Towering Pines Blog

Memories of Soaring Free . . .

Looking back at 2023 and the Summer of “Soaring Free” . . .

We always have time away from camp when we all go our separate ways to engage in what others call “real life.”  During this part of the year, we go back to school, to jobs, to our families and our friends at home.  And as the old saying goes, absence really can make the heart grow fonder.   Time away from camp reminds us of how truly valuable it is in our lives.  It gives us time to reflect on the the bigger picture and how camp impacts us in so many ways.  It also helps us to recall the little things we may sometimes have overlooked when we were caught up in the moment living the adventures and the experiences camp provides.

There is an awareness among the boys and all of us that our time at camp is short, and we are truly grateful to be at Towering Pines.  Some of the staff shared memories that stood out or impacted them in some way last summer.

Jeff:  The reveal of Bunny Foo Foo! (What a moment!!)

Jonathan Shirley:  Camp started with a haze from the fires in Canada.  It didn’t really impact the day to day of camp, but you just felt like there was a heaviness in the air. The first day that things were completely open and clear . . . you could see straight across the lake and there was a feeling of a weight being lifted. Just made me smile.

Drinka:  The peaceful feeling of being in my favorite place, making the camp birthday cake and the campers excitement over eating their favorite meals again.

Jon:  All of the amazing learning that took place during Trick Ski and Free Swim.  Every day boys were stepping up, trying new things and embracing everything about skiing on Nokomis.  It was incredible to be a part of this!

Angie:  Being at assembly each morning and watching the banter and laugher amidst the boys as they became more and more of a camp community every day and watching their faces as they embarked upon another day of learning and adventure.  And . . . let’s not forget Sam Sharpe’s daily call about the best activity of all . . . TUTORING!!  It just doesn’t get any better than that.

The campers also shared some of the memories that they’ll never forget while living in the Northwoods of Wisconsin.  These memories are all woven together into the Summer of 2023 as we all became part of a close-knit, and often times crazy, camp family right there on County D.

Cabin 4

Rodrigo G.:  Olympics, Quest Day and TP Fair; Ryan G.:  Quest Day, sleeping (even CITs get tired!!), and being a 2nd year CIT; Miles B.:  Archery, Riflery, and Dodgeball; Warner M.:  My cabinmates, the first time I got up on water skis and when I got to 30-yards in archery; Benji J.:  When I moved up to 25-yards in riflery; going to Woodland for Zoo; going to Cathy’s; Chester C.:  4th of July (“Red, White & Boom Campfire”), being sick at camp; Pirate Day; Guy C.:  holding a snake and meeting the counselors; Jose Pablo G.:  my friends, TP Fair and Olympics; Lorenzo V.G.:  Quest Day, TP Fair and Olympics

Cabin 5

Ben H.:  Camping, friends and the food; Devin S.:  “Jurassic Park 3” on movie night, “Magic the Gathering” (game) and the canoe trip; Chris W.:  winning trap at Red Arrow, leading campfire and eating great food; Roark C.:  creepy stories at our canoe trip campfire, getting awarded “Chief of the Day!” and scoring a goal in soccer; Chase J.:  big bass, going to a riflery exchange and playing Catan in the cabin; Will G.: creating Olympic team names, TP Fair and 4th of July; Matt H.:  getting up on one ski and catching 4 bass in one period; Andres O.:  passing to 20-yards in archery, first high score in riflery and getting “catch of the day” in fishing; Mateo R.:  catching a big bass, mile trail in biking and going to Cathy’s

Cabin 6

Javier F.:  Olympics, our cabin canoe trip and my cabin; Emiliano V.G.:  the friends, TP Fair and Coed Show; Diego O.:  my first bass, the games in the cabin and the match against Red Arrow; Bosco F.:  Olympics, soccer match versus Red Arrow and our cabin canoe trip; Jose Pablo B.:  my cabin, the activities and skin diving; Forrest R.:  our cabin canoe trip and skiing; Charilie L.:  catching a snake, catching a fish and eating fish; Thomas K.:  Getting Expert in riflery, basketball and discus in Olympics

Cabin 7

Rodrigo G.:  tennis versus Red Arrow, Olympics, our canoe trip; Andres A.:  tennis against Red Arrow, TP Olympics and the canoe trip; Juan Pablo O.:  going to the doctor, the cabin canoe trip and Olympics; Miguel:  cabin clean-up, riflery and sail race; Emilio:  telling jokes at the campfire; Reid J.:  skin diving for the first time, playing tennis and being in the blue section (in instructional swim); Jacob J.:  getting to sitting in riflery and when I got my 3-year badge (at Camp Birthday); Will Sharpe:  developing a photographic memory and singing the TP song; Johnny:  thinking I was lost on the biking part of the triathlon, first doing riflery and being bad but getting better and getting up on the wakeboard and the feeling of being behind the boat

Cabin 8

Sebas Z.:  playaking, tennis, playing soccer against Red Arrow; Rodrigo F.:  the first time I slalomed in skiing, when I broke the record in Olympics and when my team won Olympics; Pablo E.:  getting my Golden Archer, our canoe trip and all of camp (!!); Emeric D.:  when I finished the triathlon and when I met my new cabin; Lucas H.S.:  my friends, the outdoor activities and the food; Conor:  star gazing, getting to 50-yards in archery and my canoe trip; Lucio S.:  people at camp, the activities and the special events; Aiden Z.:  hanging with my friends, the food and activities, going star gazing; Henry P.:  my friends, my first cabin and the fun I had; Manuel:  EVERYTHING!!; Thomas S.:  moving to standing in riflery, shooting my “Expert” in riflery and shooting 11/20 in the trap competition with Red Arrow

Cabin 11

Johnny E.:  playing SSBU with everyone, writing a short horror story and mobile game skits at campfire; Mitch D.: Nathan proclaiming “FISH!”; William R.:  Playing “Capture the Flag,” the tennis exchange and playing Halo ball; Nathan T.:  catching my first Walleye, friends and the trap competition; William L.:  I got a 24″ Pike, going 2/2 in trap shooting delayed and TP Fair; Ricardo S.:  our cabin canoe trip, Coed Show and the CITs; Pato E.:  trick ski, soccer and the canoe trip; Alvaro A.:  Everything!!; Patricio R.S.:  vespers, campfires and the canoe trips

Cabin 12

Julian H.S.:  getting up on skis, Coed Show practices and fun talks at night; Eli W.:  getting to standing in rifllery, Coed Show practice and the canoe trip; Colin M.:  skindiving, meeting new people and being at camp; Ercole S.:  getting up on slalom, trick skiing and swimming in Olympics; Arturo:  when I won in the swimming competition, when I died in “Spoon Assassins” (a long time traditional TP game) and the canoe trip; Sam S.:  canoe trip, getting to 50-yards in archery and Coed Show practice


As we look back at the magnificent memories of 2023 . . . it is extremely exciting to look ahead to all of the opportunities to “Open New Doors in ’24.”  The words “Thank YOU” seem almost inadequate, so please know that we are immensely grateful for the opportunity to share Towering Pines Camp for Boys with your families.  We are so excited to see these fellas back at camp next summer!  If you haven’t yet registered your son, just click this link!!

Happy New Year!

Angie Ziller

  • Camp Mom at TP
  • Leadership Staff at TP/Office Manager
  • Marketing TP/Woodland
  • Leadership Team TP/Woodland
  • Assistant Waterfront Director at Woodland
  • Counselor at Woodland
  • “Building in our hearts fond memories, Towering Pines for you.”