"On August 5, 1949 The East Tennessee District Advisory Board accepted, pending the action of the District Assembly, the outright gift of the Louisville Holiness Campground from the Louisville Holiness Association. The East Tennessee District Assembly in their meeting of September 1, 1949; '...voted to ratify the acts of the Advisory Board to accept the gift of the Louisville Campground.'"
"As the camp began its operation under the administration of the Church of the Nazarene, one immediate addition was the emphasis placed on a Youth Institute incorporated into the framework of the campmeeting schedule. With the progression of years the feeling developed that without this youth institute the campmeeting would die."
"At the 1951 Assembly plans were also set in motion to hold all conventions and assemblies at the campgrounds beginning with the 1952 Assembly. The 1951 Assembly received the report of the Advisory Board as to the purchase of 7 additional acres of land adjoining the old camp property for a total cost of $2,541.50."
"The East Tennessee District Assembly convened at the Louisville Campgrounds from 1952 through 1972. A district Boys and Girls Camp was started n 1962 with Rev. Lillian Williams as the first speaker. The annual campmeeting became a powerful force in the spiritual like of the District, often setting the tone for the coming church year as the camp through 1972 began immediately after the close of the District Assembly. With the close of the 1972 Assembly the District chose to move the future assemblies away from the campgrounds. Many felt that this would also be a death blow to the future of the camp."
"The camp atmosphere was in a downward spiral when Dr. Glen Jones came to the district in October 1971. Efforts to revive the camp through the start of a refurbishing of the buildings offered hope to many. However it appeared that it was too late. The 1977 camp closed with 25 people present for the closing Sunday evening service. The knowledge that in 1978 the youth department would be conducting their own camp in another time slot along with the realization that the camp had the support of only one third of the seventy churches on the district influenced the district leadership to forego scheduling district campmeeting services in 1978-1980."
"The absence of the annual campmeeting appears to have provided the impetus for a rebirth in the hearts of many for the annual campmeeting. The 1980 District Assembly received the report of the District Ways and Means Committee which recommended in item 23 that, 'the District Superintendent be empowered to appoint a committee of no less than 10 members to give a thorough study of our camping and campground facilities and formulate recommendations to be presented for action at the next District Assembly.'"
"The District Board of Christian Life was asked to develop the format and organize the staff for the 1981 Family Camp. A positive attitude and the combined efforts of a host of workers paved the way for a successful camp." At the time of this writing in the late 80's, "Over half of the churches on the district now support the camp and the growth is apparent. The Youth Camp is growing and the Family Camp has shown growth each year. The division of the youth camp from the annual campmeeting has provided room for the growth of both camps. The 1987 camp saw an average of 150 persons staying on the grounds during the week and a closing service of approximately 600 persons present."
"The three year gap appeared to wake those who desired a camp up to the realization that if the camp was to meet with success it must have a wider base of support. The camp continues to find a group of laymen willing to dedicate themselves to the services of the camp, both in labor and financial support. Most of the work (construction and otherwise) has involved donated labor. More enthusiastic support from the churches involved the camp program is evident. Since 1981 the district has invested each year in materials for improvement in the buildings. The camp today is growing in attendance and financial support. Long range goals are being sought out for the future. Renovation and improvements are continuing as monies allow" (taken from East Tennessee District Church of the Nazarene Campground - A Research Paper submitted to Dr. Chester O. Galloway of the Department of Christian Education at the Nazarene Theological Seminary in Kansas City, MO by Kuhrman K. Cox).
The Foothills Camp & Retreat Center is moving forward! Needed renovations and upgrades are being made and business is good! Even though we are not where we want to be we are not where we used to be! With God's help and the help of God's people the future is bright! I borrow a statement from Kentucky Wildcat basketball, "Envy the past, Fear the future." God has done amazing things on the hallowed hill in Louisville, TN the past 100 years and "God is the same yesterday and today and forever" (Hebrews 13:8). The future God has for His people and this campground is amazing! Will you partner with us as we embrace the future? We hope you will! We hope you will!