Camp is right around the corner and what a summer we have in store. As I write many of our staff are here and training in various disciplines. Our adventure staff training started Sunday and life guard training and wilderness first aid has completed their coursework. More first aid and CPR sessions begin tomorrow. Paddlers, climbers, mountain bikers and backpackers were all out today on various terrain to become familiar with the resources of our forest lands and how we roll. The rest of our staff are slated to arrive on Friday and so begins a week of all staff training and the almost best part of the summer. Of course, the best part comes when our first campers arrive on June 7th. We had many of them visit with us last weekend for our annual Open House. Families came from Charleston, West Virginia, Wilmington, Charlotte, Raleigh, Atlanta, Tennessee, and many other far and near locations.
One of our camp values is diversity and we have a diverse and wonderful staff here that will be guiding and leading your children. It’s also good for the children to be with other children from all over our GV nation. Building relationships is the essence of camp. Put that together with a great program and you’ve got a recipe for success. Children are good at making friends and camp really promotes friendships that are new and sometimes long lasting. It’s fun to meet people that aren’t from your neighborhood, school, city, state or country.
You are giving your child the opportunity to live and thrive without being with you and under your scrutiny. The growth in confidence and independence happens at camp because you are not there. You are also giving your child the gift of magical childhood memories — dirt, adventure, stories, skills, music, and joke-filled days and nights spent with friends outdoors, under the stars, and around the campfire. These childhood memories will last forever. And, as Michael Thompson, PhD, so eloquently states, “Our best childhood memories do not include adults.” Camp is the perfect getaway for a child. It’s a break from the pressures and stress of competitive sports, school, and you. Our kids need a break from our well-intentioned involvement in their lives. They also need other mentors in their lives that come in the form of counselors and activity leaders like those here at camp. Lastly, camp provides children the chance to unplug and connect to the real “facebook” of life.
So…don’t ever question your decision to send your children to camp. You will miss them, they will mostly likely miss you and you will both be the better for it. Camp has a value that in many ways is priceless and cannot be measured. Your gift of camp to them and our gift of creating great memories (camp DNA) is a dynamite combination. We are partnering with you to create great experiences and great people. We look forward to seeing you soon!