Teresa on Winter Camping and Winter Creatures

Hey, Camp Fans!

Here at Everything Summer Camp, we love being the provider of all your summer camp needs, but we’re so much more than that. Check out the ‘Camp 101’ feature on our main site for a treasure trove of excellent advice concerning how best to prepare for your camp experience. Much more than a business, we’re a family and we like to show the Meet Teresa, our Foreman Assistant at Everything Summer Camp.faces of our family so you can learn something about the people who work here.

Let me virtually introduce you to the Foreman’s Assistant of our Production crew, Teresa—she’s pretty much next-in-line after our Production Supervisor, Shirley (who you can read about right here). Having occupied every station in our production department, Teresa is well-versed with the factory and what goes into a well-constructed camp trunk. She’s had a hand in making them for 11 years now!

Having come from Mason Shoes in Chippewa—a company of more than 600 employees, Teresa loved the change of pace at Everything Summer Camp where we never have more than forty people under our employment. While she still loves how small we are, Teresa’s favorite part about her job is the ten-hour days she has which makes every weekend three days long!

Teresa comes from a warm family upbringing in which they braved the cold together for the sake of fun. The oldest of her two brothers and two sisters, Teresa and her parents and siblings would do what they called ‘makeshift camping’ which was essentially in their backyard—they would go year-round.

Winters didn’t stop them. They would cut firewood, cook dinners, and go for sleigh rides in their family’s legitimate sleigh (pulled by the snow blower). And when they were done playing in the snow, they would hang their mittens over the fire and huddle close to the flames to get warm. It wasn’t exactly summer camp, but it certainly gave her lasting memories!

Thanks to her mother and her grandmother, Teresa is a unique artist of two different The Snow Cookie Monster from Teresa's family!media. Since she was 10, her mother coached her on how to decorate a cake. Her grandmother shared a great project with her classroom students first and then her family: colorful snow creatures! Get a good look at these painted snow sculptures and see how to make them yourself right here! I hope you’ve enjoyed learning a little about Teresa at Everything Summer Camp and, as always, thanks for reading!

- John

Meet our Printing Technician at Everything Summer Camp!

Hey, Fans of Everything Summer Camp!

Meet our Printing Technician at Everything Summer Camp, Ed Jr. (or EJ). An excellent part of our team, EJ is in charge of the printing part of our Designer Trunk production. He keeps tabs on orders so he knows how many printouts of which designs to mGet a load of this guy, he's our Printing Technician.ake! He also networks and finds artists to supply us with more of our awesome designs for our Designer Trunks.

If you don’t know what our Designer Trunks are, they’re our traditional C&N footlockers, only turned on its ear. These trunks are dressed up in a design that covers them completely (aside from the bottom). To get a better sense of what EJ does, take a look at our Designer Trunks right here.

To achieve such a cool look, EJ employs an interesting printing technique that embeds our high-definition designs directly into the metal exterior of our trunks. “I’ve learned a lot since I’ve been here,” he says.

When EJ isn’t at work, he’s home with his beautiful family—his wife Justine, their daughter Arya, and baby #2 on the way! He and Justine are very excited to bring another little baby into the world. In the meantime, they’re just enjoying the summer. “I love to go camping,” he told me. “And Justine’s family is really into that too—it’s an every weekend kind of thing for them,” he clarified.

“Camping is a big part of our family life.” EJ anticipates the camping trips he’ll be making this summer and the new member of his family that will be here by the end of summer! We can’t wait to meet her! EJ asks that all our customers enjoy your Designer Trunks or get one if you don’t already have one—they’re the coolest! And of course, as always, thanks for reading!

- John


Give Anita a Call!

Hey, Camp Preppers!

As we end the month of May and embark on what’s obviously our busiest season here at Everything Summer Camp, it’s imperative that we keep our Call Center packed with The best picture available of Anita Semankocompetent and helpful representatives who we like to think of as our gear counselors. With the proper management, our Call Center operates like a well-oiled machine: taking calls, placing orders, answering questions, and handling the occasional ‘problem order’.

This department requires a knowledgeable, dedicated head that can keep things running smoothly on a day-to-day basis and that’s where our Call Center Supervisor Anita comes in. Hired on for our seasonal help last year in the Call Center, Anita showed exceptional skills in customer service and it wasn’t long until we could see her in the supervisor position for our Call Center.

With technology taking over, the Call Center has seen a considerable decrease of in-bound calls. While they still receive a decent amount throughout the day, Anita estimates that 75% of customers contact us by either email or LiveChat as opposed to talking to us on the phone. But no matter what mode of communication our customers choose, “Nobody treats their customers as well as we do here,” comments Anita.

A mother herself as well as her own in-home daycare previous to her employment at Everything Summer Camp, it’s nothing short of fitting that she should have found a place for herself here at Everything Summer Camp where she continues to play a role of encouraging children as they grow up.

Bailing hay in the summers on the farm, Anita had no time for summer camp, but she and her husband of 24 years, John, have given their children a different upbringing, sending their younger daughter, Rachel to the Girl Scouts for a number of different summers in the Chippewa Valley and going for family camping trips with Rachel and their older son Robert.

Their children are older now, but back in the day Anita and John had a nice camper that the family and their yellow lab, Tubby Jo Semanko, would stay in during weekend camping trips where they would enjoy campfire pizzas and scrambled eggs in the morning with orange peel muffins.

Everything Summer Camp is more than happy to have such a diligent, warm employee as Anita. I love talking to Anita. Give us a call and maybe you can talk to her too! Enjoy your summer experience and, as always, thanks for reading!

- John

Who Picks our Products?

Hey, Fans of Everything Summer Camp!

Meet our Lead Buyer at Everything Summer Camp, Tim. An excellent part of our team, Tim keeps a running list of every single available item on our website in his head! It’s an incredibly long list made of a number of different departments and it’s constantly changing. Still, Tim manages to fulfill the needs of his job with efficiency and success.

It’s Tim’s job to scout for new brands to carry, analyze sales, and attend tradeshows to Meet Tim: Everything Summer Camp's Lead Buyer.find the current trends. And on top of all those responsibilities, he also leads the way in physically bringing in new products. From accepting shipments to putting them on our website, Tim is involved in every step along the way.

In the last three years, he has undoubtedly become an essential asset to Everything Summer Camp. He started back in the summer of 2014 when he came on as temporary help in our Shipping Department. Proving his hard work and unflinching work ethic that summer, we made the call to keep him on as our Administrative Assistant in charge of purchasing.

He excelled in that position and then proved himself as our Shipping Manager as well. Since he’s made his latest climb now as our Lead Buyer, he has only continued to provide our team at Everything Summer Camp with flawless organization and a good eye for cool new products to bring on board our online store. Down-to-earth and friendly, Tim is always there to help.

A great fit, Tim loves the work atmosphere that we’ve created here in Boyd, Wisconsin because he feels he can be himself at work. Simply put, “People just let you do your job here,” says Tim. Coming from his previous job as a nurse in Lake Wissota, the casual business environment is much appreciated.

How does Tim do it? How does he know what products will be popular? Well, simply put, he knows what kids think is cool. And now that you know what Tim does as our Lead Buyer, feel free to make a suggestion if there are any products you’d like to see that we don’t yet offer on our site. Leave him a note in the comments section below. As always, thanks for reading!

- John

Smart Art

Hey, Everything Summer Camp Fans!

It’s a little tricky, hanging a name on Art’s position at Everything Summer Camp. I guess you could say he’s our Handyman/Maintenance guy but he does much more than that. For the last five years, he’s been doing everything from fixing the flash dryer in our screen printing shop to mowing the grass on the company’s property.
Art is our handy maintenance guy at Everything Summer Camp.
Ask Art to build you something—anything—and he’ll come back with a piece of equipment that drops your jaw. He’s fixed my riding lawn mower for me as well as my two push mowers lickety-split!

Not too far from Everything Summer Camp, Art lives in Stanley, Wisconsin but he was born all the way on the other side of the country in Fresno, California. So how did he come to settle down in Stanley? Well, to answer that question, allow me to simply delve into some facts about the guy.

I’m not trying to say that Art’s old, but he definitely has more history under his belt that anyone else at Everything Summer Camp.

Just as he’s had every conceivable job under the sun, he’s been to every single one of the 48, contiguous United States. When choosing an area in which to settle, he didn’t look around the neighborhood, he looked at the U.S. map.

He chose northwestern Wisconsin because it was a place that suited him and his wife, Pat. Art met his wife in the military, as Art served as a Marine in the Viet Nam war. Together they raised three boys—Art II, Jeremy, and Sean. With their boys all grown up, Art and Pat share a simple life together with the house all to themselves—no kids or even animals. “Wife, kids, grandchildren—no pets,” he says.

Aside from a Marine, he’s also been a police officer, a meteorologist (in Viet Nam), a tool and die maker, and (an avid skier), he’s also worked Ski Patrol which entails skiing out to treat injured skiers on the scene. Remember when I said he’s done a lot of different jobs? I wasn’t makin’ it up. When going down the list, a line from one of Sinatra’s songs comes to mind:

I’ve been a puppet, a pauper, a pirate, a poet, a pawn, and a king. That’s all for today, Camp Fans. Thanks for reading.

- John

Happy birthday to…ME?

Hey, Blog Buddies!

Do you know what today is? Not that there’s any reason you should. After all, how would any of you know that today is my birthday unless you’re, like, my MOM or something (and Mom, if you’re reading this, why haven’t you called yet?)? In any case, today is, indeed, your loyal Blogger’s birthday. On this day, I turn 28. Happy Birthday to me!Happy Birthday to ME! Check out other people who share my birthday!

Looking back on my previous year, it seems hard to believe that it really WAS a whole year. It flew! They say time flies when you’re having fun, so I guess you could say that my previous year was a blast in its entirety! Yeah, it was pretty good, I suppose.

There are some people who absolutely hate their birthdays. They see them as nothing but another mile marker down the highway of life, marking them one year older and that much more removed from their youth. The other folks LOVE their birthdays! To them, birthdays aren’t mile markers, they’re celebrations of the day you were born, ‘x’ amount of years ago.

I’ve always been of the latter sort. I don’t mind my birthday one bit. On the contrary, I want to get together with as many friends and family members as I can to enjoy the fact that all of these people feel extremely obligated to be extra-nice to me today. But even if I don’t get to hang out with a bunch of people I know, I’m still happily amused as I pass all the strangers I see with the thought in my head that I know something they don’t know.

I never really wanted the big birthday party. I was more than content with my parents, siblings, and grandfather (who lived next-door) gathering around the dining room table for a dinner and cake of my choice with gift-opening to follow. I’ll remember those days fondly for the rest of my life!

But I’m not the only one who celebrates a January 7 birthday. Kenny Loggins, Dustin Diamond, Nicolas Cage, and President Fillmore are just a few famous folks who celebrate their birthdays today too. Check out more famous people who celebrate their birthday today—there are a lot. And, as always, thanks for reading.

- John

Meet Keisha, our Supervisor of the Call Center

Hey, Fans of Everything Summer Camp!

For today’s Blog post I’d like to tell you about another one of Everything Summer Camp’s excellent employees, Keisha. If you’ve placed an order over the phone for a C&N camp trunk or any other camping supplies in the last year, there’s a good chance that you spoke with Keisha.


Hired on for our seasonal help last year in the Call Center, Keisha showed exceptional skills in customer service—handling inbound calls and the occasional “problem order.” Now that the busy season at Everything Summer Camp is starting to cool down, Keisha was asked to stick around as our Call Center Supervisor.

Despite how busy we get at Everything Summer Camp, we always strive to keep our work environment fun. I think it’s safe to say that working here suits Keisha very well. She fits right in with our casual environment and diligent work style.

You can always count on Keisha for an infectious smile and a quick laugh to keep things light around the office. With a friendly attitude and an open ear, she’s always good to talk to (which is so clearly why she is now our Call Center Supervisor—we want all of you to get to talk to her as well)!

Nowadays they say nobody reads the newspaper anymore. But Keisha does. And that worked out well for us because that’s how she found us after her temporary position at United Health Care came to an end. Living in the small town of Thorp has made her drive to work much shorter and she enjoys the friendlier atmosphere here too.

More than happy to have received such a down-to-earth, hard-working employee as Keisha, we urge you to give us a call and maybe you can talk to Keisha too! Thanks for reading, everyone!

- John

Shot put Shelby

Hey, Camp Fans!

About a year ago, I told you about Shelby. She’s one of our great Call Center Shelby is one of our returning seasonal employees in the Call Center here at Everything Summer CampRepresentatives at Everything Summer Camp. She helps our customers (like you) place their orders over the phone. If you called us to place an order in the last three years then it’s possible that you’ve talked to Shelby!

I told you about her role in the Call Center calling customers back with questions about personalized products, handling returned items, and emailing customers for further contact. But today, I’d like to give you a better idea of what Shelby’s life is like outside of work.

She grew up just a little ways away from Everything Summer Camp, on her family’s farm. She fondly recalls taking turns with her younger brother over who would get up early to milk the cows.

While she grew up here, in Boyd, WI, she’s currently attending her senior year at UW Whitewater where she majors in Special Education and minors in Human Services. She’s also into Track at her college but not nearly as much as Shot put. Having thrown a shot 49’ and 7”, Shelby’s goal is to, at least once, become a national champ. She’s got quite an arm on her!

Shelby doesn’t like to toot her own horn, so I will for her. She’s AWESOME! She’s been doing it since the seventh grade, so she’s had nearly a decade to hone her skill. As for what inspired Shelby to try Shot put, she says, “My mom forced me into it,” but follows up quickly to say, “I’m glad she did!”

Very good for a place like Whitewater (a D-3 college), Shelby seems to think that, while she may stand a chance against a D-1 college (like Madison), she definitely wouldn’t be the champ. I’ll let you be the judge. Check out these great throws from Shelby under the post and thanks for reading!

- John



Learn a little more about Derek

Hey there, Everything Summer Camp Aficionados!

For today’s Blog post we’re going back to our guy in the Shipping Department. Taking on the chief role in Receiving and other assistive duties, Derek has brought his great attitude and excellent work ethic to Everything Summer Camp for the last five years.Our guy in Shipping and Receiving, learn all about Derek today on his Blog post.

Last year I posted about Derek’s job. I told you about how he picks, packs, and prints orders along with handling most of Everything Summer Camp’s incoming freight. Whether the shipments be camping gear, equipment for all of our personalized products, or simply supplies for our office, it goes through Derek’s hands first.

Today, however, I want to give you a better idea of what life looks like for Derek when he isn’t at work. A close-knit little family, Derek lives with his sister and brother-in-law (which happens to be Ryan, the Manager of our Shipping Department).

Originally from Boyceville, Wisconsin, Derek moved here, to Boyd, when he heard about a job at Everything Summer Camp. Since then, he’s really grown to love the job as well as the town. And, only 60 miles from home, Derek returns home often enough to see his family and his parents’ dogs, a Yellow Lab and a Springer Spaniel.

As for fun, Derek’s family has a cabin up north in Bessemer—just past the Wisconsin border in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Derek and his family typically makes it up once a year, but the best vacation he’s ever been on was the one he made to Europe about eight years ago.

Through a Student Ambassador Program, he smiles to say it. “I went to France, Italy, and Malta.” Malta is an island in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea, directly below Italy. “It was the time of my life,” he says without hesitation. “It was beautiful!”

In closing, Camp Fans, keep it in mind–the next time you get an order from Everything Summer Camp, it very well could have been Derek who packed it for you!

Until next time, Campers!

- John

Get To Know Ryan A Little Bit Better

Hey, Fans of Everything Summer Camp!

Almost exactly one year ago I posted about the manager of our Shipping Department and longtime employee of 11 years, Ryan. I told you all about what his job entails and how proud he is of the work environment that he’s established with the crew in Shipping—the camaraderie that they’ve formed.

Ryan works as hard as or even harder than what he expects out of his shipping crew and ryanhe’ll even sacrifice his sports radio to give his crew the morale boost of their varied musical choice. From Country to Kansas to Michael Jackson, the Shipping Department is always a hoppin’ place in the summer.

But today, we’ll delve a little deeper to get a picture of what Ryan’s life looks like outside of work. We won’t have to look too far since he lives just a mile away from the workplace here at Everything Summer Camp. A local resident of Boyd, Ryan lives with his lovely family: his wife, Stephanie, and their beautiful three-year-old daughter, Kaylee.

Ryan is originally from the nearby town of Cadott and even admits that, due to its closeness, he still commonly thinks of it as his hometown, despite the fact that he and Steph found their place and moved to Boyd a whole seven years ago.

Ryan’s little family enjoys annual visits between his parents as well as his parents-in-law. They often have get-togethers with Ryan’s extended family for holidays like Christmas and the Fourth of July. And, of course, Ryan enjoys his everyday life at home.

An avid (and rather skilled) golfer, Ryan is big into sports, closely following any of the major ones. He’s also hired on each season to be the coach of The Hornets, Cadott’s high school basketball team which he thoroughly enjoys.

As for Steph, “she doesn’t have any hobbies besides spending my money,” Ryan laughs, quickly following his statement with an eager, “No, no, no! Don’t put that. It’s just a sick joke!” Between being a devoted mother and loving wife, Steph squeezes in her commute to her job in Eau Claire, Wisconsin at Sacred Heart Hospital.

When Ryan’s not busy at work, coaching, or spending quality time with his family at home, he somehow finds time to play roles in such films as Remember the Titans and The Notebook.

Thanks for reading, Camp Fans!


- John