Your Take: Sharing Camp Casey stories at #spucaseymemories

In the autumn issue, we shared photos from Camp Casey and asked you to share some of your own memories and photos. You had some great stories! We’ve gathered a few of them here. If you missed the chance to contribute, we still want to hear from you. We’re always looking for your memories of SPU and other feedback. Send us an email or find us on social media.

Rob Arnold ’74, Westport, Washington

In this photo, a group of SPU students stand in front of the lighthouse near Camp Casey dressed in 1970s track clothing.
Back row (L to R): Keith Catlin, Kirk Fechter, John Small, Steve Sooter, Rob Arnold, Alan Shelton; front row (L to R): Steve Thomas, Bill Thun, Dennis Howell

Camp Casey has always been a special place for me. I was part of the cross country running team at SPU from 1970 to 1973, and every fall SPU hosted the Fort Casey Invitational Cross Country Meet.

For several years, we would go to Camp Casey as a team before the school year started to live in the old barracks for a week and train. Our coaches, Ken Foreman and Doris Brown Heritage, would plan it well, and while there was a lot of hard work involved, we also had a lot of fun together. Someone would always bring a high-powered stereo system and we would be playing Cream and Deep Purple tapes late into the night. But what really made it special was the time I could spend with my teammates, pictured above.

Thanks, SPU, for purchasing and preserving this special part of Whidbey Island.

William Allen Kritsonis MEd ’71, Houston, Texas

During my graduate program we were required to spend a week at Camp Casey. I really did not want to go. However, it was required as part of the degree. Little did I know how valuable it would be to my career and me personally.

Camp Casey provided a safe place and solitude. For the first time as an adult, I read one book per day. I really enjoyed the early breakfasts and talking with others. Going to Camp Casey and discovering things about myself was a life-altering experience.

Evogene Atkinson Stephens ’58, Phoenix, Arizona

I will always see a sunset at Camp Casey when I sing “How Great Thou Art.” I was at Camp Casey on a weekend retreat when we saw a glorious sunset as we stood on the beach. The group began spontaneously singing “How Great Thou Art.” It was a thrilling worship experience.

Vickie Tinker ’79, Soldotna, Alaska

In this photo, a group of people stand on a grassy bluff overlooking water.

Here’s a photo of the group of students who spent a semester at Casey in 1978 with Bob and Joy Drovdahl. This picture was from our 35th reunion — we stayed in the house where we lived that semester!

Next year will be our 40th anniversary reunion and we hope to do it again.

Tavia Stone White ’03, Lynnwood, Washington

My husband and I met on the Hill Hall retreat at Camp Casey in the autumn of 1999. Late on the first evening we were on the beach with a group of friends, where I pointed out that we could see the Milky Way. He was appropriately impressed, and the rest is history!

Savanna Hanson ’10, Denver, Colorado

In this photo, four people stand near the water on a beach.

Every year, the SPU soccer teams would team up and host two weeklong youth soccer camps at Camp Casey. The second week in 2010, I was a counselor, which meant staying in the barracks with, supervising, and entertaining 15 preteens.

We spent the week dancing to Justin Bieber, pushing whipped cream pies into each other’s faces, building forts, hiking to nearby Fort Casey, and of course kicking the ball around. Going to Camp Casey each year was one of my favorite parts of being a Falcon, and it is home to many of my favorite SPU memories.

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