A recent New York Times article by Matt Haber, Coming Clean At Camp profiled Camp Grounded for Adults. It's a charming and well located boy scout campground, north of the Silicon Valley and San Francisco where hyper connected grown ups go to unplug and do things like talent shows and Arts and Crafts, color wars, flag-raisings and bunk in villages designated by gender (skinny dipping was permitted). This is not Burning Man or Esalen (esque)! Rules were simple : no phones, computers, tablets or watches; work talk, discussion of people's ages and use of real names were prohibited!
photo by Scott Sporleder
Wow... The cover photo taken by Scott Sporleder sums it up. It looks like a lot of fun without a new age patina prompting a lot of the psycho spiritual subtext one would normally get from a gathering of self actualized over acheivers (in and around the redwoods). It seems simply basic and fun.
From the writer : "Camp Grounded, Digital Detox’s biggest event thus far, was designed less to be a spiritual journey than a whimsical return to childhood. Campers, who spent $300 for the weekend, were sent maps, instructions and a suggested packing list designed with a self-consciously retro style that wouldn’t be out of place in a Wes Anderson film.
Men and women were separated and sorted into separate animal-themed villages, where they bunked in three-walled lean-tos built for the camp’s original Boy Scouts by the Petaluma Kiwanis Club. Aside from a water-resistant sleeping pad, no camping equipment was provided.
The Scouts’ rifle range had been reconceived as a typewriter range, and a yurt had been erected near a stream and used as an all-night tea lounge. Throughout the weekend, there was skinny-dipping at the swimming hole. A psychedelic bus parked in a clearing hosted a late-night concert. On the final night, there was an ’80s-themed prom, replete with souvenir couples’ photos and a new wave band that looked as if it had walked off the set of “Revenge of the Nerds.”
Here's the offical scoop from Camp Grounded:
About the Location: Camp Navarro
Camp Navarro is situated in 80 acres of
towering Redwoods tucked away in the stunning
Anderson Valley wine country.
The North Fork of the Navarro River meanders
through the property and this idyllic setting is
dotted with timeless cabins, incredible Adirondack
camping, a massive lodge, a 300+ seat outdoor amphitheater, and a large open air central plaza.
Yoga platform, volleyball, horseshoes, archery range,
trails, canteen, and typical camp recreational facilities
will take you back to the good ol' days.
This is not a conference.
This is summer camp.
Let’s be clear.
This is not a conference, a networking event
or meet-up opportunity to make contacts that further your career.
There will be no cocktail hour or welcoming reception for anyone to explain
what they do, play the “we know the same people” game, or try and figure
out how they can connect again after they return to the workplace.
Instead, we create an atmosphere for personal freedom, creative thinking,
liberation from technology, and a space from the working world
where we can all once again be… human.
Friendships at camp are based on real-life connections,
and the most important status we’ll update is our happiness.
Not to worry it's a yearly event and the company that mapped it out has other digital detox events that discourage "networking" or anything that enable digital aspirations but encourages purely human ones. Here's some highlights and links to explore:
July Retreat: 19th-21st
We keep our retreats small, private and intimate.
Only 10-14 spots available.
Join us at the beautiful, serene and tranquil Shambhala Ranch in Ukiah, California for our upcoming retreats. Disconnect in this custom-built ranch tucked away and secluded in the rolling hills and redwoods. With panoramic views from large windows and wrap-around decks, two fireplaces, hot tub, private pond and nearby hikes through the redwoods, this is a perfect getaway.
Enjoy three days off the grid stargazing in the pond-side hot tub, taking a stroll by the private river, loosening up with a morning yoga class, sitting in the beautiful gardens with a good book, hiking in the unparalleled Montgomery Woods, healthy eating, journalling, arts and crafts, and reflecting with an evening of meditation.
July Retreat Details
July 19th-21st 2013
Reserve your spot, ask questions and learn more.