Our Legacy

Red Willow Bible Camp Founded in 1926 and is alleged to be the oldest, continuously-operating Lutheran Bible Camp in the United States. It has always been humbling to do the math: if we figured conservatively on serving 1,000 youth for three quarters of a century, that’s 75,000 youth that have come to the old camp. In the past–before young people had so many other options, and when attendance at bible camp before confirmation was mandatory–the numbers 25-30 years ago were in the 2,000 a year range.


1926 – Luther League girls from Edmore camped on the shore of Devils Lake under the leadership of Pastor R.A. Ofstedal.

1927 – Fourteen boys from Edmore camped at Devils Lake for four days with Pastor Ofstedal conducting a study on the Lords Prayer.

1928 – The first camp was held at Red Willow Lake located just 8 miles north of Binford, ND in Griggs County. There were 35 young people in attendance.

1940 – Pastor M.B. Ordahl was instrumental in securing first tract of 20 acres of lake front property for a camp. Pastor Ordahl referred to the site as “Outlook Point” where young people’s outlooks on life could be changed.  Tents were the only facilities.

1949 – The camp Chapel was constructed from lumber.IMG_8945

1963 – First camp director hired.

1967 – Ofstedal Retreat Center was constructed.

1967 to Present
The camp has been further developed with a boys village of 4 cabins, girls village of 7 cabins, shop, outdoor swimming pool, water front, hospitality house, adventure course, girls and boys bathhouses, and tipi village.  Today we serve over 1,000 youth during the summer and have retreats, meetings, seminars, and social activities for all ages throughout the calendar year.

Learn about our mission…