RV Park Lodging Lodge Conference Center

History of the Resort

Greg & Linda Ordway first walked on the 167-acre property now called Cedar Creek Resort & RV Park in the fall of 2009. It had formerly been a farm before the Loyd family that owned it decided to create the Newman Lake. Later it was owned by three fraternity brothers who built three separate homes around the lake and enjoyed spending summers there with their families. At one point the property housed a race horse before John and Clarice Peters purchased it to make a corporate retreat for executives. John Peters was the one who had a vision for the potential of the ranch as a resort and started to develop the property. Cedar Creek Lodge was it’s name in the early 2000’s. John died in 2008 before he could see his dream fulfilled. He had built six 2 bedroom/2 bathroom 800 sq. ft. cabins and turned the indoor riding arena into a snack bar and skeet shooting gun club. He actually knew he had cancer before he purchased the place, but he was convinced he could beat the disease and pursued his dream. The bank took it over in a friendly foreclosure and Jim Arens was the caretaker while the bank had possession and started looking for a buyer. The bottom falling out of the real estate market in 2008 did not help the bank find a willing buyer.

When the Ordway’s actually put an offer on the property in May of 2010 their son, Jonathan, was looking to elope with his fiance, Becky Jo Howard, formerly from Georgia. That’s when the Ordway’s decided they were going to see if the bank would be willing to let them have a wedding on the property. They had not closed yet, but had made the offer and the bankers were more than willing to push the closing so the wedding could be the first “official” event that Cedar Creek Resort held in August of 2010. They took the wedding photos from that one event and attended two wedding shows that fall where they had over 14 weddings booked in less then 2 months for the upcoming 2011 season. For the next 5 years it was known as one of the most popular and prettiest wedding venues in the state of Missouri.

In 2015 they felt they were to consecrate the property to more Christian events and conferences. They stopped having weddings and started being approached by groups to hold conferences on the acreage with lodging for about 60 people. With more people asking about other forms of lodging the Ordway’s looked into options of building more cabins or actually putting a hotel on the property. It was decided that an RV Park would be a better alternative for an initial investment. In 2017 the decision was made to start an RV Park on the north side of the property. It took almost a year, but in October of 2018 the first official RV was invited to stay to a 40-site full-hook up RV Park. There has been at least 2 to 35 campers there every night since. They provide nightly, weekly or monthly options for short-term housing for construction workers and traveling nurses.

The Ordway’s have been providing oversight for special needs men since 1988. They have several homes in the Columbia area and 2 homes in Branson where they and their staff provide oversight for these men with various types of physical, mental and emotional disabilities. Their initial proposal to the bank for the property offered the possibility that there could be a few Independent Supported Living homes’ as well as one group home. The state denied that offer saying they were no longer approving any institutional settings for homes. They came back with a suggestion that the Ordway’s could start a job development program as that was the next focus for employment for those individuals with disabilities. They received their contract under the name of Life Enterprises for pre-vocational services, job development, community employment and day hab in 2011. The property was primarily used Monday through Friday to help individuals with a broad range of disabilities to learn to hold down employment. This has been the primary focus of Cedar Creek Resort & RV Park for the last several years.