Since the summer of 1984, John Erdmann has continued the tradition of his parents, Mim and Charlie Erdmann, who founded the camp in 1950. "Kids gain something special here through physical activity, challenge, adventure, and the community of friendship. They grow in ways not possible at home during each summer in the great Northwoods."
After graduating from DePauw University an fine arts degree, John spent two years in the Peace Corps in Venezuela. He has worked in higher education, the corporate world, and has run his own chicken franchise in Milan, Tennessee for 30 years. In a few years, his grandchildren will become campers.
Deb, sister of Vicki and John Erdmann, has grown up at camp, coming up nearly every summer since she was 3 months old. She attended the Minnesota State University, Mankato, to get her masters in experiential education. She remembers fondly making her decision to focus on camp; "I had a great opportunity to affect people in a special way, and I thought, this could be my life work. This place is where my heart is. It's in my DNA."
Deb manages the business aspect of camp and coordinates logistics such as meal preparation and management of staff. As she likes to say about running camp, "it takes a lot of people paddling the right way to make the canoe go." Deb and her husband Jeff also manage camp during the off-season, living only a short walk away.
Deb is also the contact person for the camper scholarship application.
Bill first worked as a CV counselor for Charlie Erdmann in 1972, and is now in his tenth year serving as the program director. He is responsible for coordinating the staff and directing the morning, afternoon and evening programs.
His career experience includes serving as an educator, high school and college tennis coach, and then as a health science administrator managing fitness, health and wellness centers. At the top of his list of goals for the summer is developing some new and different day trips that make the camp experience truly more memorable.
Vicki has spent part or all of her summers at camp since she was four years old. She is the sister of John and Deb Erdmann. A retired elementary school teacher, she spends most of her time here making supply runs, assisting Deb in meal preparation, and assuring that campers have adequate gear. She is an essential part of making camp work from behind the scenes.
Charlie's been coming up to camp as a counselor and camper for over half his life now. This year however, he will be taking the reigns as the camp's trip director. His responsibilities include maximizing the wilderness experience of each camper, coordinating tripping logistics (permits, boats, etc.), and maintenance of the boat fleet. He was also one of the three staff members to paddle from camp to Hudson Bay this past summer.
Charlie plans to attend school for Outdoor Education this fall in the Twin Cities area. But most of all, he says, "I'm just looking forward to another summer in the Northwoods!"
Joe has joined the staff for his 7th time, starting as a Counselor in Training back in 2007. He is an avid photographer and musician, and you can count on him taking many of the high-quality photos at camp this summer. Over the years, he has taken an interest in sailing, becoming a skilled boat-repairman and leader in the sailing program.
Back in Wisconsin, Joe teaches grades K-12 as a band and general music teacher. He has served for 3 years AmeriCorps in Oregon teaching music. He will return to Wisconsin to continue teaching this fall.
Peter has spent five summers as a camper and is returning for his third summer as a counselor. He will also be working extensively on the website, producing blogs, videos, and photos throughout the season. He worked for an Engineering and Surveying Firm in Connecticut after graduating from the University of Vermont in 2013. He plans on returning to Connecticut to find work around Yale and await his call for service in the Peace Corps.
Peter looks forward to teaching sailing and working with the older campers to advance their camping skills. He is one of the three staff members to paddle from camp to Hudson Bay last summer. You can follow his blog at Onwardtothebay.org. Feel free to contact him via email with ideas for the camp website and blog!
Liz is a returning trip leader at camp for the girl's trips that go out. She is an experienced leader, having lead science clubs for middle school students in Lincoln, NE, and taught English to grades 1-9 in Chile. She's currently a volunteer at a local natural science museum with kids and works as a researcher and grad student. Her future plans include finishing her thesis and then rewarding herself with travel in the U.S. and Canada.
She's very excited to welcome two new faces on the girls trip and seeing the three girls she paddled with last year.
Stephen has been a camper for five years and is now in his second year as a counselor. He is currently working on his B.S. in Psychology, planning to transfer to Cleveland State University in the fall.
Stephen is known for his humorous stage-talent in the evening programs at camp. He hopes to lead many adventures and explore new areas of the Northwoods. He looks forward to spending another summer surrounded by his friends, new and old.