Printed from:

Welcome to Columbia Magazine  

KY Afield Outdoors: Land donations fuel camp upgrades

By Lee McClellan

Frankfort, KY - The sale of donated land in McLean County and around Beaver Lake in Anderson County helped provide the funds to begin construction of a new dining hall at Camp John Currie on Kentucky Lake beginning this August. This is just one example of the positive impact donated lands can have on conservation education in Kentucky.

"Our camps have been around since the late 1940s," said Laura Burford, assistant director of the Information and Education Division of the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources. "The buildings are showing their age and some of them need updating so they can continue to provide great experiences to campers for many more decades."

The original portion of the dining hall at Camp Currie was built in time for the first year of camping there in 1949. "The old dining facility is small and a little outdated," said Chad Miles, administrative director of the Kentucky Fish and Wildlife Foundation.

The Foundation helps with funding to improve conservation education infrastructure such as Kentucky Fish and Wildlife's Salato Wildlife Education Center and the department's summer conservation camps.

"The Kentucky Fish and Wildlife Foundation is committed to assisting in the funding to make this project a reality," Miles said. "A good working partnership between public and private individuals allowed this to take place."

The new dining hall will seat up to 240 campers and camp counselors and will be equipped with an audio and visual system for education and entertainment in inclement weather. Demolition of the old dining hall begins this August. The new facility should be ready for the start of the 2017 summer camping season.

"This new dining facility is really exciting for the generations of Kentuckians who went to Camp Currie and those who will attend in the years to come," Burford said. "The extra space allows all campers and camp counselors to be in the dining hall at the same time. We would not even be able to think about doing this without the support of the Kentucky Fish and Wildlife Foundation."

Miles said a large share of the monies for this new project came from the sale of 171 acres of prime McLean County farm land donated by the estate of Lucy Ann Griffin along with some federal matching funds.

Other funds for this new dining facility came from a committee in Paducah that raised $75,000 several years ago for new kitchen facilities at Camp Currie. The kitchen in the new dining facility will be named after retired conservation educator Doug Travis. Travis taught conservation education to over 300,000 children over his 59-year career at Kentucky Fish and Wildlife.

The sale of donated tracts of land on Beaver Lake in Anderson County is another source of funding for this project. A non-profit group bequeathed several lots to the Kentucky Fish and Wildlife Foundation. The sale netted nearly $250,000 toward the construction of the dining hall.

These developments are good examples of what can happen through a donation of land to the Kentucky Fish and Wildlife Foundation.

"Anyone interested in estate planning through a land gift should contact the Kentucky Fish and Wildlife Foundation on our website at," Miles said. "Your gift could benefit generations of Kentucky children."

Author Lee McClellan is a nationally award-winning associate editor for Kentucky Afield magazine, the official publication of the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources. He is a life-long hunter and angler, with a passion for smallmouth bass fishing.

This story was posted on 2016-01-08 09:34:22
Printable: this page is now automatically formatted for printing.
Have comments or corrections for this story? Use our contact form and let us know.

KY Afield Outdoors: Camp Currie

2016-01-08 - Benton, KY - Photo by Lee McClellan. Conservation campers like these enjoying the pool at Camp Currie on Kentucky Lake will have new dining facilities at the camp thanks to funds generated by the sale of land donated to the Kentucky Fish and Wildlife Foundation. The Foundation provides funding for infrastructure improvements at the summer conservation camps operated by the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources as well as at the Salato Wildlife Education Center at Fish and Wildlife Headquarters in Frankfort.
Read More... | Comments? | Click here to share, print, or bookmark this photo.


Quick Links to Popular Features

Looking for a story or picture?
Try our Photo Archive or our Stories Archive for all the information that's appeared on


Contact us: Columbia Magazine and are published by D'Zine, Ltd., PO Box 906, Columbia, KY 42728.
Phone: 270.403.0017

Please use our contact page, or send questions about technical issues with this site to All logos and trademarks used on this site are property of their respective owners. All comments remain the property and responsibility of their posters, all articles and photos remain the property of their creators, and all the rest is copyright 1995-Present by Columbia! Magazine and D'Zine, Ltd. Privacy policy: use of this site requires no sharing of information. Voluntarily shared information may be published and made available to the public on this site and/or stored electronically. Anonymous submissions will be subject to additional verification. Cookies are not required to use our site. However, if you have cookies enabled in your web browser, some of our advertisers may use cookies for interest-based advertising across multiple domains. For more information about third-party advertising, visit the NAI web privacy site.