YMCA Camp St. Croix has been a part of Phil Fabel’s life since he attended winter camp with his father when he was eight years old. The experience changed his life. From that foundation, he built relationships and grew as a summer camper and later a counselor – and today, as a volunteer leader.
Supporting Y camps as an adult was an easy decision. Phil’s wife, Joanne, was a camper at YMCA Camp Widjiwagan. Phil and Joanne wanted to leave a legacy in the places that meant the most to them. Phil served on the Camp St. Croix community board for more than 20 years, helping camp expand and deepening relationships with the Hudson community. Since retiring, he volunteers at camp regularly to help preserve and restore the oldest buildings at camp for the next generation.
For Phil, nurturing that place has meant providing leadership and support so the YMCA can embrace diversity and demonstrate empathy in our communities through transformational camping experiences. It has meant giving of his time and energy so campers like him, and like his children and grandchildren, can learn and grow just like he did. Despite his long personal history at camp, it is hope for the future that keeps him coming back.
“My best memory of Camp St. Croix will be tomorrow, when I go to volunteer and see a group of school kids learn and engage in the outdoors,” Phil shares. “To see not only youth, but also adults and leaders, deeply involved in environmental education, recreation, relationships, group dynamics – this is the YMCA. This is Camp St. Croix.”