Story last updated at 2/4/2009 - 12:28 pm
When Lucinda (Wright) Fink attended youth camp at Eagle River Methodist camp as a girl, she grew to love the place. So when she became engaged in 2006, it wasn't too much of a stretch, when she and her fiance were considering wedding sites, to add the camp to the list of possible locations. Soon they decided, and the date was booked; in July 2008 they were married at the camp, with the 100 guests in attendance enjoying the serene setting beneath the camp's towering spruce trees. They also enjoyed celebrating in the newly-remodeled and enlarged lodge, which can now seat up to 120 guests, and dancing outdoors on the enlarged deck.
Eagle River Methodist Camp quietly hosts many community events and is a well-loved and inspiring site for all kinds of activities. The Methodist churches in Southeast Alaska operate the camp, which is located at Mile 28 Glacier Highway, and the churches sponsor several camps for kids and families, including two family camps, an elementary camp, and a spring work camp to prepare the facilities for the busy summer season. Now in its 54th year, the camp is available year-round to users from all faiths and backgrounds, and is used by groups and individuals for everything from meditative getaways and retreats to family reunions, birthday parties, seminars and holiday gatherings. The camp is regularly used by the Juneau School District, scouting groups, SAGA, Juneau Youth Football, music and dance groups, many churches' adult and youth groups, and many more groups and individuals.
Sandie Coon, dean of the Methodists' annual Discovery Camp, held for children from third through eighth grades in late July, has staffed the camp for nine years. She loves the camp's closeness to nature and the fun and fellowship it offers to kids. She loves to see youth who attend - and grow up with - the camp return as junior counselors, and then full-fledged counselors.
Camp caretakers Lori and Virgil Fredenberg have lived at the camp for almost three years. The peaceful, forested setting of the camp is especially magical when thickly blanketed with snow. They are happy to pre-warm cabins for anyone wanting a wintertime weekend getaway within Juneau - no need to ferry out of town for this mini-vacation! - with cross-country skiing and snowshoeing opportunities just beyond the cabins' doors. Five of the camp's 13 buildings are equipped for wintertime use.
The camp is overseen by a board of directors from the five Southeast Methodist churches. For more information on the camp's reasonable rates and dates of availability, call Lori Fredenberg at 789-3734 or visit the camp's website at www.methodistcamp.org.