Nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina, Laurel Ridge is where many come to be closer to God and renew their spirits…where the sound of camp songs and children playing helps us clear our minds of all the clutter from the busy world we live in. At night after campfire you can see the stars up close and experience the peaceful easy feeling you get with the brown earth and the soft grass under your feet.
The 2014 summer sessions at Laurel Ridge will begin with Eco camp (grades 3-5) and Eco Action camp (grades 6-8) which begin June 15-21. These camps offer ways to understand and be better stewards of our environment and all the creatures that God has given us. The children will be able to go off site to work with park rangers in Mt. Jefferson State Park.
Laurel Ridge hired Environmental Intern Elaine Stingel to join the staff this summer, starting with Eco Camp. Elaine, a member of First Moravian church in Dover, Ohio, is an Environmental Science Natural Resources Management major at Ohio State University. She will provide help with various Eco activities at all camps this summer. She will also be working to provide activities in the nature center, Suncatcher greenhouse and garden.
Alan Snow, a retired science/biology teacher and lifelong Moravian from Forsyth County, will be working with Elaine in the Nature center. Rosemary Jayne, wife of Dan our facilities manager, has been working hard filling the Suncatcher with vegetables and flowers. This will give us a jumpstart on our hay bale garden this summer. We are very excited to see this become a reality for Laurel Ridge as our focus has been on the environment and having a sustainable plan for Laurel Ridge in the future.
All summer camps offer swimming, canoeing, fishing, hiking, sports, music, GIC (Group Interaction Course), archery, crafts and for the Middle High and Senior High camps we also have a Frisbee golf course. We end each night with a campfire, usually on top of the mountain or by the lake. These are led by the M-staff who work hard all day cleaning, mowing and leading activities, and wouldn’t dream of missing this part of the evening!
Pre-Junior camps offer children who have completed either grades 1 or 2 a two-night camp that is geared just for them. The Bible study theme this year is “Lord Teach Us to Pray.” Pre Junior 1 is June 20-22 and Pre Junior 2 is August 10-12.
The week-long Junior Camp is for children that have completed grades 3-5. The Bible study theme this year is “Jesus Calls Us.” Junior 2 is July 6-12 and Junior 3 is August 10-16.
Middle High camps are for youth that have completed grades 6-8. The Bible study theme is “Faithbook,” finding out what it would have been like for the disciples to have had Facebook and how we can use it to be disciples now. Middle High 1 is June 22-28 and Middle High 2 is August 3-9.
Senior High Camp is for youth that have completed grades 9-12 and is July 13-19. The Bible Study theme is “The Hills are Alive,” taking a look at Christian music.
We continue to have Mission Camps for youth 6-12 grade. Week 1 is June 29-July 4, Week 2 is July 6-11, Week 3 is July 20-25 and week 4 is July 27-August 1. Mission Camps serve the community around Laurel Ridge, including Alleghany, Ashe and Wilkes Counties. There is also Bible Study to enhance the mission experience for each of our participants.
Laurel Ridge is a member of the American Camping Association (ACA). As a leading authority in youth development, ACA works to preserve, promote and improve the camp experience. All staff and volunteer staff must have background checks and drug test. Safety is the priority.
As the summer winds down and the summer camp sessions draw to a close, there are still opportunities to visit the mountain. Family Camp, started in 2013, will be taking place September 19-21. This is a weekend filled with camp activities for the entire family, with the opportunity to bring Mom and Dad and stay in a cabin at summer camp, go fishing, hiking and more.
All of the facilities at Laurel Ridge can be used for various retreats. This includes Higgins Lodge for those that would like hotel style lodging and Tise Lodge which features a dorm-type setting. Also among our facilities is the Gemeinhouse for a one-person retreat or the Friends Cottage for a family. Visit our website at www.laurelridge.org or contact the Program Manager, Scarlett Dowdy,
email@example.com for camper or volunteer counselor information.
Scarlett Dowdy is program manager for Laurel Ridge.