A Beautiful Morning and A Beautiful DayJuly 31, 2013
Sometimes it is clear as the sun rises over the lake that it’s going to be a special day at Camp. Today was a beautiful morning and a beautiful day from start to finish. As we woke the kids up at 7:35 the air was crisp with low humidity and nary a cloud in the sky. When I arrived at the Assembly area campers of all ages ran up to me to ask “how pretty is it out today?!” I love how many of our campers notice the beauty that surrounds us here.
After a quick cleanup we headed out to activities. The Evergreen 1st Year Seniors braved new waters and took K&E’s first-ever ocean paddle boarding trip. After a quick lesson the girls were upright and riding the waves with style. When they returned they told us that it was a fabulous trip, and one that they would like us to keep for the future.
Our Kenwood Inters returned from their mountain climb and overnight camping trip feeling all sorts of pride. They took this incredible group photo from the top of the mountain yesterday!
The Kenwood U15’s hosted an Ultimate Frisbee tournament. 7 camps from around New England spent the day spinning the bean on our fields. With so many campers interested in playing we actually sported two different teams, and for the first time ever, there were Evergreen campers on both the A and B teams! Our B team won their first game and then lost their next two, while our A team managed to go undefeated the entire day, ultimately beating Camp Coniston in the finals 13-1! During the finals all available campers were on hand to watch and cheer as our team brought home yet another tournament win this summer.
Just after breakfast our Kenwood 2nd Year Seniors departed for their 3-day white water canoeing trip on the Androscogin River. Led by Scott, they spent the afternoon getting used to the rapids, and will brave the kayak course starting tomorrow morning. This was my all-time favorite trip as a camper, and I can’t wait to hear the stories of their adventures when they return on Wednesday.
Now that we are into the final weeks of the summer many of our specialty area counselors are introducing some of their more audacious projects. As an example, it’s Dessert Week in the Cooking Lab. Today our girls spent the morning and afternoon learning how to make different cookie crusts (including gluten free), and then experiment with different pie ingredients and fillings. The goal was to figure out which combinations tasted best – and also had the best consistency.
During Free Play this and next week our Seniors have the opportunity to take special cooking classes led by Chef Rachel. Each night she is teaching a distinct skill: sautéing, chopping, sauce making, grilling, baking, sanitation, et al. Campers who complete at least one of her courses will be eligible after Color War to take part in an event called “Iron Chef”, a multi-hour collaborative cooking contest. As you can imagine there’s a lot of buzz around Camp right now about this!
Other campers used the Free Play time to play Gaga, kick soccer balls around in the hollow, finish up some art projects, play magic cards, and of course, hunt for frogs in a stream near the Archery range!
Tonight Evergreen’s evening activity was another Mia extravaganza. All day campers and counselors were stopping by Arts & Crafts to design and make decorative masks and costumes. At the start of Evening Activity they all gathered on the Evergreen Waterfront for the start of Mardi Gras night. With Zydeco music beckoning them they made their way to the theater tent for a night of dancing and singing. At great time was had by all.
Kenwood’s evening activity was called The Brad Fong Invitational Camper Hunt. Brad was a camper more than a dozen years ago, and during his first few summers he was somehow never caught during Camper Hunt. During his Junior summer I announced that if he kept his unblemished record that his name would forever be associated with this favorite activity. More than 10 years later we still celebrate his uncanny ability to find places to hide around campus.
Our campers went all out for the event, and many spent their Free Play surveying the campus for the best hiding spot possible. Almost all donned the darkest clothing that they owned. Our counselors also took this activity very seriously, as the counselor with the most campers found received a gift certificate to our local homemade ice cream shop. Tonight was a particularly good night for hiding, with a total of 26 campers successfully outsmarting their counselors, staying hidden until the end of the event. To add to the excitement I made periodic announcements over the PA system, with the sound of a teletype in the background while I did my best Walter Winchell impression. The kids thought it was hysterical.
As our younger campers headed off to bed I spent some time in the Music building with our Juniper girls. They have a special musical number that they are working on for Saturday’s Hollowpallooza music festival, and I loved having a chance to hear their work in progress. After so many summers together I love seeing how close they have become, and how much they truly care for and support one another.
I stopped at all of the Sophomore and Inter bunks to say a quick goodnight, and then ended the evening by telling a story to a bunk of Junior boys. In spending time with them earlier in the day I learned that one of them has a connection to the Rainbow Room in NYC, and he asked if I would tell his friends about why it’s one of my favorite places. Afterwards, I asked each of them to tell a short story about one of their favorite places. It was just one more beautiful moment of connecting with our community after a beautiful morning and a beautiful day.