Camp Roger, the YMCA's youth camp in the Uinta Mountains, is getting a face lift.
The camp is 52 years old, starting out as a Civilian Conservation Corps camp in 1946, and its facilities are worn out.YMCA officials considered trying to remodel around campers, but given the short duration of both the camping and construction season (currently the camp is still buried under a couple of feet of snow) they finally decided to forgo camping this summer and go full steam ahead on the renovations.
The 650 youths who attended the camp last summer will have to find somewhere else to go this year. The construction will continue over the following two years, although the camp will be open during that period. The whole project is expected to cost $1 million.
Renovations include a new bathhouse, a new boardwalk, a food storage building, repair to existing buildings, an update of the kitchen on one end of the main lodge and a backup pump system for the water supply. There are other things YMCA officials would like to do as well.
"We're going to do as much as the money will fund," said Shannon Mascher, YMCA manager of operations.
The camp currently extends over 12 acres of leased Forest Service land, which the YMCA hopes to extend to 35 to 40 acres by this summer. It is located 15 miles east of Kamas on the Mirror Lake Highway.
Campers at Camp Roger participate in horseback riding, fishing, hiking, archery, arts and crafts - but counselors strive to give them something more.
"While the kids are doing these activities we are teaching them YMCA principles - Christian principles," Mascher said. "A healthy spirit, mind and body for all, caring, honesty, respect and responsibility. It's something everyone can embrace. You're taking care of the whole person."
The camp was named for Roger Freund, a YMCA executive director in the 1960s and '70s.