Frontier Camp has (re)started an intern program this fall and we are blessed to have four great young adults as our first class of interns! We have been enjoying having them around camp since the end of the summer season, and figured it was about time we introduced them to everyone else in the FC family too. Please take a minute to read their answers below to get to know them a little, and when you’re next out at camp this fall or spring, be sure to say hello and thank them for their hard work!
1) Where are you from? Tell us about your family.
Taylor Beavers: I grew up in Houston, from high school onward, and in Atlanta, GA, before that. I am the youngest, and favorite (not really, but I like to pretend), of four siblings, and an uncle to seven nieces and nephews! My family is very much into outdoor activities like hiking and kayaking, and doing activities like that with my family is probably my favorite thing in the world.
Ashley Higgins: I grew up in Garland. I am the third child, and I have 6 siblings! I also have two awesome brothers in law, a sweet sister in law, and a precious little nephew. My family is fun, loud, and extremely goofy! Almost all of us are grown up, out of the house, and pretty spread out, so the times when we’re all together are so fun! My parents are amazing. They love the Lord with all their hearts, and I love and respect them so much.
Justin Christoph: I’m from Northern Houston in an area called Spring. I’m part of an immediate family of 4, consisting of myself, my younger brother and my parents. My father has been an auto mechanic for longer than I’ve been alive, and my mother works as a paralegal, while my brother enjoys playing football and baseball throughout the year.
Langston Gardner: I was born and raised in Bryan and am an only child. All the way through high school, my amazing mom was my teacher, as my dad worked (and still does) for a medical equipment business.
2) What has been your involvement in FC?
Ashley: My parents actually met working here at Frontier Camp when they were both teenagers, so I have a lot of history with Camp! My first summer as a camper was 2004, and my first summer on staff was in 2012. I didn’t work at Camp from ’15 – ’17, but God led me back here this summer and I worked as one of the Work Crew Leaders. It was so much fun!
Langston: 2010 was my family’s first time to explore Frontier Camp during the last family camp before Fossil Creek was built. After consistently coming to the Father/Son retreats, I finally came as a camper in 2015, and have worked the following three summers.
Taylor: I was never a camper and had never heard of Frontier Camp until about two weeks before I was hired in April of 2017 when I heard about it through a friend who was working. I worked as a senior counselor in 2017, then as adventure challenge manager in 2018. My summer as a counselor was probably my favorite summer of my life. Working with campers, building relationships, investing in them spiritually and simply as an older guy in their lives…it was the best.
Justin: While I had plenty of friends at my church who worked at FC, I didn’t join them until after my church’s college ministry took a group of us out here on a retreat. I immediately enjoyed the camp experience, and I quickly put in my application and spent that summer and the following summer as a Senior Counselor, Cable Operator and Boat Driver at both camp locations.
3) What do you do as an intern and what made you want to intern here?
Taylor: Whatever random thing needs to be done, which means a lot of cleaning, a lot of outdoor maintenance like weed-eating or leaf blowing, and a lot of dishes. I also help run recreation for various groups, have classes with full-time staff over theology and hospitality, and projects with the other interns. The group of people we work with is great! I’ve wanted to work in youth ministry for years, and with my love of the outdoors, I’ve been very interested in Christian camping as my future job for a long time. When this opportunity came up, I saw it (and still do) as an opportunity to learn a lot more about camp life, the logistics of running a camp, and the details of camp ministry that go on behind the scenes.
Ashley: I do a lot of cleaning and maintaining of facilities during and after retreat groups are here. I’m being trained in how to host retreat groups, and I’m also learning how to do some of the office work as well. I love Frontier Camp, and after working this summer I knew that interning here was where God wanted me to be!
Langston: I’ve been hired to keep the camp looking the best it can, from lawn care to limb trimming. My jack-of-all-trades nature fits very well into the camp dynamic where even full time staff are likely to be wearing several different hats at the same time.
Justin: As a retreats intern, I spend most of my work days preparing facilities for our guests, which includes various landscaping tasks as well as cleaning each cabin and facility. During the retreat, I spend a lot of time during recreational periods as a lifeguard at either the pool or the lagoon, and I help out where needed in the kitchen. What I want to learn most while interning here at FC is really as much as I can about different life skills, whether that’s improving my cooking skills, continuing to build on my public relations when I’m involved with our guests, and ultimately building on my faith through the community that I’m grateful to be a part of.
4) How has God worked in and through you here at camp?
Ashley: God has worked so much in my life here at Frontier Camp. Not only did I grow and learn so much over my years as a camper, I have continued to do so even more during my time as a staffer. God has taught me a lot about His faithfulness and his steadfast love. He has also taught me how to rely on Him in every moment of my day, and to trust Him in the relationships that I have with people. God has been so gracious to use me in the ministry here at camp. This summer was especially exciting and stretching for me! I was the Work Crew Leader, and I absolutely loved getting to lead devotionals with the girls that were on Work Crew. Getting to pour into them was such a huge blessing, and I honestly learned so much from them as well! It was a blast, and I’m so thankful for the opportunity that God gave me through that summer staff position.
Justin: The biggest thing that God has done in me is He used this camp to help build up my faith in Him, and I’m learning more by being more consistent in reading His Word. Likewise, He has used me to help spread His good news and disciple campers and fellow staff members in order to help glorify His kingdom.
Taylor: I have always felt a closeness to God and a deeper call to enjoy Him and worship Him in the outdoors. Hiking and camping in wild places, kayaking in beautiful areas of the country, I’ve always been called into deeper awe and greater pleasure in Him when I’m there and go home recharged spiritually, which makes it really cool to live and work in an outdoor setting 24/7. I see God growing my gifts through using them, training me to use them better in His service, as well as teaching me humility through the work I do here. It’s been a very growing experience already in the less than two months I’ve worked here.
5) What is your favorite Bible verse/passage/story?
Langston: The account of Ehud, a judge of Israel. It’s got action, an underdog, an evil king, and a cunning assassination. It’s fascinating how smoothly Ehud’s mission goes. There’s no mention of him second-guessing God or worrying. It makes me wonder how often we make things harder by worrying about them or overthinking things that should really be left to God.
Justin: Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego and the fiery furnace, as it shows God’s love and protectiveness of his faithful followers, regardless of the trials and evils that surrounded them.
6) What is your favorite building or place at camp?
Taylor: Without question, the dock overlooking Houston County Lake at night. It comes with a great view of the stars, the sound of water all around you (which makes anywhere except probably a lifeboat about 10x better), and good memories of enjoying time off down there with fellow summer staffers!
Langston: The (actual) fossil creek itself. It’s peaceful and beautiful there and it’s an easy place to wonder at creation. It’s all the more meaningful when fossils from Noah’s flood are merely a hammer and chisel away.
Ashley: I really love the top porch of the Quarry! I love the view of Lake Maverick… I could sit up there for ages!
7) Tell us about a favorite camp memory.
Ashley: I was a teen camper back before Fossil Creek existed, and one day I was walking to the craft building with a few friends when it suddenly starting pouring rain on us. We ran and got there as quick as we could, but we got completely drenched! Everyone had to be inside until the storm passed and when all was said and done, there were probably 30-40 campers that ended up in the craft building! It was cramped, and we were all cold, and we had to stay there for (what seemed like) an eternity… but it was so much fun and there was so much joy, laughter, and bonding that happened!
Langston: This past summer, I gave a short campfire message on the beginning of John 1. Seeing it as something of an “origin story” for Jesus, I decided to wear a Spiderman costume I had made. Although I had thought it foolish to consider it, when the camp director (after reviewing my message) asked if was going to make an entrance by dropping off the roof of the Creation Station, I jumped at the opportunity. He forgot just how far of a drop it was. After he saw it, he thought for sure that I wouldn’t do it, but I did. I dropped in at the right time and went on to give my campfire message. Definitely a memorable entrance.
8) What is the best FC activity?
Justin: I enjoy both participating in and facilitating all of the many water sports activities FC offers, like tubing, the water weenie, wakeboarding, and waterskiing.
Langston: The best FC activity would have to be fossil hunts. Where else do you get to dig up fossils straight from the days of Noah and keep what you find? It’s really a unique opportunity, and it makes Frontier Camp that much more special.
9) What is a special talent you have or random fun fact about you?
Taylor: I’m a Wilderness EMT. I was planning to go home after summer of 2018 from camp and begin working toward flight paramedic certification down the road, but interning came up and here I am! Emergency medicine is still a passion for me though.
10) What are your hobbies/what do you like to do in your free time?
Justin: During my off days, I spend much of my time in Huntsville at Sam Houston State University, where I’m currently pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice with a minor in General Business. My ultimate career goal is to become a Game Warden here in the great Lone Star State!
Taylor: I am a 2nd degree black belt and a two time national champion in taekwondo, as well as member of Team USA in 2015 and 2017. I absolutely love competing and teaching kids when I can on my off days from camp!
Ashley: I am an avid reader! I spend a lot of my free time with my nose in a book. The Lord of the Rings and The Chronicles of Narnia are some of my all time favorite book series that I’ve ever read! I also really enjoy exploring, so when the weather is nice I love to go hiking! State parks are some of my favorite places to spend my free time.
Langston: I enjoy making music in my spare time, or putting together videos. Violin, guitar, and drums are my main instruments, but I dabble in some others. Most of my videos are goofy, cringey, and corny, but I’ve worked on some other projects such as a wedding and a few Shakespeare plays.
11) What’s your favorite place you’ve ever traveled to or somewhere you want to travel to?
Ashley: My favorite place I’ve ever traveled to is definitely Glacier National Park in Montana! It was hands down the most beautiful place I’ve ever been. If you love waterfalls, trees, and crystal clear rivers, I highly recommend it!!
Taylor: I had the opportunity to compete in Dublin, Ireland, last year, and I fell in love with Ireland. So that fits under both, favorite place I’ve traveled to and definitely hope to travel to again.