Mar. 3, 2023 9:30p
(WPR)---A buyer has stepped up to save an East Troy youth camp that hosts a program for children with burn injuries.
Camp Timber-lee's owner Trinity International University had announced it was shutting down the camp this month. That left the Professional Fire Fighters of Wisconsin searching for a new home for the annual Summer Camp for Burn Injured Youth, a program for burn survivors they've operated in East Troy for 28 years.
This week, the university announced it has entered into a purchase agreement with a Delavan businessman who plans to buy the Evangelical Christian camp to keep it operating. The purchase is expected to close April 1, and according to the Trinity statement, the camp will "remain open without any changes to scheduled camps for the 2023 season and prior planned events."
"We have prayed for the best solution — and I believe we have found it," said Nicholas Perrin, university president, in a statement.
Michael Wos, executive director of the Professional Fire Fighters of Wisconsin, said with news of the sale the organization hopes to continue to operate Burn Camp at Timber-lee. But he said the group has not yet heard anything official from either the university or the buyer.
The buyer is Greg Kunes, who owns Delavan-based Kunes Auto Group. He also operates a family foundation that supports charitable causes.
In a statement, Kunes said he has been a supporter of the camp since he moved to Walworth County in 1996.
"When I saw that Camp Timber-lee would be closing I heard the Holy Spirit tell me 'that can't happen,'" Kunes stated.
In his statement, Kunes said he hopes to keep the Evangelical Christian camp operating for generations to come.
Camp Timber-lee's roots go back to an Evangelical church camp that opened in Williams Bay in 1947. It moved to its current, 550-acre location in 1972. The camp was gifted to Trinity International in 2016.
Trinity announced in February that it would close the camp this month, citing financial conditions.