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Night Under the Stars raises more than $70,000

Camp Knutson volunteers take a moment before rounding up this year's guests for Night Under the Stars on July 19.Submitted Photo

More than 300 people attended the annual Night Under the Stars fundraiser on July 19 at Camp Knutson. Between ticket sales, silent auction proceeds and donations, the event brought in more than $70,000 to support the mission of Camp Knutson.

The event had a Western flair; volunteers were in cowboy dress and the buffet served by Brainerd Lakes Catering featured barbecued ribs, chicken and beef roast. The night's program included Camp Knutson staff, who sang western ballads with active guest participation; a speech by Jay Hannon, camper who attends the autism camp; and music by Bridget and Kai Allen.

The book "Where Spirits Fly," the inspirational history of the camp, was available for the first time. Call 218-543-4232 and ask for Quinn or Caitlin to purchase a copy.

Other features included a gift of a new gas grill that was given in honor of Jerry Bilski's 50-plus years in the banking industry and his long-term volunteerism for the camp, a donation of $5,000 from the Million Dollar Round Table Foundation, support from Thrivent Financial and a multitude of gifts from local businesses and supporters.

Camp Knutson provides camping services to youth and families with special needs, including those with severe skin disorders, heart disease, Down syndrome, autism, and individuals affected by HIV and AIDS.