United Methodist Church selling Camp Comeca, with opportunity for local control

COZAD — Camp Comeca and Retreat Center in Cozad soon may be under local control.

The United Methodist Church through their division of Great Plains Camps, which oversees six church camps in the Kansas-Nebraska Conference, has directed that Camp Comeca be sold with the opportunity for local control, according to a press release from Camp Comeca Site Council.

“The reason why it’s exciting is we are able to give it back to local control. When Camp Comeca was really prosperous, it was ran by people in the community and the local church,” said director Justin Hoehner. “Over the last 10 years, it’s been struggling. It’s lost a lot of its local support. This is a big attempt to regain a lot of the local support that we had in the past.”

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Camp Comeca encourages young people to a life of Christian service through traditional summer camps, and there also are facilities for a growing retreat ministry in the Overlook Lodge.

The Great Plains Camping Board will vote Nov. 26 on the date and details of divestiture. Hoehner ensures that the camp isn’t closing, but is simply switching hands. Possibilities for ownership of the camp include a private investor or creating a nonprofit 501(c)(3) foundation to take over.

The Camp Comeca Site Council is inviting community members to the camp at 11:30 a.m. Sunday to worship, enjoy a barbecue meal and tour the facilities. The site council is asking for suggestions for a way to keep the camp operating into the future.

“This is not something to be sad about. It’s not unfortunate circumstances. It’s something we are really hopeful about,” Hoehner said. “It’s just really a new opportunity that is making it is easier to make us self-sustaining.”