We are a residential summer camp for all boys and girls ages 6-13. Friendly Pines Camp is a family-owned, independent camp. The camp is accredited through the American Camp Association (ACA) and a member of the Western Association for Independent Camps (WAIC).
During the rest of the year Friendly Pines Camp rents its facilities to a wide variety of groups for retreats, conferences, and other gatherings.
The camp located in the Bradshaw Range just south of Prescott, Arizona, which is about 2 hours northwest of Phoenix, about 2 hours southwest of Flagstaff, and about an hour west of Sedona. We are at an elevation of about 6300 feet and enjoy comfortable warm summers and mild winters. Much of camp property borders the Prescott National Forest.
Friendly Pines Camp has been operating since 1941. That’s a long time. It was before everyone had a television. Computers? Video Games? Forget about it. When Friendly Pines started, people listened to President Franklin Delano Roosevelt on the radio. Most of your parents hadn’t been born. We wouldn’t even go to the moon for almost 30 years.
Friendly Pines Camp was the dream of Uncle Bud and Brownie. They wanted to create a place where boys and girls could go to not only get “out of the summer heat” but also to just enjoy being kids. At Friendly Pines children could ride horses, hike the mountains, and sleep under the stars. Sure camp was fun, but it was also a place to learn. Uncle Bud was a longtime schoolteacher; however, he and Brownie knew that it was important that boys and girls learned outside the classroom. They needed to learn by doing. So Uncle Bud and Brownie made sure that campers had the chance to bottle-feed goats and lambs; that they learned the proper way to swing an axe and build a fire. Every camper learned to roll dough in his or her hand and produce the perfect, golden Dutch Oven Biscuit. And when the day was done the campers learned to entertain themselves by singing songs, telling stories, and playing games.
Uncle Bud and Brownie lived long enough to see Friendly Pines grow from a tiny camp of mostly family and family friends to a camp that serves 1000 boys and girls each summer. They came to see not only the children of former campers return to Friendly Pines, but also the grandchildren of former campers. That’s pretty amazing. That’s why we say that Friendly Pines has become An Arizona Tradition.
Unfortunately, Uncle Bud and Brownie aren’t with us anymore. But their daughter and son-in-law (Bebe and Jack May) have been running the camp since the 1960’s. Even Uncle Bud and Brownie’s grandchildren and great-grandchildren involved in the camp. Bebe and Jack have been very careful to make sure that the camp runs the way the founders had intended it to. As a result, the things you do at camp will be similar to what boys and girls did nearly 70 years ago. Okay, there are some differences. We have bathrooms and showers in the cabin. We have computers and fax machines. We use handheld radios to communicate with one another instead of just shouting real loudly. But we are still committed to fun and learning by doing.