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Korte & Luitjohan partners with youth camp

Korte & Luitjohan Contractors Inc. of Highland is once again hosting the annual golf scramble benefiting Camp Ondessonk.

The construction company’s partnership with the youth camp, located adjacent to the Shawnee National Forest, is rooted in Pete Korte, the chairman of K & L, whose children and grandchildren attended Camp Ondessonk, and later served as camp counselors.  Korte was on the camp’s board of directors from 1995 to 2002.

Both K & L and Camp Ondessonk got their start in the 1950s.  Pete Korte launched his company in 1958, while the camp was opened in 1959 by the Catholic Diocese of Belleville.  Situated on nearly 1,000 acres, Ondessonk offers kids ages 8 to 15 with a summer camping experience highlighted by canoeing, archery, horseback riding, hiking, and rock climbing. Youth of all faiths are welcome to enjoy the fun and adventure experienced at the camp.

K & L has provided labor and equipment for several projects at the camp including the installation of two miles of water line; the construction of a 3,200 square-foot shower house; and the creation of a 40-foot climbing wall.

Gregg Korte, K & L president, explained why Camp Ondessonk is a special place for his family.

“It allows kids a chance to be in touch with nature,” he said. “At Camp Ondessonk, kids can see the beauty of God’s handiwork, and become more grounded in his creation.”

Dan King, Camp Ondessonk’s executive director, said the golf benefit hosted by Pete Korte and K & L has raised around $750,000 to support the camp’s mission. “The title, ‘Golf Benefit Host’, is not honorary,” King commented.  “Our annual golf benefit was created by Pete and the K & L family.  He solicited sponsorships, participants, teams, and prizes.  Pete and Jane Korte’s children and grandchildren have also contributed countless hours.”

The 26th Annual Golf Benefit is Saturday, Oct. 16, at Roland Barkau Memorial Golf Course in Okawville.  Cost for the four-person scramble is $110 per golfer or $440 per team.  The price includes golf, cart, refreshments on the course, lunch, skins and mulligans.  There will be a shotgun start at 8 a.m.  For more information, call (618) 695-2489 or go on-line to

Korte & Luitjohan Contractors, Inc. is a full-service, design-build, construction management, and general contracting firm providing quality construction throughout the Metro St. Louis area and Southern and Central Illinois.

PHOTOS: Youths enter the chapel on the grounds of Camp Ondessonk. Image from website

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