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Adventures in Christian Kamping

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05/01/2010 - By Sherri Roberts

Where could my kids go this summer to enjoy rappelling, horseback riding, trail rides, archery, go karts, rifles, mountain biking, bmx riding, and canoeing for $150.00? Adventures in Christian Kamping (ACK), of course! According to Susan Karavitis, director of ACK, there is never a dull moment at camp and this list of activities is only a snippet of what is available.

Susan Karavitis has been camping with ACK since 1983 when leadership from her church approached her about starting a Christian camp. The goal was to fulfill a need in the community since there were so many churches that didn't have a camp and there were so many children who didn't go to a church. For the last 27 years, Susan has endeavored to give children ages 8-18 a nondenominational Christian camping experience without having any sit-down classroom lessons. "We take advantage of the fact that we are out of doors just like Jesus did," she states. That means that all of the Bible lessons are activity driven and adventure based. What better way to learn about trusting God than to compare it to trusting your harness while you are rappelling?

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Susan is especially excited this year about ACK's two new facilities. Beginning this summer, the Junior Camp (for ages 8-11) and the Junior High Camp (for ages 11-14) will be at Rim Rock by Guernsey. This will allow the campers to experience all of the regularly scheduled activities plus things like skeet shooting and a petting farm! The High School camp will be at the other new facility at Table in the Wilderness in the mountains by Centennial. These older campers will get to engage in a ropes course, rappelling, mountain bikes, and white water rafting. All campers will experience one day on the beach with a pontoon boat and paddle boats.

All of this sounds like so much fun, but being the overprotective mom that I am, I was envisioning my children getting lost in the wilderness or coming to some awful demise while shooting skeet or boating. Susan reassured me that the groups are very small and controlled and that safety always comes first. Whew!

So, how can ACK keep their rates so affordable? ACK is a non-pofit, tax exempt organization. All of the staff from the counselors, to the cooks, to the gift shop employees are volunteers. That means that $150.00 covers all activities and meals for five days!

Another great attribute of ACK is that there are several camps offered throughout the summer. This helps families work around vacations and other summer activities. Junior campers can go June 21-25, June 28-July2, or August 2-6. Junior High campers can experience ACK July 26-30 and the Senior High camp will be June 21-25. Campers at ACK come home with so much more than a great camping experience. "ACK wants the children of our community to enjoy the adventure of Christian camping- to return home with strength and hope to apply to the issues they face now... and in the future..." ACK will also follow up with each child's pastor to let them know what they learned at camp and what friends they brought who may need a church home.

The best way to find out more about ACK is to visit their base camp at www.ackcasper.org. While you're there you can get a list of events and activities and even download registration forms. I must warn you, though, that just visiting the ACK website will make you feel a little adventurous and wish you were a kid again. You'll see the reason this isn't just a camp; it's an adventure.

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