Monday, April 23, 2012

Kanakuk Adventure Series in the News

Kanakuk Kamps Launches An Adventure Series in Summer 2012

BRANSON, Mo. (April 23, 2012) – Kanakuk Kamps is adding a brand-new series to its repertoire during the summer of 2012. The Kanakuk Adventure Series is the eighth type of Kamp for kids offered by Kanakuk and the adventure-seeker’s ultimate summer experience.

The Kanakuk Adventure Series includes a Survival Kamp and a Scuba Kamp. Both camps in the series are guaranteed to teach skills that will last a lifetime.  Each camp lasts for two weeks and is open to both boys and girls between the ages of 15 and 18.

The Kanakuk Survival Kamp is a two-week training course that emulates the U.S. Army Special Forces “SERE School” survival course. A former military trained professional who was once a Kanakuk Kamper himself will lead the Survival Kamp. The camp will help boys and girls build character and learn spiritual lessons through using only what God has provided in the woods. The camp will encourage campers to test the limits of their physical and mental endurance, with lessons such as starting fires, building wind-proof and water-proof shelter from limbs, setting deadfall traps for game, making charcoal water filters, and many more. Campers will experience several survival camp outs, each one becoming progressively more challenging and culminating with a two-day solo survival trip.

The Kanakuk Scuba Kamp will teach campers how to scuba dive and certify participants with an open water diver qualification. Professional dive instructors from Aqua Sports will teach campers stress rescue, underwater navigation and wreck diving lessons.  Advanced dive courses include spear fishing, night diving and underwater photography.  The Aqua Sports team will then lead Scuba Kamp campers and their families on an optional dive trip in the Caribbean where they can put to use all the lessons learned during the two-week camp series.

Kanakuk plans to add a third Adventure Kamp series during the summer of 2013. The Aviation Kamp will allow campers to attend flight school and potentially complete the FAA ground school.

Kanakuk as a whole serves 11,000 campers each summer and has been developing dynamic Christian leaders through life-changing experiences, Godly relationships, and spiritual training since 1926. For more information on the Kanakuk Adventure Series, please visit


About Kanakuk Kamps
Kanakuk Kamps began in 1926 with a group of boys from Texas trekking to the Ozarks for 8 weeks of building character and stamina alongside great Christian role models. Today, there are 8 Kanakuk Kamps that serve over 11,000 boys and girls each summer, including whole families at K-Kauai Family Kamp located in Branson, Missouri. Kanakuk’s parent organization called Kanakuk Ministries is a not-for-profit, 501(c)3 whose mission is to develop dynamic Christian leaders through life-exchanging experiences, Godly relationships and spiritual training.  More information about Kanakuk can be found at

Monday, April 2, 2012

2012 Summer Theme Announcement: Rise Up!

The Kanakuk Kamps Summer Theme for 2012 is RiseUp! This year at Kamp, your child will hear what it means to take hold of Philippians 3:14 and RiseUp! to the challenge of our calling! With this summer's theme in mind, we've developed 6 special devotionals we’ll be sending via email and making available via download. Download them here. Feel free to share them with your friends. We hope you will find these devotionals useful, and help prepare your child, and your family for this summer. See you soon!
The story of this summer begins in 1926 when God’s hand stirred the heart of C.L. Ford. He arose from his place in Dallas, Texas and came to the Ozarks to begin what we now know as Kanakuk Kamps. There have been countless men and women, boys and girls who have followed in Mr. Ford’s footsteps; making Kanakuk a place full of laughter and cheers. Each one has chosen to stand up and step out in faith, taking the adventure step by step. Today, God continues to stir our hearts towards Him as He calls us to RiseUp!
The theme verse for Kampers is Philippians 3:14, “I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” Encouragement to a higher calling as we RiseUp! The theme verse for parents is Deuteronomy 6:7, “You shall teach them [God’s Word] diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up.” It starts in your home and continues when your child arrives at Kamp.

At Kanakuk his summer the youngest Kampers will see and hear that God is a loving Father and wonderful creator who loves them. Junior High Kampers will discover their identity is found in Christ and learn that God’s Truth should be the compass for life’s decisions. Teenage Kampers will be strengthen and encouraged as they learn to apply God’s Truth to impact and influence others for Christ. It’s a powerful message that starts with your family engaging in discussions around the dinner table this Spring. It’s a partnership with you that we are excitedly and prayerfully embarking on.
This summer at Kanakuk we will encourage our staff, our Kampers, and their families to RiseUp! To hear thecall of Jesus Christ in their lives, to be ready to live a life abundant with joy over what God is doing around us and calling us to be a part of! This summer promises to be an explosion of sports, activities, fun and worship! This summer promises to be an exciting adventure! This summer we will continue the tradition! We will exclaim the name of Christ! We will RiseUp!
In addition to the six RiseUp! devotionals you can also download the first of our summer theme songs, by Christian rapper, Nasa Sete, here. “RiseUp! RiseUp!”

Facebook friends make your comments in the original post at Inside Kanakuk.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Impact of Tornado on Kanakuk Kamps

Thank you Lord!
Kanakuk was untouched by the tornado that has damaged homes and businesses in a 7-mile stretch along East Hwy 76 (The Strip) all the way down to the Branson Landing and up through the area known as Mount Branson on the other side of the lake. Reports are that the entire path of the storm may be 22-miles! The photo below of the inside of the Branson Hilton Convention Center is from the news site and was taken by Alec Vanderboom. This damage was about 1/8 of a mile south of K-Kauai - Kanakuk's Family Kamp.

Branson Landing damage near Kanakuk.
This photo taken by former Kanakuk Summer Staff Alec Vanderboom. More photos can be seen here.

Power Out
We are thankful and feel blessed to be spared from damage. The power is off at our offices, making phone calls difficult. Tomorrow may be somewhat better as we work on ways to increase call taking capacity. This may be the situation for a couple of days. We want to take your phone calls, but for the next couple of days it may be easier to email. You can also reach us on Twitter @kanakuk or on Facebook. Our website is operating normally.

Thank You!
We have been blessed by all of you who have checked on us today. We'll do our best to keep you posted, quickly on Twitter and more details here in the days to come.

Our Branson Family
Our thoughts are turning to those around us who are suffering. Branson is our home. We love living here and being in a community like this. There is so much help pouring into Branson. Individual employees are helping neighbors, doing what we can and waiting for needs to arise. At the time of this post there was no reported loss of life here in Branson, but this will leave scars.

We are praying for our community. Please pray with us.


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Friday, February 24, 2012

Kanakuk Starts Year-round Friendships

K-Seven Kampers work together during challenge course activity.

We love hearing from our Kamp family—especially when you tell us how Kamp principles impact you and your kids back home.  It totally makes our day when we hear about someone in our Kamp family stretching her faith to the next level, and depending on Kamp friends and counselors during the year to strengthen her walk with Christ.  
Just recently, a K-Seven Kamp mom sent me an encouraging letter about her high school daughter Kelsey. Here is an excerpt from that letter:

Kanakuk is, in my opinion, one of the very best spiritual investments a parent can make for their children.  It has instilled in Kelsey a love for God, His word, and the importance of staying connected to a small group of Godly people who encourage and hold you accountable.  Kelsey’s best friend is a fellow Kamper who’s been with her the past 3 summers.  They live 5 hours apart but talk regularly, and Hannah is who Kelsey calls when she needs to talk to a Godly friend.

Just last month, she called Becca, one of her counselors from 2 years ago, and got tremendous encouragement from her.  Becca had Kelsey going all through the Bible, using scripture to help her.  Wow!  What a comfort to a mom, when we need spiritual help in raising our kids!

Kids are our greatest national resource; each one is uniquely made and important to God. Our desire is to place tools in the hands of our Kampers, so that when they get home, they understand how to live with integrity, how to stand up to peer pressure, and how to stay encouraged in their walk with Christ. Hearing how Kelsey stays strong by locking arms with her Kamp friends and counselors  is exactly what our Kamp family is all about:  Helping each Kamper influence and make an eternal impact within her circle of that the love of Christ is spread to every life, every home, every neighborhood.  
One Heart at a Time.

How has Kamp impacted you / your family?

Facebook friends make your comments in the original post at Inside Kanakuk.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

The New Kanakuk Website: Top Four Favorite Things…

If you haven’t gotten the chance to look around Kanakuk’s new website, you really should.  Not only will the bright pictures and streamlined headings catch your eyes, but several new features are just waiting for you to explore them!
I’d like to take you on a little tour of a few of these fabulous features—starting from the top of the website page, right down to the very bottom.
Here are 4 of my favorite features on the Kanakuk website:
1Starting at the top of the website page—“Summer Prep” is a wonderfully useful tab, where we’ve gathered all the information you will be looking for before your child heads to Kamp.  Have no fear “Summer Prep” is here…with individualized packing lists, transportation information, and even lodging and attraction options while you visit.  Click, click—easy, easy.

2Right below the big picture—“My Kanakuk” tab is your hub, your home base, your Sonic Happy Hour (okay, I’m stretching it a little).   “My Kanakuk” is the launch pad to your child’s everything Kamp-related:  Daily pictures, account information, health form, emails.   You’ll be able to access all of your family’s Kamp information with the click of this one button.
3In the middle of the website page—“Kanakuk Video Wall” is our chance to show you what Kamp is all about.  From inspirational to music to testimonials, these videos are packed full of Kanakuk tradition, excitement, and practical information.  Be sure to spend some time checking out these videos.  (Warning!  You may need a tissue or two…)

4At the bottom of the website page—Look for the envelope to find “Contact Kanakuk Kamps” information.  Picture this:  It’s June 4th, and you have written your son his first Kamp letter.  But, WHAT WAS HIS ADDRESS???   Just click click, look for the envelope for easy access to each Kamp’s individual mailing address.   Ah, I love easy!

Those are my favorite new website features.  But, what are yours?

Facebook friends make your comments in the original post at Inside Kanakuk.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentine's Day from all of us at Kanakuk Kamps!

"We love because He first loved us." I John 4:19

Today is a day where people all over the world express their love for one another. The only reason we can love God or love anybody else is because God first loved us. And He showed that love by sending Jesus Christ to earth to die for you and me. He showed that love by creating you. He showed that love by everything you have in life; it's all a gift of God's love.

Our prayer is that you will trust in Him and proclaim the truth that"God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life."  (John 3:16)

Download this image we created for you as your desktop photo to remind you of this amazing truth! 


Encourage others! Pin this!

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Monday, February 13, 2012

Roll out the Red Carpets, Get your Cameras Ready!

Can you hear it?  There’s a buzz humming through the Kanakuk hills.  Kanakuk Kamps is rolling out a brand new look this week—online, that is.  We think you’re going to love the changes you see!  From easier-to-access parent information to a more streamlined registration process, our brand new website has turned out a lot like many of the people who work behind the scenes around here:  friendly and engaging.

We think you’re going to like our new look.

Let’s explore some of the exciting details about our new website from a couple of the people who helped develop it.

First, let’s hear from Jay Holden, Marketing Director of Kanakuk Ministries:

Rebuilding a website the size and complexity of is a big undertaking. Why did Kanakuk choose to make this change?

Cleaner platform, easier interaction.  We rebuilt to provide Kamp families a cleaner platform to learn about our ministries, and make improvements to the tools families use to interact with us. Web technology develops quickly, and the new site is more flexible and faster to develop on. We are excited about the features we have provided--and the ones being developed later this Spring.

Quicker registration, easier access to photos and email.  The new website also leans heavily on the latest version of CircuiTree 5.0, camp and conference software provided by CircuiTree Solutions, a division of Kanakuk Ministries. CircuiTree is a powerful database-driven registration and camp management solution that Kanakuk has relied on for 15 years. Kanakuk parents are thankful for the ability to quickly register their children, and have access to photos and Kamper emails while their child is a Kamp.

It’s all about logistics.  Providing an Exciting Adventure in Christian Athletics for over 9000 children each summer is a lesson in logistics. Many Kampers take advantage of Kanakuk charter buses and airport shuttles to get to Kamp. The new website provides ways to register for those transportation options and communicate special requests and changes directly to the transportation department. Sharon Smith, Transportation Manager at Kanakuk Kamps, knows that parents appreciate the transportation functions. "Kamp parents will find tons of information about transportation options, and the new web tools will make it even easier to provide us all the important information we need to make all those connections!"

Next, we’ll hear from Jeff Schneider, Executive Director/CTO of CircuiTree Solutions:

Why did the Kanakuk registration process need to upgrade to CircuiTree 5.0?

Deeper connections.  Kanakuk's upgrade to CircuiTree 5.0 will provide parents, families, and administrative staff the ability to provide better service and a deeper connection to their Kampers during the summer. Kanakuk is a great partner, helping us bring the best camping management practices to many of the biggest camping organizations in the country.

You, yes you.  The last group of people who helped develop Kanakuk’s new website…is YOU, our Kamp families.  YOU’VE played a huge role in this enormous undertaking.  We’ve listened to your suggestions, and have tried to make this new website better and easier to use for YOU

So, now we’d love to hear from you!  What are your favorite things about Kanakuk’s new website?

Facebook friends make your comments in the original post at Inside Kanakuk.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Friends are Friends Forever

In the words of Michael W. Smith "friends are friends forever." As the theme song of so many closing days or "goodbyes" this is the first song that comes to mind as we close Kamp for the summer. Today Kampers are packing. They are exchanging contact information and promising to become friends on Facebook as soon as they get home. They are soaking in every last event from the blob to the zipline as they get excited about getting to see their families when the gates open at 4pm.

Today is my last day of work here at Kanakuk and I can't help but think about all the blessings this place has given me. I began as a Kamper here when I was 8 years old in teepee 2 at K-Seven. I attended Kamp for 8 years then I went on staff in college and worked at K-Seven. The Institute and K-Life have shared a huge part of my life over the past 4 years and now I have worked in the marketing department for the past 2 summers. Needless to say, this place holds a big piece of my heart.

I know I am not alone in feeling this way. Whether you're 8 and this was your first summer, or your 70 and came to Kanakuk as a child yourself, you know how this place really is different. This place has molded how so many of us follow Christ. It has influenced how we interact with others in an "I'm Third" mindset. It's led us to our best friends, taught us about accountability and built us into mentors for those younger than us. As so many of us leave here tomorrow we will have heavy hearts to leave family, but we will also be grateful, for a summer that stretched us, challenged us and molded us to be a little more like Christ.

Facebook friends make your comments in the original post at Inside Kanakuk.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

A Summer for the Whole Family

It has been another Incredible summer at Kanakuk Family Kamp K-Kauai! "Protect this Hut" is a theme that will remain in the back of the minds of many families as they go about their lives back home. An incredible speaker lineup, a fantastic staff and a phenomenal collection of families are all the ingredients that went into a fantastic summer at Kauai!

We are looking forward to next summer which is already nearly full! As of today we have three spots open for next summer and we know those will go very quickly. Registration will open for summer 2013 on June 1, 2012 so stay tuned. Thank you so much for such a great summer. Looking forward to seeing you next year!

Facebook friends make your comments in the original post at Inside Kanakuk.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Equipping the Future

Walking up the K-2 hill towards the upper fields the other day, I found myself surrounded by guys and girls all heading in the same direction with lime green books in their hands. There must have been at least a hundred and fifty of them piling into the chapel at K-2 for a class with no bats, no balls, no ropes or tennis shoes required. They laugh and exchange stories from the day as they find their seats in the chapel. A few minutes later Debbie Jo take the stage and discussion begins.

Discussions and lecture carries on for the next hour in this small chapel in the Ozarks. This class, called K-Equip, has been offered at K-2 for many summers. Lead by Joe & Debbie Jo White and Adam Donyes, the class is targeted to equip Kampers with a deeper Bible knowledge. When it first began it was a small group of students who wanted to learn more about the Bible. Over the past few years, this class has exploded into one of the most popular classes at K-2.

As I sat in the back pew of the chapel and listened to scripture being read by a Kamper it was incredible to see how attentive all the Kampers were. They were taking notes and asking questions with significantly more insight than I ever would've had at their age... or lets be honest, even more insight than I have now.

To see these high school students choose to be studying their Bible over spending time on the lake or at the pool was awesome. Seeing their hunger for the Word, their passion for learning and their desire to be leaders back in their community was humbling. We should be so thankful for the blessings the Lord has given us in these amazing future leaders!

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