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Coordinator Spotlight: Peanut

Get to know Peanut in this week’s Coordinator Spotlight!


Name: Tess Neddersen
Camp Name: Peanut
Hometown: Woodbury, MN
Year in School: Senior
Major(s)/Minor(s): Kinesiology with a minor in Biology

How did you hear about Camp Kesem? I heard about Camp Kesem through friends at school

What is the meaning behind your camp name? “Peanut” came from my dad’s nick name for me as a little girl, and still is applicable now given my below-average stature.

What is your favorite camp activity? Besides the obviously memorable talent show, my favorite camp activities were making bracelets and eating smores around the campfire!

What is your favorite camp song? Looking back on camp now, I’d say “The Milkshake” song was my favorite. It was the first song the automobile girls started singing together every night before bed and really helped everyone to be more outgoing and goofy!

Where was the weirdest place you saw Karl Kesem during camp last year? It wasn’t so much a place, but my favorite memory with him was painting his little caterpillar toenails bright red!

What was your favorite memory from Camp Kesem 2012? One of my favorite memories from camp last year was the last Automobiles cabin chat. It started off a little goofy, but I encouraged the girls to open up by sharing my own experience. There was lots of crying, but also a sense of relief and connection as most of the campers talked about their experiences and hardships. I think that cabin chat really brought our group closer together.

What are you most looking forward to about Camp Kesem 2013? Extending the Camp Kesem Family and learning more camp songs!

Explain your position in Camp Kesem. What role do you have? This year, I am one of the Camper Care Co-Coordinators along with Pumpkin. We’re working to recruit new campers, keep in touch with current CKMN families and coordinate the professional staffing for Camp 2013.

Why do you CK? I CK because of my personal experiences with having lost a parent to cancer. My dad battled colon cancer for 4 years before he passed away when I was 12 and it was entirely devastating. Having this experience though makes me that much more motivated to give these kids this amazing opportunity to make friends who understand the hardships they have been through. I know that this camp would have helped me so much as a kid, and I feel so blessed to be able to be a part of this organization and bringing the Kesem magic to camp.

What is one movie that will never get old to you? Finding Nemo, without a doubt.

What is a quote/motto you live by? “Just keep swimming” (as Dory sang in the movie I mentioned above). No matter how intimidating or overwhelming problems can seem, you just have to keep swimming and push your way through the challenges to make it to the other side.

If you could only eat one food all week long at camp, what would it be? Pickle & Peanut Butter sandwiches!

If you could make any celebrity a CK counselor, who would it be any why? I would definitely make Phil Dunphy a counselor. He would without a doubt provide endless camp entertainment with his philsophy jokes, tight-rope-walking skills and magic tricks.

If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be and why?  Definitely Brazil, I have family friends there and it would be a great cultural change!

We could not be more excited to have Peanut as part of our Camp Kesem Minnesota team! Be sure to check out next week’s Coordinator Spotlight to get to know even more about our student staff!