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Background & Philosophy

The word "ARETE" is an ancient Greek word that means "champion" or "achievement everlasting". In 2023, the Arete Swim Camp begins its twenty-fifth year of serving children and families through the sport of competitive swimming. Created by Coach Chuck Warner, the Arete legacy continues under the direction of world renown Coach Mickey Wender. While Coach Wender now serves as Arete's Head Coach, Coach Warner will return to camp as an expert guest coach.

Coach Mickey Wender

Please join Olympic Head Coach Mickey Wender and the head coach of the top-five nationally ranked Colorado Mesa University Mavericks for the swimming experience of a lifetime. Our camps are designed to teach and refine your swimming technique to maximize your potential. Our unique curriculum (developed over the past 30 years with thousands of campers) teaches all four strokes “from the inside out” while focusing on posture, balance, and creating more efficient swimming shapes. We will also teach starts, turns, racing skills, mental skills, and training habits that are guaranteed to take you to the next level, in and out of the pool. Video analysis will be provided for all four strokes, starts, and turns.

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Our Goals As Camp Staff

  • CREATE the most rewarding learning experience

  • ALLOW campers an opportunity to become more effecient swimmers

  • TAILOR workouts to meet the individual needs of the campers

  • GIVE our campers the chance to GO FAST

  • FOCUS on the entire swimmer…MIND, BODY, SPIRIT

  • TEACH life lessons through the sport we love

Arete Swim Camp's Four Core Objectives:

  1. Immediately improve each INDIVIDUAL'S SKILLS.

  2. Enhance each individual's SELF-ESTEEM as a swimmer.

  3. Greatly develop the joy of TEAMWORK in each camper and send them home better able to be teammate.

  4. Create WOW! experiences for every camper of things that excite them about the sport.

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Meet The Coaches

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Mickey Wender

Head Coach

Over the last 30 years , Coach Wender has run swim camp at the University of Washington, the United States Military Academy and at Colorado Mesa University. He has over 30 years experience as a HEAD collegiate swim coach. He has coached All American swimmers at every level and is currently the head coach at CMU. 

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Chuck Warner

Guest Coach

Founder of the Arete Swim Camp, author to several books, and ASCA Hall of Fame Member, Coach Warner has been a leader in American Swimming for more than thirty years. He has led teams to seven National Y team championships, three NCAA Championship runners-up teams (DII), and seven runners-up Big East Conference teams. 

Kate Wender

Camp Administrator

Kate is a former college swimmer, has taught swimming for over 30 years, and is a mother of 4 children. She will help any camper or parent at any time. Call or text: 845-249-5451.

Sam Wender

Camp Administrator

Sam is an elementary school teacher, swim instructor, and daughter of Kate and Mick. She has been actively involved in our camps for over 10 years.

Hiring the right staff takes time. With this in mind, we will announce our full staff list closer to the start of camp. 

Parent Endorsement

Joshua entered camp at age 10 with a 50 yd. freestyle time of 38.41 each year improving in both size and time 31.66, 28.07, 27.39, 23.77, 21.53 and finally 20.98 before entering college. Putting all the lessons learned and instilled within him the next four years of efforts provided winning times of 20.02, 19.82, 19.76 and his West Point school and Pool record of 19.71 in his last race beating his arch rival Navy Swimmer.

The camp provides a stimulating competitive atmosphere that builds on teamwork, sportsmanship, self-esteem, and shows the results of hard-work and discipline. A very positive transformation is awakened for the sport and the lessons learned carry on through their lives. We have seen it happen and feel very fortunate that we found the Wender camp for our son.


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"Coach Wender,  Thank you for ten years of 'Perfect Practice'. "
- Joshua Zock
(Swam 2010-2019)

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Register Today

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