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MILLPORT, AL. (WCBI)-Church camps can be a rewarding experience for youth groups, but also expensive. We take a look at a nearby camp that may be a cheaper and closer choice for youth groups this summer.

StudentLife and Mission Fuge are a few well known christian camps offered to youth groups and their leaders. Most of the time groups must come up with money for traveling expenses on top of camp fees, but this summer some local church groups will only have to travel a few miles over the Alabama border.

“For a pretty short drive you can get away from distractions and Tv’s and things like that and enjoy nature and have some quiet time to spend with loved ones and with God,” says Erin Burns.

Timberlake is a christian campground that sits right outside the Millport’s city limits. The idea came to the owners after experiencing a weekend retreat with their own youth group.

“In 2002 we found this property and after a lot of prayer and talking with friends and stuff we decided building a camp was something God wanted us to do,” says Burns.

After 11 years of renting the Timberlake’s facilities out to local churches and youth groups, owners Jeremy and Erin Burns says after a long process they are looking forward to hosting summer camps of their own.

“We are just really excited to see what God is going to be able to do and the hope that we have this summer is just a really fulfilling experience,” says Burns.

The camp offers a playground, lake, and a basketball court. Penney Wright, a staff member at the camp says there IS a lot to get done before June first.

“Right now, Timberlake only has the capabilities of sleeping 80 in our retreat center, but we are adding two more bunkhouses,” says Penney Wright.

An amphitheater, a swimming hole and craft house are also under construction on the campground for this summer. Adding new facilities will bring larger groups and a greater need for volunteers.

“We need volunteers for everyone of our sessions. Would love to hear from preachers, youth groups, youth ministers that would like to come out and talk, praise worship teams,” says Wright.

Wright says after all the planning and preparing she is hoping the children learn the most important thing.

“I’m thrilled, I just love children and I think children need to know who their best friend is and that’s Jesus Christ,” says Wright.

Camps will be offered to kids in grades 1st to 12th.

If you would like to become a volunteer for this summer or attend one of the summer camps go to www.timberlakeministries.org.

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