Life starts all over again when it gets crisp in the fall. – from The Great Gatsby
In the camping world, and perhaps also outside of that world, fall brings with it the feeling of a new year. Camp people live from summer to summer rather than the official change over from one numeric year to the next. We look back on the sublime memories of the past three months and begin to slowly plan and strategize on how to make the next one even stronger. Along with the countdown to football season, Halloween, Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, Hanukkah, Thanksgiving, Christmas, National Nacho Day (yes, that’s a thing and it’s in November), to the airing of It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown, we look forward to building brand new community with staff. We also create gift ideas and send out newsletters and visit families and think about all things camp. It’s a wonderful mix of finding respite after a busy summer and jumping into plans for the next.
Our campers are also diving into a new school year and with that comes growing and learning and hopefully taking some of their camp experiences with them into their new journeys. Seeing campers year after year as they get older is one of the most rewarding parts of camp. Being part of a community that lasts all year even if we only see each other in the summer is something very special. Because who can forget cake throws over rafters, new Lodge dances, “Hey Juliet” finally being played after days of begging Steve, hunting for counselors in the woods, running around searching for emeralds and rubies, dressing up as your favorite color crayon, running down to the lake at bedtime for ice cream, or that double Olympics fake-out which turned into a morning breakout which meant you watched your counselor chase a chicken….those are things we just won’t forget!
And the bonds you made with friends, and the challenges you may have overcome, the homesickness you may have felt, the times you helped a friend when she was perhaps feeling low, the songs you sang at campfire, the solo you stood up for, the dance you did, the bowl you made in Ceramics, the arrows you shot in Archery, the food you made in Cooking, the confidence you built, the vulnerability you honed, the independence you gained….these things carry with them infamous value that we hope leaks out into the world of Back to School.
With the new year brings an extension to our Kippy family and it grows a little bigger every year. We are excited to soak up this next year and the experiences that will unfold, and take those things with us as we enter into next summer. We can’t wait!
All you need is love. But a little chocolate now and then doesn’t hurt. – Charlie Brown