Camp Climb | Summer Camp for Creative Entrepreneurs

In August, I spent an amazing, unplugged weekend in New Liberty, Iowa at a Girl Scout Campgrounds for the inaugural Camp Climb retreat. It was exactly what my mind and soul needed after a busy summer wedding season, before heading into an even busier fall season. I went into the camp only knowing a couple of people attending, including speaker Dannie Fountain (aka my Google/Squarespace/marketing guru) and fellow Champaign-area resident Leah Longueville who I met with for coffee before the camp once we both realized we were from the same place. People travelled from all over the country to attend this camp, and I met a ton of new, awesome & inspiring women.

The campers were split into 3 groups - base, tent, and peak campers. As an established business, I chose the peak camp group and I was so inspired by the women in my group!

Friday evening started out with a meet-and-greet and social activities — sangria, leather luggage tag stamping, and flower crown designing. We then had dinner and the evening speaker, Carrie Anton from Wonder: An Idea Studio who talked about brainstorming. We then enjoyed s’mores by the fire outside before turning in for the night into our super uncomfortable camp beds! LOL A short thunderstorm

Saturday morning was up early for yoga in the fog (my first time ever doing yoga!), breakfast, canoeing in the lake, casual chats lakeside with Jenna Kutcher, and chair massages! After some great conversations, time for relaxing and lunch, it was time for the afternoon speaker series.

First up, Dannie Fountain who talked about 20% projects — essentially saying that you should commit a certain amount of time each week to work on a personal or passion project. At the time of camp, my new podcast was just a solid idea in my head with no real guidelines and one interview lined up. Camp was kind of the catapult that made me push to make it my passion project. I have been loving doing the interviews, editing, and getting the episodes ready to roll… stay tuned for my projected Oct. 1 launch!!

Then Amber Krzys encouraged us to stop pleasing people and start serving them instead. “You cannot give from your depletion,” she said. “Serve yourself first.”

Camp Climb founder Emma Hicks then did a panel discussion with Michelle Calloway who was one of my fellow peak campers. They talked about business and family, being from the midwest, and took questions from the audience.

The final afternoon speaker was Jenna Kutcher, host of the Goal Digger podcast, photographer, educator, and blogger. Jenna also did a Q&A from the audience and was truly an open book which was so nice to hear. She was super down-to-earth and personable. She gave me 3 great takeaways that I have been implementing into my business and hope to keep using.

Saturday evening was the pool party and food truck pizza — so fun and so delicious! There was also wine and Summer Shandy! Some people went down to the lake again then to release paper lanterns after dark, but many of the peak campers chose to go back to our cabin and organize our own mastermind session. It was a super time of bonding, inspiration, snacks, and camaraderie. It was great getting to know a fantastic group of boss babes on a slightly deeper level. A few of them also have podcasts or have been on each other’s podcasts, so I’ve been enjoying listening to them since camp!

Sunday morning was time for breakfast, a long walk, a cold shower, meditation/reflection time, and then closing ceremonies. Then it was back to Illinois and home!

I already have the dates for the 2019 Camp Climb on my calendar (Aug. 16-18), and am anxious to hear who the speakers will be when they are announced soon (edit: one was announced just after I wrote this post!)

Photos in this post by me (cell phone shots), Iron & Lace Photography, and Sweet Little You Photography. Part of the unplugged weekend was letting other people take the photos, and let me tell you — it was SO nice!