The name J.D. Currie Youth Camp honors the Camas attorney who conducted an outdoor program for young boys in the Camas area called Boy Rangers in the first part of the 20th century. The 300 acre camp site was leased from Crown Zellerbach, former owners of the now-Georgia Pacific paper mill in Camas, for $1 per year. Materials for the lodge, kitchen, fireplace and outside cooking facilities were donated by the mill and several individuals over the years. Crown Zellerbach also donated the cable for the fences, wood and lumber for fuel, and a large cedar log, which was hauled out to make shakes to cover the lodge and kitchen.
A World War II bell hung at one time in the tower over the lodge. During the war in Grand Island, Neb., a large bell was found in an old school house at a location where a munitions plant was being built. It was given to Meyer Avedovech, who was involved in the munitions project, and he in turn donated it to his friend J.D. Currie for the youth camp in 1947.
The site is currently owned by the Vancouver-Clark Parks and Recreation department, and is used only as a youth camp.
Buildings include the lodge, a separate toilet building, a covered outdoor cooking hall with fireplace, the caretaker’s cottage, amphitheater, and a chapel.
Sources: Donna Osgood and www.campcurrie.org.
Nestled amid a canopy of towering Douglas firs, with a rustic lodge and cabins, Camp Currie feels like it is a million miles away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.In reality, the 300-acre site is located just five minutes from downtown Camas and has been home to summer youth camps since 1943. The semi-wilderness setting includes a woodland chapel, large natural amphitheater, winding forest trails, covered outdoor eating area, and is home to a variety of wildlife.