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CU hosts 43 different camp groups over the summer

CentriKids has been using campus for summer camp for 21 years. Kids College is a popular 2-day program for kids in 4th to 8th grades
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By Elena Groholske, student news writer

CAMPBELLSVILLE, KY - Campbellsville University will host 43 different camps and 5,000 campers for church groups, sports teams, children's camps and freshman orientation this summer.

One group, the CentriKid Program Training Week Program, has been using CU as their summer camp destination since 1990.

"They've told me the reason they return is because of the excellent customer service," Rusty Watkins, director of summer camps and conferences, said.

"I coordinate housing, meals, field space and facilities; it makes it easier for the groups to only have one contact person on campus. I have a great staff helping me to get everything done and organized."

Jeremy Echols, CentriKid camp coordinator, said they hold training week for the camp leaders across the country at CU.

"We return to Campbellsville University because we have a loyal group of church leaders who love camp on this campus, and because the campus staff take great care of our camp staff and our church leaders. Rusty Watkins and his team always take care of the things we need on campus, and they even think of things before we need them sometimes!

"The customer service provided by Rusty is the biggest reason we've never even thought of looking for a new place to train our staff," he said.

Echols said his favorite thing about Campbellsville is the feeling that no matterwhat comes up he knows that the needs of the group can be accommodated. That is not the case for all our camp locations.

"We are on over 20 different campuses, and in some places we are treated like we just rent the facilities, but at Campbellsville, we are treated like partners."

Echols said Campbellsville University has changed over the years with the addition of the Winters Dining Hall and Ransdell Chapel, which are the main facilities they use at their camp.

"The exteriors of all the buildings have a similar look and feel," he said. "Every time I come on campus, I look for the new buildings and renovations because there are always improvements being made on campus."

In 2012, CentriKid will be at Campbellsville for the full summer. Echols said this is the first time they've been offered all eight weeks of camp (plus a weekend camp) at Campbellsville.

"We are happy for the opportunity to add more weeks of camp and touch the lives of more kids and adults through our partnership with Campbellsville University," he said.

CentriKid is a five-day, four-night camp for third to sixth graders to experience the time of their lives and learn more about the message of Jesus Christ, Echols said.

The camps being held over the summer include 22 sports camps, 12 of which are footballs camps and eight of them are using CU's facilities for the first time.

"The new Astroturf on the football field is an added bonus," Watkins said. "It has definitely increased participation."

Gulf Presbytery of the Reformed Presbyterian Church of North America Family Camp is using the CU campus for the first time this summer as well. This is the first family camp that CU has hosted. The Gulf Presbytery will be setting up Sunday School and church for the five days they are on campus, along with other activities. Last summer the families ranged from pre-school age to participants in their nineties.

Campbellsville also hosts its own camps, LINC Freshman Orientation, Kids College, Children's Theater Camp and a Dental Workshop.

Kids College offers courses in such categories as: Mad Scientist, CSI--Cool Science Investigations, Cookin' Up a Storm, American Girl Through the Seasons, Lights, Stage, Action and Photography 101.

Kids College is offered to students in third to eighth grade.

The Dental Workshop was an idea of Dr. Dwayne Frazier's, associate vice president for academic affairs. The workshop will be a chance for students to practice working with crowns, fillings and other situations on volunteers.

Campbellsville University is a widely acclaimed Kentucky-based Christian university with over 3,000 students offering 63 undergraduate programs, 17 master's degrees and five postgraduate areas. The website for complete information is

This story was posted on 2011-06-17 16:20:23
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Adam Almon at CentriKid 7 at Campbellsville, U

2011-06-17 - Photo by Andre Tomaz.
Adam Almon from First Baptist Church in Madisonville, KY, gets sprayed by Ashley Chestnut, assistant director for CentriKid 7 of Birmingham, AL, during CentriKid's game of Organized Mass Chaos on the campus of Campbellsville University.

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Ingy Winders of First Baptist Church, Madisonville, KY

2011-06-17 - Campbellsville University - Photo by Andre Tomaz. CU.
Organized Chaos: Ingy Winders, left, from First Baptist Church in Madisonville, KY, and Rusty Watkins, coordinator of summer camps and conferences at CU, laugh as Organized Mass Chaos is being played on Campbellsville University's Stapp Lawn.

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Jake Servino, Brentwood, TN, shows off muscles

2011-06-17 - Campbellsville University - Photo by Andre Tomaz. CU..
Jake Servino, a CentriKid student from Brentwood, TN, shows off his muscles to the cameraman, one of the tasks in Organized Mass Chaos.

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Ashley Isbell, Birmingham, and Lindsey Isbell at CU

2011-06-17 - Campbellsville University - Photo by Andre Tomaz. CU.
Ashley Chestnut, assistant director of CentriKid 7 from Birmingham, AL, sprays Lindsey Isbell of Savannah, TN. This year is Isbell's first year at CentriKid.

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