Ben Mudge comes to the Director role at Aldersgate after years of leadership, staff and camper experience. Ben indicates some of his earliest memories include his family setting up a camper on site, and walking around the trails with his grandfather. He is looking forward to sharing his love for Aldersgate with his own children – Nathaniel (8), Sydney (6), Mallory (4), and Camille (1). His wife, Danielle, is a RN at Rome Health, and has also experienced Aldersgate as both a camper and staff member.
Ben hopes that those who visit Aldersgate, especially summer campers, are able to leave camp knowing one thing –
“I want them to know that it’s real simple: God is real, God loves you very much.”
Christa Fransman connected to Aldersgate as a camper in 2014 and reconnected as an adult in 2021, where she has since worked on summer staff as a counselor and lifeguard. Her favorite Aldersgator memories from those summers have been floating lunches on Brantingham Lake and evenings around the campfire in the Yurts. Christa graduated from Utica University to be an elementary school teacher, in addition Christa is pursuing graduate school. This summer Christa is most excited to welcome back familiar faces as well as new campers. Christa hopes that each camper will experience the power of camp — they’ll feel empowered in who they are, they’ll know they’re loved unconditionally, and they’ll get to try new things.
Jill is a former camper, CIT, and staff member of Aldersgate. She supports Aldersgate and the other four Camps and Retreats Centers across Upper New York by providing technical and administrative assistance. Jill now spends her summers at Aldersgate, enjoying the opportunity to welcome a new generation of Aldersgators home.
Justin Pietruch began his own camping journey at Aldersgate in 2006 as a counselor and lifeguard. Following two summers on staff, he served three summers at Vanderkamp in Cleveland, NY. Justin is currently a music teacher in southern Maine and is looking forward to returning to Aldersgate as Waterfront Director this year. Justin is hoping that children this summer are able to build their self-confidence and awareness; knowing themselves better as they head home for the coming year.