Written by: Rob Dunfey
When I was sixteen years old, I went to Camp Woodward. My parents coughed up $900 and put me on a plane to State College, PA. I had been skateboarding for several years and had seen this place in PA Farm Country on TV.
When I got to the Camp, I went through the registration process with hundreds of other skaters, bikers, and (little did I know) also gymnasts. I was pretty psyched that this Land of Skateboarding also had what is on every 16-year-old’s boy’s mind, pretty girls!
The girls are in cabins far across the campus from the boys so I became a little disappointed. However, one night we were able to sneak into a dance and see a few girls. Unfortunately, I was a shy kid at the time and didn’t approach any.
Anyways, skateboarding is what Woodward is known for, not girls. Eight skate parks, an growing, Woodward is known for it’s terrain and one of the first camps to be dedicated to skateboard instruction. In fact, Woodward’s growth has not been without dissent from neighboring farmers. My relatives live nearby, know nothing about skateboarding, and yet they can proclaim every piece of Camp Woodward news and history even though they live 25 minutes away.
Is Camp Woodward Worth it?
My $900 was funded from my parents- Thank God. So I was highly psyched to visit. Here’s my accurate account from a camper’s perspective:
Parks: (Rating: 8.5 out of 10)
The park are pretty sick. The best part is the diversity of terrain.
Your group visits certain parks on your groups specified day. So if you like a particular park, you must know that you can’t necessarily skate it all of the time. The reason why I give the parks a 8 and not a 10 is that the park is lacking real street, like a skate plaza. For the amount of parks they have it is kind of silly they didn’t have a real plaza. The second reason was that a few of the ramps needed repair they were old and weathered. The indoor ramps were fine though.
It’s hard to say much bad things about the parks. It’s really a skate heaven (if you can grind and ride ramps). The parks are arguably the best part.
Instruction: (Rating 4 out of 10)
I had not attended the camp solely for the instruction, but I was at least psyched to know that they offered it. Your instructor is generally the leader of your cabin. The leader of my cabin was a great guy, sponsored skater who rode for a Christian board company.
Here’s what I found out about the instruction: You really don’t get any instruction unless you ask! As I mentioned before, I was a really shy kid so someone would have had to approach me and offered me training. The mantra across camp was definitely; you are free to skate how/where you want.
The “if you need help, ask” format didn’t work for me because I didn’t learn a trick the entire week. What I got from the camp was a great camping experience, not a great instructional experience.
Girls: (Rating 7 out of 10)
I was so psyched to know that there were girls there. And maybe.. JUST MAYBE, I could come home from summer camp with a new girlfriend. There were plenty of pretty girls. For that, I give Camp Woodward a 10!
I downgrade it to a 7 because I was mad they didn’t let us close to them. Maybe a few parents, expressed their concerns, which is understandable from a parent perspective, not from a hormone-flowing teen though!
Location: (Rating: 3 out of 10)
A more logical place to start a haven for skateboarding would be Southern California, or Arizona where the weather is always good for skating , there are lots of spots, and the industry is based. When Camp Woodward was developed, skateboarding instruction was unheard of. since then the era of “Tony Hawk” has made skateboarding hit mainstream. There are plenty of local camps, YMCA’s and Rec programs for skateboarding. This is my opinion. Discover here how you can learn 33 tricks in 4 days without going to Woodward. -Chicago -New York -San Francisco
Why the heck is this piece of skateboarding in a place that is completely unfriendly to skateboarders? There are no sidewalks near here, public skate parks, or any good skate spots. Some farm-owner just decided he was going to build some ramps and happened to be the first guy to do so.
Overall Experience: 7 out of 10
Like I said, the camp experience was great, but the 7 is unacquainted to the cost perspective.
$900 is a heck of a lot of money! If you really have the extra cash laying around, then go for it, but if you agree with me that $900 plus a plane ticket to PA is a big expense maybe you should reconsider.
When you add airfare and travel, you are looking at almost $1200. You could buy 3-4 local day camps for that, or two more local overnight camps. You could fly to LA then San Francisco and then NYC and skate all of the best places and your airfare and hotel for a week could be less than $1200. Or even hire a local skate instructor, for 20 hours of private instruction, and really learn skateboarding for less than $1200.
Camp Woodward Summary: Is it worth $900/Week??
Camp Woodward is crazy expensive. If you are a millionaire, Woodward can be a good time. If you are a common man, there are plenty of local options which could save you hundreds of dollars. There are other options without having to fly to Farmyville, PA and going broke.
There is another option: Go Skate Camp!
GoSkate.com offer skateboarding camps throughout the US. A great alternative to Camp Woodward. Students learn skateboarding and get a FULL camp experience. Watch the video to see a glimpse of our camp!
Location of Go Skate Camp
Go Skate Camp Vs. Woodward Camp
Go Skate provides more camps (and year-round). It also provides camps in more locations.
Camp Woodward includes food and lodging. Go Skate Camp also includes food and lodging.
Dates of Go Skate Camp
-Presidents Day Week – February
-Last week in June
-All weeks of July
-First week of August
Is Camp Woodward Worth it? … Comment What You Think..
Get More Info on the Go Skate Camp
A more logical place to start a haven for skateboarding would be Southern California, or Arizona where the weather is always good for skating , there are lots of spots, and the industry is based.
When Camp Woodward was developed, skateboarding instruction was unheard of. since then the era of “Tony Hawk” has made skateboarding hit mainstream. There are plenty of local camps, YMCA’s and Rec programs for skateboarding.
This is my opinion.
Discover here how you can learn 33 tricks in 4 days without going to Woodward.