Camping & Retreat Ministries
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The Illinois Great Rivers Conference camping program is an extension of the local church’s disciple-making process. Its mission is to provide settings where campers can have a concentrated period of time to focus upon their relationship with God. Camping partners with local churches in that the church is responsible for nurturing and helping persons grow in their faith. A good camp program is focused on creating a caring and affirming community where campers learn the fine art of living at their best. Illinois Great Rivers Camps provide an environment in which to explore God's creative genius, the leisure to discover one's self, a community of fun and faith in which to develop a genuine awareness of others, and the opportunity to foster a growing relationship with Jesus Christ.
The Illinois Great Rivers Conference camping program is carried out at six campsites, five of which are owned by the conference – East Bay, Epworth, Jensen Woods, Little Grassy and Living Springs. Camps are also offered at Beulah Camp through a lease agreement with the Beulah Holiness Camp Association.
Click here to view and download the 2014 Camping catalog.
Choose Your Price This Year
Change!! Get ready!!
In 2014 each camper (or whoever is paying the bill) will have three prices to choose from. The reason for this tiered pricing is four-fold: 1) it presents opportunities for second-mile giving to the camping ministry, 2) it educates as to the actual cost of the camp program, 3) it acknowledges that families are differently gifted, and 4) other conferences have tried it and been pleased with the results.
Whenever there is change, however, it’s important to remember that few things besides The Ten Commandments are written in stone. In other words, if this year’s change turns out not to be such a good idea, we are allowed to go back to the drawing board and try something else. And we will go back to the drawing board if, after first giving a new pricing plan “the old college try,” we discover it needs tweaking or even the circular file.
Here are the levels you will find in the information about each camp:
· Tier One: Assisted Cost
At this level the summer camp program is funded in part by conference apportionments. Apportionments are fair-share contributions from local churches to support a number of connectional costs, including camping and retreat ministries. We are blessed to have local churches that pay their apportionments in full!
· Tier Two: Actual Cost
This tier represents the true cost of the summer camp program. The Actual Cost covers everything from food to electricity, pool chemicals, summer staff, gas for the tractor that pulls the hayrack, routine site maintenance, and so on. The only things it doesn’t cover are costs related to administration and marketing, which are covered by apportionments.
· Tier Three: Actual Plus
This tier is best understood as second-mile giving and is generally $25 greater than the Actual Cost. This tier allows campers to invest in the enhancement and expansion of program and facilities. This gift is automatically routed into the Advance Special for that camp site and will be used for needed things as building additions, new mattresses for bunks, new (used) camp vehicles and large equipment, and other planned and unplanned items not included in the annual budget. Donations over and above the $25 are more than welcome.
It is the dream of Camping and Retreat Ministries that no child is kept from summer camp because of cost. In cases where Tier One: Assisted Cost is still overwhelming, a camper may apply for scholarship aid from the IGRC Camping Scholarship Fund. To apply for financial aid, go to www.igrc.org/camping and click on “Downloadable Forms and Resources, Scholarship Application,” complete the form prior to registering for the camp, and send it to IGRC Camping, P.O. Box 19207, Springfield, IL 62794-9207. Applicants will be advised of the scholarship status and amount as soon as possible after the forms is received.
About Beulah Fees
Leaders of the Beulah Holiness Camp Association have elected to continue the former practice of listing one registration price with the option of a $25.00 Early Bird discount for those who register and pay in full by the Early Bird discount deadline. The Illinois Great Rivers Conference, which relates to Beulah as a user group, gladly provides summer camp registration services and financial assistance to Beulah, but does not make decisions about fees.
Frequently Asked Questions
A-1: Pricing camps is very complex (see Q-2 below) and requires some educated guess-work. A ratio greater than 10-15% between Assisted Cost and Actual Cost often indicates that we haven’t guessed so well in the past. The camping ministry is committed to making conference resources available to all campers in proportion to the cost of the camp.
A-2: There are a zillion variables that need to be considered when pricing. Here are just a few of them:
1. the nature of the program (e.g., horse programs are more costly than fishing programs)
2. the age of the campers (younger children need more staff)
3. the degree to which the camp is supported by volunteers (volunteerism reduces the price of camps)
4. the type of lodging (tree houses are less expensive than air-conditioned lodges)
5. projections of summer attendance (our best calculations are still guesses)
6. size of group (the larger the group the lesser the cost per camper)
7. location of the camp (costs vary regionally)
8. state of the economy
A-3: In 2014 there will be no Early Bird discount, but there will be an Early Bird benefit. See the article on Early Bird Registration.
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