If Steve Wampler never went to an Easterseals summer camp as a kid, he may not have ever scaled El Capitan, the largest rock face in the world, as an adult. He may not have met some of his closest friends (pictured). In fact, he may not have decided to start his own summer camp. (Yes, he did that.)
Born with a severe form of cerebral palsy, Steve went to the wilderness camp from ages 9 to 18, and he says it remains his “favorite place on Earth.” Located in the high Sierras of California, the camp offered activities like camping, water skiing, climbing, archery and more.
Although Easterseals no longer runs the specific camp that Steve attended, Steve now leases the land through his own foundation for a new camp, Camp Wamp. He and his wife manage it with friends that he met at our camp more than 25 years ago. (Rest assured, Easterseals still has many camps throughout the country, and we remain the largest provider of recreation programs for adults and kids with disabilities...as well as a cheerleader for camp graduates like Steve. Go, Steve!)
Now married with two kids, Steve still thrives on challenging himself just as he did at summer camp. He says, "whether you're disabled or not, everyone has their issues that they battle with every day. All I'm saying is you're only put on Earth once [so] go find your own El Capitan." You just might find it at an Easterseals camp.