By Taylor Kristine Ambrose
With school now back in session, many Tucker County students are dreaming about those carefree summer days that seem much too out of reach. For 19 TCHS students, this is especially true as they experienced the “best week of their lives” this past July.
The organization Young Life, led by Chopper Evans, took 11 boys and eight girls to a $26 million camp in Rockbridge, Virginia. There, nearly 500 high schoolers had the opportunity to take a zip line into a lake, relax by the pool or hot tub, go horseback riding, do a high ropes course, play bubble soccer or get milkshakes at the snack bar.
At the end of each unique, exciting day, the simple gospel was presented to the group- and this was where lives were forever changed.
Young Life’s mission has been the same since it began 75 years ago- to meet kids where they are and share Christ’s unconditional love through words and actions.
“I’ve kept telling people since I got home from camp that they really aren’t exaggerating when they say it’s the best week of your life,” said junior Cecily Strawderman.
Cecily was only one of the 48 teenagers who went to camp from the Eastern Mountains Area, being Randolph, Upshur, Barbour and Tucker counties.
“This is our 5th and largest camp trip,” said Evans. And while their numbers screamed success, it also meant much more fundraising and planning for the man in charge. It took nearly 10 months to fundraise for the trip.
Local Wyldlife leader, Logan Evans, wanted to give middle schoolers the same opportunity and experience as the high schoolers. Wyldlife camp is based fromYoung Life only modified for middle school students.
“Before camp this year everyone was asking ‘what’s WyldLife?’ but now after camp everyone is asking ‘when’s WyldLife?’” Logan said.
Through volunteers like Logan and Chopper Evans, many students are back at school with stories of their greatest summer yet and “the best week of their lives.”
To learn more about Young Life phone Chopper Evans at (304) 642-1234 or go online to easternmountain.younglife.org.