About Us

Disciples Crossing, conveniently located outside Athens, Texas, is a beautiful campground surrounded by towering pine trees and serene private lakes. Whether you are looking for a place to have a weekend retreat, corporate event, private party, or a summer camp, our staff would be glad to serve you! Our goal is to provide you with everything you need while removing as many distractions as possible. The staff at Disciples Crossing are dedicated to ministering to the needs of all guests who come through our gates.

 
 
farsidepic1.jpg

Our History

The Christian Youth Foundation (Disciples Crossing) was originally a private retreat, Camp Underwood, owned by Arch and Minnie Underwood. Camp Undy, as it was affectionately named, was host to an impressive guest list including numerous state and national politicians and the origins of the Southwestern Conference coaches.

The Underwood family sold the property in 1946 to several districts of the Northeast and North Texas Areas of the Christian Church and the Christian Youth Foundation was founded. The Trinity Brazos Area bought into the camp as well in 1978. In the year 2000, the Board of Directors decided to re-name the camp Disciples Crossing.

Expansion and new construction projects have been ongoing on the camp’s 534 acres. Our oldest structures, the Lodge and the Peach Shed, were originally constructed in the 1920s. Rustic accommodations were built on the Creative Camp on the north side of Highway 31 in the 1950s. Facilities were expanded and improved through the 1960s and 1970s including Pine Dorm, Lakeside Dorm, Dining Hall, Chapel, and a swimming pool. The 1970s and 1980s saw improvements and expansion on the Creative Camp. In the early 2000s additional meeting space was created and the Main Camp Lake was developed with a 100-foot slide and inflatable lake toys. In 2008 Campbell Cabin was built, providing twenty beds, a meeting room, and small kitchen designed to meet the needs of camp’s smaller groups.

Disciples Crossing has hosted a total of 340,000 guests since 1947 and we look forward to seeing these numbers expand!


Our Staff

Disciples Crossing is overseen by a Board of Directors made up of 12 representative members of the congregations that own the camp. Our facilities and programming are managed by on-site staff, including:

  • Executive Director: Matt Chandler
  • Director of Programming: Rev. Emily Renee Williams
  • Crazy Maintenance Director: Jerry Servos
  • Director of Guest Services: Karlee Chandler
  • Housekeeping Queen: Tammy McGee

...and a rotating list of summer interns, lifeguards, and food service team!

Staff.jpg

download.jpeg

Our Location

We recommend that you do not use Google Maps or GPS to find the camp. We have found that those directions are not accurate and often confuse our guests.

Directions to the Camp from Fort Worth and Dallas: From Fort Worth, take I-20 East to Dallas. From I-20 in Dallas take Hwy 175 South to Athens. In Athens take Loop 7 East to Hwy 31E. You will turn left toward Tyler and away from Downtown. Take Hwy 31E approximately 1 mile and the camp's main entrance is on the right.

Directions to the Camp from Houston: From Houston take I-45 north to Corsicana. In Corsicana take Hwy 31E to Athens. In Athens take Loop 7 North to Hwy 31E. Take Hwy 31E approximately 1 mile and the camp is on the right.

Directions to the Camp from Tyler: From Tyler take Hwy 31W to Athens. Two miles West of Murchison you will see the main entrance to the camp on the left.

Directions to the Creative Camp: The Creative Camp is on the opposite side of Highway 31 from the Main Camp. You will see another entrance and gate with a large sign that says "Creative Camp" on it. Most events are held at the Main Camp, unless otherwise noted in registration materials.