Kent Cruger

After a 20-year hiatus, Kent Cruger will be returning to Belknap for his 17th summer in the role of Leadership Director.

Kent’s first year at Belknap was as a junior camper in 1977. After 5 years as a camper, he entered the leadership ranks first as a Junior Leader, then continued as a Junior Division Head and finally oversaw the Leader Corps for six years. He counts as one of his greatest life accomplishments serving as Woodcraft Chief during his last two years at Belknap.

Kent received his BA from Cornell University and his MA in Education from the University of Colorado, Boulder. It was at CU Boulder in 1993 where Kent met his wife, Kim, and they have been in Boulder ever since. Their son Jackson spent 13 summers at Belknap, his final as the Senior Division Head. Their daughter Chloe is also a Belknapper, having spent 2 summers providing childcare for the Perreault children. 

Recently retired after 30 years as a teacher and elementary school principal, Kent currently works at Eldora Ski Resort on the Mountain Safety team. 

While it’s difficult to imagine anyone more excited than Kent to be returning to Belknap, it might be possible that Kim is even more thrilled to finally be spending a summer at Belknap. And, their dog Gus might actually wind up having the best summer of all the Crugers.

Charlie Tantum

Charlie Tantum is the Leaders Corp Director for Summer 2024. This will be Charlie’s 14th summer at Camp. He was previously a Junior Cabin Leader (2021), Cadet Assistant Division Head (2022), and the Cadet Division Head (2023). Charlie also served as the Sailing Program Head in 2022-2023. During the fall of 2020, Charlie worked at camp on conservation and belonging initiatives.  

Originally from Belvedere, CA, Charlie is currently a junior at Williams College, pursuing a degree in Computer Science. He is the captain of the Williams Ultimate Frisbee Team, and he also volunteers as a “Recess Buddy” at the local elementary school. In Charlie’s free time, he loves to ski, run, and hike! At Belknap, you will find him waterskiing, playing Rock Hockey or Bizou Ball! 

Betsy Cissel

Betsy joined the year-round Camp Belknap staff as the Communications Manager in July 2023. She spent eleven years working as the Program Director for Girls on the Run New Hampshire in Exeter and is thrilled to make the transition to a local non-profit focused on youth programming. Summer 2023 will be a return to camp life for Betsy – her last summer at camp was as a Middler at Camp Huckins.

Betsy and her husband, Rob, relocated to Wolfeboro in April ’23 after living in Amherst, NH for 24 years. They have three adult children – Johnny, Tommy (Belknap 2012-2017) and Maggie (Huckins 2011-2023) and one rambunctious yellow Lab puppy, Calvin, who loves to play with the other Belknap dogs. Betsy loves to be outside hiking, kayaking, or sitting by the lake with a good book. Her favorite early morning activity is a quick jaunt up Mount Major!

Kayla Manzanares

Kayla is the nurse manager for health services at Camp Belknap.  It will be her 2nd summer at Belknap.  In this role she oversees the management of Belknap’s health team of greater than 10 staff each summer and leads health center operations including supplies, policies, and training.

Kayla graduated from Pomona College undergraduate and returned for a nursing degree at the University of Colorado.  She has spent most of her nursing career in Hospice and is a skilled listener and communicator.  She has been a travel nurse, has filled almost all roles you can imagine, and is a fluent Spanish speaker.  She is now working in the hospital setting in Colorado when she is not at camp. 

Kayla lives in Salida, Colorado with her husband Phillip (who has been known to make the best Belknap desserts) and their two daughters Auretta and Leona who love being staff kids at Belknap. 

Dacha Thurber

Dacha Thurber is the Waterfront Director and Middler Division Head for Summer 2024.  This will be Dacha’s 14th summer at Camp. He was previously a Cabin Leader (2021) in the Middler Division, Besserer Assistant Division Head (2022) and the Middler Division Head (2023-present). Dacha also served as the Sailing Program Head in 2022 and 2023.  

During the fall of 2020, Dacha worked at camp on conservation and belonging initiatives. No surprise – Dacha’s favorite ways to enjoy Belknap all involve the lake – sailing, taking in the sunrises and sunsets, and skiing on glassy water! 

Originally from Exeter, NH, Dacha is currently in his junior year at Harvard College, pursuing a degree in computer science and music. In addition, he is a violinist and conductor in ensembles throughout Boston and a violin coach at the Boston Youth Symphony Orchestra. On the side, Dacha is a chocolate taster for Lindt & Sprüngli and he loves cooking and birding!

Sue Barron

Sue Barron joins Camp Belknap in 2022 as Finance Manager. She has held various finance roles in the nonprofit industry – most recently with Dakin Humane Society in western Massachusetts for the last 11 years. She brings over 15 years experience in bookkeeping, account analysis and financial management to Camp Belknap. 

Camp holds a special place in heart since her son Dan spent 9 summers “under the pines” at Camp Belknap from 2005 – 2013 and her daughter Julia attended Camp Huckins from 2008 – 2015. 

As a prior lifelong Massachusetts native, Sue and her husband Howard relocated permanently to their “happy place” on the shores of Lake Winnipesaukee in 2020. They share their home in Alton Bay with their chocolate lab, Bella, and love it when Dan & Julia are able to come spend time up at the lake. 

Aside from travel and boating, her favorite thing to do is relax on the shores of Lake Winnipesaukee surrounded by her family (both two and four legged).