Sunday, July 3, 2016
The new fire circle at Circle V Ranch is dedicated last week.
The new and improved fire circle area in the center of the 30-acre camp at 2250 State Route 154, across from Lake Cachuma adjacent to the Huston Memorial Sports Court, was made possible by a generous donation by the Dan Murphy Foundation of Los Angeles, according to Ray Lopez, camp director.
The refurbished area is made of slate rock with a fire-safe shield in the center and can seat at least 200 people on 38 benches made of Monterey pine handcrafted by Goleta resident John Miller.
The original fire circle only seated 150 guests on rough-hewn logs that surrounded a small fire pit, Mr. Lopez said.
"The Trustees of the Dan Murphy Foundation are pleased to be able to make the renovation of the fire circle for the St. Vincent de Paul Circle V Ranch Camp possible as part of their longstanding support of the summer camp program," Richard Grant, president of the Dan Murphy Foundation, said in a press release. "We wish you many blessed years and happy times around the new fire circle. May God bless all those who gather near."
David Fields, executive director of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul Los Angeles Council, was a part of the dedication ceremony earlier this week and expressed his gratitude toward the Dan Murphy Foundation and their support through the years.
"From today forward, this Dan Murphy Fire Circle is a tangible reminder that all who gather here are blessed by their generosity," Mr. Fields said.
The formal blessing of the fire circle was conducted by the Rev. Matthew Elshoff of the Santa Ines Mission in Solvang.
"Fire has always been a symbol of God's love, warmth and light in this world," the Rev. Elshoff said. "The Dan Murphy Fire Circle here at Circle V Ranch Camp brings us together to know and share God's love and brothers and sisters."
The new fire circle will serve campers during the Circle V Ranch Camp summer session and will be available for retreat groups during the rest of the year, Mr. Lopez said.
Circle V Ranch and Retreat Center was founded in 1945 by the Society of St. Vincent de Paul Council of Los Angeles and has been at its current site since 1990.
Reservations for retreat groups are being accepted year-round.
For more information, go to www.circlevranchcamp.org.