Be part of our path forward!
By: Andrea Scofield, Executive Director
We hope this letter finds you and your family safe and well during this time when the world around us all is so uncertain. It’s hard to believe that it was just over one year ago that we lost the lodge to the fire at Camp Lutherwood Oregon. So much has happened since that day! We are happy to report that because of the support and generosity of the entire Camp Lutherwood community, in the months following the fire, we were able to:
- – RESUME Outdoor School last spring
- – CARRY ON with summer camp as planned
- – BUILD a brand-new dining hall and kitchen, which is scheduled to be completed in the coming weeks
In addition to the fire recovery efforts, we launched the Bridge to the Future capital campaign, with a goal of $4.2 million which has already received over $1.5 million dollars of pledged funds.
When combined with early fire recovery dollars and insurance payments the campaign will build:
- – DINING HALL (almost complete)
- – NEW BRIDGE is scheduled to be installed very soon thanks to the in-kind donation of Wildish Construction in Eugene
- – NEW LODGE AND RETREAT CENTER with housing for adults and families
- – BATHHOUSE near the upper cabins
As strange as it may sound, the fire recovery work positioned us well to weather the COVID-19 pandemic that we are all currently facing. We are as committed to the mission and the continuation of Camp Lutherwood Oregon today as we were the day after that fire. That does not mean that the road ahead is easy; these are still unchartered waters for camp and for us all as we navigate a new world together.
Last week, the Board of Directors made the difficult decision to suspend all planned programs for summer 2020. We believe this is the safest and best path forward this year because of the ever-changing landscape of government mandates and our strong commitment to the health and safety of our campers, staff and guests, as well as our desire to be financially responsible with the long-term mission of this ministry.
We continue to monitor the regulations closely and, if possible, alternative options such as work days, small group family camps or day events may be considered later in the summer. Additionally, camper families and congregation leaders will be surveyed to hear what resources might be helpful until we can gather again.
Of course, our forced closure during COVID-19 has had financial impact. The Outdoor School season ended abruptly. Ten weeks of revenue were lost. The number of year-round camp staff has been drastically reduced. The site continues to operate minimally, though many expenses continue. Every effort is being made to reduce costs and conserve our resources.
As was evident by the outpouring of support after the fire, Camp Lutherwood Oregon is blessed with an amazing community of donors, congregations, volunteers and campers.
Camp Lutherwood Oregon is committed to our mission and vision, even during the Coronavirus pandemic:
- – Summer camp remains central; we are already planning for summer 2021.
- – Camp exists to be a place where people gather; new and meaningful ways of experiencing the camp community are in the works.
- – Camp Lutherwood Oregon will continue to be a vibrant center of spirituality, service and hospitality to people of all ages and abilities whether virtually or in person.
- – The capital campaign will continue to move forward as we implement the master site plan that allows camp to serve campers and guests for many years to come.
We are taking this time to pause and evaluate our path forward. When we re-open, we will be an even stronger and more vibrant ministry, with new facilities and programs.
When this crisis has passed, Camp Lutherwood Oregon will be essential to the healing we all need. Children and families will experience joy and laughter in the camp community. Schools will continue to educate children about the environment using our site. All of us will seek comfort and healing in the midst of nature where reminders of God’s promises are waiting to be discovered.
Thank you for your continued support of Camp Lutherwood Oregon and for being such an important part of our path forward. We could not do it without you! We pray for the health and safety of you and your family in the challenging days ahead.