Author Archives: Asbury Hills Camp and Retreat Center

About Asbury Hills Camp and Retreat Center

For over 50 years, Asbury Hills as been offering amazing summer camp and retreat group experiences. The camp covers around 2000 acres of mountains & hills, creeks & waterfalls, and forests & lakes. Asbury Hills offers age specific programs for campers from 2nd grade through high school and serves retreat groups from 8 to 280 for the purpose of Christian birth, growth, and renewal.

Introducing LEAD STAFF: 2018

Our first day with campers is just around the corner and are staff are working hard to make sure everything is perfect! This starts with Lead Staff Training which started just over a week ago. Our Lead Staff come in a week ahead of everyone else to get their training done and prepare them to take leadership in training the rest of the summer staff. What exactly do Lead Staff do during this training? Who are the Lead Staff? What are their jobs throughout the summer? You came to the right spot to find out!

Lead Staff consists of 5 college aged people who have shown exceptional leadership skills in previous years serving on summer staff.  They are offered their position pretty early in preparation to make the summer the best it can be! Our Summer Camp Director works with Lead Staff during the months leading up to summer to get them ready to lead the incoming summer staffers.

What do Lead Staff do during their training week?

Our Lead Staff work on finalizing schedules for training week with the other summer staffers. They work on getting schedules finalized for summer camp and they work on ensuring each camper gets to experience camp in the best way. Lead Staff also spends time hiking trails and really getting to know those trails so they can teach new staff. Our Lead Staff spend time organizing supplies and materials, putting final touches on devotion booklets, preparing staff training manuals, and many many other things! Our Lead Staff also spend a lot of time together bonding and building a support system within each other.

Who are the 2018 Lead Staff? What will they be doing this summer?


From left to right

Scott Rouse, Allie Redmond, Katie Richter, Hailey Boonstra, Logan Bragg

Scott Rouse is serving as Recreation Coordinator. He pours directly into our Recreation Staff ensuring that they are properly equipped to facilitate activities throughout the week and see that the schedules run smoothly.

Allie Redmond is serving as our Worship Coordinator this year! She will be leading worship, helping the worship team learn their music and ensuring they are all working together as a team. You may also see her and the other worship team members in the camp store!

Katie Richter is serving as our Trip Coordinator this summer. She will be going on all off-site trips with campers to serve as a resource to counselors. Katie will also be preparing all off-site supplies to ensure campers and counselors are set up to have a great time!

Hailey Boonstra is one of our Program Coordinators this summer. She will be working with our other Program Coordinator creating schedules for each week, pouring into counselors and ensuring they have everything they need to create the best memories with our campers.

Logan Bragg is our other Program Coordinator this summer. He, alongside Hailey, will be working to pour into our counselors, create activity schedules for each week and ensure that our counselors are well equipped to serve our campers!

Along with all of our summer staff, our Lead Staff work so hard in preparation for the summer and then throughout the summer. They all love Asbury Hills and our mission. They all love spending time with campers and the other staff. They love watching others create memories and moments at Asbury Hills just like they have and they know that in order to create the best summer ever, they have to be ready for anything!

Will you join us as we pray and encourage all of our staff as we get ready to kick off Summer 2018? It isn’t too late to sign up to sponsor a staff member! Click here and fill out the form. Paige, our Marketing & Communications Director, will be in touch!

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Camp Pastor Martha | Week 8

Introducing our Week 8 camp pastor–Martha Timmons! Martha is the Director of Children and Youth Ministries at St. James United Methodist Church in Spartanburg. She has been with St. James for three years.

Martha Timmons

How is Martha connected to camp? We asked and here is what she said:

“Asbury Hills holds a special place in my heart and in my life.  I grew up as a pastor’s kid so we moved every so often, but even in the midst of the changes and moves, I could always count on going to camp every summer  I loved reconnecting with the staff and friends I made there.”

Not only was Martha a camper, but she was also a CIT, counselor, life guard and pastor at Asbury Hills. She’s done it all!

“Camp is where I love to go to disconnect form the chaos of the world and a place where I find myself closest to God–in the creation of God. I wanted to serve as a pastor so I could connect with the staff and spend time with campers.  I can’t wait to worship alongside of you and to grow spiritually with you while at camp.”

We asked Martha to describe herself in one word and she said ‘mom’. She has a one year old who might make an appearance this summer!

martha timmons 3

What is Martha’s favorite food? Ice cream. She has a bowl of ice cream almost every night! What is her favorite flavor? You’ll have to ask!

Upon asking Martha how she thinks our theme of Defy will play into campers and staff, she said that with God, all things are possible and with God, we can live more fully without letting fear take hold of our lives.

“I can’t wait to spend a week with you at camp! I’m looking forward to having fun and worshipping God with you!”

Join us August 5-10 to spend the week hearing from Camp Pastor Martha Timmons about what it means to defy our fears!

Here is the line up of the other pastors joining us this summer!

June 10-15 Jonathan Tompkins

June 17-22 Ed Stallworth

June 24-29 Rebecca Rowell

July 8-13 Laura-Allen Kerlin

July 13-15 Leigh Randall

July 15-20 Ben Sloan

July 22-27 Andrew Wolfe


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50 Days Until Camp!

You read that right! We only have 50 more days until we officially start Summer 2018!

Are you ready for Summer 2018?! Are you interested in what we are doing during these 50 days? How can you prepare your campers for camp?

Hopefully those questions will be answered by the end of this!


Are you ready for Summer 2018?

Have you completed your registration? Sessions are filling quickly; some are already on wait lists. Sometimes we can rework numbers and place those wait listed campers within the week. We always do the best we can to respect your schedule–we know you are busy! We work so hard to ensure each camper is with other campers their own age and with their buddies to make sure their week is the best it can be!


How can you prepare your campers for camp?

It is never too early to start shopping for camp! Maybe your camper can help with the shopping. We have lots of videos on our YouTube channel for you and your family to watch. Sometimes campers get nervous about being away from home for a week. Sit down together and check out the videos to ease their mind and show them the fun they are going to have all week! We have a Spotify playlist with songs from previous summers–give it a listen!


What are we doing to prepare for Summer 2018 during these last 50 days?

So much has already been done to prepare for Summer 2018 but we are still busy with preparations to ensure campers have the BEST SUMMER EVER! We have even finalized our schedule for 2019! Stay tuned–that will be released soon! Sarah, our Summer Camp Director, has been working hard to hire the best of the best counselors and summer staffers. She has also been working really hard to solidify trips for our Expedition and Drenched campers–they are going to be awesome! We also just finalized the design for the Summer 2018 t-shirts! How exciting?! Those will be released soon too so stay tuned!

As you can see, a lot goes in to preparing for a summer at Asbury Hills on our end and your end! We want to always make sure we are helping prepare you and your campers for the best summer ever. Please feel free to reach out with any questions–we would love to help!

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Camp Pastor Andrew | Week 6

Guess who is back?! Andrew Wolfe is joining us for week 6 of Summer 2018 as camp pastor and we are SO GLAD to have him!


Andrew is the pastor Cherokee Springs and Liberty United Methodist Churches in Spartanburg, South Carolina where he lives with is wife, Paige and their children.

What are Andrew’s favorite parts of camp at Asbury Hills? Who is his favorite superhero? Click the photo below to watch his introduction video and find out!


We are so excited to have Andrew with us July 22-27 for Week 7.

Summer 2018 Camp Pastors:

WEEK 1: Jonathan Tompkins

WEEK 2: Ed Stallworth

WEEK 3: Rebecca Rowell

WEEK 4: Laura-Allen Kerlin

FAMILY CAMP: Leigh Randall

WEEK 5: Ben Sloan


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Camp Pastor Ben | Week 5

We are excited to welcome Ben Sloan back for a second summer as Camp Pastor! Ben and his family will be joining us for Week 5 of Summer 2018. 

Ben joins us from Albemarle, North Carolina where he serves Bethany UMC as the pastor.  He has been there for almost three years now. Ben also worked as a counselor for two summers and then helped out for a third.


Where could you find Ben throughout the week? Well, aside from delivering the message at worship, he really enjoyed helping campers with archery and slingshots.  He is also looking forward to trying the Alpine Tower.

Ben spent 2 summers as a counselor at Asbury Hills and he shared how much of a different it made in his life.  Last summer he got to share Asbury Hills with his wife, Ros, and daughter, Elizabeth.  We are hoping that they will join him again this summer but with a new baby on the way, time will tell!

We asked Ben his thoughts on how our theme of Defy will play into the lives of our campers and here is what he said:

“Of course campers and staffers will have lots of immediate opportunities to practice defying fear as they challenge themselves on camp activities, but I hope they will be able to connect those lessons of courage and faith to their daily life beyond camp. Ideally campers and staffers will walk away from their experience prepared to stand up for what’s right at school, in sports, and with their family and friends.”

We asked Ben what is favorite food was and his answer was simple: pizza. Who agrees with him?!

This summer, take a moment to find Ben and ask him about that time he went to find lost hikers in his tacky day outfit.  It is a great story!

“You’re going to have a great time! Soak up every minute of it!” –Ben

We couldn’t say it better ourselves.

Join us July 15-20 to spend the week trying new things and hearing from Ben Sloan exactly what it means to defy your fears and trust in God!

We have already introduced Camp Pastor Jonathan, Ed, Rebecca, Laura-Allen and Leigh.  Stay tuned as we announce the rest of our Camp Pastors for Summer 2018!

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Camp Pastor Leigh | Family Camp

We are so excited to introduce our Family Camp pastor for Summer 2018! Leigh Randall from Advent United Methodist Church will be joining us July 13-15th for Family Camp!

Leigh is the Director of Student Ministries at Advent UMC in Simpsonville, South Carolina.  Leigh also serves as the Missions Coordinator on staff. She has been a part of Advent’s staff for 11 years.

How did Leigh and her husband meet? What is she most excited about for Family Camp? What does she think about our Summer 2018 theme? Click the video below to find out!

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We are really looking forward to having Leigh Randall with us for Family Camp!

Interested in bringing your family for family camp? Great! We still have space available! Click here to find out more and to register.

Summer 2018 Camp Pastors:

WEEK 1: Jonathan Tompkins

WEEK 2: Ed Stallworth

WEEK 4: Laura-Allen Kerlin

WEEK 5: Ben Sloan

WEEK 6: Andrew Wolfe

WEEK 8: Martha Timmons


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Camp Pastor Rebecca | Week 3

It is time to introduce another camp pastor! Rebecca Rowell will be joining us for week 3 as our camp pastor and we are so excited to have her back for Summer 2018!

Rebecca Rowel at AH.jpg

Rebecca will be joining us June 24-29 for Week 3 of Summer 2018! Rebecca comes to us from St. John’s UMC in Anderson, South Carolina.  She is currently in seminary while also serving as the Social Media Specialist and intern for St. John’s UMC.

What are Rebecca’s favorite activities at camp?

How many connections does she have to Asbury Hills?

Click the video image below to find out!


Along with Rebecca, we are happy to have Jonathan Tompkins, Ed Stallworth, and Laura-Allen joining us this summer! Stay tuned as we announce the rest of our pastors for Summer 2018!

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Growing up with Asbury Hills | Erin H.

“Asbury Hills is the best thing we have done for kids! Not only do they get to worship in one of the most beautiful places you’ve ever seen, but they also get to be outside and experience nature.”

Robert and Erin have been sending their 2 oldest children to Asbury Hills for 3 years–their 4th summer is just a few months away! While we can tell you all day how great Asbury Hills is, it means so much more coming from parents who experience camp. Keep reading to get a look into what Asbury Hills has done for Robert and Erin’s family.

Harrelson Fmaily

Alyssa (anxiously waiting her turn)        Austin (jr. high)        Beth (elementary)

“Our first year of camp there were nerves (mostly mine), but the camp counselors greeted them as soon as they entered their cabin.   We made beds, settled in, and off I left with a hug and a wave.   I was able to see how much fun they were having thanks to the wonderful camp photographers and I couldn’t wait to pick them up and hear all about it!   My middle child went to express camp her first year as she was a rising second grader. We weren’t sure at her age she was ready for a full week.   When I picked her up, she didn’t want to leave!   She kept saying, “but I didn’t get to do the climbing wall or the ropes course.”

It has now been 3 years of camping at Asbury and it never fails that the question comes up around December if we have already registered them. Now when I drop them off, there is a brief hug goodbye, if you can catch them, a wave and off I go!   I love the closing worship service where you get to see your kids rocking out with the praise band and hugging their friends (some new and some old) goodbye. They are so excited to tell us all about it, but as we head down the mountain the exhaustion from the experience creeps in and they are out like a light! We have already registered for year 4 and the anticipation for June is already there!   My youngest can’t wait until next summer when she will be able to go for the first time.

It won’t be long before we pull out the trunks and start gathering their clothes and supplies for their favorite week of the summer.”


We still have space open for Summer 2018 so be sure to register! As always, any questions can be forwarded to Sarah, our Summer Camp Director, by emailing

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Camp Pastor Laura-Allen | Week 4

We are happy to announce that Laura-Allen Kerlin will be our camp pastor for week 4!


Laura-Allen is so excited to be joining us July 8-15 as our Camp Pastor! Laura-Allen is the associate pastor for Advent United Methodist Church in Simpsonville. She graduated from Clemson University and loves Asbury Hills!

Has Laura-Allen been to Asbury Hills before?

Who is her favorite super hero?

Learn all of that and more by watching the video below!

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Along with Laura-Allen, Jonathan Tompkins and Ed Stallworth will be joining us this summer as camp pastors. Stay tuned as we announce the rest of our camp pastors for Summer 2018!

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Camp Pastor Ed | Week 2

We are so excited to have Ed Stallworth back for week 2 as our camp pastor!


Ed Stallworth is the pastor at Inman United Methodist Church in Inman, South Carolina. Remember singing songs and dancing with Ed? We do too and we are so thrilled to have him back.

Interested in attending camp when Ed is there as the camp pastor? Be sure to sign up for Week 2– June 17-22.

We have already introduced Camp Pastor Jonathan for Week 1. Stay tuned for the rest!

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