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Teen Challenge Resort 12/04/18

Bill Hall, left, and Jim Cox, right, speak about the former Lincoln Springs Resort in one of the buildings at the former resort near Charleston on Tuesday.

CHARLESTON -- Adult & Teen Challenge Illinois is looking into options for acquiring and reopening the Lincoln Springs Resort east of Charleston as a work study resource for clients who are completing its addiction recovery program.

Executive Director Paul Hinzman said life skills education is part of Adult & Teen Challenge Illinois' faith-based recovery program. He said clients could potentially put these skills into practice while serving the public at a reopened resort. He noted that this resort property, located north of Illinois Route 16, offers a restaurant building and miniature golf course.

Hinzman said Adult & Teen Challenge Illinois has not operated a work study location before, but could seek advice from nonprofit organizations that run campgrounds and other recreation facilities. He said his organization would need to conduct a fundraising campaign before it could purchase, refurbish and operate a facility like the Lincoln Springs property.

Charleston Community Church pastor Bill Hall and parishioner Jim Cox are among community members who have suggested that Adult & Teen Challenge Illinois consider purchasing the Lincoln Springs property. They are looking into fundraising options for this idea. The resort closed in 2011 and was purchased by Larry Clapp of Ashmore in 2013.

Hall said he has personally seen Teen Challenge program make a positive difference in the lives of people addicted to alcohol and drugs in Illinois and elsewhere, including in Detroit when he was a pastor there. 

"(Teen Challenge) is not just about getting over a drug problem, it's about learning to live life again. They do learn to work and have responsibility," Hall said of Teen Challenge clients.

Cox said the Lincoln Springs needs new kitchen appliances and other equipment before it could be reopened, but Clapp has been keeping the property in good shape. He added that the property has a three-story office building in a converted former horse barn, from its previous days as the Springhaven Resort, and the property has a geothermal heating and cooling system

More information about Adult & Teen Challenge Illinois is available online at https://teenchallengeillinois.com/.

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Contact Rob Stroud at (217) 238-6863. Follow her on Twitter: @PennyWeaver

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