DuBois 6.0 Campaign Update

We have received over $231,521 for a total donation as of this edition. We started this campaign in October 2021, and we met our goal in August 2022. For the remainder of 2022, we will have a stretch goal of $300,000. Any DuBois 6.0 donations received will now go toward cost overages on the original 17 projects; plus some additional projects, including an Oak Lodge Kitchen facelift; a Hickory Lodge refurb, and a new face for the waterfront area. Hurray! Congrats! Let’s see how far we can go.

We thought you would like to see some of the things that have been worked on because of your generosity.  These projects are completed:
  •  Oak Lodge Windows
  • Office windows
  • Oak Lodge HVAC – most of the money for that was used from previous Designated Donations
  • Program Director’s House Update bedrooms and living room replacement
  • New Rustic Fish Ridge Cabin – completed #5 cabin in this village (still needs inside bunk beds and mattresses) – was not used for campers in 2022












Projects worked on but not yet complete:
  • Deer Run Shower House – roof was replaced – still needs new shower and toilet partitions
  • Fence Painting – Only the Rustic barn area arena fences are completed

Dreaming of Hillside Cottage

Take a look at this picture. Squint your eyes a bit and let yourself dream for a moment. This is the future site of Hillside Cottage, the crown jewel of the DuBois 6.0 campaign. This is where a new 20-person living and meeting space is going to be, just off the road to Coveside Cottage. It will be ADA compliant and solar powered, and just about 1,400 sq. ft. It’s going to be built with as much volunteer labor and recycled/ upcycled materials as we can muster.

Hillside Cottage will add to our overnight guest capacity, and that adds to our bottom line. As with the other projects in DuBois 6.0, this is the time for us to move. Our campaign has been in motion for only 6 ½ months of a 14 ½ month effort. We’re at 74% of our $225,290 goal. Can we do this? Of course, we can. We’ve got a good camp year on the horizon, and an even brighter future. We value our camp, and we’re investing in it. We look forward to reaching this goal, and actually exceeding it. There are projects waiting in the wings that will continue adding to our programming, capabilities, and capacity.

What can you do to support DuBois 6.0?

  • Volunteer to work on a project – the Property Committee would welcome your help.
  • Make a personal or congregational donation – we can take everything from cash to stock and cryptocurrency.
  • And while you’re at it, put our outdoor ministry center in your prayers for both a safe summer filled with fun and a successful capital campaign.

We’re building faith, building capacity and building for the next 60 years.

DuBois 6.0 – new Fish Ridge cabin built!

A wonderful group of volunteers spent last week building the new Fish Ridge Cabin! The frame is finished, the roof set, and the inside wiring complete. Thanks to those who have donated to this and the other projects for DuBois 6.0, as well as the volunteer groups who have dedicated so much time and attention to the completion of these projects.

Total raised is $76,190.21 as of today. Goal is $225,290

DuBois 6.0 – On the Move

DuBois Center will get a facelift in 2022. The current donations are at $44,971 because of generous donors. Thanks! We’re on our way!

Here’s what we’re striving to do:

Round 1 – under way:

  • Oak Lodge Air Conditioning $15,740 — Completed!
  • Oak Lodge Replace Windows $17,650 — Windows should be arriving in February
  • Camp Office Replace Windows $4,500 — Windows have arrived and are ready to be installed
  • New Fish Ridge Cabin on the Rustic Side of Camp $10,400 — Foundation has been built.  Waiting on Roof Trusses

Round 2 – Spring 2022:

  • Oak Lodge Basement Sealed and Purchase Dehumidifier $6,000
  • Program Directors House Updates $7,000
  • Deer Run Shower House $10,300
  • Deer Run Lodge Repairs and Updates $4,500
  • New Archery Range and Bouldering Wall $10,000

Later this year:

  • New Hillside Cottage $77,000
  • Lumber Shed Roof $3,000
  • Temporary Infirmary: To be reaccredited by the American Camping Association, we need a multi-bed infirmary temporarily in half of Roadside Cottage $3,000
  • Road Repairs $18,500
  • Deep Water Solar Lake Aerator $6,000
  • Boat House Solar Power $1,200
  • New Hay Barn $30,000
  • Fence Painting $500

How You Can Help:

  • Sponsor a project.
  • Share your mandatory IRA distributions
  • Donate Stock or Bonds
  • Share Tax Refund
  • Dinners – Plan to attend two special Taste of DuBois Dinners in 2022
  • Share Cryptocurrency
  • Sweat Equity
  • Donate Online at www.iscucc.org and www.DuBoisCenter.org.
  • Prayers

DuBois 6.0 Capital Campaign Goal: $225,290

Note: Project order will be determined by availability of materials and funds.

Contact United Church Funds at 212-729-2628 or matt.wagner@ucfunds.org to learn how to donate IRA distributions and stock to DuBois 6.0. Dates and more information on the Taste of DuBois dinners will be coming in early 2022.

Do You Receive an Automatic IRA Distribution?

If you receive an automatic IRA distribution that you don’t need for living expenses, perhaps from an inherited IRA, please consider donating it to the DuBois 6.0 capital campaign this year.

We have already received close to $39,000 of the $225,290 needed to complete the 17 projects included in this campaign. The Oak Lodge air conditioning project is almost finished, and three other projects are just waiting on some materials and volunteers to finish them. The second round of projects needs to start soon, some of which includes work on the Deer Run shower house and lodge, moving the archery range and building a new bouldering wall. These projects will add tent camping capacity and programming activities to the 2022 summer camp season. Your donations will make a big difference in getting these done in the first quarter of the year.

If you would like to donate an IRA distribution to DuBois 6.0, please contact Matt Wagner with United Church Funds at matt.wagner@ucfunds.org for more information.

DuBois 6.0 – Building Faith, Building Capacity, Building For The Next 60 Years

DuBois Center will turn 60 in 2022, marking the year we took ownership of the land. While the first 60 years have been great, she needs some maintenance and expansion to get her ready for the next 60.

What we’ve done since 2020:

  • Repaired the spillway
  • Replaced the Rustic side septic
  • Remediated mold in the office, Oak and Hickory Lodges
  • Rebuilt and repaired the stage
  • Solved plumbing leaks in Oak and Hickory Lodges
  • Added commercial dehumidifiers to office basement and Hickory Lodge
  • Fixed foundation leaks at office, Oak & Hickory Lodges
  • Replaced camp office flooring
  • Repaired/updated at Director’s House, and corrected drainage
  • Brought the Deer Run Cabins back to life and added 3 ramps

Here’s what we’re doing next – Estimates as of Aug. 2021:

  • Oak Lodge Windows Replaced $17,650
  • Camp Office Windows Replaced $4,500
  • Oak Lodge Air Conditioning $15,740
  • Oak Lodge Basement Sealed and Dehumidifier Purchased $6,000
  • New Hillside Cottage Built $77,000
  • Lumber Shed Roof $3,000
  • Program Directors House Updates $7,000
  • Temporary Infirmary: To be reaccredited by the American Camping Association, we need a multi-bed infirmary temporarily in half of Roadside Cottage $3,000
  • Road Repairs $18,500
  • New Fish Hill Cabin on Rustic Side of Camp $10,400
  • New Archery Range and Bouldering Wall $10,000
  • Deep Water Solar Lake Aerator $6,000
  • Boat House Solar Power $1,200
  • Deer Run Lodge Repairs and Updates $4,500
  • Deer Run Shower House $10,300
  • New Hay Barn $30,000
  • Fence Painting $500

DuBois 6.0 Capital Campaign Goal: $225,290

Note: Project order will be determined by availability of materials and funds.  Capital Campaign began October 2021 at the Annual Meeting and will end December 31, 2022

How You Can Contribute:

  • Sponsor a project.
  • Share your mandatory IRA distributions
  • Share Stock or Bonds
  • Share Tax Refund
  • Dinners – Plan to attend two special Taste of DuBois Dinners in 2022
  • Sweat Equity
  • Donate Online at www.iscucc.org and www.DuBoisCenter.org.
  • Prayers

Contact the Highland office to receive an information sheet explaining how to donate IRA distributions and stock to DuBois 6.0. Dates and more information on the Taste of DuBois dinners will be coming in early 2022.

DuBois 6.0 Campaign in Need of a Freezer

You may have noticed in the DuBois 6.0 capital campaign that there’s a foraged dinner fundraiser planned for next fall. The goal is to have foraged foods from the grounds in the dishes that will be served that night, such as fish, hickory nuts, blackberries and persimmons. These foods will be collected over the course of the next few months, and several will need to be frozen when they’re gathered.

The regular camp freezer fills to capacity in the summer, so we need a freezer dedicated to storing food just for this meal. We’re looking for a small chest or upright freezer, about 5-7 cu ft in capacity, with a working lock and key. If you have a freezer you’d like to donate that meets these requirements, please contact Jill Baker at jabaker5@aol.com.

Finding God at DuBois Center

A Testimonial – “Ever since I was a child, DuBois Center has felt like a second home to me. I started coming to Fall Festival when I was maybe one or two years old and, once I learned about camp, I couldn’t wait to become a camper! My dad and I started You & Me Camp the first year I was able to go, and I continued to be a DuBois Center Camper every single summer for many years until an injury in early high school sadly kept me from attending camp. I also attended multiple retreats throughout the school year and basically found every excuse I could to make it out to camp, even if it was just for the day.”

“I came back after high school as a staff member and I loved sharing my love of camp and my love for God with a new generation of campers. Now, I make an effort to volunteer multiple Sundays each summer for registration (come find me – I’m the loud red head!) and am trying to find time in my grown up work schedule to come back as a volunteer counselor.”

“I have never felt closer to God than when I stand on the dock of Lake DuBois in the early morning when all is still quiet, or when I take a seat in one of our outdoor chapels to worship with friends, or when I’m simply exploring the trails, enjoying God’s Creation. DuBois Center helped shape the person I am today, and I could not be more happy that I still get to call it my ‘second home.”

Kara G. – Camper/Staff/Volunteer

You can make a difference to the place that many have found God. In 1962, the land that is now DuBois Center was acquired from the Illinois Central Railroad–as the need for a lake to re-water steam engines was no longer in demand for the rail industry. After a few years of planning and infrastructure design & construction, our first summer programs started in 1965. In 2022, we are paying homage to our 60th anniversary as property stewards and ministers–with DuBois 6.0, a capital campaign to beautify and enhance no less than 17 designated projects. A full list of our ideas and projects can be found on our campaign website. Help us secure the future of DuBois Center and many memories such as the one above by donating what you can. A secure link to donate is on our website. Together, we can all help continue the mission of DuBois Center.

DuBois 6.0 Building Faith, Building Capacity, Building For The Next 60 Years

DuBois Center will turn 60 in 2022, marking the year we took ownership of the land. While the first 60 years have been great, she needs some maintenance and expansion to get her ready for the next 60.

This treasure is the heart of the Illinois South Conference, where thousands of campers have experienced God and creation over the past six decades. Some found their calling to ministry there. Others found summer after summer of fun and friendship. Think of the retreats, the worship, the secrets shared and the children’s laughter. So much life has occurred under the rustling leaves at DuBois Center. Now it’s time for us to prepare for the next 60 years, by improving what we have and getting ready for the future.

As of this edition, we have received $6,835 toward the total goal of $225,290. Keep checking this website to see how the thermometer fills up and send your donation to make the improvements possible. It’s our space to bring faith and appreciation of nature to ourselves and the next generations. Here is the information on all areas we will be updating so that you may share with your congregations and friends.

Simba and MangoDuBois Center Logo

Why a Window?

Two years ago last week, Sixth Avenue United Church of Christ in Denver, where I directed youth programming, dedicated beautifully restored stained-glass windows. This window restoration project had lasted about a year. We were lucky to get a matching grant from the state’s historical fund in order to preserve these beautiful windows. The work had to be done at the right season, as glass expands and contracts with the weather, and the coloration can change based on the elements to which it is exposed. The money had to be secured up front. This day felt like a big, big celebration for our church family.

And yet, on the day of the dedication, I missed it because I was working with the youth in the fellowship hall instead of being in the sanctuary. I was watching the beautiful fall morning light stream in through unstained, unrestored windows rather than the newly restored stained-glass windows. At first, I had a sense of jealousy of all those in my church who would get to experience worship and the dedication of our restored stained glass.

And then, I realized a bigger truth: I’ve often encountered God in spaces where stained glass would be absurd, such as hiking portions of the Appalachian Trail, listening to a new album from my favorite artists or bands, the moment my wife proposed to me, stargazing at DuBois Center, meeting my cousin’s children. Often, our most sacred moments happen to us outside of the spaces we identify as sacred. God meets us at every window if we give God the opportunity. I remembered in my moment of jealousy what Mary Oliver said of prayer:


“It doesn’t have to be
the blue iris, it could be
weeds in a vacant lot, or a few
small stones; just
pay attention, then patch
a few words together and don’t try
to make them elaborate, this isn’t
a contest but the doorway
into thanks, and a silence in which
another voice may speak.”

And so, two years after this moment that changed the way I perceived what is sacred, DuBois Center has become my new sacred space. We are raising money for new projects and to fix up some of our existing buildings. One of the projects on the list is new windows for Oak Lodge, and new windows for the office. My heart is warmed when I think of our current windows – the gateway to the sacred or a great view of the lake for around 55 years now. However, eventually original windows need updating – whether they are stained glass or not. Replacing these original, single-pane windows in Oak Lodge with double-pane, insulted windows at the same time we update HVAC, our energy efficiency increases greatly, and it will help us lower a high electric bill. The cost of the Oak Lodge Windows is $17,650.00. These windows give us a view into something ordinary that has become sacred to so many over the last 60 years. To contribute money to DuBois 6.0 and help us replace these windows, visit our website. I look forward to the opportunity for many more sacred encounters in Oak Lodge.

Blessings, Hayley Elliott, Acting Director of Outdoor Ministries