For several years, our staff has been praying for wisdom as we consider ministry growth. Over these last few months we've been working with an architect on building plans, and we're excited to announce the first construction project of this nature on Trail Ridge property in over 20 years! God has continued to work in the hearts of people and provide for our present needs. This multi-functional building will meet needs that our current buildings are no longer able to accommodate, while also laying the groundwork for future growth and adaptability.
If you've attended an event at Trail Ridge, you've likely spent some time in our Chapel. We use this building a lot! It was originally dubbed the "Classroom Building" and was intended for use by small groups. Nowadays, we use this building for our chapel sessions, group meetings, indoor activities, and much more. It's well suited for some of our small groups of campers, but for some of our larger events, it gets pretty tight, and we've had to limit registration numbers due to maxing out this space. Over the years, this building has also had some moisture issues. We've addressed some of the maintenance concerns, but without a total renovation, we won't be able to fix certain things.
In 2016 we brought on our first ever full-time staff member, and in the years since, we've added more. We had one main office, and to accommodate our growing staff, converted a visitor lounge area into an office. Additionally we've added a few make-shift work areas, one in a closet, and one on a stairwell landing, but these spaces are not adequate for the current needs.
In addition to the office spaces, we have a need for some smaller meeting areas. People need fellowship, and fellowship doesn't always mean food. Sometimes we have small groups that just need a quiet space to keep the conversation going after chapel. At some events, we need meeting areas for breakout sessions, workshops, and a nursery area for the little ones.
With the variety of events that we host, we've found that we need to provide more private lodging for married couples and small families. Presently, we've run out of space in the Thomas Center which is is home to Evergreen Lodge, our current couple's lodging area.
We've been increasing our media presence over the years. Currently, live and recorded broadcasts are conducted from the office area in the Thomas Center. The Thomas Center is an activity hub, and is not soundproofed. A dedicated studio space is necessary to provide consistent and quality productions.
Our infirmary used to be in the front of the Chapel. This caused a lot of distractions during some of our most important times with campers. A few years ago, we made space in the Thomas Center for an infirmary, but it does not provide the space we need to adequately care for the healthcare of our campers. 
The building plans for The Lodge include a chapel, a welcome center and check-in area, an office wing, infirmary, and storage spaces. This multi-functional building will meet needs that our current buildings are no longer able to accommodate, while also laying the groundwork for future growth and adaptability. Having the main offices and chapel area in centralized location on the camp property will help our staff work efficiently, and be more accessible to our guests.
These concept drawings include ideas for colors, furniture, decorations, etc. and are to help visualize the appearance of The Lodge, but are not actual photographs of the structure.
The chapel area in the new building will be able to seat around 250 people with plenty of room for more seats. With the audio/visual capabilities in The Lodge, we'll be able to record audio and video from chapel sessions and share these events with others.
The front of this building makes a big statement. We hope that it's clear to our guests that this is where they should go first. The welcoming lobby will be a great place to get your first impression of camp, and it's where every guest will go to check in and get all their camp event information.
The Lodge will contain enough offices for current staff, but will also have room for continued staff growth. The front entrance of the building is a welcome center complete with a fireplace, lounge, and check-in counter. This building will also have a few different meeting areas. The office wing has a collaboration area for our resident staff to come together to brainstorm, and the welcome center provides enough space for several small groups to gather for conversation or continued instruction. The conference room will accommodate staff training, board meetings, and other small groups that need to have a more private meeting location. A soundproofed radio studio will also be located in the office wing.
The new infirmary will be compliant with our state code and will be a space we can have the adequate resources needed to best care for the campers. Because The Lodge is closer to the main activity areas of camp, the infirmary within will be in a much more convenient location for everyone.
Below is another view of The Lodge from the outside. Around the building we'd like to have some picnic tables and chairs where people can hang out and fellowship. From the map on the right you can see where on camp property we plan to build The Lodge. The west side of the building where the chapel area will be located will face the Quad, and the Welcome Center and check-in station will face the main road you follow when you drive into camp.
From the explanations and pictures above you can see that this project is going to be a big undertaking, and we need your support! There's a few special ways we're relying on you—our camp family, to help out. First of all, please partner with us in prayer. At Trail Ridge, our mission is centered on evangelizing the lost and equipping believers, and it is our prayer that this new building will help us to continue to minister to our guests and the community around us. As funds and resources are provided, we'd like to have this project completed by the summer of 2026.

Monetary Donations

As you can imaging, a project of this size will be a significant expenditure. We're doing everything we can to cut costs, but we also want this to be a building that will serve the camp ministry a very long time. Our goal is to construct this building with quality finishes to avoid excessive short-term maintenance needs. There are a few ways you can financially support the Chapel-Lodge Project. To donate online, click the "donate now" button below. You can also mail your donation straight to camp!
Checks can be made out to "Trail Ridge Camp"

Trail Ridge Camp

c/o VCY America
3434 W Kilbourn Ave
Milwaukee,WI 53208

Volunteers

Trail Ridge was built by volunteers, has been sustained by volunteers, and by God's grace, it will continue to grow through the service of volunteers. As we proceed forward, we need skilled volunteers to help with framing and general construction, roofing and siding, flooring, sheetrock installation and finishing, painting, and more. If you are skilled in any of these areas, please contact the camp office. We'd love to have you be a part of this project!

Gifts in Kind

We know that God has gifted each member of our camp family with unique abilities and resources. Likewise, some folks are able to get deals on lumber, windows and doors, siding, roofing, plumbing, or electrical fixtures. We need to make connections with a few different areas specifically, but if you or someone you know is in the trades or has access to equipment and materials that may be helpful, please reach out to the camp office. Right now, one trade we need to get lined up is a quality concrete contractor who can take care of all the flatwork. We're also looking to get in touch with a stone mason to do some chimney work and ground level stone work. We intend to beautify the area around the building with landscaping, and need some help with landscape design, supply, and installation. 
We need you to help us spread the word about the Chapel-Lodge Project! We've made a booklet explaining the project and goals—feel free to download and print this out.
You may be wondering what we will do with the Thomas Center and current Chapel once The Lodge is built. The present offices and infirmary will be converted into three bedrooms. One will be a single unit with a queen bed and a full bathroom, and the other two bedrooms will have a full attached bathroom and living space. Using both the main and upper floor of this building for lodging will help meet our need for additional couple's lodging and give us more flexibility for hosting events. The Thomas Center lower level (which currently houses our craft room) will be transformed into a lounge accessible to the occupants staying in the building. The lounge area will also serve as another small group meeting space.
The current Chapel will undergo an evaluation as to the amount of work needed to bring it up to par. It is our hope to renovate the building to be used as a permanently set up craft room, and as an additional indoor activity area for playing quieter board games, Legos, puzzles, or other similar activities.