More than just a camp… Camp Spearhead creates an environment of unconditional acceptance for youth (8yrs +) and adults with special needs and disabilities. Founded in 1968, Camp Spearhead offers residential camp programs in the summer and 20 weekend programs throughout the school year. . Everybody deserves a chance to go to camp. Camp Spearhead’s summer camp program offers (8) week-long residential summer camp sessions at our new facility, the Pleasant Ridge Camp & Retreat Center. Camp’s new home is specifically designed to meet the needs of our campers and to provide the best summer camp experience possible.
2016 Weekly Videos
See what’s happening at Camp Spearhead this summer and watch the weekly video.
John Cameron Memorial Spearhead Open Golf Tournament
The John Cameron Memorial Spearhead Open raises money to help send children and adults with special needs to Camp Spearhead. The tournament would not be possible without the passion and leadership of Fred Bentfeld whose daughter goes to Camp Spearhead. We are also very thankful for Carolina Holdings who has been our presenting sponsor since the tournament began in 2008.
Thank You Sponsors!!!
St. Paddy's Day Dash & Bash presented by Zaxby's and powered by Jarden raises $25,000 for Camp Spearhead
Camp Spearhead is one of five recipients of funds raised from the St. Paddy’s Day Dash & Bash presented by Zaxby’s and
powered by Jarden. This is a fantastic event that provides fun for the whole family. We are honored to join Let There Be Mom, the Make A Wish Foundation, GHS Children’s Hospital and Legacy Charter School as a beneficiary. Camp Spearhead received $20,000 in 2016! Please take a look at the list of sponsors below and be sure to thank them for their support if you are able.
2015 Camp Videos:
2014 Camp Videos:
Camp Spearhead’s summer home is Pleasant Ridge Camp & Retreat Center located in northern Greenville County. This facility is owned and operated by Greenville Rec.
Chuck Luttrell received a phone call from a parent of a child with disabilities in 1968 with a plea to start a camp and a call to action that this population deserves the same recreational opportunities that other children enjoy. Through the grassroots efforts of parents, Chuck Luttrell, and other engaged citizens, the Greenville County Disabilities and Special Needs Board started Camp Spearhead as a day camp at Paris Mountain State Park. . In 1990, Camp Spearhead acquired the use of the Civitan Camp in Cleveland, SC. This facility transformed Camp Spearhead from a day camp experience to an overnight experience and created the only residential therapeutic camp for individuals with severe disabilities in the Upstate. . Recognizing that all citizens deserve access to high quality recreation services, the Greenville County Recreation District partnered with the Disabilities Board in 1990 to provide both financial and staff assistance to Camp Spearhead. . In 2005, at the request of the Disabilities Board, the Greenville County Recreation District took over operational responsibility of the Camp Spearhead program. With help from the Recreation District, an advisory board consisting of Camp parents and other community stakeholders was created and incorporated as Camp Spearhead Inc. in 2006. . Naturaland Trust purchased the Civitan site in the fall of 2006 resulting in the need for Camp Spearhead to either relocate or discontinue. .In 2010, the Greenville County Recreation District opened Camp Spearhead’s new home, the Pleasant Ridge Camp & Retreat Center at Pleasant Ridge Park. .
To you incredible young people at Camp Spearhead, . To sum up “thanks” to you is not possible for the joy, laughter, smiles, and love you have given this summer to our kids. Our “kids” may be any age but you have looked through whatever their challenge and seen the person not their challenge. Chase loves everything about camp, but really loves the camaraderie between him and his friends and the staff. . As a Mom, my hope and desire is that Chase can experience life as close to the term “normal” as possible. Camp Spearhead does this in creating for him and his fellow campers the same memory making moments that many of us had growing up as young children and teens. You have become their new friends that they will never forget, and in the journey I hope that you will take away from this a new love and respect for all individuals and that all of us are indeed created by an amazing God who allows us the privilege of living with each other and working out this journey together. . God bless you all, and my best wishes on your upcoming year in school, your new job, or whatever the future may hold for you. I hope that some, if not all of you, will choose to return to Camp next year and in that case, “We’ll see you next year!” .
Hi everyone at Camp Spearhead, . Thank you so much for welcoming Kate back, yet again, to Camp. As ever she had a great time and loves the opportunity to meet up with her South Carolina friends, meanwhile I had a great visit to Savannah with Natalie’s mom. . Thank you to all the wonderful staff and if anyone visits the UK be sure to look us up. . We are all looking forward to the Olympics and in September Kate goes away to residential college to learn catering and hospitality skills, it will be a whole new world for all of us! . With very best wishes, .
Jane and Kate .
Dear Spearhead Staffers, . Thank you for your help in giving many people the highlight of their summer. My son Andrew started talking about camp in April, then counting the days after school was out. . He decorates our refrigerator with his collection of photos from Spearhead and regularly watches videos from camp. I hope you all appreciate your camp memories as much as he does. And I hope that you, too, just love the place! . I’ll ask again about any last-minute openings for Camp. I’ve listened to Andrew this morning, “Campers are waking up from sleeping,” “Campers are getting ready for breakfast,” “Campers are eating breakfast.” And the “play-by-play” is ongoing. So I know what he’s thinking about! .
Hi Camp Spearhead Family, . Just a note to thank all of you for all you do to make Josie’s camp experience sooooo fun! Last Sunday, prior to Monday’s camp session, Josie disappeared upstairs and came down with her pillow, sheets, etc. and promptly placed them on top of her luggage that I had gotten out to pack for her. . It is obvious from counselor reactions when Josie arrives that she is the “belle of the ball” at Camp Spearhead and she feels it too. When I mention camp, she beams. . Thanks again for all you do. As a parent of a special needs child, it definitely takes a special person to do what you all do. We look forward to many years of Camp Spearhead experiences for Josie. . See you next year and at the Weekend Program in the fall. .
Katie came home so very happy! We are all amazed you were able to paint her fingernails purple – a first!! Thank you so very much for giving of yourselves to care for our special children. What a truly selfless way to spend your summer. . Godspeed, .
Mark and Sarah Jane .
HJ’s first week of camp was later than usual, week 4. He has not stopped talking about “Mr. Blake” (he is my favorite) and of course hopes he will be with him his second week, week 7. Thank you Blake for making HJ’s week special. .
Joy’s Family .
Great job guys! Kudos to the staff! You make Sammy love to go to camp. On the way in he always gets so excited that he reads the signs out loud: “I”, “JUST”, “LOVE”, “THIS”, PLACE!”. Afterwards, he always spends days telling us all about it. Again, great job and we’ll see you again for the fall outings as well as next summer. . Thank you, .
A “thank you” is not enough for all you do to make camp so wonderful for my daughter Tiffany Paine. This is something she looks forward to every year and she comes home always talking about her “counselors”. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts. .
To the Staff at Camp Spearhead, . I’d like to take this time to thank all the staff members for you passion and devotion to your duties. My camper’s name is Tatiana Taylor, and every year that she goes she comes back so excited from her week. You guys are truly heroes in her book. She has such a great time and looks forward to the next season. Keep doing what you’re doing and thank you for all your love and support that you show each and every camper that comes to the camp. .
To the Camp Spearhead Staff! . You make such an impact on my son, Kalen’s, life that he comes home and wants to sing all the camp songs for us! AND, he talks about coming back next year! Down syndrome children have absolutely no time concept, so they will talk about what they are looking forward to for the whole year!!!!!!!!! That means we, his family, get to hear about Kalen not being able to wait for camp next year over and over and over and over…….you get the idea. And that also means that the reason he is so excited to return is because YOU made it memorable for him! Thank you for all you did to make camp memorable for Kalen and all of the other campers. I know each and every one of them loved their week with you and can’t wait for the year to pass to do it again. The love my child has for you, the joy you give to him with your hugs and attention are ingrained in his mind, and he remembers. Kalen can’t always express his thoughts, his joys, his emotions, but he has a lot upstairs that he is thinking about, and one of those big folders in his mind is CAMP SPEARHEAD. And, Camp Spearhead is not just a cabin, a pool, or a campfire. Camp Spearhead is YOU! Thank you for being “you” and for taking an interest in all of the children/adults who “live” to come back every summer! Have a blessed rest of the summer and may you follow your dreams! .
Connie, Jim, Preston and Carson