Eaton Rapids Camp

Eaton Rapids, Michigan

Eaton Rapids Holiness Camp Meeting

The Michigan State Holiness Association



I met Kenn Kuester in October of 1990 at the Fall Color Cruise & Island Festival in Grand Ledge.  He was a member of Project Lakewell which had just finished participating in the Grand River Expedition '90 that summer.  This was their first year of being involved with the festival, and I was a Chamber of Commerce volunteer helping out.  It was our job to check with the displayers and presenters (especially new ones) to see if they needed any help.  As providence would have it, I approached the Lakewell encampment, and that was the beginning of a 21 year relationship. 

As became his custom over the years, Kenn (and others) spent the nights of the three day festival in camp on the island.  So, I invited the group to dinner at my house since I only lived a couple of blocks away.  I cannot remember if Dot, Kenn's wife, joined us that first year, or perhaps the next, but soon we had become good friends, and it was they who introduced me to Eaton Rapids Camp.  Early in the 1990s I began regularly visiting them during the Eaton Rapids Camp Meeting which takes place in July.  While my philosophies as a Christian are not quite as conservative as most of what I experienced at the ERC, I still found it a very enjoyable time to share and grow in our faith together.  It is interesting, as I checked my files for pictures, there were not any from those early years.  In those days I did not mix my photography (which I see as work) with my times of serious spiritual reflection.  In fact, the very first photography I ever did at Eaton Rapids Camp (one shown below) had nothing to do with the Camp or the Campmeeting.  They were pictures I took (July 17, 2000), from the Campgrounds, of Project Lakewell during the Expedition 2000 journey (10th anniversary of the 1990 Expedition) along the length of the Grand River.  Kenn is the one in black at the middle of the canoe, reprising his role as Father Marquette in their living history programs. 


The next ERC photographs I have are from August 15, 2004.  Campmeeting was already over.  However, Kenn occasionally spent time at his "cottage" even when there was nothing in particular going on.  I joined him that day, bringing my camera.  Mostly, I was just taking nature shots (below), but I did take one or two of the Tabernacle, a few of Kenn's place, and even a street sign.  You never quite know what will strike my fancy when I am taking pictures. 


The photo of the Blue Heron in flight (below center) is not a very good picture, but unfortunately such circumstances do not afford you with a second chance to get a better one.  It is not like photographing mushrooms which are happy to give you all the time you need to focus and compose the shot.  I just wanted you to know the Heron was there. 


In 2007 I decided perhaps it was time that I should take some pictures during the actual Camp Meeting.  I also took many more in 2009 and 2010.  In 2007 I was fairly preoccupied (photographically speaking) with the beautiful flowers around Kenn's place (first rows below the link photo).  I have finished this page by including images of other flowers and plants from the mix of years.  But before we wrap things up there are two more pages with photos from . . .   


Eaton Rapids Campmeeting


click on the photo (right) or text (above)

  or at the bottom of this page.


I started this page two days after Kenn made his transition from this physical world on July 26, 2010.  Dot preceded him by several years in 2006 just after I had my open heart surgery.  They were very special people.  I miss them both.  These pages are dedicated to their memory and wonderful friendship.  The picture shown of Dot and Kenn is not one of mine.  I try to enjoy my time with family and friends rather than be working (photographing), but it does make for a paucity (both of them loved words) of people pictures.  The photo (below right) was provided courtesy of the Kuester family, and Mike and Ann Sanders who took the picture on Kenn and Dot's 49th wedding anniversary. 


August 20, 1998

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