Plan a Retreat at DuBois Center


Is your church or fellowship group looking for ways to breathe new energy into your membership? Is your congregation about to enter a time of visioning? Is adding depth a priority for your men’s, women’s or family ministries? If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, then we hope you will consider a spirit-filled retreat or family camp at DuBois Center! It is amazing what a difference a weekend or even 24 hours away can make. Now is the time to start planning for Spring and next Fall! Groups as small as 8 and as large as 90 can easily be accommodated. A number of churches already “retreat” to DuBois Center. We host family camps, women’s retreats, youth weekends and confirmation events for local congregations. These events can be key components of your year-round faith formation and fellowship programs. If you are interested, but don’t know where to begin – we can help. Check out this brochure, then for more information or to just explore the possibilities, contact Shirley at or 618-787-2202.

Fall Work Day – Nov. 3

fall work day 1

Stretch your muscles! Breathe fresh fall air! Hang out with friends and lend a helping hand! Youth groups, families, individuals, and adult fellowships- everyone is invited to our annual fall work day. Projects vary, depending on the skills of those involved and the weather. Preparations for winter, stacking wood, raking leaves, cleaning and painting are on the list, as are a variety of skilled labor projects. The work may not be glamorous, but it really does make a BIG DIFFERENCE!

Click here for a flyer to post and share and here for a typical Work Day schedule. Please let us know in advance if you plan to attend and if any of your group members have special skills. We want to be sure to have appropriate projects and a hot lunch ready for you! Contact DuBois Center at 618-787-2202 or

Annual Meeting Worship Offering – DuBois Center Scholarship Fund

worship offering
In order for your church to prepare for the worship offering at Annual Meeting, we felt an explanation would be helpful. One of this year’s offerings will go to the DuBois Center Scholarship fund, which is used for children of families who cannot afford to attend camp through their own budgets.
Shirley speaks about it…
If we truly believe that children and youth need open space to laugh, sing, play and pray together; that meaningful connections with positive Christian role models make a real difference; that learning to respect and care for ourselves and our “neighbors” is a critical skill; and that faith grows as we learn, explore and ask tough questions, then a week at camp can be life-changing and no one should be turned away for an inability to pay.
Finances are one of the challenges being faced by most, if not all, not-for-profit camps. Experts urge organizations to charge what it actually costs to operate a program or a facility including ongoing maintenance, and then provide scholarships for those with financial needs. Groups that have not done this have faced dire consequences. You can look across the country for examples or right here in southern Illinois. Fees that cover direct costs and scholarships for those in need are critical pieces of the equation.
The Sweet Shoppe at Fall Festival raises $1,200 – $1,500 annually for scholarships. In addition, DuBois Center receives about $2,000 each year in gifts designated specifically for scholarships. Beyond that, the Center’s budget underwrites an additional $15,000 – $18,000 of camper and retreat fees for families with significant financial struggles.
DuBois Center participates in a Title XX (financial assistance) program through the American Camp Association. This program provides some reimbursement (approximately 25-30%) of a typical camper fee, and – more importantly – a way to spread the camp experience to children beyond our churches. Information on this program is sent to foster parents, families eligible for free and reduced meals at school, and those with crippling medical bills. Some of the campers utilizing this program come from UCC churches and programs, many do not. This is one way DuBois Center provides outreach on behalf of our local congregations to the wider community.

This year’s Annual Meeting worship offering will be used to build the scholarship fund which will be used to underwrite the 70-75% of camper fees not covered by Title XX reimbursement, and in doing so, reduce our annual deficit, and provide for continued outreach.

Women on Retreat

women on retreat

The women of Friedens UCC in Troy are definitely not strangers to DuBois Center. They’ve donated kid-sized boots for the barn and dollars for new mattresses in the rustic cabins and main camp cottages. They’ve served meals during Fall Festival and played a huge role in the remodeling of Hickory Lodge – raising funds and providing labor.

BUT, at least in recent history, they had not been on retreat at DuBois Center. They hadn’t slept in the new beds, sunk into the comfy new sofas, or savored the updated décor – until now.

This past weekend, 15 women from Friedens experienced the joy of being on retreat together. They played and prayed; they laughed, ate and sang together. They enjoyed the weather, the food, the hayride and each other’s company.

Stephanie Williams, Christian Education Director, and her team put together a wonderful program and were the guides for the weekend. If you are interested in creating a retreat for a group in your church or community, please contact DuBois Center at or 618-787-2202.

Urgent: Pallets Needed!


We’ve got hay, but we need 50 more sturdy wooden pallets. It’s all about healthy horses and saving dollars. Storing hay off the ground keeps it out of the mud. Drier bales mean less mold growth. Moldy hay is not healthy for horses. In addition, mold contributes to large amounts of waste. Keeping the hay drier also helps to retain its nutritional content throughout the year. If you have or can find any new or gently used sturdy pallets, contact Scott Kuether at THANKS!

World Peace Day 2018

The International Day of Peace is observed annually on September 21. First celebrated in 1982, this day is dedicated to world peace and specifically the absence of war and violence.
In 1984, the Minute of Silence at 12:00 noon in each time zone was inaugurated in commemoration of the annual Day of Peace. Join us THIS FRIDAY, Sept 21 and be part of a “Peace Wave” of silence around the world. For more information and additional activity suggestions, check out this website.
“Peace begins with a smile.” ~ Mother Teresa
“Though force can protect in emergency, only justice, fairness, consideration and cooperation can finally lead men to the dawn of eternal peace.” ~ President Dwight D. Eisenhower

Early Bird Pricing for Mother – Daughter Retreat

mom and daughter

Get away and re-energize your relationship with your daughter, mother, granddaughter, niece, aunt or other special woman or girl in your life. Enjoy a playful, faith-based weekend together, one packed with engaging activities, inspiring God times and wonderful fellowship. All ages are welcome, but most activities are geared for girls and women age six and older.

There’s still time to sign-up, but the deadline is quickly approaching. Register by Friday, Sept 21 and save. Early Bird Rates: $108 for adults, $93 for 12-17 years olds, and $84 for 4-11 year olds. There is an additional charge for horseback riding. Registration Deadline is Friday, Sept 28.

Check out this flyer and RSVP form or go to register online. For more information contact DuBois Center at or 618.787.2202.



DuBois Center is home to an astonishing variety of native Illinois plants – including many beautiful wildflowers. These blooms play key roles in their ecosystems. Pollen and nectar feed butterflies, bees and other pollinators, which in turn feed birds and other critters up the food chain. Without the flowers to feed the bugs, the bugs to spread the pollen, or the predators to keep bug populations in check, the entire system falls apart. This delicate dance plays out all over camp, often right on the edges of our other activities!


Sweet Treats Needed!

It’s hard to imagine Fall Festival at DuBois Center without a tempting variety of sweet treats to munch on throughout the day. Each year, church members across the Illinois South Conference gather in their kitchens to cook up big batches of cookies, bars, candies, snack mixes, pies and cakes to be sold in the Sweet Shoppe. Get your Bake Date on the calendar now. Proceeds go directly to the DuBois Center Scholarship Fund; help send a young person to camp! Click here for a flyer to post at your church and share with friends.
WHO: Everyone is invited to contribute goodies
WHAT: Homemade or purchased Sweet Treats of all kinds
WHEN: Sale Date is Sunday, Oct. 7 at the DuBois Center Fall Festival.
CONTACT: For more information, call or text Melissa at 314-440-6646 or Kristen at 618-567-6863.

Mother-Daughter Retreat Registration is Now Open!

mother daughter

School, sports, band, clubs and church programs are all picking up steam, making quality family time even more difficult to schedule. STOP! You are invited to breathe, slow down and spend quality time with the girls and women in your life at DuBois Center’s annual Mother-Daughter Retreat. Engaging activities, inspiring God Time, great fellowship, meals without cooking – all are part of this weekend escape. Participate in everything or choose a more relaxed weekend, perhaps with board games, knitting or leisurely strolls. Either way, the focus of this retreat is on building relationships and making memories with loved ones! This year’s retreat will take place October 12 – 14!

All generations and groupings are welcome: mothers and daughters, grandmothers and granddaughters, godmothers and nieces! Register by Friday, Sept 21 and save $10 per person. Early Bird Rates: $108 for adults, $93 for 12-17 year-olds, and $84 for 4-11 year-olds. There is an additional charge for horseback riding. Check out this flyer and RSVP form. Online registration opens today, Friday, August 24. Register here.