Our goal is social good through outdoor education. We are currently mostly utilized by relocated athleisturists and local outdoor natives, urban athletes and achievers from downstate. Our core off-season skeleton crew is four full-time staff. From May through August, we double that with interns from college outdoor recreation programs across the US. We have nearly 100 years of creating passion for our natural world through outdoor experiences.
To create passion for our natural world through outdoor experiences.
GO•REC will be a leading Great Lakes Region resource for outdoor recreation education for people of all ages, classes, abilities regardless of religion, ethnicities, language, sexual orientation, gender identity or need.
The GO•REC Team
History of GO•REC
The Rotary Club of Traverse City was founded in 1920. Three short years later, their third president, Clarence Greilick decided to do something really significant for the five county region. Greilick was a lumberman, and furniture manufacturer. He was also a great lover of the outdoors. Clarence knew the woods, lakes, and streams of the region as well as we know our own backyards. With an eye to the future, he proposed the purchase of a site for a place where the children and youth of our community could enjoy healthy outdoor recreation and learn about woodlore. The club authorized $1,100 to purchase 430 wooded acres in the Spider and Rennie Lake area, 13 miles southeast of Traverse City.
The next step was the construction of a lodge. This was done by enlisting the aid of a building contractor, some members of the Kiwanis Club, and the enthusiastic help of all the Rotarians. The lodge provided a kitchen, dining and assembly hall. That endeavor proved so successful that an impressive $7,500 was then raised to purchase an additional 27 acres. The new acreage added substantial new Rennie Lake frontage and outstanding facilities for aquatic sports and activities. Control was turned over to a newly created nonprofit organization made up of representative Rotarians. Nineteen years later, then president, Jack Freethy, convinced the Rotary Club members that the properties should be deeded back to an organization controlled by the Rotary Club. And on January 6, 1955 the first Articles of Incorporation for “Rotary Camps, Inc.” were filed to take title to the camp properties. Today we know that organization as Rotary Camps & Services.
In April of 2019, Rotary Camps & Services hired Director Jamie Lewis Hedges to bring new life to that vision. Jamie weaves his experience in outdoor education with the Rotary vision of a legacy for the community. Clarence Greilick’s vision was ahead of its time, and for GO•REC, this is our time to help create passion for our natural world.