Meet Our Summer Leadership Staff

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For 2017, we have an experienced team of leaders heading up Camp K on Kenai Lake, Camp Si-La-Meo, and our Rural Alaska Program. Together, they bring more than 30 years of experience to this summer. We invite you to meet them below and encourage you to contact them to learn more about their program or ask any questions you may have.

katie
I am especially looking forward to introducing some great new
Leave No Trace activities at
Camp K. I am a self-proclaimed
Lorax - "I speak for the trees!"
Katie Adrian - Camp Director, Camp K on Kenai Lake
I was born and raised in Buffalo, NY (Go Bills!) and spent many summers at camp in my childhood. I have 9 summers of experience working at both overnight and day camps, and I first started working with Camp Fire in 2010 at Camp K. The camp stole my heart, and I spent the next three summers there. In 2013, I became the Camp Director at Camp Si-La-Meo, and this year I'm excited about returning to Camp K! I am certified as an American Red Cross Lifeguard Instructor, a National Archery in the Schools Program (NASP) Instructor, and an Alaska Master Naturalist. Since 2014, I have volunteered with the American Camp Association as a Standards Associate Visitor, and it has been invaluable to learn about other camp programs and bring all of that knowledge back to Camp Fire. My favorite part of working at Camp K is helping campers build a community of peers with guidance from adults who truly care about them. I believe that camp provides an unparalleled opportunity to learn about yourself and build up the confidence to take on whatever challenges come your way. Please feel free to contact me with any questions you may have! kadrian@campfireak.org
will_1
I am beyond enthusiastic to
create a place this summer where your children will have the opportunity to grow...
Will Day - Camp Director, Camp Si-La-Meo
Hello! This year will be my third summer with Camp Fire Alaska and my seventh year working at summer camps. I studied anthropology at Hawaii Pacific University and later obtained a Bachelor of Arts in Outdoor Studies at Alaska Pacific University. At APU, I concentrated on expedition, group management and leadership. I am a certified Wilderness First Responder and a Level 2 Sea Kayak Instructor. My relationship with summer camping began as a child, when I attended a small over-night camp in Colorado. Memories of that experience prompted me to become a Camp Counselor with the YMCA's Camp Shady Brook. It was then that I first witnessed (and felt) the powerful impact that camp can have on children and young adults; I watched kids and staff grow more positively in two weeks then I'd seen anyone develop in a year of schooling. I am beyond enthusiastic to create a place this summer where your children will have the opportunity to grow in that way, learning life-long skills that will help them to become self-sufficient, positive, contributing adults. I look forward to getting to know you and your campers this summer! wday@campfireak.org
mel
I look forward to 96 weeks of camp
coming to rural communities
throughout Alaska this summer!
Melanie Hill - Rural Alaska Program Manager
My name is Melanie Hill (known as "Raven Squirrel" at camp), and I am the Manager of Rural and School Age Programs here at Camp Fire Alaska. My love of the outdoors began as a child growing up on a small farm in Northeast Ohio. I graduated with my B.A. in Zoology and Anthropology from Ohio Wesleyan University where my studies focused on environmental conservation and indigenous peoples. My early experiences provided opportunities to work with youth and communities in Vietnam, Costa Rica, and Ecuador, but after university, I discovered camp and the unique environment which fosters opportunities for growth and change. I have spent the last 12 years working professionally in the camping industry, overseeing outdoor education, conferences and retreat, and summer camp programs. The past six years have been with Camp Fire Alaska, helping grow and develop both Camp K and Rural Programs. While I will greatly miss working with the youth, staff, and partner agencies at Camp K, this year I am looking forward to the opportunity to focus on the growing rural program. mhill@campfireak.org

Summer Camps for Teens

teenheaderIs your teen ready for an adventure beyond camp? We have expanded our camps for teenagers this year to include four sessions at Camp K on Kenai Lake and a special Teen Trek session at Camp Si-La-Meo. Check out these great adventures! 
 
ee5f7cef-2d04-449c-8f22-6b060370d729Camp Si-La-Meo Teen Trek, ages 13-15, June 19-23 / $300

Camp Si-La-Meo isn't just for kids! With Camp Si-La-Meo as their base, Teen Trek campers set out for adventures that take them into Alaska's beautiful natural world. Each day is full of activities that build outdoor living skills and develop teamwork and leadership abilities. At the end of the week, they work together to plan, prep and pack for an overnight camping experience. For beginning wilderness campers, this trip is a great opportunity to prepare for a longer, back country Teen Trek at Camp K.
f674d4f8-219f-434c-97fb-940e59e17c26Camp K Trailblazers Teen Trek: Ages 13-17, July 16-22 / $425

The Trailblazers Teen Trek is an introduction to overland, backcountry travel. In order to hoof it over Johnson Pass, campers will learn to plan, prepare and cook meals; organize a backpack; live out of tents; and read the weather, all while having fun as they work together to accomplish their goal.
a3c60908-2857-4063-aee5-7177cba4cddcCamp K Voyagers: Ages 13-17, July 8-14 or July 23-29 / $425

During the Voyagers Teen Trek, campers will be introduced to back country, cold water travel. They will learn to plan, prepare and cook meals; pack and paddle a canoe; live out of tents; read the weather; and, most importantly, to work together as a team.
485b632c-ef9b-47d7-a7ff-15bceaf96d8aCamp K Challengers: Ages 10-16, July 6-14 / $540

Designed for older campers, this extended session is packed full of exciting challenges and skill building. Advanced target sports, hiking, boating, and camping activities take campers out of camp for longer periods - providing even more opportunities to experience new things and grow.
9a6d71b2-6918-46f9-874b-4c1bdbb39d14Camp K's LIT Program: Ages 16-17, June 4-30 / no cost.

Does your teen feel too old to be a camper? If so, they may be ready to step into a leadership position. The LIT program is a multi-week opportunity for older teens to enhance leadership skills, co-lead camp experiences for younger campers, and gain readiness skills for college and the workplace. LIT's spend an extended time at camp, but come home each weekend. Learn more/apply here.

REGISTER NOW!

Learn About Summer Adventure Program!

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The snow has finally started to melt and we can all officially start thinking about summer. For those new to our Summer Adventure Program, we’ve got a video for you! It’s just over a minute, so press play and let those images of sunshine and laughter warm you.

Summer Adventure Program Details

Licensed Full-Day Program, June 5th – August 4th

Flexibility: Register by the day, week, or the whole summer!
Hours: Programs run from 7:00 A.M. to 6:00 P.M. (6:30 in Eagle River) 
Friends: Your camper will likely already know many of the other kids.
CCA: This program accepts child care assistance payments.
Ages: Entering grades 1 – 7
Locations: Denali, Homestead, and Abbott Loop elementary schools 

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It’s never too early to start inventing and discovering  who you are. For Career Week, campers become CEOs and must design and implement their own business. This session will culminate in our annual Lemonade Day sale, when youth will put their new business savvy into practice!
 

Summer Adventure’s Promise

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Regardless of whether your child enrolls for a day, a week, or the whole summer, we consistently offer developmentally appropriate programs that feature:

1. Healthy Futures Challenge: Designed to promote physical activity. Youth will be rewarded for logging their physical activity, which has been shown to promote awareness of healthy lifestyles.
2. STEM Activities: Engaging and surprising STEM activities will be packed into each and every session.
3. Art Instruction: We are delighted to announce that we will be partnering with Arctic Crown Canvas to bring professional art instruction to our Summer Adventure Programs.

Register Now!

 

How to Choose a Camp

Camp Fire Alaska has a variety of summer programs to match your family’s needs as well as your child’s interests and maturity level. In some cases, a mix of different camp experiences throughout the summer is the perfect choice. You can find more details on our website, but here are some guidelines to help get you started!
 

Summer Adventure Program

Licensed Full-Day Program, entering grades 1-7
June 5 – August 4

Flexibility: Register by the day, week, or the whole summer!
Friends: Your camper will likely already know many of the other kids.
CCA: This program accepts child care assistance payments.

Sample activities include outdoor recreation, field trips, gym games, cooking, science, creative arts and community involvement projects. Read more about this program!
 

Camp K on Kenai Lake

Overnight Camp, Ages 6-17
June 4 – July 30

All-Age Sessions: Camp K has short sessions for beginners and wilderness expeditions for older teens.
Independence: Overnight camp provides the best environment for kids to grow and challenge themselves.
Nature: Camp K’s beautiful surroundings provide campers with a chance to connect with the natural world around them.
 
Campers stay at camp overnight, sleep in bunk houses and participate in traditional summer camp activities such as canoeing, hiking, archery and creative arts. Read more about this program!
 

Camp Si-La-Meo

Day Camp, Ages 5 – 13 (& a special trek week for 13 – 15 year old campers)
June 5th – August 11th

Close to Home: It has all the fun of summer camp, but campers sleep at home each night.
Swimming: Campers of all ages learn to swim and/or improve their swimming skills.
Challenging: Campers are organized into small groups by age, and activities are designed to fit each group’s physical, mental and social ability levels.
 
Activities include: Swimming, Rock Wall Climbing, Boating, Archery, Creative Arts, Hiking, Outdoor Living Skills, and Team Building activities. Read more about this program!
 

Extra Resources

Next Steps: Preparing for Overnight Camp 
Need some financial support?
Our Scholarship Fund may help! Download the Application Form.
Donate: Please consider contributing to this year’s Campership Fund. Click Here to Donate.
 

Contact

Call us at (907) 279-3551 for questions about programs. Or, contact our summer program leaders…
Summer Adventure Program: Aimee Wedemeier @ awedemeier@campfireak.org
Camp K: Katie Adrian @ kadrian@campfireak.org
Camp Si-La-Meo: Will Day @ wday@campfireak.org

Is Your Child Ready for Summer Camp?

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When to start sending your child to overnight camp is a decision that depends on you and your child. A mature six year old might be ready to go, while some ten year olds might not be quite ready. Sometimes, “he’s not ready for camp” actually means you’re not ready. It’s a big step! To help you navigate this decision, we’ve pulled together some tips from experts in the field.

 

Advice from Peg Smith, former CEO of the American Camp Association

 
Parents should consider whether their child has been away from them overnight before, either with friends or family members, and how they have handled those separations. Really, it’s the child’s expectations that will drive the experience, and determine your confidence in them. I remember my son wanted to go to camp when he was about seven, and I had this bubble over my head saying ‘you’re not ready to do that.’ But he was. Talking to the child about camp and what their expectations are can help you decide if they understand what camp is, and if they’re ready to go.

 

How Your Camper Will Benefit

By Katie Adrian, Camp Fire’s Manager of Camp K on Kenai Lake 
Every camp experience provides opportunities for campers to build their social and emotional skills, and practice how to engage with their peers and with adults in a productive way that will carry over into their interactions at home, school, and in the community. From team building and get to know you games to challenging new activities and familiar favorites, camp is full of ways for youth to build self-confidence and independence.
 
You can help ease this transition for your camper by taking them out on a hike or sleeping in a tent in your backyard before sending them on the bus to camp. Sharing photos of camp also helps prepare your child for what camp will be like. No matter what you might be feeling as a parent, showing your child that you are excited for their amazing adventure will help them feel excited, too!
 
Camp is an amazing place to build new friendships and meet caring adults. As soon as a camper has built a connection to another person or activity at camp, any feelings of homesickness melt away and are replaced with independence, competence, and a sense of excitement about upcoming adventures. Families new to the camp experience are encouraged to call the Camp Fire office and speak to me about all of the awesome activities we offer at Camp Fire.
 

 
For Camp K’s session dates, rates, and more: Click Here!
 

2017 Camper Referral Competition

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Camp Fire community, it’s time to do what you do best — spread the word about our amazing camping programs!

Our Camper Referral Competition 2017 has begun! This year, you have the chance to win one of three fantastic prizes. You get a new entry for every camper you refer—the more campers you recruit, the greater your chances of winning!

 

Prize 1: A three-day motorhome rental from ABC Motorhome Rentals
Prize 2: Four roundtrip railroad tickets from Anchorage to Seward on the Alaska Railroad
Prize 3: Reservations for four in a painting class with Christina Wilson.

 

Please note:
– Recruited campers must be NEW to Camp Fire’s summer programs this year and they must register before May 15th.
– To qualify, the referring party must have been registered in a Camp Fire program within the past two years.
– The registering parent must include your name in the “Referred by someone? Tell us who!” field of our online registration form.
– Winners will be announced the first week of June.

Camp Fire provides youth the opportunity to find their spark, lift their voice and discover who they are

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Camp Fire gives youth the opportunity to discover the best in themselves and others in a fun, safe, learning environment

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Camp Fire offers outdoor programs which foster competence, stewardship and joy in the natural world

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Camp Fire fosters and encourages caring relationships

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