About YMCA Camp Pepin
Welcome to YMCA Camp Pepin!
Many people that see Camp Pepin for the first time are amazed at its picturesque beauty. The bluffs, the lake, and the woods give this region a unique character that has attracted people to the upper Mississippi valley for years. Add to that the campers, the staff, and the rich history which are so much a part of Camp Pepin, and that is what makes this place a jewel among camps.
YMCA Camp Tradition
A part of the Red Wing Family YMCA in Minnesota, Camp Pepin has been serving the community since 1935. Summer camp at our present Deer Island location began in the 1930's when Joe Saul, the Director of the Red Wing YMCA, led a small group of youth into Wisconsin to camp along the pristine shores of Lake Pepin. Through a generous land donation, their campsite was permanently established as a place where youth and adults from Minnesota, Wisconsin, and all around the world could come to enjoy the natural beauty of this area for generations. Today, we host summer campers, school groups, churches, colleges, musical ensembles, families, and more through our year-round programs.
Beautiful and Convenient Location
Nestled among the wooded bluffs of the Mississippi River, Camp Pepin enjoys 200' of beachfront along Lake Pepin, a widening in the Mississippi. We are located between Stockholm, Wisconsin - a small village that is a favorite stop for summer visitors to the area, and Pepin, Wisconsin - the birthplace of famed author Laura Ingalls Wilder, who wrote the Little House series. While our camp is situated in a forested rural area,
we are within a short drive of Red Wing, Winona, Rochester, the Twin Cities, La Crosse, and Eau Claire.
In keeping with the mission, vision, and core values of the YMCA, Camp Pepin strives to provide a safe natural setting with modern facilities where individuals can develop an awareness and appreciation of themselves, each other, and the environment through hands-on learning sessions, cooperative exercises, recreational activities, and small-group living situations.
Modern lakeside cabins make staying at Camp Pepin comfortable and cozy. All cabins enjoy a wonderful view of Lake Pepin and the bluffs beyond, and they are carpeted, heated, and serviced by electricity for convenience. The camp also boasts several year-round indoor meeting areas, including a Recreation Hall that is large enough to fit a full symphony orchestra! Bathrooms at camp are clean and heated, and feature individual shower units for privacy. Photos and capacities of our accommodations, meeting rooms, dining hall, and outdoor facilities can be viewed by clicking their locations on the Camp Map.
Three family-style meals with a fresh salad bar at every lunch and dinner are served daily during the summer and by request during the rest of the year in our spacious Dining Hall, which looks out over camp and Lake Pepin. Our kitchen staff are food-service industry professionals who understand the importance of good nutrition and a well-balanced menu. Many special dietary requirements can be accommodated with advanced notice.
Skill Development Activities
Led by our trained staff, the skill activities and classes that we offer are age-appropriate and fun. They encourage campers and students to challenge themselves in trying something new, to work with others of varying backgrounds, and to create an "I can" attitude. By the end of each experience, many campers and students claim to have performed an activity at Camp Pepin that they have never done before, ultimately fostering in them a broader diversity of interests and a more well-rounded character. Lists of activities that Camp Pepin offers can be found under the specific program descriptions.
Camp Pepin’s lakeside athletic field is a wonderful place to enjoy year-round field sports like volleyball, soccer, ultimate Frisbee, boot hockey, and softball. Another popular camp activity is our challenge course, complete with low-ropes and high-ropes elements, a Faith Pole, and a Climbing Tower. Downhill sledding, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, and ice-fishing are available during the snowy seasons. Then, when the day is done, our campfire circle on the beach by the waterfront is a relaxing place to watch a sunset over the lake.
Our team of camp staff is comprised of mature, enthusiastic, motivated professionals from all around the country and the world. Typically, they have been involved in courses of study or careers that are youth-oriented. After undergoing thorough background and reference checks, our staff members are selected on the basis of their values and proven abilities in working with children and adults. They also participate in an extensive training program that includes First Aid, CPR, and safety awareness sessions. Camp Pepin is proud of the high-caliber of individuals that provide the leadership for our guests each year.
Camp Pepin hosts around 110 campers (ages 7-17) for 8 weeks (Sunday-Friday) throughout the summer (June-August). Resident Counselors arrive about a week-and-a-half prior to the beginning of camp for training. They work together in pairs when supervising cabin groups of up to 10 campers each and live in cabins with the campers. They also guide campers in activities that include canoeing, kayaking, swimming, rugby, archery, riflery, nature, horseback riding, theater, arts and crafts, high ropes, climbing wall, and adventure tripping.
Program staff arrive about two weeks before camp for training. Program staff oversee major activity areas or specialty camps while serving in positions such as Program Director, LeadershipDirector, Trail Director,Waterfront Director, Boating Director, Arts & Crafts Director, and Challenge Course Director. When program staff are not with the campers, they live in staff lodging. All staff receive housing and meals throughout the summer at no cost while camp is in session.
A Safe Place
Our number one priority at Camp Pepin is maintaining a safe environment for everyone. We accomplish this through a variety of procedures, including staff screening, routine inspections, and national accreditation by the American Camp Association. Throughout the year, we are constantly upgrading our programs, services, and facilities in accordance with current industry standards.
Immediate Health Care
Staff certified in the most current health care procedures are always available to provide immediate medical care for injuries and illnesses. The Pepin County Rescue Squad, St. Elizabeth's Medical Center in Wabasha, MN, and Fairview Red Wing Medical Center in Red Wing, MN, are available for emergencies.
Tradition | Location | Mission | Facilities | Meals | Activities | Recreation | Staff | Camp Life | Safety | Health Care
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