One Big Reason Why Summer Camps Work

Scenic overlook south fowl lake mn.jpg?ixlib=rails 2.1
Scenic overlook near South Fowl Lake before the Pigeon River.

He drew a circle that shut me out- Heretic, rebel, a thing to flout. But love and I had the wit to win: We drew a circle and took him in!

Edwin Markham

An opportunity for a fresh start.

At unplugged, overnight summer camps it doesn’t matter what car your parents drive, how many followers you have on Instagram, how well you do in school, or what sports you play.

What matters most at Camp Voyageur is how open you are to trying new things, how you treat yourself and others around you, what you contribute to the group, and how much honest effort you put forth.

Campers arrive at camp with blank slates. No longer are they labeled as the troublemaker in English class, the shy kid who never speaks up, or the jock. At camp, they can be whoever they choose to be. They don’t carry the labels or baggage from back home.

They can choose to be the kid who goes back for more gear on portages to help out a comrade. Or the kid who plays piano on stage every morning as others walk in for breakfast. Or the artist who painted a beautiful walleye on his paddle and won the Paddle Decoration Contest. Or the kid who caught a plaquer smallmouth bass with just a green jig and worm. They can be the kid who carried a 75-pound aluminum canoe across the 8.5-mile Grand Portage into Lake Superior.

Therein lies the beauty of summer camp: It’s an opportunity for children to confront their self-concept, reinvent themselves, and motivate them to explore and exceed what they thought were their limits in a supportive setting. The impact of this experience is just one of the many benefits of summer camps and it can last beyond the summer; it often lasts for life.

Have you been impacted in this way by Camp Voyageur? Let us know in the comment section!

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