1980s: New Names, Same Voyageur Spirit

Camp Voyageur by the Decades

In 1984 Camp Voyageur reopened for a two-week session under the direction of sister and brother team, Deb and John Erdmann. Big games once again drew campers to Pine Stadium. The Mess Hall plaques started filling up with names as in years past. Trips pushed off into the wilderness from the camp dock. But there were new evolutions as well—including inaugural hiking trips, an uptick in campers from foreign countries, and frequent educational presentations from various Ely experts as part of Camp’s evening programming.

The Trail of Life

Though it was released in 1992, John Behnke’s iconic film details the 1980s transition from Charlie and Mim’s administration to John and Deb’s

Interested in getting the behind-the-scenes scoop on how the film came together? Read our interview with Behnke!

Charlie and Mim Erdmann remained a stable presence at Camp too, as one issue of the Paddle Post from the decade explained:

You remember the Bean Auction? Charlie’s piano music filtering through the trees before dinner? Trip stories at the Fire Circle? Treks around Hunter’s Island to Grand Portage and the Little Triangle? Fighting a Northern Pike in Mystery Lake? Cabin Skits? While some of the players have changed, the Camp Voyageur program remains the same.

1980s Photo Gallery

Click here to check it out and download pictures!

The Show Goes On

We are looking for Trailblazers to help us contact Voyageur alumni, asking for their support in our Covid Relief Campaign. Click here to print a PDF of 1980s campers.