"... Campingly Yours is more than a loving memoir of summer camp, it is an enchanting journey through the heartland of one man's life. Written with disarming simplicity and honest emotion, the folksy anecdotes and wry observations entwine like woodsmoke from an evening campfire. The book invites you to sit down and listen in to treasured stories full of laughter and friendship, music and memory, a sense of life's joys and its inescapable sadness.
In addition to being a wonderful read, Campingly Yours asks us to share the author's lifelong desire to preserve and extend the values of a lost American childhood, a more innocent time in which boys and girls were able to experience life more directly, independently, and responsibly. To Adler - and all of us lucky enough to have shared similar summertime adventures - camp is far more than a place or a time; it is a way of looking at the world.
As a writer, Thomas C. Adler is an American original. His prose is distinctively homespun - understated, yet deeply felt; by turns amusing, sweet, and often surprisingly affecting. You know from reading this book that Adler is the guy you want in your canoe on a long day's paddle into the wind.
I recommend reading Campingly Yours to anyone who has been to summer camp or wonders what they missed by not going to camp. And they missed a lot. Beyond that, however, the book will appeal to anyone who wants to know what it was like to grow up in a more innocent age and discover a singular slice of heaven in the forested lakes of northern Wisconsin."
(Hill Street Blues, Northern Exposure, Alias)
“Seamlessly woven with wisdom and wit, Thomas C. Adler’s heartfelt memoir blends forty-five years of summer camp with a lifetime of love. A tribute to family, friendship and the coming of age, Campingly Yours reflects on childhood in a bygone era-adventure, tradition and the timeless bond between idyllic parents and a devoted son. From camper and counselor to owner and director, Adler’s nostalgic personal journey is seasoned with humor and insight, courage and character. Engaging from beginning to end, Adler masterfully captures the essence of summer camp at Chippewa Ranch…with the North Star as his constant guide..."
"Campingly Yours is an honest and heartfelt memoir about a lifelong journey of finding a dream and making it come true. It's about dedication, perseverance, family and finding true love. Campingly Yours made me laugh, cry, and want to go back in time; back to the time of being a child and having no worries in the world…except waiting for another season of summer camp to begin.
Thomas C. Adler takes the reader on an exciting ride through the north woods of Wisconsin. He is honest, passionate and devoted from child to adult. Thomas C. shares with us as he fulfills his dreams and the dreams of many others, through a time and place of simplicity, to a time of modern technology. Every person should experience what it's like to have a 'home away from home'. A place that is so special, that it becomes a part of you for life…a place that is 'in you blood'."
Ensemble Member of the National Tour of Wicked, The Musical.
"Campingly Yours is much more than a book about camping. It helps you appreciate how strong families are the core of a strong society. It is full of lessons in life that display how wisdom, loyalty, dignity, and humility are essential qualities that can propel someone to reach his or her goals in life. This book takes you back to your childhood and jogs your memory to help you trace your steps back to the foundation of life that made you the person you have become."
Jerry Hairston,Sr. Former Major League Baseball Player
Hairstons: The only family in Major League History to have five members to play in Majors:
Father Sam Hairston, brother John, sons Jerry, Jr. , and Scott.
"If you have been fortunate enough to have experienced the joy, the memories and the "magic" of camp, this book will resonate as loud and clear as the camp dinner bell! But it's not just for "camp people". It's for everyone that appreciates the joy and magic of family and friends and the great and touching experiences of life. Masterful, on the mark…"
Camp Birch Knoll for Girls
Eagle River, WI
"Tom Adler's book does a great service to those of of us who believe in the positive power of the camping experience . It provides a humorous and touching personal history that is deeply connected to the best traditions of camping in America--teaching children and young adults about community, responsibility, self-reliance, and respect for the environment. As a former camper and counselor, I recommend this book to anyone who is interested in the best that camping has to offer."
Paul Adelstein, Actor
"If you've attended summer camp before, Tom's book will deluge you with your own camp memories, thoughts, and feelings as you read about his. He recounts details so vividly, you can remember being there yourself. This book clarifies for us that camps need not be about the latest technology on their websites, or the gourmet food coming out of their kitchens, or even the slick ski boats or basketball courts. As Tom's journal of camping makes clear, camps do their greatest good through the people they bring together to live and play for a summer, and learn for a lifetime."
Owner and director of Camp Timberlane for Boys
"Campingly Yours brought smiles, laughs and a few tears. So many memories came pouring back. Whoa! Tom's stories of his camper and counselor days made me feel as if I had just stepped out of a time machine to relive the important moments of our childhood. Reading of Tom's life as a Camp Director renewed my passion for our chosen profession.
Thanks, Tom, for validating the work of everyone who has been a camp counselor."
Mike "Moose" Jay
Co-Director: Camp Kamaji for Girls
Co-Founder: Camp For All Kids Foundation
"Thank you so very much for allowing us to read an advance copy of Campingly Yours. My husband and I found Tom Adler's book to be one of the most touching and heartwarming stories we have ever read! We laughed, we cried, and we reminisced. Although the characters and events in his book are real, the subject matter is universal. Tom's love of family, passion for camp, and concern and understanding for humanity make this book a must read! It is truly a 'LOVE' story. Thank you for giving us the opportunity to express our feelings about Tom's beautiful and inspirational book of memoirs."
Diane & Jim Levy
Vice Chairman, Levy Entertainment
"No matter how many miles we've traveled away from that fantastic little camp in the corner of northwestern Wisconsin, those of us who were lucky enough to spend our summers there will never forget it - leeches and all. Tommy, the Flash, Adler brings it all hilariously back to life with the warmth and accuracy of his memories. He's done a lot of camping since I first saw him throwing pop-ups to himself on a dusty baseball diamond and, like his mentor Lou, is now a senior pied piper for the joys of living in the woods. So write your name in your underwear, pack that trunk, and go camping with the Flash! You'll have a blast."
Actor - Broadway, Television, Movies
"Campingly Yours is an engaging read with appeal to anyone who has been to summer camp, is considering camp for their children, or is interested in human psychology. It will bring back memories, provide a guide of how camps 'work', and foster understanding and tolerance. Thomas C. Adler is a natural."
President, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis
"Campingly Yours is a heartfelt valentine to summer camp. Warm, witty and wise, Campingly Yours demonstrates that traditional values like friendship, compassion and loyalty never go out of style.
Thomas C. Adler is "full of compassion and insight into the lives of kids who find themselves away from home for the first time. He understands as well the feelings of young adults who experience their first taste of leadership and responsibility, and relates it with down-home Missouri wisdom."
Writer/Producer, Prevalent Films, LLC
"Campingly Yours is a wonderful journal of a boy who attends summer camp, and the effects this experience has on his life. This story is heartwarming and reminds us of the 'old days', when life was much simpler, and relationships were the barometer for personal growth.
Thomas C. Adler is expressive and thoughtful in his presentation. His life experiences are truly heartwarming, and his writing style expresses his commitment to his story. The way he chapters the book gives a fluidity to the story, while a better understanding of this life is understood. Tom's life experiences will bring a tear to your eye, a smile to your face, and an appreciation for those that touch our lives."
Director, Camp Lenox
"Campingly Yours is a warm, vivid picture of how camping can extend and strengthen one's family. These are not just one man's memories-they are a guidebook to keeping alive the flames of friendship and family, both in the shared communal moments themselves and the power those moments can retain over time if they are cherished, understood, and passed on.
Thomas C. Adler's voice is unique. And it should be, considering his varied experiences, his life's intersection with the paths of so many people so important to camping, and-most importantly-his unflinching honesty with his own feelings. A clear, powerful memory makes for a clear, powerful memoir."
WSCR 670 The Score
"Campingly Yours is an insightful view to a kind and giving soul who has grown from a young camper to a reflective adult. Tom has grown and matured as he witnessed and facilitated the development of his campers and staff.
Thomas C. Adler is as kind and generous in his writing as he has been in his real life-never taking the credit that he is often due. I loved the book and felt disappointed when it concluded."
The Paradies Shops
"Campingly Yours is a poignant recap of the memories that were important milestones and building blocks of a life and career in camping. That career was truly a passion and continues in all those campers who were lucky enough to experience a summer with Thomas C. Adler.
Thomas C. Adler is eloquent in his easy style of down to earth poise that makes the book a fast and enjoyable read."
Fritz S. Hirsch
President of Sassy, Inc.
"Campingly Yours did not have me from page one. Nope, it wasn't until page three that I was magically transported to Lake Plantagenet in Bemidji, Minnesota, where I spent my formative summers. Tom Adler's evocative memoir is a must read for anyone who has ever hunted for snipe, searched for skyhooks, or skinny-dipped in the north woods."
Author, former camper at Camp Thunderbird
"Campingly Yours is a heartfelt story about a relationship between a boy and his family that can't help but put a smile on your face. It is a must read for anyone who has ever spent time at summer camp or for anyone thinking of sending their kids. If you have had bug juice, sand in your sheets, or sung songs around the campfire you will love to relive your memories with this book because as you know, that camper is always going to be a part of you throughout your life.
Thomas C. Adler is an amazing camp director and surrogate father to many. He has a place in my memoirs as he provided my home-away-from-home and through camp helped me to become the person I am today. I was happily surprised to see that he is also a gifted and talented writer. I look forward to his next surprise."
Emmy Award-winning producer and published author
"... Campingly Yours is: A loving reflection tracing a young boy's journey from his first years at a summer camp through to his golden years assisting his successors in directing the girls camp he ran in Wisconsin for many years. In frequent anecdotes, Adler gives the reader a solid glimpse at the constant challenges a camp director faces. This book is hard to put down.
As a writer, Thomas C. Adler is able to capture the uncertainties of a 10-year-old boy on through his many years in the magical world of summers at camp to his years as a camp counselor and then a director. His love for his parents, his camp directors, his own campers, his staff, even his dogs who inhabit his Wisconsin summers, shine through on every page.
I recommend reading Campingly Yours to anyone lucky enough to have spent a summer at camp. They will find in Campingly Yours all the fun, growth, tears, and laughter, that is present in a well run camp as well as the depths of love we all can derive from living every day of our lives."
Retired Co-Director Camp Nebagamon
"... Campingly Yours is a page-turner. Though I have "been there, done that," Adler's memoir was compelling and transforms his life in camping into a book which will interest anyone who has ever been at a camp-or who has ever been a child!
As a writer, Thomas C. Adler is literate, tender and honest. He has the unusual combination of being able to write like an adult, yet describe from the perspective of a child, then a young adult, then a nostalgic about-to-retire older adult. This is a rare quality, and he has written a rare book!
...I recommend reading Campingly Yours to anyone who wants to hear, for once, about a "functional" family -or to anyone who wants a happy read."
Sally Lorber Stein
Retired Co-Director Camp Nebagamon
"Everyone who loved going to summer camp has had a secret wish to stay there the rest of their life. Tom Adler wished that same wish, and really lived it! Campingly Yours fulfills for so many of us a life of camping that still resonates from the very first canoe we paddled, campfire that we helped build, trails we explored, wildlife we spotted, song we sang, and friends that we made. Open the pages of this book and the secrets pour out, confirming a camper's hunch-if we could only have just stayed at camp, it would have been good."
Steven L. Katz
former camper and author of
Lion Taming; Working Successfully with Leaders, Bosses, and Other Tough Customers.
An honest, heartwarming, touching, inspiring story about growing up at Camp, December 21, 2008
"Ah camp. Tom's book captures it perfectly. Hard to imagine a more honest, touching and insightful book about summer camp and how great it can be. Having fun, making fast friends, and building a foundation for the rest of your life. That's camp and Tom captures it better than anything except..... of course...... being there.
Great for parents before and after sending your kids to camp. Like the President of Harvard said. 1 year at a good camp is better than 4 years at my place.
You'll love it, and learn a lot too. Have fun and think who else you can share this special book with."