As you may have seen, Camp Encourage recently made the decision to move our campgrounds from Linwood, KS to Heartland Retreat Center in Parkville, Mo.  With this comes several changes, some incredibly exciting, others a bit more challenging.  

We are thrilled to be able to resume offering horseback riding and zipline (which now includes a full challenge course!) for our campers. Further, we will be able to add a second swimming pool and a variety of other activities such as waterslides, rock climbing and laser tag offered by Heartland.  

That said, as we make the shift to our new home, some things will be unable to remain the same.  Several activities offered at Heartland (such as horseback riding and zipline) are only available to those aged 10 and up. In the past, our sessions have been open to campers over the age of 8, however, we felt it best to operate using the same policies as Heartland moving forward. Thus, beginning in 2023, Camp Encourage will begin serving campers ages 10-18 at our weekend and summer camp sessions (while also continuing to offer an alumni camp for those that have attended and are 19 and older). Note: a camper simply needs to be ten years old by the first day of camp.

Campers ages 8-9 who have attended at least one camp session in the past WILL be able to attend in 2023 despite being under the age of ten. However, while they are eligible to attend, parents should be aware that their camper will be unable to participate in horseback riding or the zipline challenge course per Heartland policies. Please consider this prior to completing an application. 

We are deeply sorry for the inconvenience this may cause some families.  We know some campers have been waiting a very long time to apply and we are heartbroken for them.  In the future, we may consider adding a separate camp session for younger campers based on interest.  Presently, only a small handful of campers ages 8-9 apply each year, so it’s not feasible to do so at this time.    

Should you have any questions at all regarding this change, please don’t hesitate to contact us at

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