Fall Festival Thank You

fall fest music

We just want to say “thanks” to the volunteers, staff, vendors and guests who helped make Fall Festival 2018 such a success!

Watch our blog and upcoming editions of the Weekly Connection e-newsletter (sign up below if you haven’t already) to hear some of the fun stories from this event.

fall fest collage

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 dcinfo@DuBoisCenter.org or 618-787-2202.

There’s Still Time to Buy Your Quilt Tickets

Quilt

Fall Festival is THIS SUNDAY, October 7, and there is still time to buy 1 quilt ticket or 20! Check out this flyer with photos and print your own tickets. NOTE: All completed quilt tickets with payments must be received in the DuBois Center office by 2:00 pm on Sunday to be eligible for the drawing. Mail them today with a check or deliver them in person. A special THANKS to everyone who has been selling tickets at church and around the community, and to everyone who has purchased them.

Donate Your Sweet Treats

sweet treats

Cookies! Cakes! Pies! Breads! Snack Mixes! The Sweet Shoppe at Fall Festival is still in need of donations. Each dollar raised in this area goes directly to providing scholarships and enable children and youth from families that are struggling financially to attend camp. This team is doing a great job, but they need YOUR help! So apron up and bake on!

For more information, check out and share this flyer or text/call Melissa at 314-440-6646 or Kristen at 618-567-6863.

Volunteers Still Needed for Fall Festival

FF Volunteers2

Calling all church groups, individuals, families, scout troops and youth needing service hours – lend a hand for a couple hours or for the full day! Fall Festival is DuBois Center’s biggest one-day event of the year and would not be possible without the efforts of scores of volunteers.

There are so many ways to help – prep and serve food, paint faces, supervise crafts and activities in the Kidz Korner, catch pontoon boats, walk horses in the arena, take tickets, assist guests in the Upscale Resale Shop or serve as a cashier.

Sound like fun? Contact DuBois Center at 618-787-2202 or dcinfo@DuBoisCenter.org.

The Circle of (Camp) Life

camp horse
This summer – in addition to the chaplains, nurses, and Sunday Welcome Team – 26 volunteers contributed 21 weeks of counseling and over six weeks of program support. They could be found all over camp – including at the barn, the craft grotto, and the office. Many of these volunteers are former campers, staff from the past decade, or both! This cycle of camper-volunteer-staff-volunteer helps to keep fun traditions alive as new traditions develop.
Paired with ideas from new members of DuBois Center’s family, we create a camping experience that is uniquely organic and uniquely DuBois.
Our volunteer counselors and program folks also help to inject fresh energy and ideas even in the most mind-numbing heat. THANK YOU for all the wonderful things you do for our campers – we love seeing old friends and making new ones!

Urgent: Pallets Needed!

pallets

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 sekuether21@gmail.com. THANKS!

Rolls of Ribbon are Needed!

ribbon

Rolls of ribbon are needed for a Kidz Korner craft at Fall Festival! For this particular project, Christmas colors and patterns will work best, but all are welcome. Specs: 3/8-7/8″ width. Ribbon may be dropped off at the same locations as t-shirts to be donated (listed below). You can also bring rolls directly camp.

Drop-Off Locations:
Sun, Sept 23 only: Grantfork UCC at Pre-Annual Meeting, 3-5 pm
September 4-25:DuBois Center, Highland – ISC Office, Waterloo – St. Paul UCC

World Peace Day 2018

peace
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