Christian Church Conference Center arrives


Last fall, the Christian Church Conference Center’s new Alexander Cambell Hall was completed in Bethany Beach. This Saturday, the church is inviting the public to visit the new facility.

“It’s a very nice building,” said Alexis Distler, program manager. “It turned out just as we wanted it to.”

The first tours of the facility will run from 1 to 2 p.m. At 2 p.m., the Rev. Bob Perry will give the blessing and officiate the ceremony, which will include a few other keynote speakers. Attendees will also be able to enjoy music and light refreshments. Tours will resume from 3 to 4 p.m.

Distler said the hall will be used to house visitors who rent out the space for various reasons, such as camps, retreats or even parties.

“Many of them have been coming for years, starting as kids, from the Maryland, Virginia, Pennsylvania area,” she said. “We have regular camps that come every year — youth camps, family camps. Some that were kids here are now counselors and run their own camps.”

The new facility joins the complex’s other sleeping facilities.

“Currently, we have two buildings that house people. Our Stone House will sleep 16, and then we have our Disciples House, which are dorms and sleeps 32.

“Our new Campbell Hall will now sleep 76 people,” said Distler. “We have one wing of dorm rooms that have eight bunk beds and a public bathroom on each end, which are really good for youth groups that come and stay, or women’s groups.”

Another wing houses four ADA-compliant rooms, as well as five family rooms, complete with private bathrooms and four twin beds.

“They’re good for families that might come or a small group of women that might want to share a room.”

The new facility boasts an elevator, outdoor showers, two large screened porches with ping-pong tables, and meeting rooms.

“We have a very large meeting area, where we can comfortably seat 85 people. It has a complete audio/video system… It’s very top-of-the-line. Groups can come in and plug their laptops in, play their music or movies. Then, upstairs, we have a small meeting room, where you can actually look down onto the main room.”

The facility can be rented throughout the year, for as few as two days to an entire week. Distler said all are welcome, no matter what church or denomination.

“We have many each year that are new, coming for the first time. We have a lot of new ones this year. We welcome Cub Scout groups, Boy Scout groups and Girl Scout groups,” she said. “The summers typically book up fast, but a lot of times, in the spring and fall, we’ll get weekenders.”

The alcohol-free, smoke-free facility can be rented for events other than camps. Distler said they welcome meetings, small wedding receptions and parties.

“It doesn’t have to be small weekend retreats; we’re open to groups maybe using the facility for a function. For instance, we had a church use it for New Year’s Eve.”

Distler said the Christian Church Conference Center works hand-in-hand with the local community, from providing parking for summer events to being a place for the Delaware State Police helicopter to land during Bethany Beach Fire Department’s Safe Kids Day.

She added that she hopes the community will attend Saturday’s event to see what their new facility has to offer.

“We definitely want the grand opening to be open to anybody and everybody. We’re open to doing things here that are not just church-related,” she said. “We want the community to see what we offer and what we have, and to spread the word.”

To view pictures of the facility, or to find out more information about booking the Christian Church Conference Center, call (302) 539-7034, email confcenterbb@verizon.net or visit www.cccadisciples.org/bethanybeach. The Christian Church Conference Center is located on the corner of Garfield Parkway and Pennsylvania Avenue in downtown Bethany Beach.