Towering Pines Blog

25 years in the making!!!

Posted by on July 1, 2016
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My son Isaac at TP!!


It was with great anticipation that I awaited my arrival at Towering Pines this year.  After all, it’s been a few moons ago since I spent my summers at camp—26 years ago to be exact.  Since the day I left, I had always promised myself I would come back someday, I just wasn’t sure when that someday would come.

For those of you who don’t know me, my name is Angie Wenzl Ziller, and I spent several summers as a counselor at Camp Woodland in the 90’s.  Although that is more years than all of the campers and most of the counselors have been alive, at the same time, in many ways it seems like the blink of the eye.  I now have 3 children of my own, and it has always been a dream of mine that they would spend time at Camp Woodland and Towering Pines.

Something that a parent said to me when I was a 1st-year counselor has stayed with me all these years and is one of the reasons I feel so strongly about camp.  I can hear her telling me this as though it was yesterday.  We were standing on the waterfront at the end of the summer, and she said, “You know, Angie, the first summer I dropped my kids off at camp, I felt like the most selfish mom ever.”  I looked at her rather stunned thinking that I had similar thoughts when I first arrived.  But she went on to say, “And then at the end of that first summer I realized that I would be the most selfish parent ever if I did not let my kids come back again next year!”

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Angie’s first year in Treetops

I went on to ask her what she meant by this, and she explained that allowing her kids to come to camp gave them an opportunity of a lifetime because over the course of that first summer, something very amazing happened to each of them.  Of course, she had my attention by now, and I asked her what this amazing thing was, and she said, “My kids changed over the summer.  They gained confidence, self-esteem, and a belief in themselves that they can do anything or at least give it a really good try.  It truly changed their lives.”  My perspective had changed as well that summer.  I saw kids arrive timid and apprehensive, and over the summer they had become self-assured and confident.  They were willing to try new things and take risks that they wouldn’t have been able to before.

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Having fun at TP in 2016

This summer my experience at camp will offer a different perspective, that of a Camp Mom while working here at TP and also as a parent of campers at both TP and Woodland.  As I drove down the familiar TP road, it truly felt like coming home.  Camp has created so many memories for me and inspired me to become the person I am today.  I am extremely grateful for the opportunity to be back here working and for my kids to be here at camp because I know that something amazing will happen to them too just as it did for those campers many years ago.
Here’s to a great summer!!

Thank you for sharing your kids with us and for giving them the chance of a lifetime—one in which they will grow, learn and change in incredible ways!

Angie Wenzl Ziller

Camp Mom at TP
Office Manager at TP
Marketing TP/Woodland
Assistant Waterfront Director at Woodland
Counselor at Woodland