- Associated Press - Sunday, April 27, 2014

FREMONT, Neb. (AP) - Campers will spend their last summer at the Fremont Family YMCA’s Camp Christian this summer.

Jerry Rinne, CEO of the YMCA, said camp activities will move in the summer of 2015 to the Christensen Family YMCA Camp on West Military Avenue, where the Keene Lodge is beginning to take shape.

“This summer is going to be the last summer we’re going to hold camp (at Camp Christian), so we’re going to be in the process of selling that piece of ground,” Rinne told the Fremont Tribune (http://bit.ly/1mApgHV). “We’ll turn that money back into the new camp then.

“The last camp will be in August,” he said. “We’ll try to figure out when we’re going to do something, and we’ll invite all the campers back and all the volunteers and staff, people who went there.

“We thought at one time about keeping it around for the smaller kids. The problems is the buildings are in disrepair because they’re very old,” he said.

Rinne believes the 14-acre camp with a small lake and abundant wildlife will appeal to hunters.

The Christensen Family YMCA Camp, which grew to 121 acres recently when the YMCA acquired the former Sunset Motel, will begin accommodating campers in the summer of 2015.

“If we have an overnighter, we can do a couple things,” Rinne said. “We can bring tents out there, and we can have tent camps on the island as well.”

Discover Island, at 7 acres, is half as large as the entire Camp Christian.

The Keene Lodge can also be set up with cots, with separate areas for girls and boys, he added.

Foundations and footings are in place for the 6,800-square-foot lodge, which is expected to be completed sometime this fall on the southeast bank of Marv’s Lake.

The lodge will feature a 1,600-square-foot Great Room and equally large Activity Room, along with a catering-based kitchen, locker rooms and furnace. Locker rooms will double as tornado shelters.

The Great Room, featuring a three-sided fireplace, will seat up to 100 people, and is generally intended for rental use. The Activities Room is seen as a place where youth attending YMCA camps can congregate or sleep.

The view from the lodge will be impressive, Rinne said.

“When you walk into the lodge there’s going to be lots of windows, so you’ll be able to see all the way through to the lake,” he said.

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