Our son has had an amazing year at school, due in part to the ego-building summer at Highlands which set him in the mindset to have a successful year.
– parent from Bainbridge Island, WA
I’ve joked before that every single day someone in our house is wearing something with the camp logo…today was the first time we had matching shirts! I can’t tell you how important camp is to my [four] boys, it even surprises me. I see daily the influence it’s had on their lives.
– parent from Purcellville, VA
Thanks for everything you all have done for Evan and Colin through the years. Their mom and I are convinced that their Highlands experience as campers, and especially as counselors, has been one of the chief reasons they have turned out to be such incredible young men. We’re very proud of both of them and very grateful to you all.
– parent from Chicago, IL
It is hard to put into words the value of Highlands. I was concerned about sending my not-even-8-year-old son last summer, but my worries for naught – it was better than we could have imagined. He loved it, he is begging to go back, and there is no doubt that Highlands will now be a part of every summer for our family. I will never forget the phone call I got after my husband picked him up – begging me to sign him up immediately for next summer. Months later, Zach still talks about the Army-Navy games, Sunday Sing, paddling with friends, swimming across the lake, having countless buddies and something to do everywhere you turn. He came home changed – more confident and outgoing and willing.
– parent from Gainesville, FL
Each aspect of camp seems to work together to create an atmosphere where he can grow and mature. We are extremely thankful for all the time and energy that so many people give to CH. Senior Row was a great experience for him. No doubt due to the leadership of the counselors and campers.
– parent from Holland, MI
Going to camp for a while now, I realized a couple of years ago how camp effected me so much, even when I went back home to the craziness of school, I found myself taking the qualities above Ellsworth the Moose’s head along with me. The great thing about CH is that everyone there becomes a more Worthwhile man. Like this past summer all the senior guys (14-16 year olds) got around a fire and talked about what they appreciated about each other, life, and how much CH meant to them. I’m pretty sure that most guys my age would never do that, so that just shows how extraordinary the place really is.
– 15-year old from Naperville, IL
Activities are the best! You get to do things here you never do at home like archery, rifelry and water skiing.
– 13-year old from West Chicago, IL
I like water skiing and sailing because I love the water, and Plum Lake is awesome!
– 12-year old from San Francisco, CA
The best thing about Camp is the friends I have made.
– 11-year old camper from Gudalajara, Mexico
Just the people. Everyone is so nice, that if you’re walking around and you see somebody, they’ll say hi even if they don’t know you. People are just really friendly to each other.
– 10-year old Camper from Chicago, IL
Camp Highlands has always been brilliant among the greatest privileges and opportunities and treasured experiences of life on this earth, all of which have created priceless and indelible memories. Camp for me was always beautiful, exciting, adventurous, educational and inspirational with horizons unlimited.
– Ken Nelson 1924 – 1931, ’34, ’35, as quoted in “To Brag Little, to Show Well”
Best memory at Camp? Starting camp in 2001 as Cub in cabin 22/21, and returning for 10 summers to become the counselor of that same cabin.
– Pat Gallagher, Highlands man since 2001
Like most boys, I listened to and, for the most part, followed the examples and standards set by my parents, often, I realize in retrospect, because they were around to ensure I did so. However, not until I attended Highlands, separated from my family, did I have the opportunity to independently choose my own conduct. Camp afforded me the opportunity to stand on my own two feet, and it surrounded me with wonderful people who set a fine example of positive behavior while I took those first steps toward manhood. What struck me about Highlands, from day one, was how effortlessly “good” all the people there are. The counselors are all genuinely nice men who come back, year after year, because they love the kids and the fellowship of camp, itself. The campers were great kids, ones who I wanted to be like. Everyone always seemed to want to do everything the right way, the good way, even if that meant it took more time, or was a little harder, or, especially, if it meant putting one’s self “Third.” Once I entered adulthood, I recognized that not all people adhere to such a code of conduct. However, the summers at Highlands, “on my own,” had well prepared me to stand on my own two feet. The choice to do the right thing happened repeatedly in high school, in college, as a naval officer, as a businessman, and, most importantly, as a husband and father. Having those summers at Highlands under my belt made the difficult decisions easy. My sons, Reed and Davis, both five-summer campers and fourth-generation Highlands Men, occasionally face these decisions. It’s no coincidence that when they need a little help choosing their paths, I need only ask, “What would an Honor Camper do?”
– Scott Altorfer, former camper and now parent of two sons at Highlands
Camp Highlands deserves most of the credit for the kind of person I have become as an adult. The people who lead me years ago continue to influence me, what I do, how I treat people, the kind of life I try to lead even today after I have retired. Many of these people are no longer with us and in many cases they are the campers I worked with as I was a staff member. I know of no other organization and few other people who have had such a positive influence on the direction of my life.
– Mike Moen, camper 1961-1964; staff 1965-1973; 1977-1980; invading neighbor from around the lake and lifeguarding instructor 1982-present