Greetings all - Glory to Jesus Christ!

We are writing to let you know about a "change-back" we are making to our minimum summer camp grade level, beginning next year with Summer Camp 2023. Our Camp Board, with feedback and input from staff in recent years, has made the decision to revert back to "going into 6th grade" as our minimum grade. Prior to 2011, this was our minimum camper grade, but starting in 2011 we decided to try adding the 4th & 5th grade school ages. While it was wonderful to let kids come to camp sooner, there were also tradoffs in order to meet the needs of of the younger campers, including dividing the camp into three age groups instead of two.

In 2021, due to the pandemic, we limited camp to 6th and up, and we quickly noticed the benefits of an older camp - maturity and cohesiveness being among the top. Having just two groups at camp (junior high and high school) contributed to a more unified camp experience. This past summer we wanted to "experiment" and added 5th grade to our junior high group, hoping to find a happy-medium between mainting the two-group experience, while allowing a little earlier entry into camp. While there's no question we were thankful for all the kids who came (it was a record attendance year!), we still didn't meet the same experience as with 6th and up.

Our camp has grown in size, and with the record number of kids this past year, we felt the limits of our physical space. With that in mind, along with the aforementioned reasons, our Camp Board made the decision to return to 6th grade and up for the foreseeable future. We know this change will be a disappointment for those families with kids who hoped to begin their camp journey this coming summer. That said, the experience that will be in store for them from 6th through 13th grades will be even richer and worth the trade-off.

We ask you remember us and the Camp Board in your prayers, on whom these decisions are not taken lightly. With much love, Your brothers in Christ, 
Jon & Dan

Jon Beecham
Director, Summer Camp´╗┐

Dan Clevenger 
Asst. Director, Summer Camp
President, Saint John's Camp Board

317-821-7527