He’s Pops Perfect!
The space many campers hold in their hearts for Pops is immeasurable
At The Painted Turtle, Pops is essentially synonymous with the camp experience for most campers because since the day camp opened in Spring 2004, he’s rarely missed a session. When campers and families arrive, often the first question is “where is Pops?” And for anyone who has ever interacted with him, it’s clear why.
Pops can be spotted a mile away with his trademark hat, he fills a room with a welcoming presence, making everyone he interacts with feel like they have the spotlight. More importantly, any challenge-by-choice activity can be met with perseverance and success with his encouraging words and support every step of the way. And of all the thank you emails and notes we receive, you can guarantee that there is always a line or more acknowledging and thanking Pops!
I especially like the zip line and woodwork with Pops! —Camper
Help Us Name Woodshop in Honor of Pop’s
Woodshop is always a favorite spot on camp as campers harness their imagination and gain new skills of craftsmanship. The projects in Woodshop range in difficulty from a simple painting task to a more complex project of building something new from scratch. The credo of the Woodshop is that there is no project too ambitious: if you can visualize it, you can make it. As campers sand, hammer, nail, wood-burn, stain, paint and decorate, personal handcrafted projects will be the end result of their hard work and patience.
Through Pops’ guidance and experienced engineer mind (retired from Northrop Grumman), campers are introduced to craftsmanship, collaborative learning, and team-based projects – skills that transcend their days at camp.
Neither Woodshop nor Camp would be what they are today without Pops. He’s always fixing something onsite, building or making a new piece or camp sign, and always working to keep Woodshop and all areas tidy and organized. And if he’s not in Woodshop, he’s on the Ropes Course, washing dishes in the kitchen, at a local school leading a volunteer project, participating in a skit at opening campfire, leading a camp song in the Dining Hall, helping MC a special event fundraiser, or just advocating for camp every single day!
- A resident of Lake Hughes, CA, the same town as camp, Pops and his wife Sherry got involved in 2002 while they were building their home.
- They attended a tree planting event at camp before camp even broke ground.
- Pops has volunteered over 30,000 total hours.
- In 2013, the Power House fire threatened camp and Pops came in fire gear and with a fire hose in hand to protect camp alongside the real firefighters.
- Since retiring, Pops continues to volunteer and can be found any given day of the week helping out.
- While at Northrop Grumman as an engineer, Pops was heavily involved in all of our volunteer days at Camp (3 a year), with special connections to Aerospace Volunteer Day. He still is to this day.
- Pops attends special events no matter how far, from San Francisco to San Diego.
Today’s Footprint is Tomorrow’s Legacy
Please join The Painted Turtle in honoring the dedication and unwavering commitment of long-time volunteer Pops, whose spirit inspires campers to be their greater selves every single day.
Pops is a camp icon and his contributions to all things Painted Turtle, especially Woodshop, have made a lasting impact. We look forward to honoring his impact on the program and The Painted Turtle.