­Over the past year, Camp Heritage made many updates and renovations in various areas.

In 2020 due to COVID-19, Camp Heritage did not have any campers. They did, however, have staff members who participated in training for a new program, DiscipleTrek, which was scheduled to begin in 2021. During their training, staff spent a few hours each day to help maintain and improve aspects of camp.

During this time, camp staff helped renovate the medicine lodge — replacing equipment, painting, redoing the ceilings and replacing lights, windows and doors.

Camp Heritage nurse Millie Greer said the renovations were great.

“The ceilings are beautiful, and the windows are a huge improvement,” Greer said.

Denison Sager, director for Camp Heritage, said the camp tried to brighten the space and make changes that reduce maintenance in the future.

“We tried to make more space and make it more comfortable for the kids,” Sager said. “I think we’ve done well but there’s still some things to do.”

Sager said he hopes to soon replace the flooring in the medicine lodge to further update the space.

New ceiling and light improve the overall atmosphere of the medicine lodge, according to camp nurse Millie Greer.

One of the larger projects Camp Heritage tackled during the past two years was renovating the bathhouses. Originally each bathhouse only had six showers. This made it difficult for cabins to shower in an efficient manner, according to Sager. With the help of staff, Sunnydale Adventist Academy and other volunteers, the camp added four more showers to each bathhouse.

“To have 10 showers instead of six made a big difference, because you can just shower your whole cabin all at once and be done,” Sager said.

Additional improvements included repainting the inside of the bathhouse, replacing lighting, shortening stall length to allow in more light and laying new tile.

Staff helped lay tile in 2020 and were excited to see the completely renovated bathhouses upon their return to camp this year, according to Sager.

“When they came back, they were just so proud of the job they did,” Sager said. “It was great to see their excitement.”

In addition to the bathhouse and medicine lodge renovations, the camp also added several outdoor canopies, including canopies for archery, crafts and outdoor eating. Originally added to reduce risk of spreading COVID-19, Sager said he foresees the camp continuing to use the canopies even if COVID-19 is mitigated.

“Having the canopies has been great,” Sager said.

Camp Heritage also repainted the youth cabins, replaced the pavilion’s roof and built an implement shed for machinery and boat storage.

Sager hopes to continue to make improvements to the camp. He believes adding a large multipurpose building and updating kitchen appliances would help Camp Heritage serve its campers better.

“We would love, as we move forward, to improve our facilities where we could be of service to more people, whether it’s in the summer or if it’s in the offseason,” Sager said. “We’d love to have more people at camp.”