Beatrice Johnson Youth Kamp Foundation

Quick Reference


email: [email protected]


Our Beginning

In June 2008, Beatrice Johnson, of Johnson County, Arkansas, passed away and bequeathed 160 acres of Kiwanis for the construction of  a camp for children.  A 501(c)3 non-profit corporation named the Missouri-Arkansas Beatrice Johnson Kiwanis Youth Kamp Foundation was formed on November 17, 2011. Chuck Raney, a member of the Ft. Smith Commissary Kiwanis Club and the leader of the task force, was elected as the first President of the foundation board. The camp was formally dedicated on April 14, 2012.  

The camp is a 160 acre forested site located about three hours south of Branson, MO in Northwestern Arkansas. The camp is in Johnson County, Arkansas, adjacent to Arkansas Highway 359 approximately 3-1/2 miles north of I-40. From Ft. Smith, travel approximately 65 miles east on I-40 to Exit 67, then approximately 4 miles east on US 64 to Ark Highway 359, then north 3-1/2 miles to the camp. From Little Rock, travel approximately 80 miles west on I-40 to Exit 74, then approximately 4 miles west on US 64 to Ark Highway 359, then north 3-1/2 miles to camp.

The Missouri-Arkansas Beatrice Johnson Kiwanis Youth Kamp currently offers overnight and/or day camp primitive camping to supervised groups. You can provide your own programming or we can provide programming upon request. 

Current Camp Status

Phase one development focused on preparing the camp for primitive tent camping. Campsites, trails, and parking areas were cleared and prepared. The camp’s first permanent structure, a 24’x40’ multi-use pavilion, was constructed with electricity and lighting.  Water is now available at the pavilion and the camp area.   Vault toilet restrooms were completed.

Through partnership with the River Valley Chapter of the Ozark Off-road Cyclists, we have created over 5 miles of mountain biking and hiking trails.  Facilities include 25 pads for tent camping, a meditation meeting area, and nature overlooks. 

Multiple outdoor games are available on site. A wide range of interpretive programs are available on request. Twelve pre-packaged, ready to use programs are available for a “rainy day.”

Future Development 

The plan is to construct permanent facilities at the camp, which will include showers, kitchen, cabins, and activity areas.  Development of recreational areas for archery, Indian marbles, and skeet shooting is planned.   Also a clearing for a nature overlook and additional trails with interpretive signage.

In 2018 the Kamp issued a video; a new brochure followed in 2022.  The next goal is a headquarters/multi-use cabin.  The funds needed:  $22,190.  Your contributions can help us reach the goal.

You Can Help!!!

Join us for one of our scheduled work days to help build and maintain the camp.

Girl Scouts at Beatrice Johnson Youth Kamp, 2021
Girl Scouts at Beatrice Johnson Youth Kamp, 2021

Contact us to schedule a day camp for a group of kids from your area or to schedule overnight camping trips.

Eagle Scout projects to benefit the Kamp are welcome.

Contact us to schedule a Kiwanis Club meeting or event at the camp.

All donations large or small are appreciated.  Make checks payable to Beatrice Johnson Youth Kamp Foundation.

Note the new address:                                            

The Missouri-Arkansas Beatrice Johnson
Youth Kamp Foundation
PO Box 1998
Russellville, AR 72811-1998

For more information, contact us at [email protected]

Construction Update 2023

In 2023, the camp undertook construction of a headquarters cabin. Dedication ceremonies were held January 27. The cabin is now known as the Education Center at BJKYK.

LEFT to right
Ron Hill Trustee Candidate
Dolores Stamps BJKYK Board Secretary
Builder Dave Clayton, Black Ladder, Construction, Russellville, AR
BJKYK Board member, Joe Pearson
BJKYK Pres Sam Taylor
MOARK GOV Roy Ockert
Building Coordinator Jerry Martin
Imm Past Gov Carla O’Brien
BJKYK Board member Dan Yates
BJKYK Board member Troy Massey
Earl Collins board Rep Dale Garner
Construction of the Education Center at BJKYK making progress. May, 2023

Jerry Martin reports the cabin is nearly complete. Roofing and interior work are still in process, but the basic cabin is done. That includes installation of a septic tank system.

New concrete steps were added to the pavillion.