Pretty Lake. Beautiful Mission.
Since 1916, Pretty Lake Camp, a non-profit community organization, has provided a cost-free summer camp experience to over 60,000 youth from Kalamazoo County who can benefit most from the experience. Throughout the years, we have enriched the lives of thousands of youth by offering a safe, structured and encouraging environment in a natural setting. We accommodate approximately 800 children each summer.
Many of the children who attend Pretty Lake Camp face significant challenges at home, in school, and in their community. We strive to remove all barriers that prevent a child from being able to come to camp.
Through the financial support of generous individuals and organizations, we provide everything that campers need during their session at camp – clothes, toiletries, bedding, towels, food, transportation to and from camp, and activities – at no cost to the camper or their family or caregiver. Our focus is to assist in the development of campers by teaching life skills and helping campers cope with life’s challenges.
Pretty Lake provides life-changing experiences through free summer camp and experiential learning.
Experiences at Pretty Lake build stronger communities and a more just, inclusive, and compassionate world.
Our Enduring Values
- Community-Focused Service – We remain a Kalamazoo-focused, youth-serving organization.
- Innovative Discovery – We passionately build a place of exploration, thoughtful risk-taking, and discovery for all participants.
- Responsible Stewardship – We act as responsible stewards who care for our physical, financial, and human resources.
- Principled Leadership – We are committed to upholding the highest moral principles to best serve others with integrity, honesty, and respect.
- Authentic Dialogue – We respect open, humble, and sincere two-way communication.
We are committed to strengthening ourselves as the “community’s camp” – a year-round resource for our campers, families, schools, retreat guests and the community at large. True to our founder, Edward B. Desenberg, the core of the organization will be the on-going operation and continuous improvement of all of our programs.