North Star Camp for Boys

Saturday, December 31, 2011

NSC Winter Pic of the Day - Dec. 31st

The Council Ring - click to enlarge
As we say goodbye to 2011, we're finishing our slate of winter pictures with The Council Ring. There is no more fitting way to end the year than with the place we spend every Friday night during the summer. We have a lot of keylogs to offer for the year past, starting with our awesome campers. Of course, without all of our North Star parents, their summer at camp wouldn't be possible. We'd also like to thank our tremendous staff, who work tirelessly during the summer and sacrifice so much. Finally we'd like to thank our alumni who support North Star in so many ways, from recommending us to friends to donating to the scholarship fund.

We're very lucky to be able to work at a place like North Star with such great people. We throw in the final keylog of 2011 to our North Star family!

- Leb, Sue, Andy and Dan

Friday, December 30, 2011

NSC Winter Pic of the Day - Dec. 30th

The Terrace - click to enlarge
In recent years, we've been faced with after meal announcements that go on, and on, and on.... and on. We've tried figuring out how to make them a bit shorter so, especially after lunch, we can head back to our cabins and enjoy a nice, long rest period. Well, maybe the key is making sure that the terrace is covered with snow and temps are below freezing! 

Check out the entire Winter Picture of the Day photo album.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

NSC Winter Pic of the Day - Dec. 29th

The Tipi - click to enlarge

During the summer, the tipi is covered with a large canvas, and for many years, we took the entire tipi down at the end of each camp season. Of course, that meant that in June, we had to put the entire thing back up. It gave us great appreciation of the Native American tribes of the Great Plains, because even with an illustrated manual, for us, putting up the tipi poles is an adventure. Kind of like tinfoil surprise, we never knew what our final product would look like. Several years ago, another camp told us that they just remove the canvas, but leave the poles up year round. Needless to say, it makes our lives a lot easier and our Counselors in Training, who are tasked with putting up the tipi, much happier.

Check out the entire Winter Picture of the Day photo album.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

NSC Winter Pic of the Day - Dec. 28th

A Walk in the Snow - click to enlarge
While many of our camp families and friends are enjoying nice long walks along a beach somewhere on their winter breaks, that's not what this picture is of. While this might resemble footprints in the sand, about to be erased by an incoming wave, these are actually bootprints in the newly fallen snow on a frozen Brewer's Bay. There is also probably a slight temp difference, too... today, its 19 degrees in Hayward, WI.

Check out the entire Winter Picture of the Day photo album.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

NSC Winter Pic of the Day - Dec. 27th

North Star - click to enlarge
There's nothing that a layer of snow doesn't add a nice element to... unless, of course, you don't like snow. One of the really cool things about the early sunset and its perspective on the horizon during the winter is that it tends to light things up differently during the winter and  create some really cool shadows.

Check out the entire Winter Picture of the Day photo album.

Monday, December 26, 2011

NSC Winter Pic of the Day - Dec. 26th

Day is Done... - click to enlarge
Our 12/19 Picture of the Day had a view of the sun setting on cabin Junior 6, illuminating the cabin. Here is a view of that same sunset, but from inside the cabin. The J6 counselor quarters have had many residents who love living there, waking up to the lake view. That lake view is a big different when Brewers Bay has been transformed to a sheet of ice covered by a layer of snow.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

NSC Winter Pic of the Day - Dec. 25th

Brewers Bay - click to enlarge
We wanted to take a moment to wish a Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukkah to all of our camp families, staff, alumni and friends who celebrate the holidays. We hope that you all are enjoying the day with loved ones! As always, we thank you for your continued support  and we're glad that you're part of the North Star family.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

NSC Winter Pic of the Day - Dec. 24th

Fun Bug Tree - click to enlarge
During the winter, the fun bug area (aka the Purple Martin Village) is quiet. The lone tree has lost all of its leaves and has always reminded me of something out of an Ansel Adams picture. For those keeping track, we're about 178 days until we have the inaugural fun bug dude of 2012!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Thursday, December 22, 2011

NSC Winter Pic of the Day - Dec. 22nd

Athletic Fields - Click to Enlarge
While our friends out west have gotten some snow, at least in the midwest, we're still waiting for a good covering of white. Today I decided to pass along this picture from the middle of the athletic fields, showing the the fields, lodge and other buildings covered with snow.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

NSC Winter Pic of the Day - Dec. 21st

Brewers Bay Sunset - click to enlarge

Our Winter Picture of the Day on 12/19 featured the sun setting on cabin J6. Here you can see where the sun actually sets during the winter. This shot of Brewers Bay is taken with the senior village along the right hand side of the picture. So instead if the sun setting behind the council ring, during the winter, it sets over Brewers Bay.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

NSC Winter Pic of the Day - Dec. 20th

Lets Play Two! - Click to enlarge
Bleacher seating with a great view of Lou's Diamond and the rest of the athletic field is pretty inexpensive during the winter months. Then again, there isn't much action to watch... but don't worry, we'll make sure that an usher wipes down your seat for you.

These rocking chairs, on the porch of the Handler Health Center, overlook one of our baseball diamonds as well as the athletic fields. During one of our winter camp visits, we actually did play a (short) game of snow softball. Needless to say, hitting a ball while bundled in a few layers and running to first in half a foot of snow isn't the easiest thing in the world. 

Monday, December 19, 2011

NSC Winter Pic of the Day - Dec. 19th

J6 Sunset - Click to Enlarge
During the summer, we're all used to the sun setting over the Council Ring. During the winter, however, visitors to camp are very surprised when they realize that the sun actually sets over Tipi Island. With camp being so far north, you can see a notable difference of where the sun is in the horizon, rising near swim point and, throughout the day, moves across the southern horizon. Here, you can see the setting sun reflecting off the front of cabin J6.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

NSC Winter Pic of the Day - Dec. 18th

Tipi Island - Click to Enlarge
During the summer, we head out towards Tipi Island on canoes, kayaks and other boats. During the winter, no watercraft is necessary to get there. Once a thick layer of ice covers Brewers Bay, you get there on foot. One of the neat parts of being at camp during the winter is taking a hike from the canoe racks, towards Tipi Island, and then over to swim point. If you're really adventurous and can withstand the cold, you can take an extended hike along the ridge, to the opening between Little Spider Lake and Clear Lake, and over to the Council Ring.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

NSC Winter Pic of the Day - Dec. 17th

With the holiday season approaching and not much snow thus far, we wanted to get into the holiday spirit. Each day up until the end of the year, we're going to post a picture of North Star during the winter. Not many people get to experience camp during the winter, when you can drive a car on the lake and see cabins covered with feet of snow. We hope all of our campers, staff, alumni and friends enjoy pictures of camp during the winter.
The Lodge - Click to enlarge

We wish you all a happy holidays. Safe travels to those of you who are headed somewhere for vacation.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Happy Holidays from NSC

We wanted to take this time to wish you and your family a happy and healthy holiday season. We are so glad that you choose to spend your summers with us! Whatever your plans for the holiday season, we hope that you have a lot of happy and healthy time with your friends and family.  And we are so thankful that you are a part of our North Star family.

With 2012 just ahead, we've got lots of news to share, and we're looking forward to our January newsletter, which will feature information about our 2012 staff. Our list of returners is tremendous and we know that you'll be thrilled about those guys who are going to make this coming summer a special one. In place of a full newsletter, we do have two quick pieces of info to pass along.

Logo Gear World Wide:
We've gotten a great response to our logo apparel, and now we want everyone to show off their North Star gear. We're trying to get as many pictures of campers, staff and camp families wearing their North Star gear wherever they are. We figured that with many of our campers traveling this holiday season, it would be a great time to kick this off. Whether you're headed somewhere exotic or even staying home, we hope that you'll join in the fun (if you're staying home, you just need to be creative...but appropriate). We'll start an album online of NSC Logo Gear World Wide!

To submit your pictures, you can either email them to, post them to Facebook and tag the North Star Camp page, or send them via twitter by adding @northstarcamp to your tweet. So as you're packing for the holidays, be sure to remember a NSC shirt or hoodie! Read more info about North Star Gear World Wide at Leb's Ramblings.

NSC Bowl Mania:
For those college football fans, we have again set up a group for Bowl Mania. Whether you or your son is a college football expert, a casual fan, or you pick your favorite team based on colors and mascots, it matters not. This is open to all campers, staff, alumni and friends. To join in, you can follow this link:
The password to enter the group is: keylog

As always, a wanegan goes to the winner.

Lastly, as you enjoy your time with your friends and family, don't forget to spread the word about North Star with anybody who may be interested. While we are full in almost every age group second session, we are still working hard to find the world's greatest campers. If you think of anyone that would be a good fit for North Star, please pass along their information to Andy (, 847-943-9559) or fill out our Refer-A-Friend Form  on the website.

Thanks for being part of the North Star Family!

Happy Holidays,

Leb, Sue, Dan and Andy

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Show your North Star Pride Around the Globe

As the holidays approach, we know that many of you are headed away for vacation. Some of you may be headed somewhere tropical while others may be eager to hit the slopes for some great skiing. We're always amazed, and a bit jealous, too, when we hear of some of the fantastic destinations that our campers and their families are headed to. So as you get ready to head off, we have a bit of a favor to ask... pack your North Star gear.

We have a small project that we're working on, and that is to get pictures of campers, staff, alumni and other NSC friends in their logo gear in as many cool places as possible. That may be on a beach, in front of one of the Wonders of the World, or even in your own neighborhood doing something fun. Even if you aren't headed to an exotic locale, thats okay, you can participate, too. You'll just have to be creative in your picture (and appropriate, too!!!).

Here's how to join in the fun. Step one is to pack your favorite NSC tee, sweatshirt or other logo item. When you find your spot, snap a picture or two. Then send them to us in one of the following ways
- Via Facebook, you can post the picture to your page and then tag the North Star Camp page
- Via Twitter, post the picture and mention @northstarcamp
- Via email, send the picture to
We'll be posting these pictures as they come in to our Facebook group page. While this is something that we're starting now, we hope that it will continue on and on. We want to see how many pictures we can amass of people in their NSC gear world wide!

Monday, December 5, 2011

On the Importance of Camp...

You don't have to search high and low to find the importance of the camp experience. Especially when the media is doing a great job of putting it right in front of us! Here are three great reads about different aspects of the camp experience:

On the importance of close friendships:
NBC's Today: Why boys need to have - and keep - a BFF:

On the value of unplugging:
Mitch Albom of the Detroit Free PressYouth are spending so much time online, for what?...

On the benefits seen later in life:
My Psychology Today: Creating Advantage in College: Summer camp gives children meaningful advantages in college...

What makes the camp experience so important to you? Happy reading!