How Did We Go @ ACA National Conference?

After a very busy few weeks of office work, Ec, Alfred, Phil, Anton and Kylie were ready for a week in Atlanta for a change of pace. The international ACA conference is held in a new location each year and this year we were lucky enough to have it hosted only 3 hours away from Camp Carolina. Some slight car sickness, stunning sunsets and a drive by from Alfred Thompson Snr the 5 arrived at their shared apartment for the week, located on Peachtree avenue, 10 min away from downtown. A delicious tapas dinner at a local restaurant and we headed to bed, ready for the Epic (Emerging Professionals In Camping) pre conference seminar the following morning.

Phil, Ec and Anton busy learning!

The Conference was held at the Hyatt, and took up the lower 3 levels of the hotel. The Epic seminar was presented by Chris Thurber and Steve Maguire. Chris is a psychologist and one of the leading educators in the camping industry as well as being a well-known author. He attended Camp Carolina’s pre season training in 2007 and educated our counselors on how to ensure the campers had the most positive camp experience possible. Steve Maguire is a professional speaker, author and summer camp consultant. The seminar included a wide variety of topics, with the focus being developing camps leadership through the years.


Wednesday and Thursday were busy days filled with learning. The 5 had the freedom to pick up to 6 seminars a day focussing on a wide variety of topics. Some stand out presentations were Bob Ditter’s seminars on “How to Develop Grit, Zest and Self Control at Camp” and “Creative , Practical Approaches to Camper Behavioural Challenges”, Michael Thompsons seminar on “Helping Anxious Parent’s” and Michael Brandewein’s seminar on “New Terrific Training Tools to Deepen Staff Learning and Boost Performance”. All of these speakers are psychologists, social workers, professional speakers and highly regarded in the camping community for their expertise and presentation skills to inspire and motivate all levels of camp professionals.

Anton, Alfred, Kylie and Phil at the closing Keynote

Friday started with 2 fantastic seminar sessions and ended at 1PM with a delicious lunch and closing Keynote Presentation. Ec, Alfred, Anton, Phil and Kylie all had a fantastic time and got a lot of creative new ideas to implement in to camp as well as obtain new skills to ensure that the staff, children and parents all have the best camp experience possible. We are currently reviewing all the information to decide what will work best at Camp Carolina.

Phil repping for CCB at the Coca Cola Factory

Ec, Alfred and Anton headed back to Brevard Friday evening whilst Phil and Kylie played “tourist” in Atlanta and spent a night in Buck Head and checked out the Georgia Aquarium and Coca Cola Factory.

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