In the early nineteen-fifties, a prominent Kamloops physician, Dr. Hartley Grafton, had a dream of providing a rustic camp for the Boy Scouts, particularly for the Third Kamloops Scouts. Dr. Grafton and his family had picnicked on the Magna Bay property owned by one of his patients, who was also keen to make it available for the Scouts. At the time, the Scouting organization was not able to hold title for property, and so Dr. Grafton arranged to donate the purchase price to the Trustees of Kamloops United Church, for the acquisition of the camp property to be held for the use of the Scouts. Over time, the Scouts wanted a more remote wilderness camp, and so in the late sixties Camp Grafton began to offer camps for boys and girls, and was administered by committees of volunteers from the two United Churches in Kamloops.
In 1975, the original Panabode log dining hall collapsed under a heavy snow; in 1978 the current dining hall was completed, and four of the original cabins were replaced.
By 2002, the move was made to create a Camp Grafton Society, to be comprised of members from a number of Kamloops’ denominations. The Camp Grafton Society (CGS), which now draws its members and support from the greater community, leases the property from Kamloops United Church, and the CGS has all the responsibility for the Camp’s programs and upkeep of the property and its facilities. In 2014, a new and expanded boat house was added, and the building and upgrading effort continues as donations allow.