By Kevin Schaefer
Sprite, Mountain Dew, Coke, Dr. Pepper, Root Beer and Grape.
Published July 12, 2013
These are usually found in grocery and convenience stores. But they can also be found at Farmers Union Camps. They are the names of the Task Teams of the youngsters at camp and are used to play games, assign chores and take turns.
The North Dakota Farmers Union has been offering camping activities for decades. Currently there are four locations • Heart Butte Farmers Union Camp – near Elgin • Wesley Acres Bible Camp – near Dazey • Camp of the Cross – near Garrison and • Upper Missouri Ministries – near Epping.
The Junior Camps are for boys and girls who have completed grades 3-6 and are four days and three night camps. The Senior Camps are also for both boys and girls who have completed grades 7-12 and are for five days and four nights.
The campers’ typical day begins at 7 am and ends with ‘lights out’ at 11 pm. The camp counselors keep their charges very busy with a variety of activities. The campers all participate in water games, skits, sports, campfires, talent shows, dances, crafts, a camp project and a banquet. During all of the activities, the young campers are also taught self confidence, respect for him or herself and others and love of God and country. They learn respect for the flag with the raising in the morning and the lowering at dusk and how to fold and care for the flag.
At North Dakota Farmers Union camps, attendees learn about the cooperative business model by organizing and operating their own store and selling snacks, beverages, and camp souvenirs. Campers are educated on real-life issues affecting their generation through hands-on lessons in: • Volunteerism • Government • Cultural diversity • Legislative process • Mock trials and • Patriotism. While participating in all of the activities, the campers develop strong friendships and have a ‘whale’ of fun.
More than 1,400 North Dakota youth participate in cooperative-focused leadership camps annually. Check out Farmers Union Camps at ndfu.org/youth-camps.php