Camp Challenge, Bedford Indiana 2-5-02
On monday I headed out of Bedford on my way to Brownstown, around 27 miles away. I was pretty worried about getting there before dark, and according to the map it didn't look like there was anything in between. But I did discover a few gas station/convenient stores along the way, and made a pit stop in each one. Then at about the halfway point, out in the middle of nowhere, was a motel. So I went inside to check out the cost, and the lady said $35 plus tax. I tried to talk her down a ways, but she wouldn't budge on her price so I continued on. All day long a police officer had been passing me several times and keeping an eye on me. Finally after about the tenth time he decided to stop and check me out. He said he'd received several calls that day about a lady walking down the road. Later I discovered that this area has several campground retreats -- the kind you send your kids off to in the summer. After passing up the first 2 I decided I wasn't going to make it to Brownstown before dark, so I pulled in to the 3rd one. Camp Challenge is located east of Bedford and is owned and operated by the Indiana South Ministerial Assoc of the Church of God of Anderson, Indiana. I knocked on the door and asked Ralph Price if I could sleep in one of the cabins that night. I told him what I was doing, and he said sure. He took me to the dining hall and showed me a little bedroom with a bathroom and shower (and heat!) where the cooks stay at when the camp is in full swing. In the evening he built me a fire in the large fireplace and I really enjoyed that. This camp has been around for 40 yrs and occupies 158 acres of land. About 65% of the area is wooded, and the remaining area is kept mowed for recreational activities. There are 16 cabins that hold a total of 137 beds. The dining hall will seat about 140 people, and has a fully epuipped kitchen. The camp also has Amity Hall (used for services, crafts & cantee,) an outdoor vesper area, 2 shelter houses, a swimming pool, and a bathhouse. Some of the activities here are archery, basketball, sand-pit volleyball, hiking, baseball, swimming, ping-pong, soccer and hayrides. Right now they're in the process of building a large retreat/convention center, which they hope to have completed by fall. Besides running the camp during the summer months, the camp can also be rented for retreats, family reunions and other types of gatherings. I got to visiting with Ralph & Lyn and found out she is a teacher. I mentioned that I enjoy giving talks to schools and organizations and she promptly called up the Bedford-North Lawrence High School and made arrangements for me to give some talks there today (tues.) So this morning Ralph drove me back to Bedford High School and I was there from 8:00-3:00 giving talks to 7 classes. It was an all day affair, and my voice is pretty hoarse. Tomorrow (wed) I'll finish walking to Brownstown and then head out to Seymour. One of the PE teachers there mentioned that his folks live in Seymour, and he called them up and told them I was coming, so I'll be staying with them when I get there. That's kinda neat. Tonight I'll be staying in the cabin once more enjoying the warmth of the fireplace and tomorrow I'll continue on. Y'all take care and have a great day! KB
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