Cameron Goss gets in some target practice.
Cameron Goss gets in some target practice.
The Boys and Girls Club of Neshoba County enjoyed a day of horseback riding and other fun activities at Camp Soaring Eagle last week despite the rain. 

The children were the first to attend the new camp, which was started by Steve Cheatham and his wife Brenda, near their home in the Burnside community.

Camp Soaring Eagle is the product of over three years of hard work on the part the Cheathams and their church family.

Cheatham said the “call,” as he describes it, came to him one night in a dream.

He had just retired after coaching for 31 years and God gave him a vision in a dream one night of a boys and girls ranch, he said.

He didn’t know at the time  exactly what God was calling him to do but he set to work anyway.

Cheatham and his wife began buying horses and land for what they felt God was calling them to build.

The project got off to a slow start but after Cheatham shared his desire to start a camp with members of his church,  they came out to look at the prospective location.

They went to work the next day.

“It was time,” Cheatham said.

He contacted Danielle Spurlock of the Boys and Girls Club and invited them to attend the very first camp.

Spurlock said that they were excited to attend the first camp session and were always looking for free activities to take the boys and girls to.

“If they invite us back we’ll come as often as we can,” Spurlock said.

Rev. Chris Vowell, the Cheathams’ pastor, was in attendance  and said the camp is a great way to give back to the community.

 Cheatham and Keith Gaines picked the children up from the Boys and Girls Club in Philadelphia and drove them to the camp in two school buses. 

The children were ecstatic as they exited the buses and even more excited when the rain started to fall in a deluge.

The rain did not deter any of the activities and the children were escorted to different stations to practice archery, baseball, horseback riding, shooting and water activities.

Cheatham said that his next goal is to build a large pavilion with bathrooms and a kitchen. He also plans to add boys’ and girls’ bunk houses and have overnight camps on Friday nights. He also plans to have programs for married couples, although he is not yet sure what the scope of those programs will entail.  

Camp Soaring Eagle’s stated goal is: “To create an environment of love, joy and peace where young people and married couples can come and be loved on by the Father and others and where they can come to know their true identities and what God has called them to do.”