Camp History


Covenant Harbor in Wisconsin Hilltop House at Covenant Harbor Housing at Covenant Harbor Meeting Space in Wisconsin Camp Lodging in Wisconsin Lakefront at Covenant Harbor

1947  Snug Harbor, the estate of the Sturges, Borden, Smith, Macintosh and Dodge families, built in 1881, was purchased by the churches of the Central Conference of the Evangelical Covenant Church for use as a Bible Camp.

1948  First camps. The Lodge was built with volunteer labor.

1951-2  Triplets were built. Most housing and meetings were in the Big House, a striking mansion on the waterfront.

1957  The Big House burned in January. No camps that summer.

1959  Hilltop House was created from The Twins cabins, sleeping rooms added inside both ends of the large Dining Hall, turning it into the Lodge.

1965  New construction: Director’s residence (now the office), upper and lower compounds (Kishwauketoe and Maple Commons), Maintenance Shop, winterizing buildings.

1986  First ropes course constructed.

1989-90  Geneva Bay Center completed, introducing new programming options, including Road Scholar. Camp Kishwauketoe, for young children, was begun. Snake Road Adventure Center established.

1994  First Annual Golf for Kids event which raised funds for scholarships to bring urban children to camp.

1996  Because of the work of the Foundation for Covenant Harbor and the generosity of Central Conference Churches and many people, Covenant Harbor’s debt was eliminated.

1997  Due to the generosity of several people, a major renovation of the Boathouse and front lawn area was done. Covenant Harbor celebrated its 50th anniversary with a staff reunion and worship service in the new worship tent. New high ropes course installed.

1998  Day camp program begun in cooperation with Lake Geneva YMCA.

1999  Climbing tower & zip lines installed. First Mission Adventure trip taken to Covenant camp in Santo Domingo, Ecuador.

2002  Engebretson Lodge completed.

2003-05  Guest House and Hilltop remodeled, New maintenance building, Nicholls Maintenance Center, completed.

2006 Covenant Harbor served more than 28,000 guests and campers in youth children’s, family and adult ministries, Road Scholar, adventure and rental programs.

2007 For the first time, Covenant Harbor serves more than 2,000 summer campers in one season and the amphitheater was rebuilt, and landscaped.

2008  The Jackson Family Activity Center was completed.

2008  Covenant Harbor breaks a record for summer campers with over 2,400 registered.

2010  The Historic Carriage House is re-roofed and the garage at the Gate House is renovated to house single staff and interns.

2011  Climbing room installed at the Jackson Family Activity Center, wall donated by Dick’s Sporting Goods store in Frisco, Texas.

2012  With the Jackson Family Activity Center project fully funded in April, work began on updating the Master Plan in order to determine the next project for facility improvement as Covenant Harbor celebrates 65 years of ministry.
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