The History

Armenian Summer Camp 1964

Armenian Summer Camp 1964

The Hye Camp Program began in 1964 with 32 participants. Originally called the Summer Religious Study Conference, it ran from July 27 – August 8, 1964 at Dinky Creek in the Sierra Mountains. In 1968, the Executive Camp Committee Chaired by John Ketchoyan restructured Armenian Summer Camp and the number of campers grew.  Still today Hye Camp holds the same standards and practices with updated improvements. A unique bond was formed and this little group, and the experiences they shared, became the mustard seed from which the current camp program developed. 

The following year (and almost every subsequent year until 1988), the camp program took place at Camp Sugar Pine in the Sierra Mountains. In December 1987, the Western Diocese became the proud owner of the Alta Sierra Camp (formerly Bob Mathias Camp), nestled in the Sequoia National Forest of the San Joaquin Valley.

Dedicated in 2013 as Archbishop Vatche Hovsepian Camp, the property is 160-acres located in Dunlap, California about 35 miles east of Fresno. It is within five miles of the entrance to Kings Canyon National Park at an elevation of 4,400 feet. The property offers a unique, serene retreat setting, perfect for reflection and fellowship.

Currently, The Diocese, hosts Hye Camp, which consists of 4 one-week programs. During the remainder of the year, the facility is used by various Diocesan organizations for meetings, retreats and conferences. The camp is also available to rent by outside groups throughout the year, and interested parties should contact the camp by emailing armenianchurchcampwd@gmail.com.