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Fall Service Weekend 2016

fallservice     Fall Service Weekend 2016 was a resounding success with milestones achieved and grand, new projects announced. All of the buildings in Camp have been re-roofed during a recent Service Weekend and are now better protected from the elements. Those tireless laborers who have shucked old roofing, hefted heavy packs of new shingles on their shoulders, and driven countless nails may stay on the ground for a few years until their skills are again needed. Renovations to the Education Building were marked by a reception dedicating the new Mary Jane Gannaway Layne Museum. Many exciting updates are set to take place in the coming years to create and improve resources available to campers in the Education Building as renovations move forward.

     Each weekend the joist replacement crew disappears from view for hours on end to emerge dirty, tired, and victorious after spending every working hour crawling around under one of the buildings at Camp. They spend this time inspecting and strategizing then installing new joists to reinforce the original floor supports with pressure treated lumber that will keep the floors solid for many generations of new campers. As all of those who’ve visited Camp know nearly every building in Camp is “primitive” with only lighting and ceiling fans leaving the indoor climate to be controlled by whatever is allowed to enter and escape through the large, screened windows on each building. These windows require  constant maintenance in order to keep them clean and free of holes while the shutters that replace them during Camp’s off-season dormancy need occasional repairs and re-design as well. Many folks contribute their time to removing old screens and installing new, repairing screen frames, and adjusting shutters so that air flow is maximized, indoor insects are minimized, and the buildings are protected while Camp sleeps in the winter. A great deal of smaller maintenance projects completed last fall include many adjustments to drawers, doors, and all the other various moving parts of Camp to ensure their proper function.

     Thank you to each of you who carefully completed these tasks, small improvements to frequently used items are often the most appreciated during the summer!  And a special thanks to Charlie Truxell, who just popped in for a visit and immediately jumped in to fix the kitchen water heater!!

  fallservice2   Thank you to Katie, Angelina, Matthew, Gary, Jenna, Penny, Barak, Caroline, Cori, Jaylin, Deb, Paul, Liam, Mack, Gisela, Mary, Chris, Ed, Rick, Amy, Cate, Flip, Charlotte, Cooper, Austin, James, Reid, Elizabeth, Steve, Margot, Nell, Wynne, Ryan, Maggie, Paul, Amy, Taimir, Katie, Corrina, Jarrod, Michaux, Powell, Joanne, Caitlin, Kaleigh, Janet, Emma, Sarah, Steven, Kim, Allen, Betsy, Charlie, Peggy, Leigh Ann, Mary Frances, Simon, Mike, Walter, Alexandra, Theta, Galen, Ginny, Shirley, Caroline, David, Leah, Beth, Mark, Robert Adam, Ben, Paul, Scott, Sheryl, Ventry, George, Mike, Suzanne, Brett, Kate, Jerry, Eleanor, Charlie, Annie, Luke, Carolyn, Lyt, Jason, Sally, Ella, Turner, Tristan, Caleb, Jenna, Neil and Lily!

     Each of those who have attended Service Weekend in the past have provided a donation to Camp in the form of work that would have otherwise been contracted out.  Those funds can instead be utilized to improve the facilities as well as provide assistance in the form of scholarships to those families who wish to provide their children with the experience of being a camper at Nature Camp who could not otherwise. It’s difficult to come up with an exact number for how much has been saved but it’s estimated that well over $100,000 worth of work has been completed during Service Weekends since folks began showing up and providing their skills and work in exchange for a few excellent meals, a bed, and the fellowship and camaraderie that we all enjoy.

     Everyone is welcome at Service Weekend regardless of prior experience as a camper or staffer and all skill levels can be put to use. We welcome families and the rec field or the surrounding National Forest provides an excellent opportunity for those who desire to camp as a group. The traditional, separate male and female bunkhouses and bathhouses are fully available for use during the weekend while very limited alternate accommodations are available on-site. Those requiring or desiring other accommodation are encouraged to check out the various lodging options available in nearby Lexington.

     Please contact me (Corey Basham) at with any requests or concerns regarding sleeping accommodations or dietary restrictions including allergies.

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