United Church of God

2023 Camp Report: Southwest

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2023 Camp Report


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Southwest Camp was again held in the beautiful Prescott mountains of Northern Arizona, at around 6,500 feet in elevation surrounded by large, beautiful pine trees. A fun, uplifting week was shared by 57 campers and 57 staff. The campers participated in archery, arts and crafts, Bible class, hiking, dance class, field sports, volleyball, mountain biking, kayaking and horseback riding.

Right after breakfast, we began the day with Christian living. We set the tone for each day with a focus on God’s plan for each of us as we talked about “Race to Your Crown.” The Christian living messages were powerful, personal and motivating for both the campers and staff. The theme fit in with many of our activities and lessons were reinforced throughout the day.

Most evenings, we concluded the day around the campfire, participating in minute-to-win-it games, skits, Wamatochick Woo’s (a shout-out to anyone who went above and beyond that day in serving others, overcoming a fear or setting a positive example throughout the day) and a story that tied into the day’s theme (eventually given the title, “Creech’s Speeches”). We then concluded with our camp song, “Running” by Hillsong Worship.

Our mountain biking program is something that is very unique to Southwest Camp. We have had a range of skill levels among the campers, some who have never ridden a bike and others who are very proficient at mountain biking. Our staff will break them into groups and help each group to have fun, be safe and be challenged during this exciting activity. Some of the campers came away with scrapes and bruises, but after two years of having had this activity, we have not had any serious injuries and for the second year in a row it is one of our highest rated activities at camp.

A huge thank you to all of our staff and those who help support our camps with their time, finances and prayers—we can’t do it without you!

For a number of years Brent Fogelson, along with his wife Kristina, has been a huge part in helping run and coordinate Southwest Camp. As this year ends and we look toward next year, I am excited to share that Mr. Fogelson will be the camp director next year. As I pass the baton off to him, I am confident that he will do an amazing job continuing the Southwest Camp program and that it is left in great hands. The Fogelsons have a passion and commitment to our camp program, which is evident to all who have seen them serve at camp over the years.