A beautiful, fun day for a picnic and cookout at our overnight campJuly 3, 2015
We woke up to an absolutely beautiful day today. By 7:35 the campus was hopping with so many different and exciting activities going on. The Kenwood 11-and-Under Tennis team headed out for a tournament, and our Evergreen 15-and-Under Soccer team hosted 7 other areas camps in an all-day event.
There were sports clinics and lessons happening in every athletic area today. I watched a fabulous lesson with our sophomores boys on the Field of Dreams, followed by a practice for our Kenwood 15’s Soccer team. Everyone seemed so happy to be playing their hearts out on our ball fields.
Our intrepid Kenwood Freshmen went exploring deep into the 100-acre woods with Adventure Dave at the edge of our campus. On this expedition they were in search of newts and salamanders, and to find more of them than the Evergreen Freshmen had the day before. I actually don’t know if they did or not, but I do know that they found dozens of them, and that each boy on the trip had an incredible time communing with the natural world around our summer camp. Going on an outdoor adventure like this is such an important and fun part of the Kenwood and Evergreen overnight camp experience!
Later in the morning I sat and watched the Evergreen Inters and Juniors work on their groundstrokes and footwork on the Junior tennis courts. Phyllis and I were cheering at the quality of playing we saw today, and high fiving our girls as they triumphantly walked off of the courts.
It was no different on the basketball courts. Head coach Erin spent much of the morning running offensive and defensive drills with our girls. Working with different groups of two, she was able to take time with each set to help teach them techniques for dribbling the ball away from a defender, or strategies for stealing and blocking a shooter. The girls were WAY into this period.
But today wasn’t just about quality sports clinics. Yet again, Kaitlin and Hannah had groups of budding film makers on location, shooting their masterpieces. By now some of our kids are working in teams, collaborating to produce truly remarkable films. In this picture below you can see a director, production assistant, cinematographer, script writer, and actors. I cannot wait to see what they premier at the film festival in August!
It was also a fun day in Ceramics. I sat and watched a couple of campers have success for the first time ever on the potter’s wheel. The delight on their faces was so fun to see. They each felt a great sense of accomplishment. We recently bought a new set of presses and cutters for the ceramic studio, including all of the letters of the Hebrew alphabet. Campers have been making plates and candle sticks to bring home for Jewish holidays this fall and winter. I love that there is always something new to create at our camp!
Georgia is literally exclaiming here “I finally made a pot that I like!”
Like the image above. For many years now campers have been making chess sets in the ceramics studio, and then beautiful chess boards in the wood shop. On the first day of camp I witnessed a camper say “you know, I don’t like those chess pieces. I want to do something different”. That young lady is now creating her own chess set with one group of land animals, and one of sea creatures. As you can see, she is a very talented artist, and I look forward to showing you her progress as the summer continues.
Andy, our head of ceramics, was introducing campers to a new technique today for making bowls and cups. He had campers find objects with a shape that they liked, and then wrapped it in plastic cling wrap. Using a clay with a higher-than-typical concentration of water, they then formed the clay in the same shape, pressing it against the plastic wrap. After smoothing it out and trimming the edges they’ll leave it for a few days to dry, and then return to separate it from the original object. Viola: you’ve created a perfect bowl or cup (or other cool piece) without using the potter’s wheel. Pretty cool, right?
Today was also Deli Day, maybe the most popular lunch of the week. Everyone sat outside and had a massive picnic together. The weather was gorgeous and we all loved the chance to sit and gab and just enjoy being together. Afterwards, James, our head of music, had a meeting with the entire camp to plan out this summer’s Hollowpallooza. Hollowpallooza is our annual music festival/rock concert, and it will be taking place during the fifth weekend of the summer. Already campers and counselors are forming bands and practicing regularly. We can’t wait to see them all get up on stage in August!
This evening we had our first cookouts of the summer. In three different locations in Kenwood, and with one massive group in Evergreen, the counselors cooked dinner for the community. Never a place where we pass up the chance for a party, each cookout area had music blasting, people playing games, and tons of fun everywhere you looked. While the food was cooking I saw games of ping pong, can jam, baggo, soccer, running the bases, tetherball, ladderball, magic the gathering, psychologist, and more! It looked a lot like the quad at a college!
As you can see in this picture below, the cookouts are a major deal at our summer camp. Our Evergreen Junior Counselors get so into it that each year they have special t-shirts designed for this one activity. In so many community grilling is considered a guy-only activity, and our young woman LOVE that this is a part of our girls’ camp culture. I love when our youngest campers arrive to the BBQ and see that their Evergreen JC’s are running this activity (and are totally in control).
After the cookouts it was time for more excitement and fun. In Kenwood the evening activity was something I looked forward to every week when I was a camper: Hobby Night. Our boys had the chance to pursue their passions, and get extra special attention from the coaches and teachers who run our activity areas. Campers were jamming in the music rooms, practicing their soccer and tennis skills, lawn bowling, fishing, waterskiing, making Lego animation films, creating comic books, making plaster masks of their faces, baking in the cooking lab, building model rockets, creating furniture, taking swings in the batting cage, climbing the Giant’s Ladder, learning to cradle in lacrosse, shooting hoops and arrows, and doing so much more.
In Evergreen, tonight was also a special night. The entire camp was divided into two teams — Green and Gold — and given an hour create the most elaborate costumes that they could…and write and learn a series of team cheers. By the time they were finished the girls had learned elaborate choreographed dance steps and hand motions, and the lines to multiple chants. I missed the final presentations, but here are two short clips of their team practices. As you can see they were having about as much fun as a group of girls can have!
All in all, it was just another beautiful, relaxing, fun day at our overnight camp in NH.
Camp Kenwood for Boys and Camp Evergreen for Girls are 7-week brother sister summer camps for children ages 8-15. We invite you to learn more about our incredible community for children.