Winter at Bay Cliff

A nonprofit organization in the Upper Peninsula is widely known for the work it does each summer, but it’s not only open in the summertime anymore.

For decades, Bay Cliff Health Camp in Big Bay operated during the summer months only. Its annual therapy camp program for kids lasts for about two months. Within the last ten years, though, Bay Cliff has expanded its schedule into the winter months.

“We’re a wonderful place to go to, to get away from everything,” assistant director and education coordinator Karen Schlicher said. “People in agencies that are not for profit have the opportunity to come here and hold a program here on the weekend.”

Bay Cliff is holding Winter Blast on February 21st through the 23rd for adult campers who go there during the summer. The Michigan DNR ‘Becoming An Outdoors Woman’ program takes place the weekend after that. Then, in early March, Bay Cliff has its Snow Days program, in which kids who come to camp in the summer return for a weekend.

“If there’s a way that we can help people that have challenges or struggles in life, this is a place where they can come,” executive director Tim Bennett said. “We’ll partner with others in the community and develop programs that help people live a better and fuller life.”

Since it opened 80 years ago, Bay Cliff has helped about 12,000 people work through the challenges that Bennett spoke of to become more independent.