For eight years, Lahonda was what I looked forward to most from the time I left to when it was time to pack again for the next year. It encouraged me to keep practicing throughout the summer and taught me invaluable lessons about theory and music I would not have learned alone at school. Being immersed in music and the redwoods has got to be one of the coolest things ever. I met some of my best friends and now college roommate that still keeps me involved in music today thanks to Lahonda! To top things off, there are fun recreational activities to participate in thanks to the awesome YMCA staff.
I love La Honda Music Camp because it gives me a week to work with other musicians and professional coaches. Last year was my first year at camp and I learned so much from working with my peers and mentors. Along with that, I also made tons of friends who share similar interests as me. Even though it was my first year, the environment was extremely welcoming and I was able to make lots of friends. I'm excited to go back this summer!
This will be the last year that my son can go as a camper and I'm sure he will be competing with his camp friends for a job here next year. He started in 5th grade and every year he is so tired and so dirty he wants to go home, but he can't wait to get back. When we get there to drop him off we hear his name being yelled through the trees as boys come running to greet one another after a year apart. The stories of epic summer camp fun have changed over the years: the zip line, the rock wall, the pool, the antics in the cabin! The dances. The classes. Last year he took an electronic music class that for him was truly life changing.
His High School doesn't offer music. Most kids put down their instrument but this guy has found ways to keep up his musicianship just so he can play at La Honda Music Camp each and every summer. That is compelling!
The photos, videos, tshirts - all of these are prized possessions from a wonderful adventure.
There are not enough words to say how wonderful this camp experience was for our son! 2012 was the first year he attended. He only knew a couple of other students and was a bit aprehensive about attending at first. Once there he made fast friends with other students AND the staff. The camp helped him grow in so many ways. He received professional level instruction from staff, his musicianship dramatically improved. The variety of classes that he was able to choose from allowed him to grow in areas that he was personally interested in. When we showed up for the final concert we were amazed by his camp experience. The friendships he made have lasted the whole year and he is really excited to attend again this summer. This camp gave him an advantage at school in the fall. The STAFF is just top notch and seriously all professional level musicians that go to any length to give each and every student every bit of their knowledge and expertise. The housing was good, food was great, staff was unbelievably excellent. Our son came home telling us it was obvious that the staff really cared about each and every student and helping them get the most out of camp! We were so impressed and you will be too if you choose this camp for your student. Now our younger son is excited for the chance to attend Hayward-LaHonda music camp too. We couldn't be more pleased. Thank you Hayward-LaHonda camp!
This music camp changed my life when I was a teenager! I made so many connections and friends, some of whom I remain in contact with today! Now I am a music teacher and I love telling my students exactly which music camp they should attend: Hayward La Honda Music Camp, of course! :)
My son had the time of his life attending the La Honda Music Camp for the first time this summer. We had done a lot of research and were seeking a music camp that was professional, enriching, educational, safe, clean, reasonably priced, and most importantly, fun! La Honda far exceeded our hopes. The leadership of the camp is clearly passionate about kids and music as it shows in everything that they do. The staff (and there are lots of them!) are all of the highest caliber and incredibly approachable. The kids seemed to have worked hard and played hard at this tremendous camp nestled in the middle of some truly gorgeous woods. It’s obvious why this camp celebrated its 50th year this summer, it’s amongst the best. Our only regret… not knowing about La Honda sooner! Kudos La Honda – we are already looking forward to next summer.
My daughter has gone to Lahonda for the past five years and is signed up for her sixth. She LOVES it. It is a great combination of music, fun and nature. Lahonda is the highlight of her summer. From my perspective the camp is well run, the instructors are professional and I really enjoy picking my daughter up at the end of the week and hearing the all the bands at camp in the concert.
Hayward La Honda Music Camp is a special music camp. Not only is the quality of instruction among the top in the state (national award winning classical and jazz instructors), but the staff is very personable. And, it doesn't hurt that the cost of the camp is is fairly modest in comparrison with other camps. One thing that makes the camp very special is the generational element that is present. A number of the campers, after graduating from high school, are interested in becoming counselors for the program; and in turn, the counselors often want to eventually become instructors. This is evident in my situation, as I was once a camper in the 70's, an instructor from 1986-1999, and am now a parent of two high school campers. Eventhough there are other, more "prestigious" camps to attend, I choose to send my kds (and students) to this one - it is "the" one!
My son doesn't get excited about much. His experience at La Honda had changed that. He learned so much in 10 days. He came home with an experience he still talks about today. The instructors came from all over the US. I was amazed to see the dedication from instructors and camp organizers. My son would go every year if I could send him financially.
My son attended this camp several times. He learned more in the time he was there than he did all year at school. The coordinators and staff at this camp really care about the safety and care of the kids attending. Their concert on the last day of camp is outstanding. Overall, a SUPER enjoyable experience for our son. They are trying to keep their costs down to make it affordable, so they do several fundraisers.
After you have grown out of kiddie music camp, Hayward LaHonda is a great step up. This is a camp that balances the music (which is great) with the social which is age appropriate. My kids love(d) it as a great adventure in the fall, the camp they look forward to all high school year long.
Last year my son attended La Honda Music Camp for the first time. This was literally a life-changing experience for him. While he has been studying music for a while, it was that experience of making and enjoying music with his peers that really inspired him. Now he is in the 6th grade and is currently playing in 3 orchestras (string orchestra and 7th grade band at school plus Berkeley Youth Orchestra). He converted his room into a music production studio, equipped with a computer and two synthesizers, learned musical score typesetting and is counting days remaining before the 2010 camp. Even more important than music itself, was (in my opinion) how many friends he made in the camp. It was absolutely amazing seeking kids of different ages and backgrounds, some much older than my son being so friendly and nice with him and really enjoying his company, especially since he was considered almost an outcast in his school. I think it boosted his self-esteem enormously and helped him a lot in his transition to the middle school. I could only envy him, because I did not have such an experience when I was a kid myself.
I attended this camp when I was young, and my son has been attending for 4 years! He enjoys playing music with young people who are like him. He says he's made so many friends, and each year marks the calendar for the next as soon as camp dates are announced. The level of instruction and organization of the music leaders is outstanding. The outdoor and social activities, my son says, are also fun. We are from the local area, so he enjoys making others more comfortable in the woods as well. He especially loves the horses, swimming and archery. I had the same experience as my son, and our family can, without hesitancy recommend this fabulous camp. It is not expensive and is a personally rewarding experience for young people, whether beginners or advanced in their music level. Also, all of the campers seem to bond so easily, so new campers really feel welcome.
Hayward La Honda Music Camp changed my life! I began going two years after I had started playing oboe, and it was the first actual chance I had gotten one on one oboe lessons.. from an actual oboist! I learned to make reeds at this camp, and these opportunities helped me get into college as a music major. This camp offers many different opportunities for the young musician. La Honda was the first opportunity I ever had to sing in a choir, take a jazz improv class, and play in an orchestra! Every ambition I had was encouraged. Being in an atmosphere where I was surrounded by people with like interests and passions hands down, made my youth more worth living.
Hayward La Honda Music Camp was the highlight of my year for many many years of my teenage life. I loved music, I loved the other students, I loved the teachers and counselors. I would talk about it all year round. I remained close with the friends I made there. Truly one of the best experiences for young musicians.
This summer will be my eighth summer at La Honda music camp. Each year I look forward to that one week in the summer more than any other. Each year I tell myself that the next year cannot possibly be as fun as the last, and each year I prove myself wrong. La Honda has helped me to grow both musically and emotionally. Being surrounded by incredible musicians and getting to the opportunity to learn from them is only part of the experience. Soaking in the love of music that the campers and staff share is intoxicating. There have been times when I wanted to put music aside in favor of other things, but after one week at La Honda, I inevitably leave re-inspired to continue with music. One of the strengths of the camp is the focus on this atmosphere of shared music appreciation rather than creating a competitive environment. Even after I am too old to attend camp, I will always remember it as providing for some of the best friendships and best experiences of my youth.
My daughter has attended the camp for several years. She looks forward to it all year. she has made some terrific friends from all over the Bay Area. The camp experience, the music, the concerts, the learning and the beautiful location make it a truly special place.
This summer, I will be attending camp for the seventh time. When I refer to La Honda Music Camp as "the best place in the world", I am not exaggerating. During the whole year, I look forward to camp and am confident that each time, it will be yet another unforgettable experience. I have met some amazing musicians and people and have made life-long friends and memories. From a musical standpoint, it is amazing to be able to play in ensembles with high schoolers that are just as passionate about music as you are. All the coaches and conductors are extremely encouraging. (by the way...Mr. Gold is my hero! Just had to put that in here somewhere =D ) During the 8 days (used to be 9...so sad :'| ) I feel like I improve more than I could in months of regular school orchestra, and am re-invigorated and inspired to continue pursuing music so avidly throughout the year. But the great, unique thing about La Honda Music Camp that sets it apart is the fact that this is not only a music camp. It's a CAMP. Skit night, cabin bonding, dances, canoes, horseback riding, archery, rock climbing......there's never a dull moment, and it's all just so much FUN. Every year on the last day of camp my friends and I devise a plan to hide somewhere and stay because we know how much we'll miss it. Instead of getting home-sick, I get sick AFTER coming back...we call it "la-honda-sick" ! This will be my last summer where I will be allowed back as a camper (getting too old :/ ) Hopefully I can one day become a counselor and give back to this place that has given so much to me. As said before, best place on Earth.
My two daughters have attended Hayward La Honda music camp over the past four years and have enjoyed camp enormously as well as growing musically through this experience. The instructors are experienced first class musicians that work very well with teens and I have heard many glowing reviews from my girls about the instuctors at camp. The setting is beautiful and really gets you out in the woods and away from the burbs. The friendships made at camp with other young musicians from the Bay Area has been what my girls cherish most. I highly recommend this La Honda Music Camp.
My daughter has attended Hayward La Honda Music Camp for four years. It's the high point of her summer, and she schedules all other camps and commitments around it. The music education is incredible -- immersive and fun at the same time. There are enough other activities that add fun to camp also, especially horseback riding and games. Teachers and conductors are top-notch, and offer a depth of knowledge that can't easily be accessed elesewhere.