Summer Employment FAQs
Camp Amnicon staff lead a wide variety of wilderness trips, including family camp, backpacking, river and lake canoeing, white-water canoeing, and paddling a 34’ Montreal Canoe on Lake Superior. While the locations vary widely, some things are the same about every Amnicon trip. Every trip includes programming—usually a highly interactive Bible study, but sometimes a ‘secular study’ for non-Christian groups. Most trips are led by two guides and include an ‘adult leader’ attending with the group so you’re not working alone. Every trip affects the lives of our campers for the better—giving them strong relationships, self-confidence, and a growing faith.
Amnicon’s groups are very diverse—Amnicon’s groups are very diverse — privileged, at-risk, low-income, suburban, inner-city, Lutheran, Baptist, secular, and everything in between! Most groups consist of Junior or Senior High school kids; some groups are intergenerational, and family camp is especially so. Many Amnicon campers come from difficult backgrounds and come with a lot of baggage—which is exactly what makes these trips so inspiring and rewarding to lead.
The Amnicon week starts on Sunday with staff breakfast, worship, and meeting. Groups arrive Sunday afternoon, and the rest of the day is spent preparing for a trip (packing, health and safety talk, etc.). A campfire is held on the beach of Lake Superior. Groups and their guides depart for the trail in the morning, and spend 3-4 nights sleeping in tents and 3-4 days paddling, cooking over fires, and having fun. Groups depart Friday afternoon, and after an evaluation most staff take time off until Sunday morning. Some trips are staggered to arrive on Monday and depart on Saturday. We try to provide at least one full day off per week for guides, but this is not always possible. Support staff working in base usually have 2 days off a week.
Yes. When they’re not ‘on trail’ with a group, Amnicon staff live ‘in-base’ in rustic Adirondack cabins. Adirondacks (ADs for short) are simple, open-air cabins—like sleeping in a screen porch—and offer intimate access to the outdoors all summer. ADs have no electricity or running water, and are shared with one or two roommates. The ‘Shalom Shack’ serves as a staff lounge and has electricity. Meals are covered for the entire summer at camp, even during off-time. Some local support staff may choose to live at home instead of at camp.
YES. Guides must arrive at camp already certified in CPR and Lifeguarding (or Wilderness Water Safety, a course is offered at camp every spring). Many guides decide to acquire these certifications after they are hired. Amnicon also conducts a rigorous three week paid staff training session for guides, which includes two training camping trips and a Wilderness First Aid certification for every guide. Guides will learn everything from tying knots and starting fires (in the rain, no less!) to leading Bible study and managing group dynamics. We don’t need to hire camping experts—we’ll teach you everything you need to know. What we DO need are people with a passion for service and a love of the great outdoors.
Amnicon is a small camp, and the Amnicon staff is tight-knit and caring. We need to be, because the work is hard, and support from the staff community is essential for success! As a community, we try to imagine what it would be like to REALLY follow Jesus’ way of love and justice in our actions and relationships. Many staff tell us that their experience with the Amnicon staff community is life-changing. Come see for yourself!