Camp Kawaga

Minocqua, Wisconsin    

Lantern Review of Camp Kawaga

One of the country’s oldest camps is a wonderful example of appealing to many of a boy’s developmental needs while energizing the youthful spirit that fuels the vitality of boyhood. Camp Kawaga is a special mix of long-held traditions, fresh programming, competitive sports and outdoor recreation.

The compact campus hosts nearly 300 boys, equally split between full summer and 4-week campers. This is an active place where a constant presentation of options creates a vibrant program. A vast offering of more than one-hundred (yes, 100!) activities encourage campers to look beyond what they already know and to try new things. Skills are taught through a unique club structure. Boys join a club of their choice (specific to an activity) and spend five days developing skills in that activity. These skills are in turn showcased in daily afternoon league play. Kawaga promotes healthy competition and uses it as a tool to build confidence and resilience, while making sure that fair play and sportsmanship remain the priority.

The reason campers return, however, may have more to do with the intriguing value program that’s filtered through a rich Indian tradition. Boys are inducted into Honorary Tribes after cumulatively gathering points. Points are awarded based on active participation in camp activities and demonstration of character values. The presentation of a tribal name at the Sunday pow-wow cements a meaningful accomplishment that goes beyond simple wins or basic character. It is about tangible character development.

The camper return rate of more than 90% is trumped by a remarkable staff return rate of 95%. Not only does that staff benchmark reflect the loyalty and dedication to the mission, but it also reinforces all of the traditions, skills and values that Kawaga holds dear. It promotes consistency and experience.

Whether boys are on the soccer pitch or waterskiing from their wonderful waterfront, Kawaga’s community is a supportive one and their traditions find and develop eager spirits.

Fast Facts

  • Boys Only
  • 185 Campers per Session
  • 4-week, 8-week
  • Founded in 1915
  • $$

Director's Message

Camp Kawaga is a well balanced, active program for boys 7-16 years old. Through active programming and sports, as well as water activities, campers will have ample opportunity to have fun, learn new activities or improve on skills they already have started. Camp Kawaga's proud traditions and great staff help raise young boys into great young men. The boys will make friends from all over the country as they learn independence, self-confidence and life skills.

Program Highlights

  • 100 Activities
  • Team Sports
  • Arts & Crafts
  • Individual Activities
  • Tripping
  • Waterfront
  • Forest

Top 5 Activities

  • Football
  • Lacrosse
  • Waterskiing
  • Trampball
  • Archery

Travel Information

Families can drive and drop off at camp - camp is approximately 2 hours north of Madision, WI. There is a luxury bus from north side suburbs of Chicago area which also stops at Milwaukee (MKE) airport en route to camp. The drop off/pickup point is about 25 min from OHare airport, so many out of state families fly in to Chicago and drop off son for bus ride. Camp Kawaga does not pick up at ORD. Campers can fly into MKE for pick up. Campers can also fly to regional airports about one hour away in Wausau (CWA) or Rhinelander (RHI) where camp vans will pick up fliers.


Camp Kawaga

(715) 356-6262

Ty Simpson