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Everlasting Camp Memories

How do you and your child hold on to camp memories? I have recently been reading numerous blogs, tweets, and articles from camp experts, and current and former campers nationwide.

The one constant I have noticed with all of them are their “keepsake boxes”.  The most common collected treasure from a camping season seems to be letters written home and letters received.

How many of you still have letters from when you were a pioneer? And…How many of you that have them have ever looked back to see what you wrote home.  My guess is, you were singing a totally different tune back then than you are today.  You had the stationary with multiple choice boxes to check off, pre-written address return envelopes and lots of stickers.  Now, for many of you the letters home have a whole lot more depth to them.  For instance, “Hi Mom and Dad, I had to write today in order to get in the mess hall and eat. Love ya, Bye”.  Now as a parent, I am sure you would like a lot more, but as a camp professional we love that means your son is so engrossed at camp that he can’t find the time to write.

Point being, camp is such a phenomenal experience in the present, but equally rewarding in the future.  Don’t let those memories slip away.  Hold on to them.  If it is not a letter maybe it is an art project, a t shirt from a camping trip that floated half way down a river, or article of clothing from Casino Night.  Whatever it is, keep it.  You will be thankful in the future.

I was recently at a Bar Mitzvah where a parent read a few previous letters home from his son and they were absolutely priceless!

I still have a pink hat with Rhinestones on it from the first summer, Quenotah, (yeah, I know, what am I doing with a pink hat with rhinestones in general for?) However, every time I go in to my closet and see it, I think of camp. What a great way to put a smile on my face everyday!

We hope all of you continue to hold on to these memories.  You never know, you might just need them one day when you least expect it!

New Year’s Resolution

Every year, thousands of people go in to the new year with one giant resolution. These resolutions range from watching what you eat (I personally have given up Diet Coke) to making sure you call your loved ones once a week just to say hi.

In many ways camp is very similar. Kids get on the bus to start a camping season with various different goals as well. Unfortunately, for you parents, writing letters twice a week is usually not one of them!

For some campers getting up on two skis and skiing around the lake is their main goal, for others, creating one or two new friends is the ultimate “New Year’s Resolution”.  There is no one “Resolution” that trumps the rest.

As a staff member I can firmly say that our number 1 goal is to create an incredible life changing experience for each and every one of your boys in a healthy, safe, and fun environment.

Along with giving up Diet Coke, which has not been easy, my second new years resolution is to continue to go out and find the best most well rounded staff we can for the summer of 2012.  I will be travelling to various college campuses in the near future, and Fran and Jordan will personally be attending fairs in London to add to our phenomenal returning staff members.  We anticipate the highest return of staff we have ever had!

There will be loads of familiar faces, ie; Lougee, Danica, Gordo, Bob D, D’Aghion, Joey Smith, Z Kalter, Z Warren, Blake, Spitzy, and Webby just to name a few along with our entire kitchen staff!

We wish all of you the best in this new year and with all of your own resolutions!

Stay connected on Facebook to stay up to date with the latest in returning staff as well.

Camp Horseshoe Recognized by the American Camping Association

We are pleased to announce that Camp Horseshoe has once again earned ACA-Accredited Camp status!

The ACA-Accreditation signifies our commitment to the ideals of excellent camping the ACA has exemplified for nearly a century.  ACA standards are recognized by courts of law and government regulators as the standards of the camp industry. The ACA accreditation program is continually evaluated and updated to reflect current best practice in camps. ACA collaborates with experts from many fields such as the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Red Cross, and other youth-serving agencies to be sure required practices are current and sound.

At least once every three years, an outside team of trained professionals observes our camp in session to verify compliance with applicable standards. The ACA has developed up to 300 standards that cover the various aspects of camp operations focusing on educating and equipping camps to provide:

  • Healthy, developmentally-appropriate activities and learning experiences
  • Discovery through experiential education
  • Caring, competent role models
  • Service to the community and the environment
  • Opportunities for leadership and personal growth

While the ACA’s benchmarks are the national standards of care for camps, they aren’t required. We voluntarily invite the ACA to visit us and review our facilities, programming, management, and staff.

ACA accreditation is the best evidence parents have of a camp’s commitment to a safe and nurturing environment for their children. This voluntary accreditation assures parents that camp practices have been measured against national standards and go a step beyond a state’s basic licensing requirements.

We are very proud of our accomplishments as a camp, and we hope you can see the benefits of our hard work to become ACA-accredited. If you have any questions about our status or the accreditation process, please let us know. We’re happy to share the value of accreditation with you.

For more parent-focused information about accreditation, visit ACA’s www.CampParents.org.

On the Cake There’ll be Candles Horseshoe Green and Blue

Happy Birthday to the following Horseshoe campers this month!

Daniel Adler
Adam Bernstein
Sam Bernstein
Ben Bizar
Reese Bressler
Danny Bronska
Owen Burg
Austin Clamage
Neil Coleman
Sam Coleman
Jackson Doughty
Spencer Dowell
Drew Felman
Max Goshen
Ryan Greenbury
Parker Hara
Tyler Horberg
Cory Johnson
Austin Levine
Jack Lewin
Jacob Littman
Hunter Macek
Charlie Malkin
Lucas Marks
Scott Merdinger
Jeremy Noskin
Sammy Pierce
Jonathon Raupp
Ryan Roggeman
Ben Sacks
Brice Saul
Grant Schmarak
Ben Serck
Simon Shindler
Brad Thompson
Zack Tickman
Paul Udoni
Alex Wade
Robbie Weiland
Josh Widman
Evan Zisook

Horseshoe Halloween

Every year people all over the US spend countless hours, days, even weeks trying to decide on that perfect Halloween Costume.

For the best inspiration and ideas look no further than a mid July evening in the Northwoods of Wisconsin at Camp Horseshoe’s Casino Night!

I know that is where I go.  Share your favorite Casino Night Costumes on Facebook and help me prepare for Halloween this year.Hail to the Forest!