of camp while maintaining a good degree of distance from the rest of the camp population.”
 
Northern Pines Camp Director Leslie Hobson added that most meals will be eaten outdoors (as weather permits) and noted that most cabins and treehouses are designed for space between bunks; windows are open most of the time.

Registration for the 2021 camping season will open Jan. 19, 2021 on the Camp Minnesota website. Registration and all information for the 2021 camping season will be digital. The early bird incentive, bring-a-friend discount, and camperships are all still available. 
 
“Space may be limited this season, so sign up soon!” Shew said. “With the potential for changes to schedules and events leading up to summer due to the coronavirus pandemic, your camping team chose to forgo the traditional printed camp brochure this year. “Instead, we will have all camp listings and registration information on the Minnesota United Methodist Camps website where details can be updated quickly, and changes made in real-time. This ensures you will always have the most up-to-date information.”

All registered campers will receive updates as conditions change and new information becomes available that may impact the 2021 camping season.

“You will be informed, well in advance of your time at camp, of any pre-camp requirements, changes to the schedule, and safety protocols that will be in effect during your time at camp,” said Shew. “We know that it is a tough time for many of our families and want to remind folks of our campership program. We would love to help your family attend camp.”

What’s new and exciting?
Campers praying around a campfire at Northern Pines in Park Rapids.

Northern Pines in Park Rapids plans to introduce pickleball to camp this year, said Hobson. Pickleball is a popular paddleball sport that combines elements of badminton, table tennis, and tennis.
 
Additionally, a “Comfort Cottage” will be available to clergy for time apart. Comfort Cottage sits on 44 acres of land that the Minnesota Conference purchased in October—land that more than doubles the camp’s size. Hobson said many clergy appreciated the opportunity to get away to Northern Pines alone or with their families last summer, and this new space will provide another place for them to do that.
 
The newly acquired property will also be used for nature activities including plant and tree identification and the building of fairy houses, personal shelters, and nature sculptures.
 
Meanwhile, Koronis Ministries in Paynesville is excited to debut some new features at its waterfront—including a waterslide and a huge aquatic inflatable to climb called “the rock,” said Ziegler.
 
Both camps will continue to offer all of the timeless activities campers love in safe and socially distanced ways—swimming, archery, boating, campfires, and group games.
 
Hobson and Ziegler can’t wait for the camps to be filled with sounds of campers. “We’re a small camp, a family really, and we grow very close to these kids each year,” said Ziegler. “We care deeply about their spiritual and social growth.”
 
Hobson echoed that sentiment. “One of my favorite sounds is hearing campers singing around the nighttime fire during snack time,” she said. “I look forward to hearing the laughter and the voices rising from the woods by the treehouses or from the playing field area during the evening… I cannot wait to greet them and welcome them back.”

January 14, 2021

By: Christa Meland

This article may also be found at the minnesotaumc.org website
Christa Meland is director of communications for the Minnesota Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church.


Koronis Breezes Newsletter - 2021 New Year's Edition!

Koronis Breezes Newsletter - 2021 New Year's Edition!

1/6/2021

Check out the latest news from Koronis Ministries!


Conference named Crow Wing County Conservationist of the Year

Conference named Crow Wing County Conservationist of the Year

12/17/2020

The Minnesota Conference and Camp Minnesota were recently awarded the 2020 Crow Wing County Conservationist of the Year Award for their efforts to preserve Star Lakes Wilderness Camp in Pequot Lakes through a conservation easement. In August, Minnesota Land Trust paid the conference $1.218 million for the easement, which covers 383 acres of the camp. The conservation easement will ensure the preservation of the pristine land so that it can be enjoyed for years to come while also generating resources for the conference’s camping and retreat ministry. Below is a press release sent out by the Crow Wing Soil and Water Conservation District about the award.


Northern Pines Camp doubles in size after land acquisition

Northern Pines Camp doubles in size after land acquisition

10/8/2020

The Minnesota Conference has purchased 44 acres of land adjacent to Northern Pines Camp in Park Rapids that more than doubles the camp’s size and will provide new space for campers and guests to explore and enjoy. The new land includes 750 feet of lakeshore, and the purchase price was $415,000—considerably less than its appraised value, thanks to the generosity of the sellers, who wanted the land to remain free from development.
 
Initial plans for the just-acquired land include offering Northern Pines visitors new minimal-impact activities like hiking, tent camping, and cross-country skiing, as well expanding some current program offerings like archery, hammocking, outdoor worship experiences, and nature study. The land includes a modest seasonal cabin that Northern Pines will use for staff or as a guest retreat beginning in 2021.
 
In the longer term, the camp might consider adding a nature center and observation tower to the land.

“Camp Minnesota and Northern Pines Camp are excited and humbled to receive this beautiful property,” said Keith Shew, Dakotas-Minnesota Area director of camp and retreat ministries. “This purchase ensures that the camp remains a place set apart from outside development. More importantly, it opens up a new world for future campers and guests to explore creation and experience Christ in a pristine natural space.  What an impact this will make in the hearts and lives of so many!”

A Northern Pines camper enjoying the waterfront.
 
The purchase comes after 18 years of conversation with the sellers, David and Sue Egloff, who are now in their mid-80s and live in Ohio. Although they have returned to Minnesota almost every year, recent visits have been shorter and they decided this was the right time to say goodbye to the beloved land that’s been in their family since 1917.
 
“We're confident the camp will find ways to use the cottage, forest, and lakeshore to enhance and expand their mission,” said David Egloff, who has maintained a website detailing the history of the land. “It was important to us to preserve the land and have it used in ways that would serve others. Alternative uses of the land were not appealing to us.”
 
Bart Seebach, an attorney who serves on the Minnesota Conference’s Board of Trustees, led trustees’ discussions with the Egloffs in recent years and played a key role in creating the purchase agreement. He said trustees have hoped for this result over many years, and he is overjoyed to see it come to fruition.

“This acquisition includes a very substantial and wonderful gift by the Egloff family,” Seebach said. “We are so grateful to them! They are passing their family’s legacy of stewardship and love for the woods at Fish Hook Lake into our care. I am so very hopeful our youth and family camping ministry will use this land to help people, young and old, forge and nurture deep relationships with God, whose love is so beautifully revealed in our natural world.”
 
David and Sue Egloff enjoying the property they just sold to the conference.

Camp Minnesota has made several key sales in recent years as part of its long-range strategic plan. Camp Kingswood in Mound was sold in 2013, and Decision Hills Camp in Spicer was sold in 2017. Then in July, Minnesota Land Trust paid the Minnesota Conference $1.218 million for a conservation easement covering 383 acres of its Star Lake Wilderness Camp—thus ensuring the preservation of the pristine land while also generating resources for the conference’s camping and retreat ministry.
 
The camping ministry’s long-range strategic plan calls for Camp Minnesota to continue to invest in and expand its two primary camps for youth—Northern Pines and Koronis Ministries in Paynesville, and proceeds from these previous sales funded the just-completed land purchase at Northern Pines.

October 08, 2020
By: Christa Meland

This article may also be found at the minnesotaumc.org websiteChrista Meland is director of communications for the Minnesota Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church.


Koronis Breezes Newsletter - Summer 2020

Koronis Breezes Newsletter - Summer 2020

9/2/2020

Check out the latest news from Koronis Ministries!


Koronis Ministries’ Lakeview Open House

Koronis Ministries’ Lakeview Open House

8/26/2020

Koronis Ministries’ Lakeview Open House
1-4 PM Labor Day (Sept. 7, 2020)

In December of 2019, an early-morning fire severely damaged historic Lakeview Lodge at Koronis Ministries in Paynesville, MN. Thankfully, no one was hurt and the building was fully insured. Lakeview is central to the camp’s operations, housing the dining room, kitchen, administrative offices, camp store and some guest lodging.  Over the next eight months, major restoration work has been under way with the help of Giertsen Company of Minneapolis. The work on the building will wrap up at the end of August. 

Koronis Ministries is inviting friends of the camp to drop in between 1PM – 4 PM on Labor Day (Sept. 7, 2020) to walk through the newly renovated structure and see the completed $600,000 restoration project first hand. Come celebrate with the camp community God’s goodness and provision.  Social distancing and masks will be required for the event, and snacks will be provided. Call the camp office for more information: 320-243-4544.






Photos of fire damage and after the completed restoration:


Conservation easement preserves Star Lake land, generates resources for camping ministry

Conservation easement preserves Star Lake land, generates resources for camping ministry

8/13/2020

In a transaction that closed late last month, Minnesota Land Trust paid the Minnesota Conference $1.218 million for a conservation easement covering 383 acres of its Star Lake Wilderness Camp.
 
The conservation easement will ensure the preservation of the pristine land so that it can be enjoyed for years to come while also generating resources for the conference’s camping and retreat ministry. Star Lake spans 441 acres and is located in Pequot Lakes.

A conservation easement is a legal agreement between a landowner (in this case, the conference) and a land trust or government agency that permanently limits uses of a piece of land for conservation purposes. The landowner agrees to sell certain rights associated with the property—in this case, the right to develop it—and a private organization or public agency can enforce the landowner’s promise not to exercise those rights. The agreement exists even if the property is sold.
 
“I am overjoyed,” said Bart Seebach, a member of the Minnesota Conference Board of Trustees who has been working on the easement for the past five years.

Seebach pointed out that the easement demonstrates the conference’s commitment to responsible stewardship of God’s creation, affirmed in our Social Principles, which call for “the preservation of old-growth forests and other irreplaceable natural treasures, as well as preservation of endangered plant species.”
 
The easement also “honors the vision of the clergy and laypersons whose commitment and ‘sweat equity,’ together with God’s grace, pieced together the Star Lake wilderness camp and brought generations of United Methodists face-to-face with the stunning beauty and challenge of meeting God in the wilderness,” said Seebach.

Campers playing volleyball at Star Lake Wilderness Camp.
 
In 2012, camp consultant Kaleidoscope, Inc., recommended selling three camp sites, including Star Lake, as part of a long-range Camp Minnesota strategic plan. (The other two sites, Camp Kingswood in Mound and Decision Hills Camp in Spicer, were sold in 2013 and 2017, respectively.) In 2015, conference trustees appointed a four-person task force to explore various options for the land, including divestment—and in 2016, at the recommendation of that task force, they voted to pursue selling a conservation easement after learning that they could preserve the land and receive income for the camping ministry.
 
In recent years, the conference has not conducted programming at Star Lake and has instead leased it to an independent nonprofit, Star Lake Camp Incorporated. That organization, operated by a group of Minnesota United Methodists, is in the midst of a five-year lease and will be able to continue to use the land for its summer camp ministry.
 
“I’m excited about this easement and think it’s a good thing,” said Rev. Walter Lockhart, the executive director of Star Lake Camp Incorporated. “I don’t think any of us has a good sense of what the future of the UMC looks like but this is a statement of faith and value of this land. We know we don’t want to turn this land into homes.”
 
Lockhart has been to Star Lake every summer since 1987, and what he values most is the type of ministry that the land allows. Campers sleep in canvas tents, cook meals over an open fire, and bathe in the lake. There are many more trees than people, and campers are able to spread out. The majority of campers are not from United Methodist churches and many lack financial resources typically required for camp participation, said Lockhart. Last year, Star Lake welcomed nearly 100 campers, and Lockhart is hoping to reach 200 next summer.
 
Keith Shew, director of camping and retreat ministries for the Dakotas-Minnesota Area, is also pleased with the conservation easement.   
Star Lake Camp is located within the yellow lines of this aerial map.

“This demonstrates the annual conference’s commitment to honoring Star Lake’s camping ministry and the beauty of the natural spaces while also providing financial resources to help advance the camp and retreat ministry’s strategic plan for ministry,” he said.
 
The buyer of the easement, Minnesota Land Trust, is an organization formed in 1991 whose mission is to protect and restore Minnesota’s most vital natural lands in order to provide wildlife habitat, clean water, outdoor experiences and scenic beauty for generations to come.

“By protecting these lakes, the Minnesota Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church is doing much more than protecting the camp for the young conservationists of the future,” said Ruurd Schoolderman, program manager for Minnesota Land Trust. “These lakes play a vital role in protecting tullibee fish populations, an important species in our state that relies on cold, deep waters, and undisturbed shoreline to survive. This conservation easement truly is a gift to all Minnesotans.”
 
In addition to Star Lake, the Minnesota Conference owns Northern Pines in Park Rapids and Koronis Ministries in Paynesville, and it operates Kowakan Adventures near Ely.

August 13, 2020
By: Christa Meland

This article may also be found at the minnesotaumc.org websiteChrista Meland is director of communications for the Minnesota Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church.


Keep Our Campfires Glowing: Camping ministry needs YOU!

Keep Our Campfires Glowing: Camping ministry needs YOU!

8/6/2020

Exactly a year ago, Dan Ziegler walked around Camp Koronis to the sound of “screams and laughter and joyful noises of family and kids.” The children’s camps were just wrapping up after a full season, and the intergenerational family camps were in full swing. Campers could be spotted at the beach, on the playground, hiking in the woods, and simply sitting and enjoying the beauty around them. Forty-five staff members were fulfilling jobs ranging from waterfront supervision to meal preparation to leading campers.
 
This summer is very different. Dakotas and Minnesota United Methodist camps, like many camps across the country, ceased summer operations amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. So while cottages are housing small family groups, the guest lodges are all empty—and the camp is mostly quiet. Just two full-time staff and six-part timers are employed.

“Camp is about bringing people together,” said Ziegler, who has served as Koronis’ executive director since 2015. “Social distancing is the opposite of what we’re about, so there’s definitely a sense of loss about the interpersonal relationships and spiritual growth that won’t be able to happen at camp this year. We’re about kids walking arm-in-arm and families hugging and singing and laughing together.”

Teen campers at Koronis Ministries.

While camp leaders are confident that the decision to suspend summer camps was the right one in order to prioritize the safety of campers, guests, and staff, it has resulted in financial challenges for Dakotas-Minnesota Area camps. Each campsite’s operation—including salaries and benefits, maintenance and upkeep of the property and facilities, program-related expenses, and fixed costs—are funded almost entirely by camper and guest group fees. Because of that, the suspension has resulted in an estimated $1.8 million loss in revenue for the area camping program, $1.1 million of which is attributed to Minnesota’s three camps—Koronis, Northern Pines in Park Rapids, and Kowakan Adventures near Ely, which offers Boundary Waters expeditions.

“Our camps are part of the fabric of our Dakotas and Minnesota Annual Conferences,” said Keith Shew, director of area camp and retreat ministries. “For generations of Dakotans and Minnesotans, time spent at your camps is part of their faith story. Now more than ever, our world needs camp. We desperately seek the sacred and safe spaces, set apart from the world, where we experience Christ, creation, and community in the meaningful and impactful ways that only camp can provide. We want to gather around the glowing campfire at the end of a fun day, to be still, and to know that God is here and that we are loved even in a hurting and broken world.”
 
Northern Pines campers.

Rev. Tony Fink, who now serves Pine Island UMC, brings kids to Northern Pines every summer—and it’s always been a deeply impactful experience. He points out that for many youth, camp the highlight of their year in terms of coming closer to Jesus and reconnecting with God. “If they are not at the place that seems so sacred to them, will they find another chance to have this special and meaningful connection in their faith walk?” he wonders.
 
What will it take to keep the campfires glowing? Staff reductions and furloughs at all of the camps have helped control costs, but estimated operational costs for 2020 total $938,000, including $578,000 in Minnesota. Dakotas and Minnesota United Methodists are invited to give to a special “Keep Our Campfires Glowing” campaign in order to position camps to survive and thrive through and beyond the pandemic.

“In the history of camp, it has never existed without your support,” said Rev. Nate Melcher, a longtime camp supporter who serves Richfield UMC and serves on the Dakotas-Minnesota Area Camp and Retreat Council. “Yes, servant heart support to help build our sites into great places to experience God and build great teams—and yet, it’s the financial support that helps get those campers there in the first place so they can grow, experience Jesus, and learn more about the people they want to be in this world. Thank you for your extravagant generosity to support your camping ministry during this very crucial time.”
 
Looking ahead, Ziegler hopes next summer looks a lot more like last summer than this summer, and he looks forward to brighter days ahead.
 
“My prayer is that the quiet that we have this summer will next summer be filled with laughter and joy and song and conversation and arm-in-arm walking and all the good things that happen at camp as people connect with God, connect with nature, and connect with each other,” he said.

Learn more about campaign
Donate to “Keep Our Campfires Glowing” campaign
Watch testimonials on Camp Minnesota Facebook page

By: Christa Meland
Christa Meland is director of communications for the Minnesota Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church. This article may also be found on the minnesotaumc.org website.


DK-MN Camps and the Coronavirus - Information for Camps and Retreats

DK-MN Camps and the Coronavirus - Information for Camps and Retreats

6/5/2020

June 5, 2020
Update from your Dakotas and Minnesota Area United Methodist camps

Greetings from your Dakotas and Minnesota Area United Methodist camps.  Summer 2020 has arrived and it just doesn’t feel the same when we know we won’t see your smiling faces!   We are sad, we miss you, and we know you miss camp too!  With all that’s happening in our world today, it seems like there has never been a more important time than right now for children to be at camp!   While we know the decision to suspend summer programming at our six camps was the right choice during the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s simply not summer without you.  We can’t wait to see you when it is safe to gather once again.
   

 

  • Camp Connections.  Even though we can’t physically be together at camp this summer, you can STILL stay connected virtually to some of your favorite parts of camp!  Beginning Monday, June 8, make sure to follow your Dakotas and Minnesota Facebook pages for a daily “Camp Connection.”  Connect with some of your favorite places and activities at camp.  Join us as we: hike beautiful trails, feed the camp goats, visit the gold mine, go kayaking, swing in the hammocks, make S’mores, zoom down the zip line, sing your favorite songs around the campfire, worship - and SO MUCH more!  We will share a new “Camp Connection” every day for five weeks.  Make sure to check it out!  Stay connected.
     
  • Plan for re-opening camps.  Our staff continue to work closely with local, state, and industry leaders to determine when and how to safely reopen our sites.   We’ve developed, and are implementing, reopening protocols and procedures that meet safety guidelines set by each state and the CDC.  Like us, we know you are ready to get back to camp.  Please be assured we are moving as swiftly as we’re able to reopen while also exercising an abundance of caution.  The safety of guests and staff is worth the time it takes to do it right!  We’re starting slow and with small family groups only, but we hope and pray for a time when we will be able to host larger retreat groups.  Since our area camps work with three different state governments, each with a unique pathway to navigate the pandemic, we ask that you please contact the camp director at the site where you’d like to schedule an event for information on what is possible at this time. 
     
  • Financial update.  Each of your six camp’s operating budgets are funded nearly exclusively through user fees.  With the suspension of summer camps and the inability to host retreats and gatherings, the financial impact on our camp and retreat ministry is significant.  While staff have been doing their best to reduce fixed costs, including reduction of staff and salaries, delaying projects, and keeping many facilities offline, our sites are struggling financially.  No one knows how long the COVID-19 pandemic will impact our ministry, but we anticipate disruption of service into 2021. 
     

We’ve been blessed with some wonderful gifts from our United Methodist conferences, individuals, and local churches.  Thank you!!!  If you are feeling led to support your camps at this time, we enthusiastically welcome your assistance!  Watch for additional opportunities to help keep our campfires glowing and to ensure your camps remain strong and growing.   

Thank you for all the ways you support your Dakotas and Minnesota United Methodist Camp and Retreat Ministries.  

Be well, stay safe, and God bless you.  

Your Dakotas and Minnesota UMC Camp staff


Fire at Koronis Ministries: Exchanging beauty for ashes

Fire at Koronis Ministries: Exchanging beauty for ashes

2/20/2020

On Dec. 21, Koronis Ministries Camp and Retreat Center experienced a fire that significantly damaged its kitchen and part of its historic Lakeview Lodge.


Northern Pines Newsletter - Winter 2019

Northern Pines Newsletter - Winter 2019

12/20/2019

Check out the latest news from Northern Pines Camp!


Knitting Our Lives Together Retreat - February 6-9, 2020

Knitting Our Lives Together Retreat - February 6-9, 2020

11/21/2019

A knitting retreat for knitters of all abilities


Koronis Tabernacle gets green light for construction to begin

Koronis Tabernacle gets green light for construction to begin

9/5/2019

“We are so excited to see this long-awaited project come to fruition,” said Keith Shew, director of the Dakotas-Minnesota Camp and Retreat Ministry.


Koronis Breezes Newsletter - Autumn 2018

Koronis Breezes Newsletter - Autumn 2018

12/20/2018

Check out the latest news from Koronis Ministries!


Northern Pines Newsletter - Winter 2018

Northern Pines Newsletter - Winter 2018

12/20/2018

Check out the latest news from Northern Pines Camp!


Zieglers named directors at Storm Mountain Center

Zieglers named directors at Storm Mountain Center

11/19/2018

Levi and Lara Ziegler will fill the role of camp director at Storm Mountain Center.


2019 Camp Curriculum Launch: PEACE WORKS

2019 Camp Curriculum Launch: PEACE WORKS

10/19/2018

What a great summer ahead with the theme of PEACE WORKS! Can you see the fun and bright tie-dye shirts? Campers can be involved in the worldwide peace crane project and peace pole creation.


Leaving a Legacy: Tabernacle Groundbreaking

Leaving a Legacy: Tabernacle Groundbreaking

9/6/2018

On Labor Day, about 150 people gathered to celebrate the groundbreaking of a new Tabernacle at Koronis Ministries Camp and Retreat Center in Paynesville.
 
In a moving worship service, the nine-decade lifespan of the original Tabernacle was remembered and celebrated—and those assembled prayed over and blessed the site of a new building that will be ready to welcome guests by spring 2019.
 
Dan Ziegler, director of Koronis Ministries, described the original building as a holy space where all who came found fellowship with each other and with the Lord, and where thousands of people were “challenged to orient their lives toward Jesus.” But the historic Tabernacle had no restrooms, air conditioning, ceiling fans, or heat, and it wasn’t able to be used year-round. Years of use had resulted in a leaking roof and a cracked foundation that caused water to puddle inside.
 
The new Tabernacle will be a multi-level, multi-use meeting and worship space that’s available year-round and has state-of-the-art technology, modern amenities, and full accessibility. So far, nearly $1.7 million has been committed to the project. A capital campaign is underway to raise the remaining funds needed for the $2 million building. Each Minnesota United Methodist congregation has been challenged to give at least $1,500 to help bring this vision to reality, and Ziegler reported that dozens of churches have already risen to the occasion.
 
Bishop Ough gives a sermon at the groundbreaking ceremony.During the groundbreaking ceremony, Bishop Bruce R. Ough gave a sermon in which he encouraged those assembled to build on the legacy of the past as we move into a new era with the new Tabernacle.
 
“Legacy is often a negative word,” he said. “Too often it applies looking backward or trying only to honor and preserve the past. But legacy is not about preservation; it is about purpose. Legacy is not about one’s fate; it is about one’s future. Legacy is not about holding onto the past; it is about building on a sure foundation... We are the persons designated to carry the legacy of the Koronis Tabernacle, and all of its ministries, into the future.”
 
One man who knows a lot about leaving a legacy is Dwight Rieke. He has attended Koronis for 91 of the 92 years he’s been alive.

"I’ve never missed a summer,” he said. All who attended the groundbreaking were encouraged to bring a shovel or garden trowel to help break ground. Rieke had “1928,” his first year at Koronis, written on his shovel. He attended the groundbreaking with his great-grandson, Chase, who enjoyed digging with his own little shovel. Rieke dedicated his life to Christ at the original Tabernacle, and it’s important to him create a new “hallowed place of worship” for Chase’s generation and those who come after.
 
Karen Craven has also attended Koronis since she was a baby and now owns a cottage on the Koronis grounds with her husband Bob.
 
“The old building was awesome, and it meant a lot to the older generation,” she said. “But the new generation needs to make their own memories.” She added that she and her husband are excited about the new building because “we know that what happens at camp changes lives.”
 
Craven is proof of that. She explained that there’s a book filled with the names of all of the kids who made a commitment to Christ at the old Tabernacle. It includes her own name.
 
Rev. Deb Marzahn, pastor at multi-campus Crossroads UMC and president of the 150-year-old Red Rock Camp, which uses the Tabernacle every year, told stories of how she has seen God touch the lives of those gathered in the original Tabernacle and what gathering there has meant to her family.
 
About 150 people broung shovels and helped break ground for the new Tabernacle at Koronis.“Camp is an unparalleled opportunity, coupled with the movement of the Holy Spirit, to experience true Christian community,” she said.
 
Rev. Paul Marzahn, also a pastor at Crossroads UMC and her husband, added that the future Tabernacle is important to him because he wants to pass on the legacy of faith and family he received in the original structure.
 
“There’s not a lot of camps where I can bring my 85-year-old mom and my 4-year-old grandson and enjoy a great week of great programming and great fellowship, and Koronis is one of those kinds of places,” he said. His grandfather designed the original building, and now that he brings his grandson to Koronis, five generations of his family have a connection to the Tabernacle. “We’re able to receive this blessing because of those like my grandfather 100 years ago who thought about this place,” he said. “We’re doing this groundbreaking so we can continue doing this ministry for the next 100 years.”
 
For Steve Knight, the Minnesota chair of the Dakotas-Minnesota Area Camp and Retreat Council, the most meaningful part of the groundbreaking event was “seeing the past and the future generations come together to consecrate this place and break ground with a vision for what we can do in the future.” Like most people attending this event, his faith was strongly shaped by his time at camp.
 
Ough concluded his sermon by reminding those gathered that “as we break ground, we are affirming we are still in the business of building on the sure foundation, which is Jesus Christ.”

View More Photos from the Groundbreaking
Learn More and Donate​
By: Karla Hovde
Karla Hovde is the communications specialist for the Minnesota Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church.
Dwight Rieke has attended Koronis for 91 summers in a row. He broke ground on Labor Day with his great-grandson.
Dwight Rieke has attended Koronis for 91 summers in a row. He broke ground for the Tabernacle on Labor Day with his great-grandson.


Koronis Breezes Newsletter - Summer 2018

Koronis Breezes Newsletter - Summer 2018

6/10/2018

Check out the latest news from Koronis Ministries!


Koronis Tabernacle Gains MN UMC Trustees' Approval

Koronis Tabernacle Gains MN UMC Trustees' Approval

6/6/2018

Koronis Ministries’ new Tabernacle moved one step closer to reality in May when the Board of Trustees of the Minnesota United Methodist Church gave unanimous approval of this proposed meeting place.


Check out our Latest Newsletter!

Check out our Latest Newsletter!

5/25/2018

Camp News Spring 2018 includes camp information updates on all six camps of the Dakotas-Minnesota Area Camp and Retreat Ministry.


Koronis Tabernacle:

Koronis Tabernacle: "Continuing the Vision" Videos

5/3/2018

Videos on Minnesota Vimeo. Continue the Vision and Legacy of Koronis Tabernacle now.


T.E.E.N.S. Camp at Northern Pines Camp Expands

T.E.E.N.S. Camp at Northern Pines Camp Expands

4/23/2018

Teaching, Equipping, Empowering, Nurturing, Servants.


Koronis Ministries Seeking Full-Time Facilities Manager

Koronis Ministries Seeking Full-Time Facilities Manager

4/4/2018

Koronis Ministries, on beautiful Lake Koronis, is seeking a full-time Facilities Manger to oversee the upkeep and enhancement of 50+ buildings and 185 acres.


Camp Chill Returns in 2019!

Camp Chill Returns in 2019!

2/9/2018

Camp Chill is currently under construction and will return in 2019! Thank you to everyone who has made
this fundraiser for camp scholarships so successful for our conference! We want to make sure that even more people can go to camp, so we are taking a year to make Camp Chill 2019 the best yet!

Stay tuned for how you can raise camping scholarships with Camp Chill in winter 2019!


Do you have your Church Code?

Do you have your Church Code?

2/8/2018

Did you know? We offer Church Codes! If your church is planning to offer financial assistance to your campers to help cover the cost of registration fees, a church code can help.


Camp Registration Opens January 9, 2018

Camp Registration Opens January 9, 2018

1/8/2018

Registration for Summer Camp 2018 is Tuesday, January 9. 2018. We welcome you to view Camp Sessions online for all three Minnesota locations: Koronis, Kowakan, and Northern Pines.


Stay Up-to-Date with the Northern Pines Winter Newsletter

Stay Up-to-Date with the Northern Pines Winter Newsletter

12/31/2017

Northern Pines Camp Information Newsletter


Phase I of Koronis Ministries' Tabernacle Campaign Enters Final Stage

Phase I of Koronis Ministries' Tabernacle Campaign Enters Final Stage

11/3/2017

Koronis Ministries’ campaign for a new Tabernacle has entered its final stage, and plans for the new structure are beginning to move forward.  If all goes as expected, site excavation will begin this Fall as workers remove the footers and slab from the old Tabernacle site in preparation for planned construction in the Spring.


Fall Woodcutting Day at Koronis Ministries (Nov. 4, 2017)

Fall Woodcutting Day at Koronis Ministries (Nov. 4, 2017)

10/19/2017

We need your HELP...

Winter is coming and the camp needs volunteers to help us cut and split wood for the season! Come volunteer for a day of good work, fellowship, FREE food, and fresh apple cider. No experience needed, there's work for everyone - bring your chain saw if you've got one. Stay overnight if you'd like, as our guests!

Call the camp to sign up: (320) 243-4544


Camp Koronis Adds NEW Nature Art Specialty for Teens: July 23-28

Camp Koronis Adds NEW Nature Art Specialty for Teens: July 23-28

5/23/2017

Camp Koronis has added a NEW Nature Arts & Crafts specialty for creative teens who see beauty in nature. This program is offered during Teen Week, July 23 - 28, 2017


Check out some of the great stuff happening with your camps!

Check out some of the great stuff happening with your camps!

5/8/2017

Check out some of the great stuff happening with your United Methodist camps!  Click here to read the Dakotas and Minnesota Area Camp Newsletter!


Summer Theology Workshop at Koronis Ministries - June 11-15

Summer Theology Workshop at Koronis Ministries - June 11-15

3/28/2017

The annual Summer Theology Workshop will provide an in depth theological insight into "The Early Church: from Diverse Theology to Orthodoxy" for interested clergy and laypersons.


Northern Pines Volunteer Work Day - Saturday, May 20

Northern Pines Volunteer Work Day - Saturday, May 20

2/28/2017

Northern Pines Camp and Retreat Center will have a Volunteer Work Day Saturday, May 20 from 9 am-5 pm. Lunch will be served to all volunteers. We have many projects to work on, for all gifts and abilities. Come join the fun as we clean, paint, rake and prepare our site for a summer of ministry. If you plan to attend, please email NPdirector@campminnesota.org or call 218-732-4713. Friday night lodging is available for those needing it.

 


"Pollyanna" and "Daisy Mae" Cabin Demolition Project

2/15/2017

Demolition was completed this week on two cabins at Northern Pines Camp and Retreat.  This is a step forward in the plans to construct a new cabin on camp property in the future.  Leslie Hobson, director, reflected on the demolition.  “As I watched in fascination as the buildings came down, I was thankful for those who came before us creating this wonderful place.  I thought of all of the campers and families who have experienced life in these cabins.  I feel blessed to be part of the future of this camp as we continue to take the steps needed to build a new cabin.” 


Assistant director, Carol Ford, shared her thoughts about the cabin demolition: "It was with mixed feelings that I watched the cabins come down. So many memories within the walls and yes, on the walls. But they were tired and worn. The foundation of Daisy Mae was no longer strong enough to support the cabin. Like when our faith foundation becomes weak it is time to rebuild and look forward. As the area where the cabins was cleared, a wonderful space emerged. A new place for people to experience God. The reason we are Northern Pines Camp."




Keith Shew, Director of Camp and Retreat Ministries, takes the Camp Chill Challenge!

Keith Shew, Director of Camp and Retreat Ministries, takes the Camp Chill Challenge!

2/13/2017

Keith absolutely loves camp, knows the impact of a camping experience on the hearts and lives of campers, and wants anyone and everyone to experience camp in 2017!   

Keith is set to plunge into the icy waters of Lake Koronis if the $500.00 goal is met.  And, for each additional $100 raised over the $500, Keith will attach one full-sized bag of marshmallows to his body as "floaties" for his Camp Chill Challenge.  

Please help support Keith to take the Camp Chill Challenge and help children, youth and families to attend camp this summer!
 


United Methodists raise $10,000, Bishop Ough prepares for polar plunge

United Methodists raise $10,000, Bishop Ough prepares for polar plunge

2/9/2017

We did it! Thanks to your amazing generosity, we raised more than $10,000 for camp scholarships—and Bishop Ough is officially jumping into frigid Lake Koronis on Feb. 18! At the 2016 Annual Conference, LYFE campers challenged Bishop Ough to show his support for Camp Minnesota by doing a polar plunge, and he agreed to do so IF United Methodists pledged $10,000 for camp scholarships (which you did!). Your donations have not only prompted the bishop to go all in for the sake of sending kids to camp, but they will enable many kids to have a life-changing experience at Camp Minnesota this summer. In recent days, Bishop Ough has been busy preparing for his polar plunge, and you're invited to check out how he's getting ready. Watch this video, and share it with your congregation in person on Sunday and via social media!  Watch and/or download video


Support camperships -- get Bishop Ough to jump in a frozen lake!

Support camperships -- get Bishop Ough to jump in a frozen lake!

1/11/2017

Minnesota is the land of 10,000 lakes, and we need your help in raising $10,000 to get Bishop Ough to jump into frozen Lake Koronis on Feb. 18! At the 2016 Annual Conference, LYFE campers challenged Bishop Ough to show his support for Camp Minnesota by taking the plunge, and he agreed to do so IF the conference pledges $10,000 for camperships (camp scholarships). We're a little more than halfway there with six weeks to go! Make a donation to see the bishop go ALL IN for the sake of sending kids to camp!  Learn more and donate


 


Knitting Our Lives Together Retreat - February 5-11, 2017

Knitting Our Lives Together Retreat - February 5-11, 2017

12/13/2016

Like to knit or want to learn to knit? Enjoy being around knitting and knitters? Want a little time away? You’re invited to this time-flexible knitting retreat at beautiful Northern Pines Camp and Retreat Center!

Knitting Our Lives Together

  • refresh your spirit
  • enjoy community
  • develop knitting skills
February 5-11, 2017
Northern Pines Camp and Retreat Center
Park Rapids, MN


Opportunities will be offered for daily devotions and Bible study, charity knitting, knitting skill sessions, and special presentations. Skilled knitters will be on site to help beginners who want to learn to knit as well as answer questions and trouble shoot problems.

Prices are per person and include lodging, food, and program costs.
1 Night (3 meals) $100
2 Nights $180
3 Nights $260
4 Nights $340
5 Nights $420
6 Nights $490

Click here to view and download registration form.
For more information, email NPdirector@campminnesota.org or call (218) 732-4713.

Sponsored by
Northern Pines Camp and
Mary Martha Yarns


Koronis Breezes Newsletter - Winter 2016

Koronis Breezes Newsletter - Winter 2016

11/30/2016

Be in the know!  Click here to read the Winter 2016 Koronis Breezes Newsletter.


New Leaders for Kowakan Adventures

New Leaders for Kowakan Adventures

11/30/2016

We are excited to welcome Levi and Lara Ziegler as program leaders for Kowakan Adventures, the Boundary Waters Wilderness arm of Camp Minnesota.  Levi and Lara come with a wealth of camp and ministry experience, including: service in a wilderness camp setting, work with various children’s ministries, and most recently, through their program and administrative leadership at Camp Koronis.  Levi grew up in the Christian camp setting with his father, Koronis Ministries’ Director Dan Ziegler, mother, Wendy, and five siblings. 

Levi and Lara share a deep love of the out-of-doors as avid hikers, canoers, and nature enthusiasts. In 2015, they enjoyed a 1,200-mile trek together, hiking on the Appalachian Trail.  “Nature is one of the most real and distraction free settings to experience the presence of God, and we want to facilitate a real quality experience of that for anyone who desires it” says Lara. “We want Kowakan to be a go-to place of wilderness based relationships and team-building for church and ministry groups in particular.” 

Keith Shew, Director of Camp & Retreat Ministries for the Dakotas-Minnesota Area of the United Methodist Church, was enthusiastic about their appointment. “They are remarkable leaders, and I’m thrilled that they’ve expressed interest in overseeing our Kowakan ministry in 2017.”
Levi and Lara are replacing Josh Jirasek, who has stepped down from the Kowakan program leader position in order to serve full-time as Koronis Ministries’ Facilities Manager. 

To schedule a Kowakan expedition for your group, email Kowakan@campminnesota.org or call 320-243-4544.
 


And the winners are...

11/17/2016


Thank you to everyone who responded to our email request for the contact information of your church's Camp Ambassador!  
 
Everyone who replied was entered into a drawing and here are the winners:
 
GRAND PRIZE - One FREE week @ Summer Camp 2017 ($425 value)
DAK - Linton UMC - CA is Marlin Sapp
MN - Riverside UMC (Park Rapids) - CA is Kirsten Kisner
 
Cool Prize #1 - Camp Ministry Pullover ($60 value)
DAK - Frankfort UMC - CA is Deanna Bindenagel
MN - First UMC (Stillwater) - CA is Patsy Bellman
 
Cool Prize #2 - Coffee & Donuts for Staff
DAK - Madison UMC - CA is Gloria Van Duyn
MN - Spirit of Hope UMC - CA is Penny Meschke
 
Cool Prize #3 - $10 Starbucks Giftcard
DAK - Highmore UMC - CA is Benjamin McKird-Wilsey
MN - Hennepin Avenue UMC - CA is Nate Melcher
 
Congratulations to all!!
 
We still want your Camp Ambassador information!!!  If you haven't sent it yet, please email campambassadors@dakmnareaumc.org NOW!  We want to make sure all the amazing camp information gets to the right person at your church!
 
Looking forward to an amazing 2017 Camping season with all of you!!
 
Rachel Devereaux
Area Camp Ambassador Coordinator
 


Canadian Fishing Camp 1 - July 28 - August 3, 2016 - Lac Seul, Ontario

Canadian Fishing Camp 1 - July 28 - August 3, 2016 - Lac Seul, Ontario

11/1/2016

The 2016 Canadian Fishing Camp 1 was held July 28 - August 3, at Mahkwa Lodge on Lac Seul, Ontario.  Led by Dan Hair and Marlys Carls-Steiskal, their group of dedicated campers enjoyed fishing, fellowship, and spiritual enrichment.  Click here to view the remarkable photos from their expedition.

Consider joining us next year!  Look for the Offsite Programs and Events portion of our upcoming 2017 Camp Minnesota brochure for details.


Hot of the press!  Koronis Breezes Newsletter

Hot of the press! Koronis Breezes Newsletter

10/26/2016

Read all about it!  Click here to view the Fall 2016 Koronis Breezes Newsletter.


Woodward Cabin Project Completion!

Woodward Cabin Project Completion!

10/26/2016

A project begun in June at Northern Pines has been completed, all thanks to volunteers under the leadership of Don Arnold.  In June, Don Arnold brought a group of volunteers from Northern Light in Ramsey to begin the work of residing and staining the exterior of Woodward Cabin, a cabin at Northern Pines Camp and Retreat Center, Park Rapids, one of the camps of Camp Minnesota, Minnesota Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church.  

In October, an adult mission group from Eden Prairie United Methodist Church arrived at Northern Pines to spend a week working on projects at the camp.  This group came prepared to work on the siding, bringing supplies and tools and a monetary gift to help pay for supplies needed to complete the siding project.  This group of 7 individuals from Eden Prairie, Willmar, Hackensack, and Fort Pierre, SD were able to get the rest of the old siding off the cabin, stain the front side, and completed siding almost two sides of the cabin during their week at Northern Pines.  Don Arnold was there all week to help the crew with the project.  At the end of the week, a crew from Northern Light again came to Northern Pines to finish the project.  With the help of the team of 3 people and Don’s tireless work through the next Monday, the siding and staining was finished. We are very grateful to all who helped complete Woodward Cabin’s new exterior.

by: Leslie Hobson


Northern Pines Winter Clergy Family Weekend - January 6-8, 2017

Northern Pines Winter Clergy Family Weekend - January 6-8, 2017

10/17/2016

Are you looking for a relaxing place to get away with your family after a busy Advent and Christmas season?  Now is the time to make your plans for the Northern Pines Clergy Family Weekend - January 6-8, 2017! You'll experience a weekend where your family will gather with friends both new and old, take time to renew your spirit and enjoy the beautiful setting at Northern Pines Camp & Retreat Center.  Come experience this ideal setting to experience God.

We will offer planned activities for your family with plenty of free time for you to choose your own activities such as sledding, skating, ice fishing, and snowshoeing.  

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER!

2017 FEES  reflect a 25% discount for clergy families
Full Weekend (2 nights/5 meals)                  Half weekend (1 night/3 meals)
Adult (age 19+): $79                                       Adult ( age 19+): $57
Youth (age 10-18): $73                                  Youth (age 10-18): $53                                 
Child (age 4-9): $55                                        Child (age 4-9): $42               
 Age 3 or under: Free    
Immediate family maximum: $280 full weekend, $200 half weekend  
Family max includes immediate members residing at same address.
You are welcome to bring friends, but they are not included in the maximum fee.

Lodging:  Each family will be assigned a room in the Lodge or a cabin on a first come/first served basis.  Limit of 12 families.

REGISTRATION DEADLINE IS: December 27, 2016

THURSDAY/FRIDAY SCHEDULE
½ Weekend – Thursday/Friday (1 night/3 meals) **New this year!!
 
Thursday
Arrival any time after 1:00 PM
Settle in
Dinner
 
Friday
Breakfast in Bed
Lunch at noon
Relax in front of the fireplace
“Be still…”
Checkout and Departure at 3:00 PM
 
 
WEEKEND SCHEDULE
½ Weekend – Friday/Saturday (1 night/3 meals)
Full Weekend – Friday, Saturday, Sunday (2 nights/5 meals)
½ Weekend – Saturday/Sunday (1 night/3 meals)
 
Friday
Arrival any time after 5:00 PM
Pizza
Settle in
Campfire singing & S’mores
 
Saturday
Breakfast
Worship
Free time
Lunch
(½ Weekend – Saturday/Sunday Arrival any time after 1:00 PM)
Craft or naps
Free time
Story time for younger kiddos
Dinner
Board Games/Movie/Popcorn
(1/2 Weekend Saturday/Sunday Checkout and Departure at 3:00 PM)
 
Sunday
Breakfast
Worship
Free Time
Lunch
Checkout and Departure at 3:00 PM 
 


Camp Chill:  Bishop's Ough takes the plunge to raise $10,000 for camp scholarships!

Camp Chill: Bishop's Ough takes the plunge to raise $10,000 for camp scholarships!

10/13/2016

We need your help in raising $10,000 to get Bishop Ough to jump into frozen Lake Koronis on Feb. 18, 2017!


Exciting news!

Exciting news!

10/4/2016

The camp and retreat ministries of the Dakotas and Minnesota United Methodist conferences are excited to share that we’ve partnered with Rachel Devereaux to help with a reboot of each conference’s camp ambassador outreach.  Rachel is currently on staff at Cross Winds United Methodist Church in Maple Grove where she’s leading a powerful and growing ministry with youth!  Rachel holds a degree in marketing, is in process to become a licensed local pastor.  She regularly volunteers at camp, and currently serves on the area camp and retreat council.  Rachel has a deep love for camping ministry, has been transformed through experiences at camp, and sees first-hand the impact a camping experience has on lives of children and youth.  Rachel will be working closely with local church camp ambassadors, site directors, and our office staff to help even more children, youth, and families attend camp through the area wide camp ambassador outreach program.  Watch for information from Rachel soon!
 
 


Thank You From Your Camping Ministry

Thank You From Your Camping Ministry

10/4/2016

From all of the Camp Minnesota staff…THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!

Thank you for making sure the children, youth, young adults, and families in your church and community know about camping opportunities. Thank you for your care, commitment, and continued support of your Minnesota camp and retreat ministry. Because of you, campers experienced Christ, Creation, and Community in powerful, creative, impactful and fun ways this summer at camp.

There’s much to celebrate in your camping and retreat program after the 2016 season!
Some highlights include: 
• an overall increase of 17% in summer registrations        
• a 25% increase in the amount of children and youth attending summer camp
• Deaconess, Leslie Hobson, joining the Camp Minnesota team as site director at Northern Pines Camp


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