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Stringalong Gathering - March 5-7, 2010

CAMP EDWARDS

Edwards Camp and Conference Center is a lovely secluded property of 132 acres of marshlands, pine forests and prairies on beautiful Lake Beulah. Established in 1929, it is owned and operated by Elgin, IL YMCA.

The Stringalong Gathering uses three of its buildings: Meals are served in the Main Lodge on a private heated porch with full length glass windows, tables for six, and rocking chairs overlooking beautiful Lake Beulah. In the Kettle Morraine region of Wisconsin, Lake Beulah is 83 square acres, with a mean depth of 17 feet. Our program and our sleeping rooms are located in two large lodges, Hoffer Lodge and Runge Lodge, which are about a 5-7 minute walk from the Main Lodge. They are only about 30-40 yards apart from each other. Parking is right outside the lodge doors.

There is a boardwalk that winds through beautiful marsh, past a marsh island. Sandhill cranes nest in the marsh, and we have seen a mother turtle laying her eggs in March. We often observe a pair of wild swans flying over Lake Beulah. There is a ropes/obstacle course on the grounds, an archery field, and an outdoor amphitheater.

RUNGE LODGE: Runge Lodge is a big two-story house with eight bedrooms. It has a large lounge with a huge stone fireplace and upholstered furniture, two furnished balconies which overlook the lounge, as well as a kitchen with a refrigerator, stove and sink (used for the Friday potluck, cooking classes if any, and also by some folks for evening snacks and soft drinks). Built on a hill, four of Runge's upstairs bedrooms have French doors which open out onto a large shared deck level with the parking lot. The other two upstairs bedrooms have private attached baths. There are two downstairs bedrooms off the main lounge. Each bedroom has two sturdy full-length bunks with firm mattresses, a built-in dresser with drawers and a mirror, and closet space. Except for the two upstairs rooms with private bath, each room shares a single bathroom (sink/mirror, toilet, shower) with the room on the other side of the bathroom, with locks on both doors. The two downstairs bedrooms share a larger bathroom next to the lounge. There is a coin-operated soda machine, a ping pong table (which is sometimes used for crafts classes), and firewood is supplied. Runge Lounge windows look out onto the woods. THE ALL-NIGHT SING takes place in the Runge Lounge.

HOFFER LODGE: Like Runge Lodge, Hoffer Lodge is a big two-story house with nine bedrooms. It has a large lounge with a big fireplace and upholstered furniture, and the lounge has a balcony on two sides which overlook the marsh, and windows on three sides. Hoffer has an additional smaller furnished downstairs lounge with anther fireplace, a kitchen with a refrigerator, stove and sink (used by some folks for evening snacks and soft drinks), as well as an outdoor patio. Built on a hill, two of Hoffer's bedrooms are upstairs and level with the parking lot and share a single bathroom (sink/mirror, toilet, shower) with locks on the doors. The other upstairs bedroom is the VIP room, with only two single beds and a private attached bath (the only bathroom with a tub as well as a shower). There are four downstairs bedrooms and two single bathrooms on one side of the downstairs lounge, and two bedrooms with a shared single bathroom on the other side of the downstairs lounge. Each bedroom has two sturdy full-length bunks with firm mattresses, a built-in dresser with drawers and a mirror, and closet space. Firewood is supplied. Hoffer Lounge is a designated quiet space after 10:00 pm.