Alumni Spotlight: Peggy Doerrie

“The song “Each Camp Fire Lights Anew” is true. As an alum, I treasure many wonderful Camp Fire friends and memories.”

Read Time 3 minutes

I joyfully became a Bluebird with Camp Fire Girls (as it was called then) as a young girl in Des Moines, Iowa. My older sister was also a member, and my mother was a leader. Our family moved to Wayzata, Minnesota in 1961, and I became very involved in Camp Fire, receiving a prestigious award for my demonstration of leadership and commitment to community service. I attended the National Horizon Club Conference in 1968, where I had the opportunity to rubber raft the Colorado River and campout in the Grand Canyon.

Camp Fire summer camp became a regular yearly joy in my life! I attended camps in Iowa, Minnesota, and Washington (as an “exchange camper”). After high school, I became a Counselor in Training and joined the Camp Trelipe (Remer, Minnesota) staff. I served as the Unit Director, Waterfront Director, and Canoe Tripping Director from 1973-1978. After Camp Trelipe closed, I joined the staff at Camp Fire Minnesota, serving one year as Camp Director and another three years as Waterfront Director.

I learned to swim, canoe, and sail at camp, made new friends by sharing all sorts of activities, and learned to cook out-of-doors. By earning patches, I learned how to accomplish goals and feel proud of what I could do by tackling new skills. I grew stronger physically each summer while at camp, being out in the fresh air and sunshine and being active. Sleeping in a screened cabin or tent was amazing. When I was a camper, it was a girls-only camp, and being able to handle Boundary Waters canoe trips as both a camper and counselor gave me great confidence in my abilities as a young woman to be responsible for the care of others. My Camp Fire involvement helped me with my school activities and academic pursuits by encouraging my curiosity, concentration, and follow-through.

The “Spark of Camp Fire” has generated so much good in my life. If you’ve attended camp, you know that singing together is a mainstay of camp life. Leading and teaching songs as a counselor helped motivate me to pursue a teaching career in music. I have served as principal flutist with both the St. Cloud Symphony and Northern Symphony for many years and perform with the FluteSpiration Quartet. I taught flute lessons for over 30 years and have loved working with young people all my life, encouraging their creativity and spark of life – to pass it on.

As a Camp Fire alum, I supported the Capital Campaign for the new Community and Dining Center. I am so thrilled at the transformation it now offers the camp. I understand that Camp Fire Minnesota is now in the process of renovating The Mansion along with other buildings holding valuable memories on property.  All updates would allow for more and new youth programs.

The song “Each Camp Fire Lights Anew” is true. As an alum, I treasure many wonderful Camp Fire friends and memories.