COVID-19 Updates

Summer 2020 at Riverside

Riverside is sad to announce that onsite summer camp at Riverside has been cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes summer youth camp, family camp, and day camp. Between the Riverside Board of Directors and our full time staff, we feel that this is the best decision for the safety and well being of the people we serve and our staff. We know that God is still on the move, and our mission remains the same. We will continue "To Know Jesus Christ, and to Make Christ Known to All" in everything we do at Riverside, and we hope to be creative in how we make that happen this summer! Click here to be directed to the full statement from our Executive Director, Chris Dahl, and Board President, Jon Anenson in regards to this decision. Below, you will find information on what we are hoping to offer, as well as some frequently asked questions in regards to your child or family who may have been registered for camp at Riverside this summer.

Q: My child or family was registered to come to Riverside this summer. What are my options with the registration fees and non-refundable deposit?

  • Many of you have already paid registration fees for this summer. For this summer only, we have changed our refund/transfer policy. There are a few options for what you can do with the registration fees you have already paid, or were planning on paying, for your child or family to come to camp. Please email us at with your camper's name (first and last), your name and relation to the camper, and what you would like done with your registration fees based on the following options...

  1. Donate all or part of your fees to the ministry of Riverside - While your child might not be attending camp, the Christ-centered ministry of Riverside continues with our great year-round ministry team and making enhancements to the grounds and facilities to provide excellent camp experiences. We ask that you would prayerfully consider donating all or part of the cost of the registration fees and/or the non-refundable deposit to Riverside.

  2. Transfer your fees to a Fall Recharge or Summer 2021 - You can transfer your balance to register for a Fall Recharge weekend in 2020 or to a Summer 2021 week of your choice.

  3. Receive a refund - You can receive a full or partial refund of your registration fees, including the non-refundable deposit on your card or via paper check. While we typically do not allow the deposit to be refunded, we understand that many families will need this money due to a loss of a job or other circumstances as they relate to this pandemic, and we want to be a part of helping families that may find themselves in this situation.

*We ask that you email us at with your camper's name (first and last), your name and relation to the camper, and what you would like done with your registration fees.*​

Q: My child LOVES Riverside! They will be devastated that they can't come to Riverside this summer. How can they stay connected or still have a camp experience this summer?

  • We understand how campers feel! Our staff have shed actual tears and continue to mourn the idea of not having hundreds of kids worshiping Jesus in the chapel, forming lifelong friends, swimming at the pool, riding horses at the ranch, experiencing the Holy Spirit, and experiencing the love of God at Riverside. However, we know that God works in SO MANY ways, and we are excited about some possibilities for this summer.

  • If you have social media, you should be sure to like & follow us on Facebook (Riverside Lutheran Bible Camp), Instagram (@RiversideLBC), Twitter (@RiversideLBC), and Snapchat (@RiversideLBC). We will have plenty of updates on these pages, as well as some fun videos and posts for your whole family to enjoy during this time.

  • You can enjoy Riverside at home! We've created a two and a half online curriculum including recorded worship & skits, Bible studies, and a schedule for your campers to participate in at home. It's free, and we hope you will take advantage of these resources! Even just playing a chapel service would be great. Click here to learn about Camp From Home.

  • If you live in the Story City area (Ames, Gilbert, Huxley, Roland, etc. maybe even Ankeny or Iowa Falls) and your child loves horses, you can sign up for riding lessons with our incredible equine staff down at the ranch! If this is you, then you should email Hilary at

  • You can also enjoy the Riverside pool! Check out the options here.

Q: Did you say that there's a possibility of having camp at home this summer?!?

Q: Wait, and did you say that there's a possibility of having individual and/or small group riding lesson programs at the Riverside ranch?

  • Yes again! While we will continue to comply with all local, state, and federal guidelines and recommendations, we are hopeful that we will be able to serve more folks who live within a decent driving distance to camp with riding lessons during the summer. This can be for kids or adults, and it is the perfect opportunity to learn some horsemanship! We will have safety protocols in place for all riding lessons. Contact our Equine Director, Hilary Younglove, at, if you have any interest in this option!  

Q: My entire family would like to come out to Riverside for a short getaway this summer. Would that be possible?

  • We are open to serving families for a retreat or a simple getaway with certain cleaning and safety protocols in place, assuming that the local, state, and federal guidelines allow us to do so! Let us know if your family would be interested in this. Contact our Retreat Coordinater, Elly, at if you'd like to know more information about this possibility.

Q: Do you think small church groups or retreat groups will be able to come to Riverside this summer?

  • We are definitely hopeful that we will be able to have small church groups or retreat groups at Riverside this summer with certain cleaning and safety protocols in place, but that is assuming that local, state, and federal guidelines would allow us to do so. Our Retreat Coordinator, Elly, can answer questions about our lodging options. Call or email her at to find out more.

Q: Do you anticipate proceeding with fall events and programs?

  • At this point we are still planning on having all of our fall programs, including Riverside Women's Retreat, Fall Recharges, and Ride-With-The-King. We encourage you to continue to register for these events. Our team will continue to evaluate what is in the best interest for the people we serve. If they need to be cancelled due to COVID-19, we will follow the same refund and transfer options that we have made available for summer camp.