Thursday, March 13, 2014

Achieving Success In and Out of Camp

Meet Gina Scala.

She’s been coming to Camp Anokijig for 9 years; as a camper, Junior Staff member, and will return for her 2nd summer as a Senior Staff Wrangler for 2014. Gina loves camp but she also loves riding horses and playing the baritone saxophone in her college jazz band.

Gina was recently honored as this week’s Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association's Defensive Player of the Week for her outstanding talents as goalie for the Kalamazoo College Women's Varsity Lacrosse Team. This is her first season of varsity competition and her first time being honored as Player of the Week, but Gina has been playing lacrosse for the past 7 years. She says that her positive experiences at Camp Anokijig have served her well as she continues her personal growth outside of Camp. She says,

            “Camp has influenced me to constantly strive to be at my best. I’m always working to improve as an athlete, a teammate, and as a person. The values and skills that I have picked up at Camp Anokijig have had a huge impact on how I play lacrosse; respect, accountability, adaptability, teamwork, confidence, positive leadership, and communication are absolutely key qualities on the field.”

It’s so wonderful to see members of our Anokijig family doing positive things outside of Camp. Congratulations, Gina!

If you know of an Anokijig family member who's accomplished great things, please let us know. We'd love to highlight the achievements and accomplishments of our former and current campers and staff members. Send us an email:

Monday, February 10, 2014

No Winter Hibernation Here!!

In the dead of winter, schools may close, but at Camp, things are just heating up! Have you ever wondered what happens at Camp outside of Summer Camp? Well, you’re probably familiar with the outdoor ed. school groups, weekend rentals, and family camps, but how about in the dead of winter?  Just like the magical rest hour from 1:30pm – 2:30pm every day of the summer, Camp uses the months of November, December, and early January to rest, repair, and renew.

Come mid-January, the gears are already turning as we look ahead to Summer Camp 2014. By this time, all reservations for the specialty camps, day trips and adventure trips  have been made, the brochures are printed, and Carol and Gale are busy processing summer camp registrations.
Jim is busy preparing a new budget and working with Mary to secure grants and other fundraising projects. Scott Stewart and Preston keep the roads clear of snow, maintain the buildings, keep the horses fed, and repair things for the upcoming season. Heidi and Jim selected the new Trading Post offerings, with a great outpouring of your suggestions. Thank you!

This January, the Program Team (Jim, Darin, Scott M., Claude, and Heidi) has taken on a new, but necessary challenge to review and revamp both our Senior and Junior Staff Training Programs. (WARNING: intentional teaser. You’ll just have to attend to get all the details!). Each off-season, we also take a close look at our current programs and research and tweak them to make them the best they can be. We’ve also been implementing a new social media campaign (you may have noticed more frequent and interactive posts on Facebook) to go along with our other camp marketing activities. Click here to start following us on Facebook.

On top of all that, Anokijig has been entertaining and hosting several weekend groups. These groups of adults and children typically come in on Friday night and stay until Sunday morning. They spend the weekend tubing down the tube hill, playing broomball and curling on the rinks, ice fishing and ice skating, snowshoeing on the trails through camp, and even taking a horse-drawn sleigh-ride, all to be warmed up with a delicious spaghetti supper and multiple cups of hot cocoa from Linda and her kitchen staff. 

As we look ahead to February and March, we’ve got hiring, employment, and recruitment on the brain. The Program Team is hitting the road, visiting many of the colleges and universities looking for talented and energetic individuals to be part of the 2014 Senior Staff. Claude is also pouring through the junior staff applications, selecting the best candidates and scheduling their weeks. (If you submitted a junior staff application, results are expected in late February). Scott Mabie is putting on the miles delivering camp brochures to many of the school districts throughout Southeast Wisconsin and Illinois. And lastly, the program team spends just about every weekend in February and March at multiple Family Fairs and Kids Expos throughout the Midwest, recruiting this year’s summer campers. Phew! 

We haven’t even begun to talk about putting Camp back together and work weekends. (They start March 22nd, by the way! Click here for more information.) And, you may have heard about a Casino Night Fundraiser with the Racine Rotary Club on February 22nd, which benefits Camp Anokijig.  We’ll be there (and you can, too) helping deal blackjack and assisting during the event. Click here for more information.

So, while the actual hours in the office become a bit shorter during the off-season, by no means do things come to a screeching halt. In fact, we’re always looking ahead. We look forward to thawing temperatures and reconnecting with our Camp family as the calendar rolls forward and spring programs start up again. Until we see you again, stay warm                                                and keep sharing the Anokijig spirit!