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Summer Newsletter

August 7, 2017

Summer 2017 Recap

What an amazing “Quest” God had for us in the summer of 2017. God did amazing things at camp in staffing, campers, and projects. Our theme verse this year is Ephesians 2:10 “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” We knew that God prepared our “Quest” in advance for us this year, and provided for all of our needs along the way. We started our “Quest” with Performing Arts Camp and their productions of Queen E - The reluctant Royal and Disney’s Beauty and the Beast. From there an action packed Day camp week led to half of those campers returning to our Boys and Girls Camps. Boys camp was an immersive look at the life of Moses while Girls camp took a trip down under in the Australian outback. All along the way God’s hand was evident in the way that he provided for our needs. A new bus for Performing Arts Camp, a director’s trailer and trailer site, and last minute staff just to name a few. On top of all that, four campers came to a saving knowledge of Christ at camp this year. We rejoice with heaven’s angels as we celebrate their commitment to seek Christ first as they continue their “Quest” to serve Him. All that we do at camp and around camp is about the campers. From work weekend projects, cleaning camp, and long days of training, it is all for the sake of making an impact on all who enter our gates.

Summer 2017 Recap
Day Camp Shrinky Dinks

So many great things have been happening all around camp that we are excited to share this year. God provided 23 first-time staff members to help us grow this year! 23 people! With football season around the corner, that’s more than the entire field of players. Some of those keys positions were a bus driver on staff for Performing Arts Camp, a head cook all summer, a new maintenance staff member, and almost ½ of our male staff for boys camp. These new staff members were not just on staff for the sake of joining our team, but they were hand picked by God for the work that He had for us to accomplish. Not only that, but God has stirred the greater camp family to have many stop by to visit camp this year. Almost 50 visits were logged in our visitor book this year. One of our staff Bible studies this summer was through the book of Nehemiah where God called the nation of Israel back to rebuild the wall. At times it felt like a similar situation here at camp with the reunion of so many past camp friends. Our greater camp family is stirring and reuniting to continue to build camp. This is so critical for the success of camp as we build for continued growth in 2018.


The next area God truly blessed us was campers. Forty percent of our campers this year were first-time campers! This is a huge opportunity as we look forward to next year and keep hearing the feedback from our campers about the experiences they had at camp. Part of this growth was in Girls camp with an entire additional cabin registering for camp in the last 10 days before check-in. God provided and our Dining Hall was a boisterous and joyful gathering at every meal. This year was the largest single camper registration week of Girls Camp that we have seen in several years. We pray for God’s continued blessing with new campers who haven’t yet heard about Camp CedarRidge or haven’t been here to experience the intentional way we do things differently.


Finally, God provided for several projects around camp to be completed this spring. The addition of our four trailer sites with water, sewer, and electric just past the Cedars Bathhouse was a huge blessing and challenge to complete in our short time frame. The drainage field was replaced to handle the addition of the four full trailer sites. Two of the sites were utilized as all summer-long housing for our new-to-us director's trailer as well as additional staff members. Many projects were done as beautification and upkeep projects around camp that you might not recognize individually, but add to the general feeling around camp. Through a generous donation, we now have over 250 railroad ties to be used in re-building our retaining walls. One of our first projects will be to widen the path behind the pool against the hill. This will allow our new riding mower access to the commons area, and future work on the Dining Hall, Rec Hall, and Bird Sanctuary. So many things happening at camp right now to be thankful for!


God is great. He does have a continuing work for us here at Camp CedarRidge planned out in advance. As we plan for 2018, we look forward to sharing more details about our renewed commitment to our four core values: Christ in all we do, Individual development, Intentional community, and Outdoor appreciation. We are so thankful that you are a part of this journey and we look forward to seeing all that God will continue to do in the future. This year He has richly blessed us in staff, campers, and projects around camp. Please continue to pray for the lives that were impacted at camp and that campers would continue to grow at home while influencing those around them.

In Him,

Devon "Maverick" Roberts

Executive Director

Kenneth "Roc" Bowen

On Friday, July 14th, our dear friend and fellow servant Kenneth “Roc” Bowen went to be with the Lord. With a heart even bigger than his boots and cowboy hat, Roc served at camp with a compelling passion and dedication. His impact on this camp may never truly be measured with the countless lives he touched as well as the many things around camp he fixed as our maintenance man over the summers. A Kenneth "Roc" Bowen Memorial BUILT Scholarship fund is being established and will continue to honor the memory of our Roc and his growth and leadership as a graduate of the BUILT (Boys Under Intense Leadership Training) program. We look forward to sharing more details about how you can be a part of continuing Roc’s legacy at the camp he loved so very much. Someone is already seeding the fund and memorial donations are appreciated. Please continue to pray for the extended Bowen family as Kenneth is survived by his loving wife Abigail “Ninja” Bowen; parents Richard and Diane “Merganser” Bowen; brother Seth “Phoenix” Bowen; parents-­in-­law Craig and Jan Burns; and sisters-­in-­law Lacey (Jeyan) Burns-­Oorjitham, Charity Burns, Hannah Burns, and Kailey (Seth) Derby.

Kenneth "Roc" Bowen
Autumn Olive Removal
Autumn Olive Removal


Years ago, autumn olive was planted for erosion control, but now it is spreading and will soon cause issues for our ecosystem if it spreads into the nearby National Forest.  Now is the time to act!  Please come help us cut it down and apply herbicide to begin the fight against this invasive species. September 23rd, 2017 from 9am until 1pm. Ages 13+ welcome. Please come dressed to work, including close-toed shoes and work gloves. RSVP or Questions, contact Rebecca “Chanti” Tucker at or 616-430-9350.


Labor Day Work Weekend September 2-4th

After a summer of use, we have a few projects to get the camp back into great running condition as well as beautification and improvement projects at camp. This year we have a few projects planned. 1) Repair and refresh our pool by doing some scheduled maintenance and a few repairs. 2) Excavate the hill behind the pool to allow for lawn mowers and equipment to drive into the commons for future projects. 3) General camp improvements including power washing, painting, fence building, and grounds projects.

Families welcomed and encouraged to participate as a family. Not able to physically come but want to help out? Donations to our “Build it up” fund are always welcomed. For more information about our upcoming Labor Day work weekend CLICK HERE.

Labor Day Work Weekend
This year we are specifically looking for the following:
  • Chainsaw operators
  • Power washer(s)
  • General yard maintenance
  • Concrete wet saw
  • Excavator/dump truck & operators
  • Wood splitter
  • Chipper/mulcher
Father Daughter Weekend

Are you looking for a way to spend some time together with your daughter or granddaughter? Are you curious about what fun activities occur at Camp CedarRidge? Bring your daughter or granddaughter to Father-Daughter Weekend!  


September 15-17
For ages 8-18


This weekend is designed so that fathers and grandfathers can spend time quality time bonding with their daughters and granddaughters, all while experiencing the beautiful Huron National Forest, exciting camp activities, and quiet time together in God's Word. 


The weekend begins on Friday evening with snacks and games in the dining hall. Saturday is filled with activities, Bible Study, and a bonfire.  The weekend finishes on Sunday morning with a worship service and a traditional Father-Daughter Weekend activity.

Don't miss our early bird discount of 50 dollars!*

Register for Father-Daughter today!

*In order to receive the early bird discount, families must be registered and fully paid by August 11. 

Father Daughter Weekend
Outpost Improvements


At Camp CedarRidge, outdoor appreciation is one of our four key values. One of the ways we help campers to develop that appreciation is through an experience we call “Outpost”. It’s the highlight for many of our campers and a very life-defining experience. Each cabin chooses what they will prepare for dinner over a campfire and campers are coached through a full experience of campfire building, cooking, and sleeping outdoors. In the past few years, we have battled mosquitoes dampening that experience. We listened to camper and parent feedback to make some much needed improvements on our outpost experience by providing mosquito/bug nets for each camper. This was a welcomed modification that allowed campers a great night sleep and a great outdoor experience. Our commitment to our core values paired with our desire that every camper has a great experience at camp allows us to continue to innovate new solutions while maintaining our values and vision. Be on the lookout for more improvements in the future. A special Thank You to “NEO” and “Sander” who lead the charge on this project and designed, donated and tested the new test and hanging system!

Outpost Improvements
Land Swap Updates


God is really opening doors to move forward on a land swap with the Forest Service. Our next phase is for us to submit an official proposal to the Forest Service of what we’d like to swap, again dollar for dollar and not acre for acre. In order to create this proposal we need to do a few things. First, we need to complete a forest management plan to appraise our section of the forest and to get an idea on the value on what the land we’d like to receive. The team from Martell Forestry is in the process of writing this plan for us after an onsite visit and study that took place early this summer. The cost of this initial plan will be around $1,300.00. Through the help of Martell Forestry, we were able to qualify for a Forest Stewardship Plan grant from the DNR and USFS to cover the cost of the plan! So a big thank you to Martell Forestry, the DNR, and USFS who funds the Forest Stewardship Program. Secondly, we will need to evaluate what land would be best to acquire before a detailed environmental analysis of our property and the property we’d like to acquire can occur. This summer an IDT (Interdisciplinary Team) from the National Forest Service visited our area of the forest doing some spot samples along River Road. This will greatly help as we prepare our plan and the exact details for an environmental analysis. If you would like to be part of the land swap prayer team, or would like to join us on a prayer walk over the proposed area this fall. Please contact Maverick at

Land Swap Update
Lifeguard Training


Considering serving at camp next year as a lifeguard? Our camp friend Diana "Kestrel" Brakel is a long time WSI and lifeguard trainer who has upcoming classes in the Waterford, MI area. If you are considering serving at camp in 2018, would you consider taking a lifeguard class? Fall WSI courses offered Saturdays 9-5: October 14, 21, 28, Nov. 4, 18 at Kettering High School Pool, Waterford. Lifeguarding courses also available. Call and register at either Mott 248-674-6360 or Kettering 248-673-9969. For additional class schedules you can also search online at or contact "Kestrel" at

Lifeguard Training
Board Position Openings


We are blessed to have some of the best and most dedicated board members. This Fall three of our current members, Jessica French, Linda Neal and Chris Clauson, will be finishing their terms and moving off the board. Each one of them has served two, three-year terms faithfully. Take a moment to take these ladies for their service to camp. Their impact has made such a difference the past 6 years. I’m sure we will still see them around camp but they have earned a well need rest. Thank you ladies!


As these three finish their terms it brings openings for others to move onto the board starting in November 2017.

We will have three positions open: Vice President, Treasurer, Secretary, and Board member


For more information please email us at:

Board Position Openings
Performing Arts Camp Performance DVDs

What a great year with two fabulous performances: Queen E: the reluctant royal, and Disney's Beauty and the Beast. If you'd like the opportunity to relive the theater "magic" from this summer, make sure to order your DVD today! DVDs are still available for order until August 11th. CLICK HERE to order any of the four performance nights.

Kroger Community Rewards


Did you know you can support Camp CedarRidge while you grocery shop?? Sign up for Kroger Community Rewards and every time you use your Kroger Rewards cards camp receives a small donation at no extra cost to you!

Sign Up Here:

Kroger Community Rewards
CedarBrook Conference


We are making travel arrangements now for the 2017 Cedarbrook Conference in Salt Lake City. If you have any interest in going, please let Maverick know via email!

November 9-12, 2017

Find out more information at:

CedarBrook Conference
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