How do campers gain GRIT at Foley?

Risks. Failure. Success. in Nature.

Our Premiere Location

Camp Foley is located in North Central Minnesota, about three hours north of Minneapolis/St. Paul near Brainerd. Foley is surrounded by 211 acres of Birch, Pine and Oak Trees on 1000 feet of shoreline on 4000 acre Lower Whitefish Lake. For some campers, it takes grit to swim in a lake, sail a boat or bike a forest trail for the first time. For others, grit is becoming accustomed to the dark nights and sounds of nature.   

“The place is spectacular. We always comment to ourselves after dropping of Jens, that it looks like a resort. Not just because of the location but the fact that it is so well maintained.” -- Kenn (father of a camper)

Living in a Camp Environment

For many campers, living in a cabin with 10 other people, seeing Bald Eagles fly by or not having access to cellphones and computers are new experiences that can be both exciting and scary. In a life that is increasingly spent indoors, Foley gives campers time to be outdoors, enjoying many activities and taking healthy risks. Living outside one's comfort zone is a skill that any kid will need for the future (college, travel, other life events). It may not come easily to everyone, but having the grit needed to succeed is invaluable.

Making Mistakes & Trying Again

To put it simply, part of grit is failing. Campers are allowed (and encouraged) to fail or make mistakes and are then provided ways to correct their errors in a respectful, meaningful manner so they can then succeed. Read what Director, Alli Faricy, wrote in a blog article about how grit may just be the most important characteristic for a kid to gain.

What's Your Grit Grade

The Foley Family

It takes grit to join 130-160 other campers and 45 counselors at camp. It takes grit to arrive by plane from France or Mexico or the East or West Coast. It takes grit to travel away from home for weeks at a time.

The size of our camp makes the Foley Family large enough that campers experience diversity by interacting with campers of all different ages outside their peer group. The family is small enough that campers are known and feel like their opinions count and individual needs are met.


Our coed program gives campers the opportunity to interact daily with both boys and girls during the activities, meals and all-camp programs – this is like the real world! The times boys can just hang with their bros and girls can spend quality time with their ladies are equally important, and camp provides ample moments for these special relationships. 

When campers return home, they will have gained an additional family - their Foley Family - that will be with them for life. One day they may even be at college, far from home, with another member of the Foley family. Think what a little grit can spark!

Go back to Grow! Go on to Investigate!
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