Camp Journal 2016: Week Six

IMG_1452On Tuesday evening, six lucky junior campers and two counselors paddled across Round Lake with a packed supper and all the fixings for S’mores. After sharing their meal by the campfire, the children settled into bed on the sleeping porch of RockE boathouse. When shooting stars began to illuminate the night sky, counselors roused them from sleep. Gazing northeast toward Perseus, the group was treated to a spectacular sight. Campers also recognized constellations like the Big Dipper and Seven Sisters. They learned that the vast majority of exploding stars are tens of millions of light years away, and so, starlight takes tens of millions of years to become visible from Earth. It was a magical experience.

IMG_1675 (1)Connecting to each other is particularly meaningful at this point in the summer. After six weeks together, shared experiences carry more meaning, whether star gazing, collecting eggs at barn chores, or reading aloud to one’s tent group. Children are at home in the community, excited and willing to express their true selves, to try new things, and to embrace the magic and whimsy of Treetops. It’s a time when campers are able to fully grasp how much they’ve accomplished this summer.

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DSC_0022For Supers, these final days are bittersweet, as saying goodbye to Camp means closing a chapter on their childhood. At the same time, they join a longstanding legacy of Treetops campers, many sharing this history with parents or grandparents. This week, they gathered in the Main House to listen to stories of Treetops stalwart Bill Localio (CTT 55-59, staff 64-15, parent 94-98, trustee 85-91), who first arrived at Camp decades ago as a nine-year-old. Afterwards, Supers had the opportunity to look through years of black-and-white photographs, letters, drawings, and trip logs from the Camp archives. By evening’s end, they had an even deeper appreciation for Camp’s rich and storied history, as well as a sense of their place in it.

IMG_1395As the days begin to dwindle, our community takes heart in the time spent together, savoring the smallest of moments and looking forward to the celebrations to come in the final week of Camp.

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