The Path We Take…

Each camping professional has taken a different path to get to where they are in their career. This series explores these alternative paths to show prospective camp professionals that there is no “right way” to get to where they want to be.

Enjoying the Journey

A couple of weeks ago I dropped my husband off at work, and had planned to go to the gym on the way home. I had a whole list of things I wanted to get done that morning and had about 30 minutes for the gym.

As I was driving I was coming to a turn in the road that would lead to a local park/ trail. At the last-minute I thought, ‘You know what? Today is a beautiful day! I’ll go for a 30 minute walk instead of the gym’. I took the last minute turn and got excited about venturing out on the little walking trail I’d been on a few times. Continue reading

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Starting a New Camp

 

 

Raise your hand if you’ve ever daydreamed about starting your own camp…

MEEE TOO!!!!

(High five!)

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So, since I’m a such big proponent of doing things that scare you, I resigned at my current camp and am setting out on a new adventure! (A new “path”, if you will…)

 

I’m going to start my own camp. I’m still in the early stages now, but I’ll be sure to post updates about where the journey takes me.

I’m terrified, I feel like I’ve jumped without a parachute… but I’m also exhilarated and excited. (And did I mention terrified?)

 

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Are any of you camp owners? I’d love to hear from you, I’ve been connecting with people who’ve been down this road before and asking for advice – so reach out to me if you have some wisdom you’d like to impart.

 

AND

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Making Friends in Blog Land

Hi guys,

Do you know what’s nice about blogging? It’s a lot like camp.

People are supportive of each other, and there’s no feeling of competition (at least not in this little niche of camp blogging) we’re all working towards a common goal of inspiring, educating, and informing current and future camp folk. Because after all, it’s still all about the campers, right? And the more we share and collaborate, the better our individual programs will be.

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So, on that topic (ok, all this was really just to get to that segue.. haha) I wanted to tell you that I wrote a guest blog post over at Summer Camp Programming about the Top 5 Reasons To Work At A Camp For People With Disabilities. 

Check it out! 🙂

And while you’re there, Continue reading

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The Path We Take … Curt’s Story

I’m really excited to share today’s post with you all. In my third installment in The Path We Take series we focus on Curt “Moose” Jackson, the creative and dynamic force behind the Summer Camp Programming website among other projects.

While I’ve yet to meet Curt in person, I’ve long admired his brilliant and creative programming ideas – and the fact that he has been able to bring camping professionals from around the world together to share ideas in his roundtable compilations.

(click here for information on how to participate in future email roundtables)

Now that I’ve had a chance to learn a little bit more about Curt through this process, I can also say that I admire his candor (he got real folks – and it was awesome!) and his drive to continue to explore, learn, create, and improve the level of programming we offer in the camping industry. 

I hope you enjoy learning about Curt’s journey as much as I did, and if you have any questions, comments, or just want to tell Curt how awesome he is, tell us about it in the comment section below. 

 

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Tell us about yourself.

 

Yikes, this is a broad question. It all started when I was a twinkle in my mother’s eye.

Just kidding.

I grew up an only child to a loving single parent in Southern California. My mom was a nurse who worked long hours and I was a latch-key kid. She passed away from cancer when I was 15. Unfortunately, nobody in my family wanted to take on the burden of raising a teenager. So after getting tossed around a bit between aunts and uncles my grandparents took me in. Six months later my grandfather passed away. Those two years were rough and had a big impact on my life, positive and negative.

I’ve always wanted to be an actor or a rock star, but I know that if I really did either of those careers I wouldn’t enjoy them. Besides, camp gives me the chance to do both with camp skits and camp songs. As a young kid I wanted to be a professional baseball player or a magician. Come to find out, I wasn’t very good at either of them, but I still like to pull out some magic tricks when campers are around.

I like road trips, the ocean, Moose Tracks ice cream, campfires and the smell of freshly cut grass.

I don’t like inconsiderate people, Brussel sprouts, humidity, and movie theaters that don’t have stadium seating.

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This is one of Curt’s super cool trading cards he offers on his site. You can order them here.

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The Path We Take… Mel’s Story

For part two of my path series, I asked my good friend Melanie Dash to talk about her journey to becoming a camp professional.

Mel just so happens to be one of my favourite people on the planet!
We met at a camp fair a few years ago and I decided right away that she was an adorable human and we should become friends immediately (that’s how everyone becomes friends as an adult, right?)

Over the past few years Mel has continually inspired and astounded me with her creativity, organization, passion for camping and most of all, her drive for success.

Hopefully her story will help inspire and motivate some of you too!

The path we take Mel's story

Photo credit: Doug Scortegagna / Foter.com / CC BY

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The Path We Take… Roxy’s Story

One of the questions I get asked most often is “how do I become a camp director?”
There are also variations, like “how do I do what you do?”, “which degree is the best choice if I want to become a camp director?”, and my personal favourite “how do I, well… how do I become you?” (we laughed, and bonded, and now we’re pals!)
But there’s no easy answer to any of those questions. I tell people all the time that there’s no “right” degree to take to become a great camp director – while recreation management is the obvious choice and is usually at the top of my list if they NEED an answer… I always tell people that one of the beautiful things about camp is the unique backgrounds that everyone has, and the amazing diversity that brings to our programs.

SO, I decided to explore that concept a little further and reach out to some of the friends and colleagues that I respect the most in the camping industry and find out how THEY got to where they are… what their path was.

For our inaugural post in this series I chose a good friend of mine, and an AMAZING camp director Roxy Peterson. I met Roxy back in 2009 when we sat on a board together. He is one of the most passionate camping professionals I’ve ever met, and just a genuinely nice person.

Enjoy reading Roxy’s story and wonderful advice. I know I did!

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