Posted by Larry Johnson on August 03
Helloooo parents!!!!!! And welcome to the final blog of not only 4th session, but the whole summer!! Can you believe the session is almost finished already? It seems like it was just a day or two ago when we were just getting to know each other and I was explaining all the things you first time camp parents would need to know to get ya through the session. Hopefully you guys hung in there with me and we all made it through without any major questions or confusion.
The campers sure haven’t been confused, as they finished their last day of classes, they were making sure everything went just right as they flew down the zip line or out in the circus. Of course the campers down in the arts and crafts were finishing up all their projects and as I walked around camp today, one thing that stood out was all the friendships that have developed and how all the campers were cheering each other on. Whether it was in ropes, rock climbing, horseback or even just hanging out with one another down by the river, it was great to see campers actually hanging out and talking to each other. And to think, they were communicating face to face, and doing it without any emoji’s and carrying on conversations with much more than 140 characters. Who would have ever thought they could do these things while being unplugged from their phones and technology? To tell ya the truth, after watching everyone today, I don’t think they even miss their phones….who would have thunk that!!
Tomorrow we’ll have our Grand Championship at the Horse stables where the winners from todays horse shows will compete for the Grand Champion and earn the Horse cup for their club at tomorrow’s banquet. Then its off to see the Matinee where our campers will put on the presentation of “The Lion King”. They’ve been working hard on learning their lines and positions all camp long and we can’t wait to see the final product.
Tomorrow night everyone will gather in the dinning hall for our end of year banquet where we’ll find out who wins the letter awards for each class and then the honor campers and counselors. At the end of the night they’ll announce the winners of the points cup, the horse cup and of course the one every camper and their club has been working for, the spirit cup.
At the end of the night we’ll all gather on the river banks as our counselor choir canoes downstream singing camp songs as the river is lit up by only the torches they have in their canoes. This is where the club leaders will light the final campfire of the summer, signaling the end of competition and the age out campers, the ones who are attending their last year of camp, as a camper, will give a speech they’ve written about what their time at camp has meant to them. These speeches come straight from the heart and the way they talk when their presenting them is above anything I could have down at that age.
Sally always likes to have something special for “Age out” campers and thats having them all over to our house for a big, homemade dinner and homemade ice cream at the end of the session. They really enjoy getting to come over and sit down with her and several of the other administrators in a quiet setting and a real kitchen. It’s one of the things that makes their final year of camp special and they all look forward to the ice cream. So far this summer I think she’s made around 30+ gallons of ice-cream for all the campers.
Well, its been a busy session and everyone has had a great time. I hope you guys at home have enjoyed tuning in online as much as we have enjoyed bringing it to ya. We can’t thank you enough for trusting us with your most prized possessions the last 2 weeks and I know when you see them you’re gonna be surprised at how much they’ve grown up and changed while they were here.
Please be careful on your way here Friday, like I mentioned in last nights blog, you will be right in the middle of the worlds longest yard sale and they are already having lines form on the road as people look to see whats available at each area. Also, when you get here, We will have a flash drive for you that has every picture you guys have been looking at on line loaded on it. The pics online are shrunk to help speed up their loading, but these will be the full size images and will be perfect to print of share. Be sure to grab your flash drive when you check out at the office.
Well folks, its been fun and I really have enjoyed bringing ya the news while your camper is up here. Please stop in and say HI when you pick up your camper Friday, I’ll be easy to spot….. I’ll be the one that looks like they’ve spent as much time on the computer the last 2 weeks as you have!!!
Take care and be careful on trip here. Thank you and God Bless, we’ll see ya Friday
Larry is originally from Florida and graduated from Florida State University (Go Noles!). He taught and coached for 12 years before working full time at camp. During the off season, he heads up the winter retreats and leadership training with sports teams from all across the country. He’s married to Sally (who tries to keep him in line) and is an avid pilot and caver in any free time he can find.