About Luther Heights Bible Camp

Welcome Welcome

Luther Heights Bible Camp is a gateway into a camp experience unlike any other! We explore the Bible and the message of the Good News in fun and exciting ways. Our summer staff is animated and full of life! They show genuine care and concern for each camper, helping everyone feel welcome and accepted. We hope you’ll consider a week or weekend at Luther Heights this summer! We are eagerly awaiting your arrival!


Our Mission

"Through safe and amazing experiences Luther Heights Bible Camp proclaims the Gospel, builds faith, and strengthens the body of Christ."


Our History

In the early 1950’s a visionary group of Lutheran clergy and laity envisioned building a camp where youth and adults could hear the glory of God’s promises and be nurtured into the abundant life promised to us by our Lord. In 1951 Pastor Elmore Carlson from Trinity Lutheran in Nampa, Idaho signed the initial Forest Service Permit, which was very instrumental in procuring further camp development. In its primitive state Luther Heights began holding onsite camps in 1955. For the next 20 years the Camp would operate with a camp manager and local Pastors serving as ‘Deans’ for each camp session. In 1977 Mike Dismer became the first executive director, followed by interim directors John Bent and Larry Stapler, and Director Diane Mundhenke. Presently, Pastor Eric Olsen is serving as Camp Director.

As it stands today, Luther Heights continues to grow. With two new buildings, functioning as four cabins with bathrooms, and many upcoming additions the camp is now serving over 1,000 campers each season and hopes to accommodate more in the future. As it was envisioned in the 1950’s, Luther Heights Bible Camp nurtures growing faith in both youth and adults and cultivates a fun loving Christian community.

  • 1951 Pastor Elmore Carlson from Trinity Lutheran in Nampa signed the Forest Service Permit for Luther Heights Bible Camp (LHBC). The articles of Incorporation were signed in 1953.
  • 1954 The first building, a bathhouse, was constructed with concrete mixed by a manual hand cranked mixer.
  • 1955 Usage of the camp with primitive facilities (tents) numbered 144 during the two scheduled camp weeks.
  • 1955-56 Construction of the main lodge began.
  • 1957 During the spring of 1957 a massive amount of snow slid off the east wall of the lodge and collapsed the roof and east wall of the dining hall. Additional structural support was added when the repairs were made.
  • 1954-76 The camp operated with a camp manager and local Pastors serving as ‘Deans’ for each camp session.
  • 1958-72 Most of the camper cabins (8), maintenance building and 2 staff cabins built with campers using the first cabins in 1960
  • 1975 Luther Heights celebrated its 25th Anniversary
  • 1977 Pastor Mike Dismer becomes first executive director through1983.
  • 1984 Luther Heights begins partnership with Camp Hodia –Diabetic Camp that continues into the present.
  • 1984-86 John Bent, ’84, and Larry Stapler served as the interim director.
  • 1987 Diane Tauscher (Mundhenke) served as the Director.
  • 1987 Pastor Eric Olsen called as Director (half time increased to full-time in1993).
  • 1989 Junior High Trails (Backpacking) sessions, 1991 Day Camp sessions, 1992 Servant Event and 1996 Introduction to Camp sessions (entering 1-4th grades) programs were added to the Luther Heights ministry
  • 1996-98 Kate Christensen becomes the first year-round Program Director, then Heather Dale 1999-2000, Laura Aase 2001-2006, Ben & Sarah Hamilton 2007, KB Ohrtmann 2008, Michelle Chandler 2009, Karin Teig 2013-14, and Jon Davidson 2014-Present.
  • 2000 Luther Heights is accredited by the American Camping Association.
  • 2004 Summer Family Camp sessions were added to the Luther Heights ministry
  • 2007-08 Two buildings constructed, functioning as 4 cabins with bathrooms.
  • July 2009 Luther Heights receives notification of US Forest Service acceptance of the 20 year Master plan for development.
  • Summer, 2010 “Town meetings” Conducted across the constituency to share plans for new facilities.
  • Fall, 2010 A pre-campaign feasibility study was conducted to determine the viability of a capital campaign to fund construction of new facilities.
  • July 17, 2011 Capital campaign authorized by the Luther Heights Board to raise the funds for new facilities.
  • 2013 Construction on the New Sawtooth Lodge begins
  • 2014 Construction of Low Ropes Course
  • July 2016 Sawtooth Lodge Dedication

Location


Directions


Leadership/Organization

A Message from the Director

When Christians talk about having a vocation from God, we are saying that God calls us. The word vocation comes from the Latin vocare, which corresponds to the English "to call." The first thing you say about vocation is, "Thank you, God." The fact that God talks to us — that God calls us — is a wonderful thing. We are not left alone to make sense of our lives. We are not left alone to make it through the day. The God of the universe wants to communicate with us. The Bible talks about God's "Word" because God is a communicating God.

God's communication has its center in Jesus Christ. God is not distant and out of our reach. Rather, God is in the midst of human life and history, in the person of Jesus. God is in all of human life, even death. Nothing can separate us from the love of God in Jesus Christ.

Come join us at Luther Heights Bible Camp — a place where God will continue to call and speak to you in new and exciting ways. Our staff is carefully chosen and well trained so that you will have a safe, exciting and memorable experience living out the Christian faith.

Pastor Eric Olsen
Camp Director

Staff Bios

Register online or by mail for any of Luther Heights' programs.