Camp Aranzazu
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Camp Aranzazu

Meet our 2022 Activity Leaders

Written by: Bianca Hernandez, Development Associate

Activity Leaders have the fun and impactful job of enriching the lives of our campers with special needs and chronic illnesses through unique camping, environmental studies and retreat experiences in Rockport, TX. Our activity leaders facilitate a wide variety of activities including, arts and crafts, archery, high and low challenge courses, sports and games, kayaking, stand up paddle boarding, fishing, sailing, swimming, nature sessions and more!

Activity leaders pose and Amelia pose with lifeguarding supplies in front of the party pool after a long week of training
Four activity leaders and Ted pose at the bayfront in front of a sailboat after a long week of sailing training on the bay
Activity leaders take a group picture with their challenge course instructor in front of the rockwall after a long week of challenge course training

These dedicated young people make the magic happen at Camp Aranzazu, and I can’t wait for you to meet them this summer! Keep reading to learn more about this year’s incredible group of activity leaders.

Activity leader Gilian smiles and spreads her arms out wide outside of the dining hall
Activity leader Anna smiles and points at camera outside of the dining hall
From left: Kaleb, Gillian, and Anna

We’re excited to welcome Kaleb for his first summer at Camp Aranzazu! Kaleb is most excited to help campers tackle the Challenge Course and gaining more experience in therapeutic recreation. Kaleb is no stranger to ropes courses; he has previous experience working at an adventure therapy course and knows how rewarding that time can be for campers AND staff! Kaleb is a North Carolina native and looking forward to spending the summer learning new skills and meeting new people at Camp Aranzazu! If you tell Kaleb enough jokes this summer, you may be able to hear his best Spongebob laugh!

Join us in welcoming first-time activity leader, Gillian! Camp Aranzazu is the perfect place for Gillian. She’s spent the last few weeks in training learning about all our camp activities and looking forward to putting her skipper training to work as she sails with campers along Copano Bay. Gillian never thought she’d be a skipper, and she’s excited to spend the summer on the water! When she’s not at the Bayfront, you can expect to find Gillian spending time laughing with her coworkers or resting up for all the camp adventures she’ll have this year.

Say hello to one of our first-time activity leaders, Anna! Anna is a compassionate and hardworking Michigander who’s looking forward to all the time she’ll spend with campers sailing along Copano Bay. Anna grew up sailing with her dad in Michigan and is looking forward to putting her skills to use on the Texas Gulf Coast. If you’re wondering what to talk about with Anna while you’re out on the water, chat with her about her love for music — she plays the ukulele, piano, and drums!

Activity leader Hannah spreads her arms wide and smiles big outside of the dining hall
Activity leader Rachel puts her arms up high and smiles outside of the dining hall
From left: Hannah, Raeann, and Rachel

Our team is thrilled to have Hannah join us for another summer at Camp Aranzazu! If you met her last year, you’ll know Hannah is full of laughs and always looking for ways to enjoy as many new adventures as possible. Hannah is most looking forward to reuniting with our returning campers and meeting new campers this summer! As a returning activity leader, Hannah can’t wait to be out on the challenge course with campers once again. “Watching campers face their fears, meet their goals, and support their friends NEVER gets old!”

We’re lucky to have Raeann on our team for a second year at Camp Aranzazu! Raeann is focusing on being in the moment and soaking up all the memories spent getting to know campers. She’s a self-described “sunshiny” person and will be full of energy this summer! Raeann is excited to show off her birding skills and help campers find love for enjoying our natural environment. We can’t wait for our returning and new campers to spend time with Raeann this summer!

Welcome to the team, Rachel! Rachel is a first-time activity leader and looking forward to spending her summer adventuring at Camp Aranzazu. As a first-time activity leader, Rachel is excited to share her passion for being creative while doing arts and crafts with campers and showing campers the benefits of kayaking. “Kayaking is a peaceful and easy way to be outside, and you get to see all kinds of nature.” Rachel is hoping to help our campers have fun and make tons of memories this summer! Fun fact about Rachel: she’s scuba certified!

Activity leader arnold jumps up in air and touches his toes in a straddle in front of the pavilion
Activity leader Katie Anne points at camera and smiles outside dining hall at camp
From left: Arnold, Gabrielle, Katie Anne

You’ll be excited to know that we’re welcoming Arnold back for his second summer at Camp Aranzazu. Arnold was a camper at Camp Aranzazu and has a special love for our mission and the work we do with campers. Arnold will be spending his summer getting to know campers, making everyone around him laugh, and balling up at the nearest basketball court. Arnoldo is excited to create a memorable camping experience for all the campers who come through the gates this summer!

Give a big Camp Aranzazu welcome to Gabrielle who will be joining our team for the first time this summer! Gabrielle is most looking forward to tackling new activities and exploring all that Camp Aranzazu has to offer. As a first-time activity leader, Gabrielle is excited to facilitate arts and crafts for our campers because she understands how helpful these activities can be to relieve stress. When she’s not working or studying, you might find Gabrielle watching her favorite movie or wandering around a museum.

We’re so happy to have Katie Anne back at Camp Aranzazu for her second summer! As a returning activity leader, Katie Anne can’t wait to welcome back our returning campers and make memories with all the smiling campers arriving at Camp for the first time. She’s excited to help campers challenge themselves at archery and hit the target! If you’re looking for Katie Anne around camp, you can probably find her enjoying the beauty of camp on a walk around the property or doodling in the Art Center.

Activity leader misty smiles and stands against brick wall
Alyssa and camper hold up bottle of sand while doing activities in the nature education building
Activity leader word stands on one leg with his arms and other leg spread out and smiles outside dining hall

We’ll also have a few long-time friends of Camp Aranzazu, Misty, Alyssa, and Word, join in on the fun this summer. Each of them have moved on from their time at Camp Aranzazu, but will be returning to camp with us a bit throughout the year.

Thanks for choosing to spend your summer at Camp Aranzazu! We know it will be a summer to remember! If you are interested in learning more about future activity leader openings, please visit our website.

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Camp Aranzazu

Camp Aranzazu

Regardless of any physical or developmental limitations, everyone can fully participate in and enjoy all the typical camping activities at Camp Aranzazu.