They’re Back!

And YES, that is a very good thing! Returning to leadership roles at DuBois Center this summer are Kristian Avise-Rouse, Ryan Goetter and Bailey Reichert. Their camp names? Sparrow, Shark Bait and Minnow!

Bailey will be back at the lake serving as our Waterfront Coordinator. Kristan and Ryan will be serving as Village Coordinators, providing support and supervision for our cabin counselors.

Kristian (right) is graduating this spring with a degree in music education. He recently accepted a position at Pinckneyville Junior High School as the Director of Bands. He will also be taking the lead with the choir and musicals at the high school. The music programs at the two schools have had a collaborative design for years, and Kristian is excited to have this expanded opportunity. At camp Kristian can be seen at the teams course, in the chapels and cabins, around the barn and at the waterfront – he loves it all. This will be Kristian’s fifth summer on staff.

Ryan (left/kneeling) is completing his first year as the music teacher and band director at Du Quoin Middle School. He’s been honing his ukulele skills while introducing students to the instrument. Ryan is a new homeowner and is staying busy working around the house and yard. It was great to have him in the area this past year. Living just 20 minutes from camp, Ryan was able to assist with evening activities for Nature’s Classroom and a variety of hosting and office tasks. We especially appreciated his guitar and voice during campfires. This will be Ryan’s sixth summer on staff.

Bailey finishes her online classes and exams this week! She is graduating with a degree in biology and minor in psychology and plans to head to nursing school in January. She is excited to get back to DuBois Center and build on her first year as the skipper of the waterfront. In addition to being a “minnow,” Bailey is a horse lover who is a fan of candle time, vespers on the beach and just connecting with the campers. She hopes to sneak in a week of counseling sometime during the summer. This will be Bailey’s third summer on staff.


One of my favorite hymns as a child was “All Things Bright and Beautiful.” A favorite line speaks of being given eyes to see God’s amazing creation and lips “that we might tell.” The glory of God surrounds us in great and small ways, from the flower that breaks through a crack in the sidewalk to the great whales of the oceans.

As you shelter at home, remember to take time to B R E A T H E and discover the wonder of God’s creation. It’s there, it just might not be as obvious as it is at DuBois Center.

Peace, Shirley AKA Kayak

A Few Good Men — Summer Jobs – Apply Now!

DuBois Center is in search of a few good men to round out our summer staff roster. We have solid applicants for the female cabin counselor positions, but not for their male counterparts. If you or someone you know enjoys working with people, has a heart for ministry and is looking for a resume-building summer job – look no further! Check out the Summer of Service flyer and consider whether serving outdoors with a dynamic team might be just the opportunity.

Believe it or not, working at camp is a REAL JOB with tangible benefits. Click here to read further about the benefits of working at camp. Questions? Contact Shirley at or 618-787-2202. Application packets are available online or can be sent by mail upon request.

Fall Line-up

It’s never too early to start planning for fall! Here are some events you won’t want to miss!


Sept 11            Bunco Night at Zoar UCC
Sept 28           1st Day of Nature’s Classroom
Oct 3               Fall Festival Work Day
October 4   DuBois Center Fall Festival
Oct 9-10         ISC Confirmation Retreat
Oct 16-18       Mother-Daughter Retreat

Reduce – Reuse – Recycle

An easy way to celebrate Earth Day when sheltering at home is to look around and see what common, items you might be able to reduce, recycle or reuse. In the DuBois Center office, one could say that we reuse paper towels and toilet paper. GROSS, but partially true. Throughout the facilities, we use larger, commercial-sized rolls of these two products. It’s never good for campers or guest to run out, so we try to replace them before the rolls get to that point. But what about what’s left over? These are taken to the office bathroom. It may not be pretty, but it does cut down on waste.

What are you doing at home to reduce waste?

Summer 2020 Update

Dear Friends,

Like many camps across the country, DuBois Center has been adjusting to the uncertainty that the COVID-19 pandemic has created.

As you know, our facilities are currently closed to the public, but critical tasks are being addressed. Our horses and cats are checked and fed regularly. The grass is being cut, fences are being mending and other essential work around the grounds is being addressed. Office and management functions also continue, but with reduced hours.

We give thanks that currently our staff and key volunteers are heathy. They are doing their best to be good stewards of DuBois Center and the ministry it provides, as they work together to find the best path forward. Please know that you and your families are at the forefront of our thoughts as we consider the options.

As you are likely aware, our Governor has canceled in-person learning for students in Illinois for the balance of this school year. He has not yet, however, spoken definitively about summer school or the summer camping season.

In order to give you, your family and your congregation time to plan, our leadership is committed to making a decision about summer programming at DuBois Center by May 5th. We will be carefully reviewing guidance from the Governor and the Illinois Department of Public Health. Whatever decision is made, know that the health and safety of our campers, guests and staff is and will remain the most important factor in our decision-making process. Remember that our Register without Risk policy continues.

A special thanks to those families, individuals and churches whose financial support has continued or been newly added. These are challenging times for all, and your commitment is greatly appreciated!

We are sending prayers for inner peace and strength from DuBois Center to you and yours.


Shirley Asmussen, Director

Meteor Showers & Earth Day 2020

April showers aren’t just for flowers! Look up in the sky and you might catch sight of the Lyrid meteor shower. The prime date this year is Earth Day – April 22 in the pre-dawn hours. The moon is in the Waning Crescent phase – great for dark skies and star gazing. Set your alarm for EARLY! Then turn off all the lights inside and outside your home. Dress warmly, bring a blanket and find a dark spot in a corner of your back yard or in an isolated spot nearby and enjoy! At its peak, 10-20 meteor per hour are expected.

Fun Fact: It’s reported that this meteor shower has made an appearance every April for the past 2,700 years! To learn more, check out these two websites: EarthSky and StarDate.

Event Cancellations

Father-Son Retreat, April 24-26: If you are registered for this event, contact Julie our camp registrar regarding payments at or 618-357-1809.


Spring Thank You Party, April 28: This event will be rescheduled for late summer or fall. Watch for updates.


Nature Photography Retreat, May 1-2: If you are registered for this event, contact Julie our camp registrar regarding payments at or 618-357-1809.


Block Party, May 3: This event will be back next spring!

Horse Camps – Ready to Ride?

Horse Campers spend more time with the ponies, but still have time for other camp favorites like swimming, 9-Square, vespers and crafts. If the weather cooperates, they have the option to ride each day. Some mornings, these horse enthusiasts are up and at ’em long before breakfast to feed, groom and tack the herd. An early morning ride – in the cool of the day – is a great reward for early morning chores! Later in the day, the stalls need to be mucked out. Horse campers take turns, and actually have fun while learning about the responsibilities of caring for horses.


Younger campers can hop aboard the Pony Express for an introduction to horse camp. Older ones can choose from a variety of sessions. Ready to register online? Click here. For more information, check out the brochure online. Contact DuBois Center at or 618-787-2202 to have one mailed to you.


PONY EXPRESS (completed grades 4-6)
            July 19-22
HORSIN’ AROUND (completed grades 5-7)
            June 7-12*, July 12-17
SADDLE ‘EM UP (completed grades 7-9)
            July 5-10, July 12-17
WRANGLERS (completed grades 8-12)
            June 21-26


* This session, June 7-12, is nearly full.