RB Community Church has a long connection with Thousand Pines Christian Camps in the San Bernadino Mountains. Our High School students have been attending since the Summer of 2001, so this year marks our 20th Summer. But Church member Virginia Neste and Casa de las Campanas resident was a pioneer camper 80 summers ago!
Since its founding in 1939, Thousand Pines Christian Camps has lived out its mission to have campers see, know, and experience God. Before our church even knew where Thousand Pines was, Virginia Neste began her eternal legacy and connection to Thousand Pines. As a 15-year-old girl, Virginia Neste headed to summer camp in 1941, as one of the first campers at Thousand Pines, in just its 3rd summer session.
This week I was able to chat with Virginia and reminisce on her memories of Thousand Pines as she fondly recalled memories from "one of the highlights of my life." Following her trip as a girl, Virginia deepened her connection to Thousand Pines through Family Camps in the '70s and '80s with her husband Norman, who later served as the camp's Board President and their children. Of the many stories Virginia shared with me, one of my favorites was of her husband becoming the oldest person ever to climb the rock wall at 86 years young. And the zip-line ride that followed.
With her great-grandchildren having been campers, Virginia was just the beginning of a legacy of 4 generations of her family who got to see, know, and experience God at Thousand Pines.
Virginia has offered to sit down with this year's students and share their stories after their return.