Riverside Resort, Richmond, MN

Riverside Resort, Richmond, MN

Journal

7 Things You May Not Know about Joe and Christina DeRose

“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” -Jeremiah 29:11

Joe and Christina DeRose are owners of Riverside Resort

God knew the plans for Joe and Christina DeRose’s lives from the very beginning of time. Isn’t that crazy to think about?!? Well, they certainly did not know the direction their lives would take, but they have chosen to trust God each step of the way. Those of you who have vacationed at Riverside Resort know how much Joe and Christina love the Resort and the guests who come. You may also know that they have 4 children, relish adventure, and take every opportunity to spend time with friends and family. Have you ever wanted to know more? Well, here are a few interesting facts to help you get to know them a bit better.

 

  1. Their first one-on-one conversation:Joe and Christina on the beach

In college, Joe and Christina went to Panama City Beach, Florida during spring break with a Campus Crusade for Christ group. One morning several of the students decided to run on the beach. As it turns out, Joe and Christina ended up at the front of the group and had a chance to get to know one another without any interruptions! 🙂

 

  1. Joe’s “profession”:Joe taking his boys on a little flight

Joe went to school to become a pilot. He worked for Menards as a corporate pilot for several years before him and Christina bought the resort. He still continues to fly from time to time whether for business or pleasure. Joe acquired his love of flying at a young age and took his first flight lesson at the ripe old age of 14.

 

  1. Christina’s noteworthy achievement:Christina has swimming in her blood

Christina comes from a family of swimmers. Her grandmother was a great swim coach, her mother was a swimmer (who swam in the olympic trials); and she, herself went on to swim competitively at the collegiate level. Christina has many fond memories from her swimming years and learned much along the way about dedication, commitment, and hardwork.

 

  1. Christina’s “profession”:Christina was a math teacher

Christina obtained her degree from St. Cloud State University. From there, she was a high school math teacher for several years before having children and staying home with them. Christina loves numbers and solving all sorts of problems. If you have any algebra, calculus, or geometry questions, she is your gal! 🙂

  1. Their unknown childhood connection:Joe and Christina play the saxophone

Long before Joe and Christina ever met, they both shared a love for music. Not only did they love music, but they both decided at a young age to play alto saxophone. Although, the times are few and far between, if they ever get a chance to play music together it is a joyful occasion.

  1. The “rumor”:Joe and Christina during their dating yearsJoe and Christina having fun

Although it did not last long and nobody is quite sure how it started, the rumor going around Christina’s hometown was that Joe was a model. While everyone agreed that Joe was a good looking fellow, the rumor was soon corrected and everyone had a good laugh about it.

  1. One of their many passions in life:Joe and Christina show their love

Joe and Christina feel very blessed to have each other. They are thankful for the union of marriage that God designed. They certainly know that a wonderful marriage does not come easy and it takes intentional thought, work, and love. Because of this, Joe and Christina have a heart for mentoring others in their marriage as well.

Joe and Christina's love is magical

 

So yes, God knew from the very beginning about all these things that have happened in their lives. He also knows everything that has and will happen in yours. If you want to find out more about us or our resort, check it out here!

 

 

By: Kathryn Rupnow

Social Media Specialist

Riverside Resort

Riverside Rabbit’s Christmas Wish List

“For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whosoever believes in Him, shall not perish but have everlasting life.” – John 3:16

The ultimate, greatest, and most precious gift of all time is this: God sent His one and only Son to the world, not to judge or condemn, but to save us all. At Christmas, we all love to give gifts to those we love. We will never come close to the gift that God has given to us. However, our hope is to make others feel loved by what we give them. Some of us even receive Christmas wish lists so that we are sure to get the right presents. Riverside Rabbit made such a list this year and asked that it be shared with you all! 🙂

1. New Dancing Shoes

Riverside Rabbit so enjoys the time he is able to spend with our guests. One of his favorite activities is dancing the bunny hop with all who will join him. As you can imagine, his shoes get pretty worn out from all the dancing and hopping. This year he is hoping for a shiny new pair!

 

2. Fishing pole

Riverside Rabbit does not typically get too close to the water. (Frankly, he would most likely sink if he fell in.) However, he is always hearing about all the great fish that are caught at the resort each year and would love to get in on the action!

 

3. Wetsuit

Fishing is not the only activity Riverside hears guests rave about, he also hears wonderful things about people swimming. He has been on the look-out for a wetsuit large enough for a bunny his size, however his search has been quite unsuccessful. Let us know if you find anything!

 

4. Glasses

 

Another activity Riverside loves is judging the coloring contest. Even though he thoroughly enjoys this responsibility, he’s getting older each year and sometimes could use some extra assistance seeing the small details in each wonderful picture.

 

5. Large Fan

As you can imagine having lots of fur is wonderful in the winter months, but can get awfully hot in the summer. Riverside wouldn’t miss the chance to see his friends, however, he does think if he had a large fan to cool him off some days would be more enjoyable.

 

6. Oversized Umbrella

Along with his request for a fan, Riverside also has asked for an umbrella. He wants to make sure he is protected from the sun because, believe it or not, rubbing sunscreen on his soft fur is not the most enjoyable experience.

 

7. Pens and Stamps

Riverside Rabbit sends his friends cards in the mail on special occasions throughout the year. Because he has so many friends, he goes through pens and stamps quite quickly.

From all of us here at Riverside Resort we wish you a very Merry Christmas!

 

How to Bake the perfect Apple Pie in 5 Easy Steps

“For he [God] satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things.“ -Psalms 107:9

God has given us an abundance of “good” fruits and vegetables. One of these magnificent foods is the apple. Nothing says ‘Fall’ quite like a large, crisp, and juicy apple. During this time of year there are a plethora of apples to choose from. Maybe you have an apple tree in your yard, or your friend’s yard, or maybe you have just taken a trip to your favorite orchard. Looking for a great way to use those apples? We have a wonderful apple pie recipe for you to try. It is a family favorite! 🙂

1. Pick the perfect apples

Granny Smith, Honeycrisp, or Mcintosh apples are some of the best to use for apple pie. However, in our experience, we have enjoyed our pie regardless of the apples we use. One of our favorite traditions is to go to a local orchard, grab a bunch of apples (whatever variety they are featuring at the time), and use those to make our pies. Bottom line, God makes AHHH-mazing apples, and you can’t really go wrong!

2.Peel the apple, peel, peel the apple

The next step is to peel and cut the apples. Depending on the size of the apples and the size of pie you want to make, you should use between 7-10 apples. Our favorite way to prepare the apples is with the Johnny Apple Peeler, because it peels, slices, and cores the apple all at the same time. However, a regular peeler and knife work just as well. Make sure the apple slices are fairly thin in order for them to cook properly.

3. Fabricate the filling

⅔ cup sugar

¼ cup flour

½ tsp. Cinnamon

½ tsp. Nutmeg

Dash of salt

*Mix these dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Once they are well mixed you can stir in the apples which you have already prepared.

4. Concoct your crust

What??? You want me to make my own crust??!? Yes, you can do it! 🙂

I know it can be intimidating but it is really very easy if you follow these steps. Here is what you will need:

        ⅓ cup plus 1 Tbsp shortening

        1 cup flour

        ¼ tsp salt

        2 to 3 Tbsp cold water

-Cut the shortening into the flour and salt using a pastry blender until particles are crumb size.

-Sprinkle with water 1 Tbsp at a time, tossing with a fork until all the dough is moistened and it almost cleans the side of the bowl.

-Gather the dough into a ball and place it on a large sheet of wax paper.

-Put another piece of wax paper over the top and roll the dough out between them with a rolling pin.

-Once the dough is in a nice circle big enough for your pie pan, take off the top layer of wax paper and flip the dough onto the pie pan. Very carefully, remove the other layer of wax paper.

-Fill the crust with the apple mixture.

 

********If you are wanting to make a 2 crust pie you can repeat these same steps after the pie filling is in the pie. If you want to make a pie with crumb topping (also known as Dutch Apple Pie) you can use these ingredients:

        1 cup flour

       ½ cup packed brown sugar

       ½ cup firm stick of butter

*Mix with pastry blender until crumbly and then place it on top of the pie.

5. Bake to excellence

Now that your delectable masterpiece is almost finished all you have to do is put it in the oven. You should bake it at 450 degrees for about 40 min. Make sure you check it towards the end of the baking time. If the outer crust is starting to look dark, it is best to put small strips of tin foil around the edges to keep them from burning.

Once it is done baking just set it aside to cool.

VOILA! Your Pie is ready.

Serve with ice cream, whipped cream, or just straight up. ENJOY!

 

 

8 Unique ways to make a S’more

“For You created my inmost being; You knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise You because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Your works are wonderful, I know that full well. “ -Psalms 139:13-14

Did you know that? God created you, He knows you, He loves you! Yes, YOU! That’s some fantastic news right there. And do you know what else? He made us each uniquely and perfectly different. Because of this fact, it is no surprise that we all have different talents, abilities, ideas, and, you guessed it, different taste buds. As the brisk air sweeps through the midwest, it’s so nice to gather around the warmth of a campfire with people you love while enjoying a delicious s’more. Here are some great s’more ideas to get your own creative juices flowing. 🙂

 

1. Caramel Apple S’more

Do you like S’mores? Do you like caramel apples? Put your hands together and try combining the timeless favorites. Roast the marshmallow to perfection, add some caramel, top with a few apple slices, and ‘Voila’!

 

2. Traditional S’more

Some may argue that the “traditional s’more” is not unique. That may be true today, but at one point in history it was a totally new and UNIQUE idea. Simply roast the marshmallow to your liking, set it on top of the chocolate, and sandwich it all between golden brown graham crackers. Enjoy!

 

3. Double Chocolate S’more

Calling all chocolate lovers!! For this recipe choose which two chocolate items you put in or on your s’more. Maybe you want the traditional s’more but switch the regular graham cracker out for a chocolate one. Or you can choose to put two different types of chocolate on your s’more. Maybe even get a little more wild and make it a triple or quadruple chocolate s’more by adding even more chocolate. I am not judging!!

 

4. Oreo/Chocolate Chip Cookie S’more

Does this one need a description? I think not. Go grab your oreos, chocolate chip cookies, (or other favorite cookies) and feel free to leave the graham crackers in the cupboard. Bon Appetit!

 

5. Candy Bar S’more

Halloween is just a few weeks away, which means you may have a few more candy bars laying around the house then usual. 🙂 I wonder what would be best paired with a warm melting marshmallow? Snickers, Reese’s, Milky Way….oh boy, my mouth is watering just thinking about it.

 

6. Salted Caramel S’more

The name of this one says it all. Once you have made the perfect s’more, as the chocolate is just starting to melt, simply drizzle or place some of your favorite salted caramel on top. This will bring the traditional s’more to a whole new level.

 

7. S’more Bacon

The saying “Bacon makes everything better” applies to, well, everything. You could prepare the bacon ahead of time or cook it right there over the fire so it is nice and hot. It may even be too good to share. 🙂

 

8. Strawberry S’more

This last idea is definitely not the least. If you are a fresh fruit lover this may be the s’more for you.  It is like a warm, chocolate covered strawberry dipped in marshmallow cream with a crunch. Yup, we may be onto something!

 

Once you have discovered and perfected your favorite s’more, be sure to bring the ingredients along to Riverside Resort next year. We would love to see what you came up with.

 

Summer Highlights

“Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart.” – Psalm 37:4

The Lord truly has given us one of the desires of our hearts this summer, which is working as a family to serve our guests and see the joy that brings around the resort. Of course we had days of struggle, occasional bad weather, and other hard situations; but that’s life right?!? Mostly, we are once again filled with awe and amazement of our Lord’s provisions, faithfulness, and blessings. The wonderful moments and memories are abundant but here are some of our favorites from the summer.

1. Charlie the clown

Charlie the Clown came to Riverside Resort on Memorial Day weekend to help us kick off our 2018 season. We had so much fun! He made balloon animals (and hats), took pictures with the kids, walked on stilts, and entertained us with an amazing unicycle routine. What a way to start the summer and celebrate the holiday!!

2. Awesome fireworks display

In the past, Riverside Resort has set off fireworks over the 4th of July, but then took a several year hiatus. 3 years ago, we decided to start it back up. Since then, we feel that every year and every show has gotten even bigger and better than the last. (Not to mention our fire masters are gaining more confidence! 🙂 ) What a brilliant display of light, sound, and color. If you missed it this year, make sure to put it on your calendar in 2019 as we plan to continue this yearly tradition. Check out this year’s finale!

3. A First for Caleb

Caleb, our oldest son, is 9 years old and this year he took on the task of helping to mow the resort lawn. There is a lot of great green space which means there are endless opportunities to mow. Caleb says that he likes to mow because it is a “pretty good work out”. He was in charge of mowing the grass around the bathhouse and the playground area in the backyard. Even though he has enjoyed using the push mower this summer, he said he is anxious for when he can also use the riding mower. 🙂

4. New Record

This year we had the most guests we have ever had in the month of August!! It was fun for our busy weeks of June and July to continue all the way through the summer. We were able to meet so many new guests for the first time as well as welcome back cherished and familiar faces who faithfully come back year after year.

5. David, the Fish Master

David, our second son, is 8 and he is quite the fisherman. He is unsure the exact number of fish he caught this summer, but we all agree it has to be over 70. The biggest fish was a 20-inch catfish!! He fishes mostly off various docks at the resort, but he said his favorite spots are Becker Lake and Mud Lake. Both of these lakes are just a boat ride away from the resort. David’s preference is to use a “blue and silver” lure, but he says you can catch a bunch of sunfish just using nightcrawlers. He is a wealth of information so if you have any questions while fishing at the resort be sure to track him down! 🙂

 

We look back fondly and thankfully at our summer and look ahead in expectancy and excitement for the fall that lies ahead!

 

ABC’s for a successful school year

“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” -Joshua 1:9

As we say ‘goodbye’ to summer, we say ‘hello’ to a new school year! This time of transition is full of excitement, nerves, shopping, and lots of planning. Here are some tips to help make this school year the best yet!

 

A – Attitude

Winston Churchill said “Attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference”. We need to set an example by having a good attitude in all situations. The beginning of the school year is very exciting, however, it can also be hard. If you keep a good attitude, it will be infectious to those around you.

 

B – Boundaries

Set boundaries on activities during the school year. Kids are so busy just going to school therefore, it is even more difficult when we cram in so many other things before and after school. Sit down as a family and talk about everyone’s priorities. From there, figure out together what will work best.

 

C – Calendar

It does not matter how many people are in your family or how many schedules you are trying to juggle. It is a good idea to have a common calendar with everyone’s activities listed. This helps everyone to be on the same page as well as decreasing miscommunication between family members.

 

D – Designate

Have specific places at home for specific activities. For example: eat at the table, sleep in your bed, relax in your living room, and find a place where homework can get done. This will help keep everyone focused on the task at hand and aid in keeping a consistent routine.

 

E – Eat

Eating and what we choose to eat are essential for our mind and body throughout the day. Eating breakfast before school helps children to stay focused on their work and not think about their rumbling tummy. It is also important for children to eat healthy snacks and meals throughout the day. Check out this website, it gives some helpful tips about nutrition for kids. 

 

F – Fun

Don’t forget to have fun. Learning is fun, being with friends is fun, and helping in your child’s classroom is fun. If we take the fun out of learning and the fun out of school, kids are going to be less excited about going.

 

G – God

Most importantly, make God’s plan and His purpose part of your child’s school year. Pray with your children about school situations, memorize scriptures that could be encouraging throughout their day, and read the Word of God to keep truth in everyone’s hearts. 

 

Guest Interview #1

“Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and your dominion endures through all generations. The Lord is trustworthy in all He promises and faithful in all He does.” – Psalm 145:13

We believe with our whole hearts that this is true! God’s kingdom is eternal, He is trustworthy, He is faithful, and His dominion endures through all generations! What great hope that brings. Nothing else endures ALL generations, but some things get pretty close. Like some of our faithful and steadfast guests that have come to Riverside Resort for years and years. Two of those families are the Gilmores and Kruisselbrinks.

Al and Barb Gilmore (left) cherish time with their family and love to cheer on their grandkids at different sporting events. They farm as well as raise beef cows and draft horses. Barb worked in the banking industry for 38 years and just recently retired to help Al on the farm. They have been married almost 43 years.

Jim (Barb’s brother) and Vicki Kruisselbrink (right) also love to spend time with family, as well as take time to travel. Jim is a crop farmer and Vicki is a nursing assistant at an assisted living and care center. They have been married 37 years.

It was a privilege to sit down with these two couples to ask a few questions and talk about their experiences at Riverside Resort.

How did you first learn about Riverside Resort?

                 Barb – “Our mother wanted to spend a week together as a family at the lake. We have siblings that live far away from each other and she (mom) wanted all the cousins to get to know one another. A family from our home church had come to the resort and highly recommended it. Not only did they recommend the resort, but they also recommended Jim and Jeanette DeRose (the owners at that time). Mom made a reservation for the first week and we have come every year since. We have always had to get multiple cabins in order to house all the family that comes.”

Barb and 2 of her granddaughters

How long have you and your family been coming here?

               Vicki – “The first year we came was 1997, and have been coming every year since.” That’s 21 straight years!

This picture was taken of the two families at Riverside Resort in 1998.

Why do you keep coming back?

               Jim – “We keep coming back because everyone enjoys it. We always do the same week so everyone can plan it from year to year. We also continue coming so that we can hang out with our family and get to know them better. The kids love it and sometimes it is the only time we all see each other the whole year.”

              Barb – “It is a family friendly place, and we feel very safe. It is fun to just sit, relax, and visit with one another.”

              Jim – “Vicki and I live only 15 minutes away from Al and Barb but we really never hang out. The Resort is far enough away from home that we feel we are really on vacation and are free to have uninterrupted time with them.”

Jim and Vicki enjoying the minnow races!

What are your favorite activities at Riverside Resort?

              Al – ” I like to nap. I also like the water and the outdoors, I am comfortable here.”

             Barb – “Our mother was deathly afraid of water. None of us (Barb, Jim, or their siblings) knew how to swim. As children, we never went to the lake or went boating or anything. Once we started coming to Riverside that changed. Now all of our kids know how to swim and they love the water. We (Jim and Barb) like to sit up on the shore and watch everyone swim and have fun.”

              Vicki – “The Sunday morning church service is my favorite activity at Riverside. In addition, Barb and I like to read here because it is so nice and quiet. I have also liked the addition of the movie night the last few years.”

Al and the kids playing bean bags

What is your favorite Riverside Resort Memory?

               Vicki – “My favorite memory is family game night with Barb and Jim’s mom and dad. We would all squeeze into one cabin and just play games together. We would stay up late into the night just enjoying being with one another.”

How would you describe Riverside Resort to someone who has not heard of it?

               Vicki – “I would say it is very family orientated and quiet. We so appreciate the DeRose family, their Christian values, and their hospitality.”

               Jim – “Yes I agree, they (the DeRose family) are part of our family now too.”

Some of the grandkids with Riverside Rabbit

Confession time, do you or do you not participate in the bunny hop when Riverside Rabbit comes to visit?

               Al – “Yes, we all have, but not each year. When our grandkids were little we would do it with them. Now they are old enough that we can just watch and enjoy them having fun.”

The couples enjoying a pontoon adventure with Jim DeRose (the previous owner)

 

Tips for staying fit and healthy while on vacation

“Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.” – 1 Corinthians 6:19-20

We believe vacations are very important, because you are able to spend time with those you love while getting away from the normal hustle and bustle of everyday life. Getting out of your routine is a great way to rejuvenate and relax, however can cause you to fall into some unhealthy habits and behaviors. Here are some ideas to help you stay on track even while away from home.

 

1. Keep a water bottle with you at all times 

It is always important to stay hydrated, especially when it is hot outside. Energy drinks, sodas, juices, etc are fine to have once in a while; but make sure the majority of liquid you consume is simply water.  

 

2. Bring your own snacks 

When you are out and about you will get hungry. If you wait until your stomach starts to rumble, most likely you will grab a quick unhealthy snack (as that’s usually cheaper and more readily available). Bring a bag of carrots, an apple, or some trail mix to curb your hunger until the next meal.

 

3. Brown bag it on the go 

Going out to eat is wonderful; however packing your own food tends to be healthier (and definitely a money saver). Another advantage of packing your own meals, is that you do not have to stop everything to find a restaurant. You already have your food with you and ready to eat!

 

4. Drive-past, don’t drive-thru 

While traveling it can be tricky to make wise food choices, especially since there is fast food everywhere you look. Research ahead of time to see if there are healthier restaurant options on your route or if you just want to pack along your own food for the trip.

 

5. Plan pitstops 

Research your traveling route ahead of time to find the best places to stop and get your body moving. You will get a little exercise and take in some great sights at the same time.

 

6. Visit a farmers market 

What a great way to immerse yourself in local culture! Here you can round up some fresh and healthy local produce. You can eat your food right at the market while taking in more of the city, or carry it out for later.

 

7. Sight see without a taxi

This is easy, practical, and really the best way to experience any location you visit. Instead of flagging down a taxi to go a few blocks, simply walk (or potentially bike) and take in all the other sites along the way.

 

8. Take advantage of your location 

You can workout in a gym anytime. When you are on vacation get creative with your workouts. Take a row boat across the lake, go running in the city, or take a paddleboard to a new, unexplored island. Whatever it is, utilize the equipment and terrain of the location you visit, and enjoy what God has created.

 

9. Don’t forget to sleep 

If you are anything like me, your itinerary is jam packed with exciting activities and experiences. Don’t forget to allow time to sleep in, as proper sleep is key to good health and a successful vacation!

 

Happy travels!

 

7 ways to use a splash mat

“But whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” – John 4:14

God provides both “living water”, which sustains the soul forever; and also “physical water”, which quenches thirst for a period of time. But it is such a wonderful gift! Water sustains us, it cleanses us, it purifies us, and it is super fun to play in. 🙂 One of the very popular attractions at our beach swimming area is the splash mat. People of all ages play on it and they continue to create new and exciting ways to use it. Here are a few that we have seen!

 

1. Relax

Who doesn’t love to just be at the beach and relax? The splash mat can be a perfect place to just chill because you do not have to worry about getting sand all over your body and you can just move smoothly with the waves. Warning: If relaxing is your goal, you will have to be a little strategic in your timing to avoid the SPLASH that typically comes with being on a splashmat.  

 

2. Slide

This encourages taking turns and seeing who can slide all the way off the mat. It is sometimes difficult to start running because the mat can be slippery, however that just adds to the fun and challenge of it all.

 

3. Jump

Jumping is an age-old activity, that almost always seems to produce both smiles and laughter. If you get a group of people to all jump on the mat at the same time, you can get some good waves going. Not only is this fun for people on the mat, but others on shore will get to practice some wave jumping as well. 🙂

 

4. Dance

When someone has got the music inside them, it just simply cannot be contained. It doesn’t matter if you are walking down the street, hanging out in your own bedroom, or playing on a splash mat. When you feel the movement of the water, it sometimes just takes over and the dancing begins.

 

5. Play Football

I suppose many sports could be adapted to play on the splash mat, but this summer there was a group of guys playing football on it. It makes sense: there is ample room to throw the ball and to avoid a tackle you can jump safely into the water. How points were scored is still a bit of a mystery, but that did not seem to matter much. When you try it, you and your group can create your own rules. 🙂

 

6. Push people off (with their permission of course)

Why is pushing people into the water so tempting and satisfying? I do not have the answer, but I do know the feeling. Before this activity starts, it is important to make sure that everyone is on board with participating. However, we all know the universal rule: if you push others, you are giving permission for others to push you.

 

7. Share it with the ducks

That’s right. The ducks love the splash mat too! Typically you can find them there in the early morning hours because it is more peaceful and they have the swimming area all to themselves.

 

When you visit Riverside Resort make sure to try all these different ways of using the splash mat and see if you can come up with others as well. We would LOVE to hear about them!

 

8 Great Camping Meals

“So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.” 1 Corinthians 10:31

There are so many wonderful things about camping. The fresh air, time spent together, the beauty of nature, gathering around the campfire, and of course EATING. Eating is one of the most fun parts of a camping trip because it sets the tone for everything else. If everyone is satisfied and well-fed, typically every other activity runs more smoothly. (Talk about ‘Happy Campers’ 🙂 ) Here are some of our favorite meals to cook over the fire.

1. Hobo meals

This is a great meal because everyone can create their own and it’s healthy and filling. Start by putting some ground beef on a piece of tin foil. Then you can add whatever you like: onions, carrots, potatoes, corn, etc. Once you have put all the food in the piece of tin foil add a few dollops of butter and perhaps some salt or pepper. Then fold up the tin foil and set on the fire to cook. Once it is done you can top it with cheese, sour cream, ketchup, or anything else you think sounds good!

2. Pudgy pies

This is another meal that everyone can make just the way they like. You will need pudgy pie irons. Let your imagination run wild with the sandwich fixings you bring. Once your main meal is over, make sure to keep the irons out; they also make super yummy desserts. Here are 7 recipes to get you going.

3. Brats

Traditional but so yummy. This is such an easy meal because you can grill them on a grate over the fire or simply stick a skewer in the middle and roast until golden brown. You do not need all the ingredients of the last few meals, just a bun and your favorite condiment!

4. Hamburgers

Another traditional and timeless camping choice. Just start a fire and throw the patties on the grate. Make sure to talk about the best part of the day while waiting for the burgers to cook perfectly over the fire. Everybody loves burger night.

5. Shish kabobs

Put a few chunks of your favorite meat along with veggies of various kinds on a skewer and you have yourself a delicious shish kabob. You can make these as fancy or simple as you desire. Make sure you think about this meal before leaving home so that you can pre-cut all the necessary meats and veggies for easy assembly by the campfire. Looking for shish kabob inspiration, check out these ideas. 

6. Spaghetti

Spaghetti might seem like an interesting camping idea, but it is easy to make and requires minimal ingredients. All you need is a pot to boil water, noodles, and your favorite spaghetti sauce. This carbo-loaded meal is great after a long day of hiking or other strenuous activities.

7. Walking tacos

This yummy meal is sure to satisfy everyone in your group. The original walking tacos were made with fritos but feel free to substitute any type of chip. A variety pack of individually packaged chips could be the way to go. The only on-site preparation needed is heating up the taco meat over the fire, this is of course if you have all your other fixings cut up and ready to go before hand.

8. Pigs in a blanket

This tasty meal is easy and only requires 3 items: 2 ingredients and 1 roasting stick. You will need some refrigerated crescent rolls and hot dogs. Simply unravel the dough and roll a hot dog in each one. Stick the hot dog on a roasting stick and cook in the fire until golden brown. Voila, dinner is served!

Try and/or tweak these meal ideas and see which ones your friends and family love most. Happy cooking!