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    Camp Rosenbaum returns to in-person activities, celebrates its 50th Anniversary

    Camp Rosenbaum returns to in-person activities, celebrates its 50th Anniversary

    Courtesy Photo | A Camp Rosenbaum staff member helps out a youth camper with ‘her catch’ at the...... read more read more



    Courtesy Story

    Oregon National Guard Public Affairs Office

    WARRENTON, Ore. - After two years of cancellations due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Camp Rosenbaum saw the return of campers, staff and volunteers to help officially celebrate the 50th Anniversary from July 23-29, 2022.

    Since its inception in 1970, Camp Rosenbaum has offered a unique experience to children from low-income households and disadvantaged circumstances across Oregon and Southwest Washington. All the while, the campers focus on a daily “good citizenship” theme of the day, from “good citizen’s care” to “good citizens work together.” Throughout the week campers are making new friends, learning the power of positive role models, and learning life skills to empower themselves and boost confidence in their future choices.

    The camp is named after the late Fred Rosenbaum, who escaped the Holocaust as a boy and served as a brigadier general in the Oregon National Guard and as chairman of the Housing Authority of Portland.

    "A lot of the principles that carried him through that hard time are the principles we use today,” said Lt. Col. Brian Kroeller, who serves at the camp director.

    At Camp Rosenbaum, counselor’s and other staff members have a ‘Camp Name,’ which gives the kids an instant reference to connect to the adults supporting the camp. Even though he is uniform, Kroeller also has a camp name, and is known to the kids as “Rogue.”

    “We’re actually seeing a really positive vibe, not only from the staff, but from the kids this year,” he said.

    What makes Camp Rosenbaum so special is that the campers do not know the professions of the counselors and volunteers. All Camp Rosenbaum staff are volunteers, composed of an extraordinary partnership between the Oregon National Guard, Portland Police Bureau and Home Forward of Portland.

    “It's people that they can trust and talk with because a lot of these kids come from backgrounds where they may not always have the best relationship with adults, or in my experience, with police officers specifically,” said Chris “Skidmark” Skidmore, a Clark County Sheriff Deputy.

    While kids are having fun riding horses, building rockets, playing on the beach or just hanging out with new friends, they get a chance to play and explore for a week with enthusiastic adults that share their energy for, “just being a kid.”

    One of the most difficult decisions was to cancel camp due to COVID-19, for two years. Camp Rosenbaum wanted to find a way to still serve low-income children during those two summers with a camp-like experience.

    In 2020, the Camp Rosenbaum Program Director implemented Operation Lemonade; a week’s worth of camp activities stuffed in a new backpack and a dedicated website linking on-line videos. The backpacks, which were sponsored by local supporters, contained an activity schedule and were filled with new items such as science experiments, footballs, books, journals, arts & crafts, and educational kits from first responder agencies. In total, 1,000 backpacks were delivered to children in Oregon and SW Washington.

    Thanks to Camp Rosenbaum’s generous sponsors and donors, the week-long camp is free to the families who send their children and focuses on good citizenship skills and the hope and support for a bright future.

    Barry “Sizzler” Quinn, who works for Tualatin Valley Fire and Rescue and has been coming to camp for well over a dozen years, said that this anniversary is important but looks forward to more years ahead.

    “We all missed being at camp in-person, but 50 years is significant and all I see is the next 50 years.”


    * Story by Lt. Col. Brian "Rogue" Kroeller, Camp Rosenbaum Director and Crystal "Spanky" Kroeller, Camp Rosenbaum Program Director



    Date Taken: 08.01.2022
    Date Posted: 09.20.2022 18:46
    Story ID: 429721
    Location: WARRENTON, OR, US 

    Web Views: 165
    Downloads: 0