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Special year for Holiness Camp PDF Print E-mail
Written by Wauneta Breeze   
Thursday, 14 July 2011 20:45

By Carolyn Lee

The Imperial Republican


For 100 years people have been attending Imperial Valley Holiness Camp, now located on Highway 6 between Enders and Imperial. This year attendees will be celebrating those 100 years.

The interdenominational camp will be open July 21-31 this year. Between 100-200 people attend part or all of the 10 days of worship and fellowship, according to secretary Miriam Hegwood, a former Imperial resident.

Hegwood, who with husband Raymond, now lives in Mitchell, S.D. was born in Benkelman, and “grew up in” the camp. “I’ve been going all my life.”

Her daughters and their families, who live in Colby, Kan. and Mitchell, also attend.

Imperial Valley Holiness Camp has a new sign and is gearing up for 10 days of worship during this, its 100th year.  (Imperial Republican Photo)


The fact that the camp is interdenominational is a drawing card, Hegwood noted. Visitors are welcome, there is no registration required, and three meals a day are provided in the dining hall for a free will donation.

“It’s an oasis in the desert,” Hegwood stated. “It’s a spot to get away. When I’m there I don’t know what’s going on in the world. Sometimes when we hear so much bad news, it’s good to get away from it all.”

The camp involves services, speakers, youth and child activities, vacation Bible school, bonfires, a lake day, a farm day and more.

Board Advisor Wesley Wheeler of Wauneta has been going to the camp for 87 years. He’s given hay rack rides to attendees in the past.

Different ministers are called to speak every year.

This year two concerts will be held. The Ball Brothers and Anthem of the Mid-America Nazarene will perform.

The camp has been held in five different locations. It began at Church Grove on Enders Reservoir, Hegwood said, and was also held near the dam.

The location was then moved to Harmon Grove, then to Robert Grove in 1921. From 1925-36 it was held at Hudnall Grove five miles west of Imperial, then from 1937-49 it was held at Benson Grove on the Frenchman River.

Imperial Valley Holiness Camp moved to its present location when the organization purchased the land in 1950.

The name has changed, also, from the original Dundy and Chase County Holiness Association to the Dundy, Chase and Perkins County Holiness Association.

Attendees pull in campers, or sleep in the cabins and dormitories on the site.

Because of the significance of the 100th year, Hegwood said some of the “main line” families will be honored, those involved in the camp throughout the years.

“It’s a tradition for families,” she explained.