Every spring, we ask the parents of our Deerhorn Leaders to write blog about their son’s time at Deerhorn. This year, for the first time ever, we will have 8 Deerhorn Leaders at camp. Will Strickland will be co-leading the Iroquois with JP Koehl. Will hails from Los Altos, California and this summer will be his 8th as a camper. Here’s what his parents have to say about Will’s 8 years at Deerhorn!
Although Rod and I have both been in northern California for our entire adult lives, I always wanted our children to go to summer camp in my home state of Wisconsin. Our daughter went to the same girls camp as her older cousins, so when Will reached camp age we wanted him to attend the same camp (which shall go unnamed!) where his older cousin from Chicago was attending at the time. We were disappointed to learn that it only offered month-long sessions and wouldn’t do anything shorter, even for the youngest boys. At 8 years old, Will didn’t want to be away for that long so I searched for another option.
When a friend recommended Deerhorn, we decided to try it thinking that when Will was older, we’d likely switch him to his cousin’s camp. Needless to say, that NEVER happened! Will and we loved everything about Deerhorn right from the start.
Deerhorn is Will’s favorite place on the planet. Not only does he have a blast 24/7, as his parents we feel that the Deerhorn community has truly helped raise him. We love that Deerhorn focuses on helping the boys grow into good, kind men. We love the turtle flipper story and we love the Deerhorn Creed (which we display on a refrigerator magnet at home!).
We love that there is no electricity in the koogees and we love that the boys go without electronics for their entire stay. (And even though Will likes video games as much as most teens, he really doesn’t miss games or his phone at Deerhorn).
We love the Father Son option and how well the Broadbridge family has created a Deerhorn community across the country. We feel so incredibly lucky to have stumbled upon this special place in the Northwoods and are grateful that the other camp didn’t work for Will when he was younger.
Every time we picked Will up at the end of his Deerhorn stay — after regaling us with stories about the team competitions and “scalp” and his water ski exploits and his koogee friends – Will has said that he wants to go for a longer time the following year… and he did. He is thrilled and honored to have the opportunity to be a Leader of the Iroquois this summer, and we are thankful for Camp Deerhorn.