Church camps are closing because of declining use, according to a recent AP story, but not so in Holston Conference. This year's summer camp attendance was down only slightly -- 3,050 compared to 3,200 in 2008. At the same time, Holston's four camps are re-energizing with birthday celebrations and capital fundraising campaigns that reveal church members' steadfast commitment to camp ministry. Here's the final report in progress series:
Camp Wesley Woods commemorates 50 years of service to the children and youth of the Maryville, Knoxville, Oak Ridge, and Morristown Districts in 2009. The More Than A Week-A Lifetime! campaign has brought new support and changes. One donor has funded and built a new road to a site for new cabins to be constructed. Another donor has committed to fund a Day Camp Village. Men from Broadway UMC have built a new porch onto the historic Tipton Lodge which is already a gathering place for camp activities. Construction on a Sabbath Cabin for clergy and church workers is underway with workers from Concord UMC. New cabins, a dining hall addition, and a new gathering hall are all on the horizon as funds are given to advance the ministry at Wesley Woods.