Wisconsin! When you hear that state mentioned, I'm sure you imagine cows, Harley Davidson motorcycles and the beautiful capitol of Madison. Yet, north of all that is the Northwoods of Wisconsin. Filled with all its natural beauty. In the sky you can see eagles all around swooping down to catch a fish in a nearby lake or stream. If your quiet you might just hear a loon or a wolf in the background. This is what America looked like 100 years ago. Until you experience the simple beauty, you can’t begin to imagine what you will find there. 

Children thrive in Wisconsin Summer Camps.Camp offers your child a chance to...

experience nature unlike any other place in the Midwest. At Swift Nature Camp your child gets the opportunity to play, make friend sand learn new skills, all this in the warm sun of the wonderful northwoods of Wisconsin.

Your child will have an unparalleled experience Camp Nature Swift in Wisconsin. This ACA accredited camp has been teaching lucky children how to have a great summer for over 40 years. Dedicated to the spirit of Ernie Swift the camps goal is to enjoy a traditional summer camp while encouraging children to respect nature and to understand it in a more profound way, Children learn why and how to become good stewards of the environment. It is through direct experience and hands on activities that we inspire kids to be environmentally conscious when they return home. This Kids summer camp is so much more, with their dedication to the environment. It is fun with a purpose.
 

A Perfect Summer Camps.


The children have such a diverse selection of activities at this Wisconsin summer camp that they can barely fit it all in during their stay! From horseback riding and swimming to archery and craft making the time is action packed with fun filled adventure that your child won’t stop talking about. It will be the best summer camp experience for your child. Camp Nature Swift is no exception and even has a special program for those first time campers. Swift Camp is dedicated to the spirit of Naturalist Ernie Swift. The camps goal is to provide a traditional summer camp while encouraging children to respect nature and to understand it in a more profound way, This ACA accredited camp has been helping children have a great summer for over 40 years. 

Our Discovery Program is dedicated to those children going to camp for the first time. This special session is unlike any other overnight camp because it is designed to give additional attention to those children a little reluctant to leave home for their first summer camp experience. Regardless if your child is a first time campers or is experienced at overnight backpacking and canoeing trips your child can attend this camp.

To learn more about picking the best summer camp for your child visit 
SUMMER CAMP.
Few of us get to see Swift Nature Cfamp when the leaves have fallen and a blanket of snowy white covers the ground. Here are a bunch of photos we took while at camp in early March. Look for the beaver marks, wolf and deer tracks and any other areas you might be familiar with.
 
 
 
What are we to do with our teen this summer?” Many parents wonder. They are looking for a place that offer personal growth and independence but in a safe place, away from the pressures of today. Well the answer has been around a long time, its Summer Camp! Yep, Summer Camp!
Parents of teenagers can find a summer camp that suits the needs of their child. Specialty camp like soccer camp, space camp, science camp, math camp, music camp, are all great at teaching a skill. Yet, traditional summer camp are general camps where camps have fun and work on self development. Wisconsin Camps like Swift Nature Camp a Teen Summer Camp offers coed summer camp programs that are just for teenaged campers up to 15 years of age. A Counselor in Training Program offers a transition for teens aged 16 and 17 (provides leadership training).

Like its summer camp programs for preteens, Swift Nature Camp offers an amazing range of camp activities. Hiking, climbing, ceramics, horseback riding, tennis, kayaking, and whitewater rafting are among the most popular programs among teen campers.


Summer teen camps provide a special opportunity for them to make friends in a relaxed and fun-filled environment, build self-esteem and independence, and meet the challenge of new adventures.

Swift Nature Camp offers teen cabin mates to leave camp together and venture into the wild. The ideal location brings opportunities to take unforgettable trips to the Apostle Islands, the International Wolf Center, and the Mississippi River. These trip are wonderful ways to build bonds among the campers. But more importantly, it helps each child feel a part of the team and want to make a contribution.

All children, especially those in their teenage years, need a break from the accelerating competition of today's world. An intimate, friendly and noncompetitive environment for teens fosters positive encouragement. The atmosphere of acceptance brings a welcome balance to young lives. Even first time campers quickly and smoothly adjust to life as a camper in this kind of setting.

Today's teens grow up too fast and need time to play. An 
Adventure Teen Camps should challenge your teen to try new things, but not in a stressful way. Camp is not school! Interaction with animals can be a perfect way for a child to learn by the natural discovery of play. Besides all the fun and excitement of a traditional camp, the kids have the joy of discovering Nature and the world we live in.

After living life in a beautiful natural setting among caring staff and instructors, teens come to love summer camp. Many teen campers return summer after summer, returning to see friends and enjoy the excitement, self-direction, and goofy fun characteristic of camp life.

Summer camp is a great place to be oneself and a perfect place to make lifelong friends. Teens come to love summer camp and look forward to time away from the pressures of performance, and the change to rediscover themselves.

You can learn more about picking a wonderful Teen Summer Camp. This site is free and give alot of information to parents. 
Summer Camp
"What are we to do with our teen this summer?” Many parents wonder. They are looking for a place that offer personal growth and independence but in a safe place, away from the pressures of today. Well the answer has been around a long time, its Summer Camp! Yep, Summer Camp!
Parents of teenagers can find a summer camp that suits the needs of their child. Specialty camp like soccer camp, space camp, science camp, math camp, music camp, are all great at teaching a skill. Yet, traditional summer camp are general camps where camps have fun and work on self development. Wisconsin Camps like Swift Nature Camp a Teen Summer Camp offers coed summer camp programs that are just for teenaged campers up to 15 years of age. A Counselor in Training Program offers a transition for teens aged 16 and 17 (provides leadership training).

Like its summer camp programs for preteens, Swift Nature Camp offers an amazing range of camp activities. Hiking, climbing, ceramics, horseback riding, tennis, kayaking, and whitewater rafting are among the most popular programs among teen campers.


Summer teen camps provide a special opportunity for them to make friends in a relaxed and fun-filled environment, build self-esteem and independence, and meet the challenge of new adventures.

Swift Nature Camp offers teen cabin mates to leave camp together and venture into the wild. The ideal location brings opportunities to take unforgettable trips to the Apostle Islands, the International Wolf Center, and the Mississippi River. These trip are wonderful ways to build bonds among the campers. But more importantly, it helps each child feel a part of the team and want to make a contribution.

All children, especially those in their teenage years, need a break from the accelerating competition of today's world. An intimate, friendly and noncompetitive environment for teens fosters positive encouragement. The atmosphere of acceptance brings a welcome balance to young lives. Even first time campers quickly and smoothly adjust to life as a camper in this kind of setting.

Today's teens grow up too fast and need time to play. An 
Adventure Teen Camps should challenge your teen to try new things, but not in a stressful way. Camp is not school! Interaction with animals can be a perfect way for a child to learn by the natural discovery of play. Besides all the fun and excitement of a traditional camp, the kids have the joy of discovering Nature and the world we live in.

After living life in a beautiful natural setting among caring staff and instructors, teens come to love summer camp. Many teen campers return summer after summer, returning to see friends and enjoy the excitement, self-direction, and goofy fun characteristic of camp life.

Summer camp is a great place to be oneself and a perfect place to make lifelong friends. Teens come to love summer camp and look forward to time away from the pressures of performance, and the change to rediscover themselves.

You can learn more about picking a wonderful Teen Summer Camp. This site is free and give alot of information to parents. 
Summer Camp.

MID STATES CAMPING CONFERENCE CAll FOR PRESENTERS


Mid States strives to provide thought provoking presenters and wonderful opportunities to connect camp pros and your peers in an affordable setting. Camps, like SNC bring their whole staff! From owners & directors to first year counselors, there is something for everyone. It is a great place to get revived and armed with fresh ideas and fill your 'bag of tricks' Thursday, March 10th through Saturday, March 12th, 2011 Pheasant Run Conference Center & Resort St. Charles, Illinois (Suburban Chicago)

 

We need presenters! if you are a SNC past staff member or CIT and...

 

you wish to make a presentation to 20 or so other professionals this is your chance. Submit your education session proposal and share your knowledge at the Eighteenth Annual Mid States Camping Conference in March 10-12, 2011 at Pheasant Run Resort in St. Charles, IL.

“Call for Presentations” form and speaker information can be found at:http://www.acamidstates.org/presenters.phpDeadline for submissions is November 1, 2011

If you have questions about becoming a presenter, submitting a proposal, or other topics related to the education sessions, please contact Colette Marquardt, Program Chair at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Selecting a summer camp is no easy task and take a lot of leg work upfront to ensure a wonderful camp experience for your child. One of the best ways is to read reviews about overnight summer camps. Then formulate your questions from what folks are saying and call the camp directors. Click here to read Swift Nature Camps most recent reviews...
Choosing a summer camp for my son was so overwhelming.  The number of different programs and options that I uncovered during my research was daunting.  While I considered all things in my decision, facilities, activities, safety, staffing, location and price, I must say that a major factor in my eventual decision to send my son to Swift was my gut feeling.  When I called to ask questions about Swift, Lonnie made me feel so comfortable about the program and the care that the staff provide for the campers.  I’m so glad that I decided to go with my gut feelings.  My son had a wonderful three weeks at camp, and has been begging to be allowed to go to the six week session next summer since the moment we picked him up off the bus.  He got to try all sorts of new things at camp, and can’t wait to go back and improve his skills at canoeing - even though he’d never been in a canoe before, one of his favorite parts of camp was the canoe trip his cabin went on.  I am so happy to say that I was able to find my son a summer ‘home’ where he feels just as comfortable as he does at home - and where he gets to be with caring staffers that encourage him to try new things and improve his skills - he’s become much more self-confident.  In a sentence, this is two thank yous: One to Lonnie for making me feel so confident that my son would be cared for and happy and camp, and one to the entire camp staff for making my son feel so confident in himself.

Having a child that is a complete animal lover, I knew that I wanted to choose a animal summer camp that had a nature focus besides just being located in the woods.  I am happy to say that Swift satisfied my daughter’s never-ending desire to be outside, explore, play with animals, and just learn through experience.  When we dropped her off at camp, I visited the nature center, and I could tell that she would love it - all sorts of animals to interact with, and lots of things to learn and explore with, not just look at.  Though her letters home were short, they were filled with descriptions of the exploring that I hoped that she would be able to do - catching frogs, exploring the outdoors, hiking, learning about wildlife, and exploring different ecosystems. (She ‘retaught’ me that one - there are lots of areas for the campers to explore with the staff - woods, a bog, a pond, a lake, and more brushy areas.)  But in addition to that, we’ve noticed such progress in her personal responsibility since she came home - camp taught her to be more self sufficient.  She’ll clear her plates after dinner, and while she doesn’t do the laundry on her own, she at least untangles her clothes before she throws them in the basket now.  It was hard having her away from us for three whole weeks, but knowing how great a time she had and how much she grew as a young person, I can’t wait for her to be able to return next summer.

I’m happy to share that next summer will be my son’s 4th year at SNC - he’s still so excited and happy from this past summer that I’m surprised he let me unpack his suitcase.  Though he’s been to camp for three years now, every summer he learns something new and improves his skills - he’s never complained about being bored at camp, which is much more than I can say about being at home.  He gets to learn to do things that he would never get the opportunity to do living in the city - and he’s learning to do them safely.  I really wanted my son to be able to have experiences that he wouldn’t be able to have at home - going on camping trips, canoeing, learning to cook over a fire, and a little bit of learning to fend for himself - with adequate supervision of course.  One of his favorite things are the trips that the cabins get to go on - they get to spend time bonding with their group, and experiencing new challenges each year.  I cannot recommend SNC highly enough to other families.  Not only do the campers have a great time, but they continue to be entertained, excited, and challenged year after year.

Both my son and daughter have attended SNC over the past 5 years, and it has been a pivotal force in their development into responsible young adults.  At the end of every summer, they come home full of enough stories and memories to keep them talking for days.  My daughter’s favorite activities at camp have always been arts and crafts and archery, and I was really surprised this past summer when she really took a liking to riflery.  She brought home several of her targets, and you could see her improvement - she showed them off to all of our family members.  My son was an intermediate, but not very strong swimmer when he started camp, and he was proud to have made it to be a blue swimmer by the end of the session - the staff really worked with him to improve his swimming skills.  His favorites from camp were the nature center, and of course, swimming.  Every summer, they come home more self-reliant and self confident.  We’re already planning for next summer, when my daughter will be a counselor in training, and my son will be back for his third summer.  I can’t imagine how different my children would be if they hadn’t had Swift in their lives.

I was nervous about sending my daughter to summer camp for the first time, but I was excited when Jeff and Lonnie told me that Swift Nature Camp has a program just for first time campers.  That way I knew that she wouldn’t be overwhelmed or feel out of place - everyone would be starting on the same page as her, so she could be more comfortable.  I think that it was harder for me than it was for her - she followed the friendly counselor right on to the camp bus, but I was a little more hesitant about her being away from home the first time.  But it seemed that everyone at camp went out of their way to soothe my ‘mommy worries’ - Lonnie called to let me know that the bus had gotten to camp safely, I received a handwritten postcard from my daughter’s counselors during her first week at camp, and the office staff was always helpful and willing to talk when I called just to check on her.  She loved all the activities at camp, as well as the ‘field trips’ to the Lumberjack show and the ice cream shop in town.  She can’t wait to go back next summer, and while I’ll miss her while she’s at camp, I’m confident that Jeff and Lonnie will make sure that she is safe, happy, and cared for the whole time that she is there.


SNC is the best summer camp!  There are so many activities that you can choose from, and the counselors are really nice.  My favorite activity is going tubing with Jeff - it is the most fun when he drives the boat really fast so that you have to hold on tight to stay on.  I wasn’t sure about swimming in a lake at first, but seeing Wally (the water trampoline) changed my mind.  The waterfront is so much fun and you can go swimming everyday at free time if you want.  The food was really good, especially Taco Tuesdays.  I learned a lot of new things at Swift this summer, and I can’t wait to go back next year to see my friends.

Swift is my favorite place on earth.  I have made some of my best friends at camp, I keep in touch with them all year long, and none of us can wait to get on the bus to go to camp in the summer.  The counselors come up with really crazy fun things to do in the cabin, and all of the regular activities are really exciting too.    My favorite thing at camp is the trips, because you get to go out with just your counselors and cabin friends and do fun things like canoeing and swimming.  Of course the BEST part of camping trips is when you get to make S’mores.  I miss camp so much when I’m at home that sometimes I even get ‘campsick’!  

Next summer will be my 3rd year as a camper at Swift Nature Camp, and I can’t wait to go back.  I’m so excited to see all the friends from my cabin for another year, and get to see the counselors again.  The best thing about camp is going up to the Nature Center, where you can play with the animals and do cool nature activities.  We caught the BIGGEST frog, and got to keep it up in the nature center for a couple of days so that everyone could come and look at it.  It was huge!  There is lots of other fun things to do at camp too.  My favorite things beside the nature center are fishing, archery, and swimming in the lake.  The counselors are really nice and are good at teaching you new things and helping you to work on your achievement awards.  I’d never done archery before I came to camp, and next summer I want to get my Level 2 Achievement award.  I hope that lots of kids will want to come to Swift so that I can make new friends this summer!


I’ll admit that when I showed up at Swift Nature Camp for my first day of orientation, I was nervous.  I knew that I loved camp, I had attended several different camps as a child, and had even worked at another summer camp during the previous summer.  And while I loved my time at that camp, I never really felt like I fit in as part of the camp family.  I am happy to say that Swift is 100% where my camp family is.  As a staff member, I always felt like my input was valued and respected, and help was available whenever I needed it - even when all that I needed was someone to listen for a few minutes.  After my first summer at Swift, I returned as a staff member for four more years - and I would be lying if I did not admit that I’m still looking for a way to get my summers off so that I could go back as a staff member again.  I’ve gone back to visit since my summers working, and getting to lead activities with the campers, and see them learn new things and succeed is so exciting.  Swift is my summer home...having spent a significant amount of time there, and having seen everything up front and behind the scenes, I can say that I hope that when I have children, it can be their summer home as well.

Being an Elementary Education major, I knew that I wanted to spend my summer getting new experiences working with children.  While I’d volunteered at extracurricular programs and worked with youth groups, I had never worked at a summer camp before.  SNC’s two week staff orientation really eased my worries before the first day of camp.  The administrative and returning staff members went over everything that we needed to know in depth: how to teach activities, leading trips, building cabin bonds, managing behaviors, and all sorts of tips and tricks to really make sure that the campers had a great time at camp.  Being able to teach the campers skills was great - it’s amazing to see the look on their face when they first really ‘get it’ - learn just how to steer a canoe, perfect their archery shot, or light a ‘one match’ fire.  At the end of my first summer as a camp counselor I’m proud to say that I knew that I had made a positive impact on all the campers that I came into contact with, and made friends that I will keep in contact with far into the future.

MID STATES CAMPING CONFERENCE CAll FOR PRESENTERS


Mid States strives to provide thought provoking presenters and wonderful opportunities to connect camp pros and your peers in an affordable setting. Camps, like SNC bring their whole staff! From owners & directors to first year counselors, there is something for everyone. It is a great place to get revived and armed with fresh ideas and fill your 'bag of tricks' Thursday, March 10th through Saturday, March 12th, 2011 Pheasant Run Conference Center & Resort St. Charles, Illinois (Suburban Chicago)

 

We need presenters! if you are a SNC past staff member or CIT and.... 

 

you wish to make a presentation to 20 or so other professionals this is your chance. Submit your education session proposal and share your knowledge at the Eighteenth Annual Mid States Camping Conference in March 10-12, 2011 at Pheasant Run Resort in St. Charles, IL.

“Call for Presentations” form and speaker information can be found at:http://www.acamidstates.org/presenters.phpDeadline for submissions is November 1, 2011

If you have questions about becoming a presenter, submitting a proposal, or other topics related to the education sessions, please contact Colette Marquardt, Program Chair at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
"What are we to do with our teen this summer?” Many parents wonder. They are looking for a place that offer personal growth and independence but in a safe place, away from the pressures of today. Well the answer has been around a long time, its Summer Camp! Yep, Summer Camp!
Parents of teenagers can find a summer camp that suits the needs of their child. Specialty camp like soccer camp, space camp, science camp, math camp, music camp, are all great at teaching a skill. Yet, traditional summer camp are general camps where camps have fun and work on self development. Wisconsin Camps like Swift Nature Camp a Teen Summer Camp offers coed summer camp programs that are just for teenaged campers up to 15 years of age. A Counselor in Training Program offers a transition for teens aged 16 and 17 (provides leadership training).

Like its summer camp programs for preteens, Swift Nature Camp offers an amazing range of camp activities. Hiking, climbing, ceramics, horseback riding, tennis, kayaking, and whitewater rafting are among the most popular programs among teen campers.


Summer teen camps provide a special opportunity for them to make friends in a relaxed and fun-filled environment, build self-esteem and independence, and meet the challenge of new adventures.

Swift Nature Camp offers teen cabin mates to leave camp together and venture into the wild. The ideal location brings opportunities to take unforgettable trips to the Apostle Islands, the International Wolf Center, and the Mississippi River. These trip are wonderful ways to build bonds among the campers. But more importantly, it helps each child feel a part of the team and want to make a contribution.

All children, especially those in their teenage years, need a break from the accelerating competition of today's world. An intimate, friendly and noncompetitive environment for teens fosters positive encouragement. The atmosphere of acceptance brings a welcome balance to young lives. Even first time campers quickly and smoothly adjust to life as a camper in this kind of setting.

Today's teens grow up too fast and need time to play. An 
Adventure Teen Camps should challenge your teen to try new things, but not in a stressful way. Camp is not school! Interaction with animals can be a perfect way for a child to learn by the natural discovery of play. Besides all the fun and excitement of a traditional camp, the kids have the joy of discovering Nature and the world we live in.

After living life in a beautiful natural setting among caring staff and instructors, teens come to love summer camp. Many teen campers return summer after summer, returning to see friends and enjoy the excitement, self-direction, and goofy fun characteristic of camp life.

Summer camp is a great place to be oneself and a perfect place to make lifelong friends. Teens come to love summer camp and look forward to time away from the pressures of performance, and the change to rediscover themselves.

You can learn more about picking a wonderful Teen Summer Camp. This site is free and give alot of information to parents 
Summer Camp.
At long last, parents of children who are going to summer camp for the first time have a choice available that is directly tailored to the needs of their child. After listening for years to parents and children expressing what they feel is important for a positive first time summer camp experience, Jeff and Lonnie Lorenz, directors of Swift Nature Camp, have created Discovery Camp, a program designed to meet the specific needs of all new campers and their parents.
At long last, parents of children who are going to summer camp for the first time have a choice available that is directly tailored to the needs of their child. After listening for years to parents and children expressing what they feel is important for a positive first time summer camp experience, Jeff and Lonnie Lorenz, directors of Swift Nature Camp, have created Discovery Camp, a program designed to meet the specific needs of all new campers and their parents.

Discovery Camp is a twelve-day First Timer’s Program offered at the Swift Nature Camp facilities near Minong, Wisconsin. The program utilizes Swift Camp's highly trained staff at a ratio of two staff members for every cabin of eight new campers. The first time at summer camp will quite possibly be a child's first extended time away from home. The program acknowledges this by making sure that every new camper will find a staff member on hand at all times. First time campers need to feel special, and the first priority of this program is to foster the sense that camp is there for them and exists for their benefit.

* Prior to each camper's arrival, the staff studies the informational packet for that person. They learn about each child and gain awareness of specific individual needs. If any camper has medical circumstances or special needs these will discussed by the staff in confidence with the camp nurse. By the time a child arrives at camp, the staff will feel as if they already know that new camper. This preparation is immediately beneficial to the first-time camper from the moment he or she steps off the bus and is warmly and personally greeted.

The first day of Discovery Camp is Orientation Day. New campers get a complete tour of Swift Nature Camp, including a visit to the HealthCenter, the Mail Box, and every activity area. Every activity is introduced with a discussion about the importance of safety and the basic safety information for that activity.

Staff members work hard to promote an atmosphere of nurturing and harmonious friendship from the campers’ first day of cabin life. There is a Respect List for all to agree to and sign, and each night will end with a bedtime story. The cabin is the place where community begins. First time campers are gently brought into a sense of connection and community with others who begin on equal footing.

At Discovery Camp, first time campers are introduced to Swift Camp’s well rounded noncompetitive variety of camp activities. Each morning a cabin’s campers are invited to instruction at two activity areas. These activities include Swimming, Canoeing, Nature Center, Arts and Crafts, Archery, and more. The new campers are encouraged to try new and different activities, giving each of them the opportunity to discover and explore what activities he or she might enjoy and eventually excel in. In the afternoon, campers learn how to make their own choices from the activity board, making their own decisions about which activity to pursue that day.

Swift Nature Camp aims to encourage each child to learn independence in a safe, age appropriate environment. The twelve day first-timer program is set up to run the optimum length of time for a first time camper to leave homesickness behind and gain a comfortable sense of autonomy. For many of these campers the greatest first lesson camp teaches them is that they can leave home, return days later and find out that very few things will have changed, especially their parents' love for them.

The directors of Swift Nature Camp think it's important that parents know that their children's first time away from home is in a safe, nurturing and secure environment. As a part of the Discovery Camp's first timer program, parents are encouraged to visit at any time after the first five days.

Parents who would like to find out if this is the right first-time summer camp experience for their child are encouraged to speak with other parents who have had their children attend Swift Nature Camp. A list of references is readily available for that purpose. Discovery Camp, a special program for the first time summer camp experience, is finally available to suit the needs of campers and parents alike!
Selecting a summer camp is no easy task and take a lot of leg work upfront to ensure a wonderful camp experience for your child. One of the best ways is to read reviews about overnight summer camps. Then formulate your questions from what folks are saying and call the camp directors. Click here to read Swift Nature Camps most recent reviews...
Choosing a summer camp for my son was so overwhelming.  The number of different programs and options that I uncovered during my research was daunting.  While I considered all things in my decision, facilities, activities, safety, staffing, location and price, I must say that a major factor in my eventual decision to send my son to Swift was my gut feeling.  When I called to ask questions about Swift, Lonnie made me feel so comfortable about the program and the care that the staff provide for the campers.  I’m so glad that I decided to go with my gut feelings.  My son had a wonderful three weeks at camp, and has been begging to be allowed to go to the six week session next summer since the moment we picked him up off the bus.  He got to try all sorts of new things at camp, and can’t wait to go back and improve his skills at canoeing - even though he’d never been in a canoe before, one of his favorite parts of camp was the canoe trip his cabin went on.  I am so happy to say that I was able to find my son a summer ‘home’ where he feels just as comfortable as he does at home - and where he gets to be with caring staffers that encourage him to try new things and improve his skills - he’s become much more self-confident.  In a sentence, this is two thank yous: One to Lonnie for making me feel so confident that my son would be cared for and happy and camp, and one to the entire camp staff for making my son feel so confident in himself.

Having a child that is a complete animal lover, I knew that I wanted to choose a animal summer camp that had a nature focus besides just being located in the woods.  I am happy to say that Swift satisfied my daughter’s never-ending desire to be outside, explore, play with animals, and just learn through experience.  When we dropped her off at camp, I visited the nature center, and I could tell that she would love it - all sorts of animals to interact with, and lots of things to learn and explore with, not just look at.  Though her letters home were short, they were filled with descriptions of the exploring that I hoped that she would be able to do - catching frogs, exploring the outdoors, hiking, learning about wildlife, and exploring different ecosystems. (She ‘retaught’ me that one - there are lots of areas for the campers to explore with the staff - woods, a bog, a pond, a lake, and more brushy areas.)  But in addition to that, we’ve noticed such progress in her personal responsibility since she came home - camp taught her to be more self sufficient.  She’ll clear her plates after dinner, and while she doesn’t do the laundry on her own, she at least untangles her clothes before she throws them in the basket now.  It was hard having her away from us for three whole weeks, but knowing how great a time she had and how much she grew as a young person, I can’t wait for her to be able to return next summer.

I’m happy to share that next summer will be my son’s 4th year at SNC - he’s still so excited and happy from this past summer that I’m surprised he let me unpack his suitcase.  Though he’s been to camp for three years now, every summer he learns something new and improves his skills - he’s never complained about being bored at camp, which is much more than I can say about being at home.  He gets to learn to do things that he would never get the opportunity to do living in the city - and he’s learning to do them safely.  I really wanted my son to be able to have experiences that he wouldn’t be able to have at home - going on camping trips, canoeing, learning to cook over a fire, and a little bit of learning to fend for himself - with adequate supervision of course.  One of his favorite things are the trips that the cabins get to go on - they get to spend time bonding with their group, and experiencing new challenges each year.  I cannot recommend SNC highly enough to other families.  Not only do the campers have a great time, but they continue to be entertained, excited, and challenged year after year.

Both my son and daughter have attended SNC over the past 5 years, and it has been a pivotal force in their development into responsible young adults.  At the end of every summer, they come home full of enough stories and memories to keep them talking for days.  My daughter’s favorite activities at camp have always been arts and crafts and archery, and I was really surprised this past summer when she really took a liking to riflery.  She brought home several of her targets, and you could see her improvement - she showed them off to all of our family members.  My son was an intermediate, but not very strong swimmer when he started camp, and he was proud to have made it to be a blue swimmer by the end of the session - the staff really worked with him to improve his swimming skills.  His favorites from camp were the nature center, and of course, swimming.  Every summer, they come home more self-reliant and self confident.  We’re already planning for next summer, when my daughter will be a counselor in training, and my son will be back for his third summer.  I can’t imagine how different my children would be if they hadn’t had Swift in their lives.

I was nervous about sending my daughter to summer camp for the first time, but I was excited when Jeff and Lonnie told me that Swift Nature Camp has a program just for first time campers.  That way I knew that she wouldn’t be overwhelmed or feel out of place - everyone would be starting on the same page as her, so she could be more comfortable.  I think that it was harder for me than it was for her - she followed the friendly counselor right on to the camp bus, but I was a little more hesitant about her being away from home the first time.  But it seemed that everyone at camp went out of their way to soothe my ‘mommy worries’ - Lonnie called to let me know that the bus had gotten to camp safely, I received a handwritten postcard from my daughter’s counselors during her first week at camp, and the office staff was always helpful and willing to talk when I called just to check on her.  She loved all the activities at camp, as well as the ‘field trips’ to the Lumberjack show and the ice cream shop in town.  She can’t wait to go back next summer, and while I’ll miss her while she’s at camp, I’m confident that Jeff and Lonnie will make sure that she is safe, happy, and cared for the whole time that she is there.


SNC is the best summer camp!  There are so many activities that you can choose from, and the counselors are really nice.  My favorite activity is going tubing with Jeff - it is the most fun when he drives the boat really fast so that you have to hold on tight to stay on.  I wasn’t sure about swimming in a lake at first, but seeing Wally (the water trampoline) changed my mind.  The waterfront is so much fun and you can go swimming everyday at free time if you want.  The food was really good, especially Taco Tuesdays.  I learned a lot of new things at Swift this summer, and I can’t wait to go back next year to see my friends.

Swift is my favorite place on earth.  I have made some of my best friends at camp, I keep in touch with them all year long, and none of us can wait to get on the bus to go to camp in the summer.  The counselors come up with really crazy fun things to do in the cabin, and all of the regular activities are really exciting too.    My favorite thing at camp is the trips, because you get to go out with just your counselors and cabin friends and do fun things like canoeing and swimming.  Of course the BEST part of camping trips is when you get to make S’mores.  I miss camp so much when I’m at home that sometimes I even get ‘campsick’!  

Next summer will be my 3rd year as a camper at Swift Nature Camp, and I can’t wait to go back.  I’m so excited to see all the friends from my cabin for another year, and get to see the counselors again.  The best thing about camp is going up to the Nature Center, where you can play with the animals and do cool nature activities.  We caught the BIGGEST frog, and got to keep it up in the nature center for a couple of days so that everyone could come and look at it.  It was huge!  There is lots of other fun things to do at camp too.  My favorite things beside the nature center are fishing, archery, and swimming in the lake.  The counselors are really nice and are good at teaching you new things and helping you to work on your achievement awards.  I’d never done archery before I came to camp, and next summer I want to get my Level 2 Achievement award.  I hope that lots of kids will want to come to Swift so that I can make new friends this summer!


I’ll admit that when I showed up at Swift Nature Camp for my first day of orientation, I was nervous.  I knew that I loved camp, I had attended several different camps as a child, and had even worked at another summer camp during the previous summer.  And while I loved my time at that camp, I never really felt like I fit in as part of the camp family.  I am happy to say that Swift is 100% where my camp family is.  As a staff member, I always felt like my input was valued and respected, and help was available whenever I needed it - even when all that I needed was someone to listen for a few minutes.  After my first summer at Swift, I returned as a staff member for four more years - and I would be lying if I did not admit that I’m still looking for a way to get my summers off so that I could go back as a staff member again.  I’ve gone back to visit since my summers working, and getting to lead activities with the campers, and see them learn new things and succeed is so exciting.  Swift is my summer home...having spent a significant amount of time there, and having seen everything up front and behind the scenes, I can say that I hope that when I have children, it can be their summer home as well.

Being an Elementary Education major, I knew that I wanted to spend my summer getting new experiences working with children.  While I’d volunteered at extracurricular programs and worked with youth groups, I had never worked at a summer camp before.  SNC’s two week staff orientation really eased my worries before the first day of camp.  The administrative and returning staff members went over everything that we needed to know in depth: how to teach activities, leading trips, building cabin bonds, managing behaviors, and all sorts of tips and tricks to really make sure that the campers had a great time at camp.  Being able to teach the campers skills was great - it’s amazing to see the look on their face when they first really ‘get it’ - learn just how to steer a canoe, perfect their archery shot, or light a ‘one match’ fire.  At the end of my first summer as a camp counselor I’m proud to say that I knew that I had made a positive impact on all the campers that I came into contact with, and made friends that I will keep in contact with far into the future.
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Winter

25 Baybrook Ln.

Oak Brook, IL 60523

Phone: 630-654-8036

swiftcamp@aol.com

Camp

W7471 Ernie Swift Rd.

Minong, WI 54859

Phone: 715-466-5666

swiftcamp@aol.com

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