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Mississippi College

Mississippi College Welcomes 2009 Summer Campers

June 5, 2009

Christian rock bands energize hundreds of noisy teens at Swor Auditorium, but there's also time to quietly worship the Lord.

Moments for morning prayer mix with fun games on the Quad and a trek to the Mississippi College track on a sunny day in early June. Summer camp season 2009 is making noise on the Clinton campus and goes through late July.

The camp season kicked off in late May with a string of basketball games at the A.E. Wood Coliseum with the Oak Grove Warriors taking on the Wesson Cobras. The sounds of music from a Texas-based band, Reverchon, loudly ring out before campers flock to the Caf for lunch.

Ken Gilliam, the director of continuing education at MC, oversees the camps - from Centrifuge to cheerleaders to the campers coming for Super Summer. Nearly 10,000 campers from 14 states will be making the rounds at Baptist-affiliated MC. During week one, there were campers from Brandon, Mississippi to Bossier City, Louisiana. They visited for 5 days from hometowns in Tennessee and Arkansas. Monday morning, a new group of campers comes calling with parent chaperones and camp counselors along for the ride.

Gilliam sees one big difference. Casey Bynum is the new camp director from Lifeway in Nashville. She succeeded Capri Brooks, who held the job the past three years. "She's young and enthusiastic," Gilliam said of Bynum a recent graduate of Anderson University in South Carolina. Casey is the point person in charge of the Mission Fuge and Centrifuge camps.

Another difference from the 2008 camp season is the calendar. Last year, campers stayed around for Independence Day festivities. But this year July 4th falls on a Saturday when the MC campers will be in their hometowns.

Another change: dozens of campers booked for Union University rescheduled to Mississippi College. They made the move because the Jackson, Tenn. campus was rebuilding from a 2008 tornado that caused $40 million in damages, including Union dorms. In six months, new dorms were built. This summer, a number of campers returned to Union, one of MC's sister Baptist institutions. "Everybody wants to support them," Gilliam said of the university located between Memphis and Nashville.

So far, the weather for MC's first week of summer camp "has been perfect," Gilliam said. One day the afternoon temperatures hovered around 93 degrees, a sure sign that summer is here at the Christian university.

For more information on MC camps, contact Gilliam at 601-925-3264 or gilliam@mc.edu