Each summer we visit Suzanne’s family in Oklahoma. This year, we mixed it up a bit by attending a few days at a family camp at New Life Ranch in Colcord, OK. Suz worked there one summer in college and signed us up for the first time as family campers. Since the trip would take close to nine hours from our home in Illinois, we spent a night in Springfield, Missouri, where we swam at the hotel, ate at Lambert’s Cafe (where they throw food at diners), visited the Bass Pro Shops headquarters, and were nearly eaten alive by wild camels at a safari animal park.
We all had a great time at New Life Ranch. I believe there were about 50 families there during our camp, and each family was assigned a staff member to help however the family needed assistance. The first morning of our stay, for example, Suzanne and I took a trail ride on horseback into the hills for breakfast, so our staff assistant, Mr. Luke, took the kids to breakfast at the dining hall and had them ready to go for the rest of the day when we returned. Sweet.
Each day began with a brief group worship time after which the kids went off to age-appropriate Bible lessons and activities while the adults spent time learning about parenting. Our speaker was Chip Jackson from Fellowship Northwest Arkansas church–he was terrific. Suz and I came away encouraged and with some good things to help us continue in our parenting journey. After lunch, we had the afternoon free to explore the camp’s numerous activities and facilities: ropes course, climbing walls, swimming pool, waterfront with huge slides, mountain biking, horseback riding, rifle/shotgun ranges, and more. Evenings involved more teaching time and group activities. Although we spent only two and a half days there, we were all exhausted from late nights, early mornings, and full days.
From Colcord, we went on to visit Suzanne’s family. We’ve posted a few photos from our trip here, and there’s a video below of Suz and I going down the zip line at the ranch. Although we signed up everybody to ride the zip line, only mom and dad were brave enough to climb to poles and go down.