A Few Showers and a Great Day!

Dear Parents and Friends,


It was a cool start to our day today and one that makes us all appreciate living life outdoors.  There’s no air conditioning at camp and the only electronics are in the office and the staff living room.  It makes life much simpler.  I left our Lodge tonight after an evening with some of our Brookside cabins that were Mountain Dancing.  It’s certainly not an activity that many campers participate in outside of camp, but it allows everyone to participate and have a good time.  There’s no forced dancing with a member of the opposite gender but there are some dances we call mixers where you dance with many others.  There are always a few that don’t want to go hand in hand when we promenade but are willing to slap hands for the Patty Cake Polka.  Challenge by choice is one of our sayings at camp and that goes for Mountain Dancing as well.  Boys and girls at the Brookside age will one day discover one another soon enough and the awkward shyness will disappear and as parents we will wish for the simpler subtleties of  childhood.  All that aside, we had a great time and it was fun to teach them some more sophisticated dances since they were older.  Saturday night we’ll entertain the Hillside crowd and simpler dances for our youngest campers.

I traveled around to many activities today watching and using my video and still camera to get a glimpse into our first day of Discovery.   We had a few showers this afternoon but nothing halted the progress of afternoon activities.  We are good with showers of rain but not the thunder and lightening that sometimes accompanies our water falling from the sky or sky juice as we call it at our tables in the dining room.

Everyone got assigned to their tables today at lunch which is always new for many.  We start off with three meals with our cabin group and at lunch on the first full day we sit with our assigned tables.  Food is great at GV and table conversation should be equally so.  Claire (one of my fellow staff at the table) asked everyone to introduce themselves while also stating if they could have a super power, what would it be.  Many conversations blossomed forth from the beginning and we were off and running with a table full of strangers, soon to become eating buddies and table friends.  Food is probably the best venue for sharing conversation and it’s important to engage everyone.

Later this afternoon I stopped by the pool where I found several of the Playhouse girls taking swim lessons.  With the showers and cooler weather some were shivering but happy when they exited the pool.  Camp’s pool is a positive place to learn your place in the water, with a gradually sloping run toward the deep end (5 feet).  It’s a great pool for learning to swim and by the end of the session all the girls had gone off the slide in the shallow end.  Courage and learning to leave comfort zones happen daily and easily here at camp.  We encourage children to try something difficult everyday, stepping in and out of their comfort zone.  The actual risk we have calculated is really different from their perceived risk they see.  This all plays into building confidence and independence as they venture forth into new surroundings and activities.

All of this is helpful in the developmental needs of children.  Going away to camp give children the opportunity to test limits, forge new relationships, gain independence, solve problems and develop a strong sense of self.  While we are no substitute for parents, I do believe camp is uniquely suited to meet many of the needs to build on the framework of making the best children into the best adults.   We’re partnering with you to create great experiences for our new campers of Session B.  Thanks for sending them to GV and stay tuned!