About Our Camp
Since 1978 Anderson Woods has been hosting those with special needs during the summer. From 3 adult campers sleeping in tents the first summer, we have grown to now each summer accommodate nearly children and adults that sleep in our four cabins.
During our four-day, three-night sessions, campers learn self-confidence, trust and responsibility through working together, caring for animals, tending the garden, and enjoying the beauty of nature. It is an opportunity for them to experience fellowship with other campers and the staff while enjoying such recreational activities as swimming, fishing, hiking, kickball, crafts and more. Camp is a place where everyone is equal. We embrace all races and spiritual beliefs.
Full-time counselors and volunteers work alongside the campers to encourage and empower them to fulfill their maximum potential.
Camp runs for eight weeks in June and July. Three weeks are for children and five weeks are for adults. Fee is $200 per session. If you think you or someone you know would enjoy a week at our camp, but have some questions, feel free to contact us for more information.
Why Anderson Woods Camp?
At Anderson Woods we believe we provide a camp experience unlike what can be found at other camps. Located on 176 acres of wooded hill country in rural Perry County, IN, near Bristow, Anderson Woods Camp places a large emphasis on enjoying the great outdoors. When weather permits most of each day is spent outside. Many of our meals are enjoyed as a picnic or cooked over a fire. Time spent in our garden or at the barn with the animals, offers experiences that are completely new for many of our campers.
Because we limit our weekly sessions to 15 children or 25 adults, the campers get to know each other and the staff members well, and form lasting friendships. Those that have been coming to Anderson Woods for years--some for nearly 30 years--return to find old friends and meet new ones. Similarly many of our staff members have been a part of our camp for numerous years, and greet the returning campers by name as soon as they arrive.
Through the generosity of our many supporters, including the United Way of Perry County, and numerous private donors, we are able to keep the cost of our camp low. While most similar camps charge $300 - 400 for a week at camp, we ask that our campers pay only $200 per session.
-- Cost: $200 per session
-- Duration of session: 4 days, 3 nights, Monday - Thursday
-- Ages (Children sessions): 7 and older (grouped by age)
-- Ages (Adult sessions): 18 and older
-- When: June and July
-- Campers per session: 15 children or 25 adults
-- Years in existence: 41
-- First year of camp: 1978
Who We Are
David & Judy Colby, Co-Founders
David & Judy Colby shared a vision of providing an experience that would foster self-esteem and empower these Special Ones to fulfill the potential within. They purchased the first property for camp in 1975, and in 1978 the first campers arrived.
Isaac & Megan Gatwood, Executive Co-Directors
With a combined 28 years of experience at Anderson Woods, Isaac & Megan are committed to making the operation of camp their life's ambition. Isaac began his career at Anderson Woods during high school as the groundskeeper, and has since also worked as a counselor, and the camp director. In that time he also earned his BA from University of Notre Dame and his medical degree from IU School of Medicine. He now works as a family physician at nearby, Memorial Health Bristow. Megan has similarly worked as counselor and camp director. She has a degree in Special Education from Ball State University, and spent four years teaching for Indianapolis Public Schools, before focusing on raising their three children, Eve, Oliver, and Lucy.
Interested in joining our staff?
We are blessed to have a dedicated and hardworking staff with many years of experience this summer. If you or someone you know might be interested in joining our staff in 2017, click here to find out more about the great experiences waiting to be had.
What people have said about our camp...
It gives them a special place to be themselves, make friends, experience outdoor life and be safe! We have never worried about her as we know everyone watches over her as if she was their own! She loves camp and looks forward to it every year!!
--Chris & Greg, Caregivers of camper
When I think of camp, I think of harmony. I think of people who are brought together in a humble way to love and be loved, united in a place where God's hand is at work and people can be real. And because of that, camp is also home to some of the most insanely funny experiences of my life. I love all that is camp! Time spent there is awesome and will go with me wherever I may go.
--Kara, Camp Counselor 2002-2003
Our daughter has attended Anderson Woods camp for ten years and each year she can't wait to go back. Everyone involved in camp--the directors, the counselors, the cook, nurse and caretaker--are all very caring, kind, and helpful. There are a variety of activities for the campers. Some of our daughter's favorites are feeding the animals, walking in the creek, helping in the garden, and the campfire.
--Ann, Caregiver of camper
After being gone for a week of meetings, I am back at my home in Anderson Woods. The first Spring Peepers voiced their song this evening and dawn brought the call of the wild goose as a flock winged northward.
One day soon a pair will drop from the sky onto the upper pond. It will be that pair's seventh year here and each morning they will spend the very early hours on the lower pond by our home. They will bring the first sounds of my day. As dawn lengthens, other songbirds will join them in wild harmony.
A walk through the woods will gift me with tiny wild flowers and herbs pushing through the forest floor to begin their renewed journey. I am grateful to a God who has graced me with eyes to see and a heart to feel, for it is here, in this place, that my heart sings and my soul is at rest.
--Judy Colby, Founder of Anderson Woods, Inc.
The most impressive part is seeing the patience and caring of the staff with the campers.
--Ann, Former Volunteer Cook
Anderson Woods is such a unique place. It has taught me more about unconditional love than anything else in my life. True friendships are formed between counselors and campers, as well as between campers themselves. Those interactions between campers are some of the most rewarding to see. Anderson Woods is a place where campers come to feel love and accepted. This tiny, simplistic camp has become a home for me.
--Noel, Camp Counselor 2017
It is hard to believe the campers are really here! The staff and volunteers finished training this weekend. It is a wonderful thing to watch old friends embrace, new friends meet and wonder unfold. We have a new staff member, Christine, who is a wonderful addition. The kitchen is buzzing as Rita and Ruth create food for the body and soul. They are great! Yes, watching the gifts of the heart is what it is all about. Learning, growing, giving...the gifts return again and again. Like the foal born last week, all of us are called to wobble a bit on new legs, then run with the wind! I watch each of us take steps we never dreamed we could...supported by the gifts of each other's love.
--Sue, Former Camp Caretaker
Hello Judy, Dave and all! I cannot tell you how uplifting it was to find and visit the Anderson Woods website. I know you know, but camp shaped and molded me into the person I am today. The experiences I had there will stay with me forever...I really miss being part of such a simple and great mission...Love, Anna
--Former Camp Counselor & Director
Camp has been a blessing in my life, as it has been for so many campers. It is a place where both the campers and the staff grow and learn together. I am a better person because of my experiences at camp.
--Ben, Camp Counselor & Director, 2001-02, 2003