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We caught a fish "this big"!
Camper Memories  

I built a castle



Counselor and Camper

Camp Counselor

I built a castle

Camp Counselor

I built a castle

Camp Counselor

I built a castle


I built a castle


Since 1950, thousands of campers have enjoyed their summers at the Varsity Day Camp. In fact, we know of parents and grandparents who are thrilled that their children can enjoy the same enriching experience that they did as a child. If you would like to share your child's memories (or your own) please write anne@varsitydaycamp.com with your permission to publish your experience. Thank you for being a part of our community!

View the Camper Photo Album here.

Recalling their times at Camp...

"I was touched by Martha and Whiz 3 different ways: As a camper, as a counselor and as the father of campers. Each experience depended on the goodwill and generosity of two of my all time favorite people.
I was a "happy camper" playing baseball in the morning, and "nature" in and around beautiful Cordley Lake in the afternoon. As a counselor over two seasons I learned how much I enjoy kids of all ages. Finally, 30 years later, I could see the smiles and enjoy the stories of my own girls who were as "happy campers" as I was.
What a privilege it was to be a part of Varsity Day Camp at any level. With each experience I saw something positive that demonstrated values we all admire. I'm so glad to know that the "Whiz kids" are continuing this great tradition developed over 50 years by Whiz and Martha."

--Dave Rogers

"Varsity Day Camp was a large part of my summers growing up. I went to camp for over 6 years. The counselors are incredible and I still see some of them around today and they still know who I am. I enjoyed the large range of activities because I was an extremely active kid. Varsity gave me the opportunity to make new friends with kids that were not in my district. I loved Varsity and wish I could still go to camp in the summer, I have so many great memories that I will always remember."

--Ilana Israel, Elon University 2014

"I am Alexander Joubert. I am from the Dominican Republic and went to the camp in the summer of 1970, along with my brothers Joy and Rony.
We all have very good memories of the camp and it’s staff and remember you all with gratitude."


"Varsity Day Camp is the best! I attended as a camper. Lots of good, clean fun and family values. As a counselor, I had the opportunity to help other campers enjoy their experiences. As a parent, our son loved his time at Varsity Day Camp.

Fun, values, friends – it’s absolutely the best choice!"

--Howdy Holmes, CEO JIFFY mixes, camper, counselor, parent

"Varsity Day camp was so much fun for me when I was a camper. SO much so that I returned as a counselor and then sent our child there!!!! I have SO many wonderful memories. Turtle hunting, baseball, archery, becoming a "rafter." Flag raising and flag lowering was always special.
Don't tell anyone but I still hold my breath passing a cemetery and beep my horn going under the bridge in Dexter and am ALWAYS first to see Peach Mountain Tower!!!!

The best........bar none - Mrs. Whiz's sloppy joe's washed down with any color bug juice!

A wonderful, fun, care-free time in my life and in our daughter's life, also! Wish we could go back!
P.S. I play tennis with my former Varsity Day Camp counselor (Ann Tramontin Rogers).

What a pleasure!"

--Judy Bradley Burt

"The Whiz family has built a tradition in Varsity Day Camp that hundreds of children have looked forward to each summer for 60+ years. As a Varsity camper I gained the confidence to try new things and the independence to make my own choices, whether it was learning how to swim, fish or play box hockey. The counselors were always so encouraging and energetic. As a camper first and now a counselor the experience gained and memories made each summer will last me a lifetime."

--Rachel Mark, camper 1998- 2002, counselor 2006-present

"As an old time 50's camper (holy cow!) and one who's 3 children have attended more recently, please allow me the following observation-through the years, Whiz and Martha have kept the Norman Rockwell feeling alive and well at Varsity. It's so important for young kids to stop and smell the flowers and have an old fashion good time. To this day, Whiz and Martha, their children and the camp's awesome staff, continue to leave a marvelous legacy. A legacy of wonderful memories!"

--John Carver

"Who doesn't want to play Varsity ?!?" The best day camp in the Ann Arbor area, bar none,...Varsity Day Camp! My first summer of camp-1959. My last summer, 1966. Time for the overnight scene... that was never as much fun !

Here's why:

Bug juice, I the future Godfather of Punk Rock (Jimmy Osterberg aka Iggy Pop ) was my kind and fun-loving counselor, catching 43 sunfish off the dock with hot dogs for bait, turtle hunting in the lake-diving from the boat to grab the reptiles! Swimming in the lake: First a minnow, then a bass, then a shark to the enviable rafter, soon to be a laker! Maybe even a double-crosser?!

The loving, compassionate and ever fair Wisniewskis overseeing all the fun ! Outdoors all day running with my friends from Ann Arbor and new ones made at camp. My Varsity Day Camp bag to carry all my stuff, emblazoned with the Michigan Wolverine, my name and all the years I attended ... written in red by Mr. Whiz

Fast forward to the early 1970s when I was a counselor: College kids attending schools all over the country, home for the summer, having fun and bonding with local kids on the lake in Livingston County. Then the 1990s when my own two kiddos attended camp and loved it! It was deja vous all over again! When my kids were at camp, I wanted to ask... "Can I stay and play all day? PLEASE, Mr. Whiz ???

Ask any Ann Arbor "kid" in the know... the place for summer camp fun is Varsity!

Thanks, Wisniewskis, for the wonderful memories and friendships. And...Go Blue!

-- Candi Carver Dufek March 15, 2013

Varsity Day camp is a great day camp in the Ann Arbor area that provides children with many opportunities for growing and learning. This day camp gives campers choices of activities every day. Varsity provides full lunch and activities that are essential for childhood development.As a counselor there for twelve years, I truly enjoyed working with the staff and children on a daily basis.

--Jarrett Cogswell
6th Grade Language Arts/ScienceNavigator School JV Girls Basketball Coach Pinckney High School

Varsity Day Camp continues to be the best day camp in Livingston County for children to experience nature, fun and just be kids in the summer!

--Kristen Winter, Counselor & Parent
"Varsity Day Camp is one of the best camps for children in the Ann Arbor area. The camp has been doing things right, the "old school" way for generations. When I say "old school" I mean, counselors with clip boards greeting each camper, daily home-made lunches, lake swimming, catching turtles, boating, archery and "bug juice." I still have my camp bag, personalized by Mr. Whiz himself, and the durable canvas draw string bag hasn't changed much. How about a flag raising and lowering ceremony each day to start and end the camp's session? Yep. Varsity imparts that kind of traditional values. My kids are getting the same wonderful classic experience I had 40 years ago.

Things I remember as a camper, I can now appreciate much more as a parent, like the fact that they offer swim lessons and announce to the entire group when a camper has passed the next level of swim test. And speaking of swimming, they pull the kids out of the lake every 5-10 minutes to count kids. The theme of SAFETY, SAFETY, SAFETY is consistent throughout the camp.

I can't put a price on the trust I feel with camp staff. Knowing that the Wisniewski family is still in charge of training the staff counselors, I am completely confident they will have safe and meaningful interactions with the staff and the other kids at Varsity. Most counselors are former campers, and counselors come back year after year. It's also the perfect location to service both Washtenaw and Livingston county kids. I call it a slice of old time summer camp perfection."

- Martha (Rogers) Stange, camper in the 1970's, parent to campers in 2012-- submitted March 2013
"Thank you Whiz family! Every year, my three girls look forward to Varsity Day Camp more than any other summer ritual! It is hands down the best Day camp and counselors in the Ann Arbor and Livingston County area. My kids return home happy and excited! Each day feeling like they went on a perfect vacation."

~ Cheryl Hall. 3/7/2013
"Our two children have attended Varsity Day Camp for the majority of the summers the past three years. They absolutely love it! Each year, we explore other day camps for children in the Pinckney and Ann Arbor areas but our children always beg to go back to Varsity. It truly is the best day camp in the Livingston and Washtenaw County area! This is a summer camp with good, old fashioned fun, family values and caring, competent counselors where kids can be kids try new things and enjoy simple, carefree summers outdoors in a beautiful setting - swimming, sailing, fishing and turtle catching! We feel fortunate to have discovered this summer day camp and highly recommend it to others. Bryan and Kaitlyn can't wait!"

-- Jeff and Tammy Bimer 3/8/2013"
"Varsity Day Camp is a hidden gem in Livingston County where kids can have good old fashioned fun. I had the privilege of being a counselor at the camp during college and I was thrilled when we moved back to the Pinckney area that my own children would be able to experience it. Varsity, near Ann Arbor,is simply a safe place to run, play sports, swim, fish, boat or just hang out under the trees doing a craft while enjoying the beauty of the camps natural surroundings. This camp is the perfect way to help your child unplug from the constant news feed of todays media and spend time outside. As a counselor, I developed close relationships with my campers. I just recently ran into one of them in town (now he is an adult!) and we had fun reliving the memories of those days. I love picking my own kids up from camp and hearing the stories about new friends they meet, their "favorite" counselor", and what crazy skit or jokes were told during the midday break. My only regret is that I was never able to attend as a camper myself!"

--Ruth Harris
"Varsity Day Camp is our favorite day camp in the Ann Arbor area. Though we sampled several each year, Varsity was always the first one our son requested and our mainstay because of the variety of activities offered and the great counselors. It is well worth the drive!

--Terri Wilkerson, Mother & Realtor
Helping You Home Since 1988

"In 1957, the summer between my Sophomore and Junior year of college, I was hired to be a camp counselor at Varsity Day Camp located on Cordley Lake outside of Pinckney, near Ann Arbor.

It was the most wonderful experience of my life! To this day I value the training and experience I was given, learning to work with children from the ages of 6 - 13, in a camp setting with outdoor activities, a hot lunch, and a atmosphere of a positive attitude to help children grow in confidence and ability. We also pointed out social skills when ever warranted. As a potential teacher, and parent, these lessons were invaluable. The camp directors, Martha and Irvin Wisniewski exemplified all the qualities that a good teacher and parent needed to be successful in working with and raising children.

At that time most of the children came from Ann Arbor, now they come from Livingston and all over Washtenaw county.

I was hired back the summer between my Junior and Senior year and that summer I met my future husband who was also a camp counselor at Varsity. We have five children and all attended Varsity at one time or another and now some of our grandchildren are attending. My experience at Varsity, not only with our children and grandchildren also attending, has followed me throughout the years as occasionally I run into former campers who remember me and my husband and their experience at camp and reminisces about their time there and its always very positive. Most of them send their children there in the summers. Today I play tennis with a former camper who sent her daughter to Varsity and we have great times remembering our time at Varsity Day Camp."

-- Ann Tramontin Rogers 1957-1958 Counselor, Parent, Grand Parent
"Varsity Day Camp is an awesome Day Camp for children in the Ann Arbor area/Livingston County. My kids have been going here for years and enjoy the variety Varsity has to offer. The staff are GREAT! They are warm, welcoming and really try to get to know the kids and their needs to make the camp experience the best possible! Varsity offers so many fun things to do from arts and crafts, swimming, boating, archery, sports. It is the kind of camp every kid should have the opportunity to attend."

--Karen Revill 3/20/13
"This classic summer camp experience begins each morning with a flag-raising; then, kids pick and choose what they want to do for the day. “We’re in our 64th season,” says Anne Brattan, daughter of the camp’s founder. “Many of our licensed, certified counselors were campers themselves.” Located on a spring-fed lake with plenty of wildlife, including turtles, the camp allows kids plenty of opportunities to enjoy the beautiful outdoor setting, including archery, baseball games, swimming, boating, and sand volleyball, as well as creative expression through arts and crafts."

As seen in Ann Arbor Family Magazine
"Having 6 children in our family, we were looking for a day camp in the Livingston County area that could burn off some serious energy. We wanted the kids to have the freedom to do what they wanted during the day, but in a safe environment with great mentors. Varsity Day Camp fit the bill with staff that played with our kids while giving them great examples in perseverance, sportsmanship and friendship! Our kids made lasting friendships, took on new challenges like swimming across the lake, learned new skills and games and came home TIRED! Thank you VDC!"

--Ann Kehn 03/07/2013