April 26, 2000

Hi Guys and Dolls...

I'm writing because each of you has been such an important part of our lives. I can't tell you how much Sharon and I keep thinking of you, and watching how each of you has moved on. We get many e-mail letters in which you say how Camp Timberlane was one of the most wonderful experiences of your life. We would like for everyone to send us an e-mail; and please include your telephone number, so that not only can we come back with an e-mail message, but we can also call and talk to you personally.

Life is funny, and I still love to do what I did as a young man. I am 72 years old, and retired from teaching high school in 1987; but was called immediately by the Dean of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and asked to head up a major math program that would help students who were not quite ready to start college algebra. I have been Head Coordinator for 13 years and have 20 instructors and 800 students per semester. I have always loved being a teacher, and it keeps me young. Sharon is a part-time travel agent, and it allows us to go on many trips around the United States, Europe, Israel, and other parts of the world. Our four children are all married and have wonderful mates. We have 9 grandchildren, and the moment they are 1 1/2 years-old, I make tapes with children's songs, Timberlane songs, and stories that I personally tell. You'd be how surprised how verbal each of them gets learning camp songs and stories.

You know that after I sold Camp Timberlane, Billy Fried convinced me to be his partner in purchasing Camp Agawak For Girls. Billy, and his wife Mary, became tremendous camp operators; and as I watch Billy recruiting and Mary helping run the camp program, I am overwhelmed by the great job they have done. My job now is to run the campfires, helping with singing and storytelling. Billy and Mary have done such an outstanding job that if a girl doesn't register for camp by October 1, there is no hope for them to attend, as enrollment is filled with 100 on the waiting list. Five of my granddaughters have gone to Camp Agawak, and it is great fun to spend time with them and watch as they have the same wonderful camp experience that each of you shared.

Hats off to Bob and Heidi Gassel who put together the Timberlane website. I love to read it; and when I hear about you, I start to cry. Did you know that John Marks was being shafted by a computer outfit that he helped to start. He called on Vance Liebman for his help as a lawyer. Vance did such an outstanding job that both he and John became rich men from the verdict. Well done to both of them... My nephew Gary Drapkin became very ill two years ago, and I went to Seattle to stay with him for a week. We knew that he wouldn't recover, and all we talked about was Camp Timberlane...he told me it was a major part of his life. Gary eventually passed away, but it was important for me, his mom and Tamie (Tishberg) Callahan to be with him during this time. There are many more stories, but I'll save those for later e-mails that I'll send to all of you.

Sharon and H

10018 N. Holmes Court
Mequon, WI 53092
(262) 242-7577 winter
(715) 356-9288 summer (Woodruff)

PS: Remember how handsome I was during the last 15 years I ran the camp? I wore a hairpiece because I wanted to look young. When I reached 65 years-of-age, Sharon said "Harold, your friends are all bald, why do you try to look younger than them?". I had to agree with her, so she pulled it off my head; and now I look like most of you, although I'm still kind of handsome?????