Showing posts from 2010

our staff team.

When a week or a weekend or a retreat at camp is over, kids will chatter all the way home about the horses or the challenge course or Ken's amazing food. But, really, it's thepeople, the community, that makes camp a great place to be. The zipline might be sweet and horses mights be amazing and the food might be mouth-watering goodness, but if the belayers aren't (safely) crazy and encouraging or the wranglers aren't friendly and fun or the meals aren't served by enthusiastic staffers ... well, it kind of takes something really important away from the experience. It sounds super cliché, but seriously team! Our people are our greatest asset.

We're going to spend sometime this winter introducing you to our staff team. We don't get a lot of comments on our blog (Alyssa, Reilly, Lisa, Bethany ... 16 points each for commenting every so often) but I've still heard from a surprising number of people that our spring time posts about our spring staff team are…

Christmas Banquet 2010

A week and a bit ago, we had our annual Christmas Banquet. It was great fun to be joined for the evening by supporters, local friends and board members. We had a fun night! We were also pleased that our Christmas Banquet plans weren't mostly derailed by a snow storm, like they were last year!

In the kitchen, Ken had help from Jyle and Emily: making a delicious Christmas dinner, from the turkey to the stuffing to the carrots and the salad and fancy-pants homemade chutney! Jyle also devote great attention to the preparation of tasty Christmas baking!

Colleen did a lovely job, decorating the dining hall in the manner of a Winter Wonderland. Kiah, Sydney, an armload of toque-clad teddy bears and our Evergreen moose all helped out.

And our guests had a lovely evening (we think! we hope!) visiting, eating, playing Christmas games, carolling and playing board games.

December 2010 Update

Six months ago, we started sending out monthly updates to our supporting churches. It's probably time to start posting them online, too, isn't it? I'm going to post it as a .jpg file, although I'm not sure if this is the best way to go. I'm not computer savvy enough to figure out how to attach a .pdf file to a blog post. Anyone want to tell me how to do that? Leave a comment ...

summer stories: PUSH, Impact and what Koda's really thinking.

A. is a lifer here at Evergreen. This summer, she spent three weeks at camp, for PUSH and Impact and she says they were the best three weeks of her summer! Here's A.'s story, in her own words:

PUSH was almost more fun than Impact for a few reasons. With PUSH, you got to know and work with everyone and your group became pretty tight. Despite the fact that we did a ton of cleaning, it was all in how you looked at that made it fun. If you went into it thinking it was going to suck then it did, but if you went in looking for all the fun you could have then you would have fun. I even had fun cleaning urinals. There was one time were we got this idea to go into the outdoor bathrooms like the FBI, so we grabbed our spray bottles and rags and brushes and that good stuff. We would have one person leading and one crouched with someone else holding a spray bottle over their head ready to fight the grime.

One morning our PUSH crew decided on what Koda would say if he could speak, it would…

summer stories: learning to ask for help.

Allison (on the left) was a FANTASTIC addition to our staff team this summer. She was a stellar kitchen staffer and a great cabin leader. She also responded promptly and graciously when I asked for summer stories. So, without further ado, this is Allison's story:

Hi! Hi!
Something that I learned at camp. Should be an easy task, right? You would think so. This entire summer was a learning process for me. Some things were significant, like hot oil will literally disintegrate plastic containers and melt the cupboard doors in the kitchen. (Sorry, Ken!) Some things were not so significant, like no matter how fast you go in, how hot the day is, or how long you stay in for, the water in the creek is always cold. Always. But that’s not the kind of thing you’re looking for now, is it?

I guess one of the most important things that I learned at camp, the thing I will remember the most, is that it’s okay to ask for help. No matter what you’re going through, no matter what you’re dealing with…

become a fan on facebook!

I know, I know. Facebook is old news. Camp Evergreen has had a group for a while, but these days, fan pages are all the rage. So, we're catching up to the times with a fan page that we promise* to keep updated!


Courtney has started a bunch of conversations ... favourite camp games of all time? Should jug 'n jog become a chosen skill? Orange Yak or Ekklesia (my vote is for "Evening Chapel", but that's going to have to be a write in ballot, I guess)?


We'll be posting about retreats and events and maybe the weather from our fan page ... it'll be exciting times!


*Things aren't being updated frequently enough? Look up "Courtney Bear Armstrong" on the fb. She'll get things going again.

pond hockey prep!

At last year's Pond Hockey tournament, we used just our usual rink. With six teams, we really only needed one ice surface and it worked out a-okay, even with the unseasonably warm weather (read last year's blog post to find out more about all that fun, if you'd like). But this year, we're expecting more than six teams, and that means that one ice surface totally isn't going to cut it!

Dave and Emily, I think with some help from Cody, have been building a surface in the middle of our RV Sites. Here are some photos, to give you an idea of the work that's underway. (Also, it's been soooo winter wonderland here - so gorgeous ... and cold!)

If you would like to enter a team into the Pond Hockey Tournament, on January 15, 2011, first check out all the information on our website by following this link. Then, give us a call at 403.638.4230 or email Kerry at It's a fun, fun day!

rise up 2010

Four score and twenty years ago (or, five weeks ago, actually), we had our 2010 Rise Up! What is Rise Up? It's our annual Senior High retreat, of course! It was lotslotslots of fun: so much fun that I've only now recovered enough to blog about it! We had 96 youth here, along 30 youth leaders, from nine churches (I think nine? Gem, Linden, River West, New Hope, Highland, Dalhousie, Bergen, Southwood, Crestwood. Am I missing anyone?)

Our speaker was Seth Franco. Seth is an old friend here at Evergreen, having spoken at previous Rise Up retreats -- last in 2007. Seth talked about what it means to give all that we are and all that we have to Christ. It was good stuff ... challenging!

Jill Hagen and her band came out to lead the worship through music.

And we had lots of fun hanging out, doing activities, playing Bomb the Burning, eating bacon, getting to know folks from other churches and communities. Good times, good times!

Tales of a Cowgirl

Okay, so this is Julia Dunbar. Kerry has asked me to write a blog post today, and so here goes...

First off, I will tell you a little bit about myself therefore answering some of Kerry's list of questions for all the winter staff... (She told me I don't have to answer all of them because I'm going to share about summer too).
I'm from Red Deer, AB but Evergreen has been my home since May 2006. I work at the barn as Assistant Wrangler and therefore like to lead trail rides, but I also love to lead climbing wall or help at the zipline. I am also currently a student at SAIT in the evenings, taking photography. In my spare time, I go climbing (on the rocks, and indoors), take lots of pictures, play my guitar, ride horses, and work on training my 2 year old horse. I have a younger brother who is getting married next summer, which is very exciting for me.
Those are some of the basic questions, and I guess I will answer a couple of the more interesting questions....
Morning or…

aerials in edmonton!

We followed up our successful and spytastic Calgary fundraiser with a Dessert Night & Silent Auction in Edmonton, at River West Christian Church, on October 29. I was a little nervous: we have fewer MBs in Edmonton and fewer campers, too. How many people would show up? Well. I was totally blown away by the support of all the great, friendly people who came out and amount of money we raised!


It was lots of fun to see campers from the summer with their families, staff members from years gone by and all sorts of other great friends!

We had a lot of help in Edmonton, which meant we ended up with a really fun program.

Michalene and Kim put their amazing aerial talents to use. Michalene did a beautiful trapeze act. Ben, infamous for many reasons including being the most fanatical climber Camp Evergreen has had on staff ever, was ridiculously impressed by how strong Michalene was. Kim did her Spidergirl routine on the rope: it's a little bit interpretive, a little bit funny…

signs, they are a-changin'.

So exciting! We got a new sign for the end of the driveway. It features our new logo, which you probably recognize, since it's been the logo on our tee-shirts and hoodies since 2008. But this fall, we bought the logo outright and you'll be seeing a lot of it on our website*, registration materials, newsletters and all the rest! The sign is also on a reflective background, which means it's impossible to miss when you're pulling in at night, as many of our weekend guest groups do this time of year.
Many thanks to the kind donors who made our new sign possible!

*It's about time for a website redesign, don't you think? We're looking at the spring for a new online look.

Furnace & Water Heater

UPDATED (January 5, 2011) information available here.

We have a project for the remainder of this calendar year: we need to pull together $15,225 (including GST) for new furnaces plus $4919.25 (including GST) for a new water heater, to replace the furnaces and water heater in our lodge. The current units are aging and our objective is to replace them pro-actively, so we don't end up in a situation where we have to shut our doors for repairs while groups are supposed to be on site!

Can you help us raise the $20,144.25 required for the new furnaces and water heater, by December 15, 2010?

We've done our research and will be choose high efficiency units to replace the furnaces -- units that will not only pay for themselves in gas savings, but will be transplantable when we reach the point where we can replace our lodge*. As for the water heater, we will again be purchasing a high efficiency unit from the same line as is used in our outdoor bathrooms. Again, we anticipate that the …

Spy-tastic Times in Calgary (Fundraiser in Review)

Last Friday (October 22), Highland Church generously loaned us their youth group and their fellowship hall, so we could have a funny and fun night raising funds for Camp Evergreen's capital projects (of which there are many ... you can take a peek at our Wish List if you don't believe me!). It was a huge blessing to spend the evening with friends and supporters of our ministry here at Evergreen. We thank God often for all of you, including those of you who couldn't make it out on Friday, of course!

Step One for the evening was a wildly tasty dinner, featuring a CRAZY salad dressing that Ken spent over an hour perfecting, along with time to visit at the tables and to check out the sweet Silent Auction opportunities! Thanks to the Highland youth for serving, washing dishes and helping with both set up and take down!

Step Two involved general silliness, zany costumes, headstands and a visit from the Three Tenors. Our host for the evening was Austin Powers (sometimes kn…

summer stories: walking humbly.

Every summer at Camp Evergreen I learn new lessons from God. This past summer was no different for me. While I was leading a cabin I encountered a camper who came from a particularly difficult living situation. Being from a group home and having little contact with family, the camper had a difficult time accepting that God loved him because he had so few experiences of love in his life. While he was enjoying the week, it was clear that the camper had set up a wall between him and God.

One night, the camper uncharacteristically refused to go to chapel. He was visibly upset, so I followed him through the woods, listened to his story, thoughts and feelings, and eventually calmed him down enough to sit outside of the chapel. It seemed like the walls he had built would never come down!

After my encounter with this camper, I was quite exhausted but for some reason, I was compelled to walk. I didn't know why but leaving my co-cabin leader with our campers, I had to keep walking. Before…

oh. man. we've been non-bloggers!

It's been a while since I've blogged here at the green spot. To the few of you who check regularly (for example, Reilly, Alyssa ...): I'm sorry! I'm sorry to the rest of you too.

So, get back into the swing of things, I'm going to give you a bit of a preview of what's coming up on the blogging front (although posts may not appear in exactly the order listed):
Rise Up!, aka Senior High Retreat, was the first weekend in October. Our speaker was Seth Franco and we had the biggest Rise Up! crowd we've had several years -- 126 youth and sponsors! Huzzah! There are teaser photos below (props to the Ben in Benton).Summer stories! I've been calling out for tales of summer to share with you all and have a nice little stack of great stories from campers and staff that I'll start posting shortly.Fundraising Fun! Tonight, we're hosting a Spy-tastic Dinner & Auction in Calgary and next Friday, we're hosting a Dessert Night & Silent Auction of …

teen camp. oh, teen camp.

Impact (teen camp) was great. It was fantastic. It was legit. It was epic. It was ... a really long time ago already! We played a great, week-long game of Settlers of Alethia. We had surprisingly fantastic weather. Homemade Jam, which took place during Hockey Night in Alethia, was totally legit. Mike talked all about the life of Jesus, which was a completely epic life.

Like I said, our speaker Mike Perschon focused on the life of Jesus in his talks during Impact. It's a little bit revolutionary ... of course, we talk about Jesus all the time, but it's usually in the context of some specific aspect of the Bible, like Micah 6:8 or Colossians 1:17 or 2 Timothy 1:7. We spent a whole week just talking about what Jesus did during his life and why it matters to us and why it matters in general. It was great!

[The whole Jesus of Nazareth movie is available on YouTube, kids! That's the one with the Jesus actor who came across as a little on the ... intense (scary) side. …