ACA Nationals Trip Report #1

Since we ask our campers to give trip reports after they get back from their canoe and hiking trips its only appropriate that we do the same. For those of you who don’t know, every February the American Camp Association holds their annual conference, and for us all, its important to attend for a lot of reasons. The conference is a great source of continued education as there are both keynote speakers and individual breakout sessions on issues that help us make North Star a better place. The conference is also a great time for us to catch up with other camps, not only from across Wisconsin and the Midwest, but really the world as there is a great contingent of representatives from international camp attending.

The conference is also a lot of fun and it doesn’t hurt that the 2011 ACA National Conference is in sunny San Diego. For Leb and Sue who live in Arizona, this may not be a big deal. For Andy and I, who left 20 inches of snow and sub zero temps in Chicago, its a nice break. Prior to the conference, Leb, Sue and Andy spent time in Phoenix and Los Angeles, meeting up with campers and alums at reunions in both cities. We’ll have lots of news from both in our upcoming newsletter.

The conference actually kicked off with the shorter Association of Independant Camps conference. There were lots of great speakers, but there were two other hightlights… for Leb and Sue, it was watching the Packers top the Steelers at the AIC Superbowl Party (yes, that is Leb and Sue in Cheesehead hats). Andy happened to be in the great state of Texas cheering on the Packer in person. We also had a great time at the AIC Western themed banquet where Leb won “Mr Tombstone” at the cowboy themed dinner.

The AIC conference ended and the national conference kicked off on Tuesday. It started with a great keynote speech from Stanford professor and best selling author Chip Heath. We all then had our first set of breakout educational sessions before meeting up with camps from Illinois and Wisconsin at a section meeting. Conference day two kicks off at 8am and we’ll report more from San Diego soon!