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Camp Arcadia Continues ‘Green’ Tradition

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Family-Camp Shines as Eco-Example

For 88 years, Camp Arcadia, a Lutheran family-camp on the shores of Arcadia, Mich., has proven its green resolve, one step at a time.

Over the last decade, Camp Arcadia’s green efforts have further evolved, helping them to achieve Mich. Department of Energy, Labor & Economic Growth (DELEG) certification as a Green Lodging Steward.

“Part of our mission statement is to renew our guests in spirit, mind and body,” said Chip May, director of Camp Arcadia for ten years.

This renewal includes being surrounded with healthy, ecologically-sound products and buildings.

“People choose to vacation in Northern Michigan because it’s so beautiful,” said May, “so it’s nice to know things we do everyday within our business help to keep it that way.”

Camp Arcadia worked with Eco-Building Products to green-up their cleaning regimen, as well as to transfer in all shapes and sizes of high-efficiency compact fluorescents.

“We switched all the chemicals we clean our camp with to Core products,” said May, “and EBP worked hard to help us find the right bulbs for all manner of fixtures and dimmers.”

Building efforts are only one of the ways Camp Arcadia shines when it comes to environmental impact. Chef Kurt Harvey, another member of Camp Arcadia’s green-minded staff, has also done his part to contribute to the local economy and the farming families found within.

A full 25-percent of the food purchased for the lodge is locally-sourced, with approximately thirty-four thousand dollars a year going to local farmers.

“Most of our meat, eggs, veggies, coffee and basics are locally sourced,” said May. “It’s great to know where our food is coming from, that it took less fossil fuels to get it here, and most importantly that the food we’re using is putting food on the table for local farmers.”

This far-reaching concern for both man and planet has also lined Camp Arcadia up with several efforts of the Grand Traverse Land Conservancy. Through a series of successful Harvest fundraisers, Camp Arcadia has helped spread the word on the importance of conservancy.

“We’ve been blessed to be a part of GTLC efforts over the years,” said May, “including the Coastal Campaign which was to preserve coastal and farmland property, and hosting a dinner in support of the Arcadia marsh area just east of us that they are trying to preserve and raise money to purchase.”

With these and other active and continuing efforts, Camp Arcadia plans to further their environmental reach.

“As part of our strategic plan, we have a goal to use all renewable energy sources, 100%, in the near future,” said May.

Although challenging for a family-lodging facility, with the resources readily available and the resolve they have shown so far, Camp Arcadia is well on its way to achieving full sustainability.

Eco-Building Products’ Environmentally Preferred Partnership (EP3) is based upon a mutual commitment to have immediate positive impact on Mother Nature. All of EBP’s products and systems eliminate or reduce negative environmental impact as soon as they are installed. Camp Arcadia has purchased products that promote good indoor-air quality, off-set carbon dioxide (a greenhouse gas) by reducing Kilowatt-hours usage, and generating clean energy.

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