whheeeewwww.... I am too old for this!!!
In 1998 Charlie and I led our first Summer Youth Retreat. We started a tradition of summer youth trips to Awanita Valley SC. If you've never heard of this camp click here. Needless to say going to Awanita has made our standards pretty high. Awanita has wonderful facilities, recreation, and an awesome staff. However, we have found a camp that runs a pretty close 2nd!
Lake Francis in Crossville TN is a pretty new camp to East Tennessee. The camp caters to gymnasts and dances but they are also open to youth groups! The facility isn't as large as Awanita but for a weekend retreat it was perfect!
We were invited to join our sister church in Knoxville on this weekend retreat back in April. At first our middle/high school group wasn't interested; they really wanted Charlie to plan the trip to Awanita. After they realized that Charlie and I just couldn't do it (financially we just weren't able) a few of them decided they wanted to go on this shorter weekend trip. This past Friday we met at the Knoxville church and pulled out about 5:30. We had a great time! About 30 kids went on the trip, and about that many adults too!
It was quite interesting going on a youth trip that we didn't plan and coordinate. Charlie did speak on Sunday morning; however we didn't have the job of coordinating all the activities, food, dealing with problems, etc that we usually have. It should have been a very relaxing weekend, but it was actually very tiring. Which is why I say I'm too old for this! I walked more this weekend than I probably have in 6 months total! I'm sure I needed the exercise, but whew I am exhausted!
I have included a slide show below of all the pics that I took. You can tell that in some of the pictures it appears that I'm just looking up in the trees, well I am! Lake Francis' has an awesome high ropes course. The course is about 30-40 feet up! I was scared just watching the kids, but they have no fear. You can tell more about the course on the retreats website. They also have a huge man made lake. Charlie took me completely around the lake on a canoe. I didn't even have to row! I just looked out at the water and took in all of God's wonderful beauty! I don't have any pictures of this because I didn't take my camera on the canoe. I was scared I'd drop my camera in the water.
Now I've got to start planning the elementary & preschool trips...