An Overflowing Day!

Dear Parents and Friends,

The magic of camp has begun in our first full day of Session A.  I just left campfire and the finale to our introduction skits.  Camp is now quiet and is well on its way to sleep as we had some great times today.  It was our first full day of program with the weather cooperating even though we got a long shower during the dinner hour.  Dinner was chicken drum sticks and thighs, rice, gravy, salad, apple sauce, baked rolls, and cabbage.

The lake was overflowing this morning with paddlers.  Mountainside and Riverside were out there learning their strokes and getting ready for upcoming trips.  Both groups combined for the GV plunge which is a pretty cool exercise.  We’ll have to get some video up and show you how it’s done.  The lake temp was just right and slightly on the chilly side.  Our group of GV lifesaving campers were practicing their entries into the water and learning how to save victims.  We also had the kayakers out there on the lake so there was lots of activity on the water this morning. Riverside leaves tomorrow for their climbing segment to Linville Gorge.  They’ll be gone through Wed and we’ll hope for good weather and lots of climbing. Archery was aiming for a full house all day and got it.  We had our first bull’s eye in the beginning of morning program.  I don’t remember what cabin the young man came from.  Mountain bikers traversed the property all day long both for the Main Camp program and Mountainside.  Some of the folks rode the trail to the top of the mountain while others worked on skills on flatter terrain.  We have two excellent instructors working with the bikers named Willis and Erin.  Both are returning staff. We also have a new trail at the Hunt Farm that was just finished this spring that is just over a mile and a half.  It’s a great trail for beginners to intermediates.

We also left our cabin groups at meals and everyone is sitting at a new table getting to know one another.  As we talked around the table everyone told one thing about themselves that was true and one thing that was not.  We had to guess which was which and it was fun. We learned a lot about one another in the process and had fun doing it. There was a good bit of fun at the climbing wall today with Mountainside and Main Camp.  The Arborist Tree climbers were also ascending the big Poplar tree just outside the Gate House (office).  Everyone learned a good bit about knots and enjoyed ascending the ropes using the Blakes Hitch that they learned.  The campers learned to tie neat knots because “a not neat knot is a knot not needed”.  That’s one of those little things the campers learn as they dig deeper and climb higher into the skills.  Putting on a harness and being able to check all your systems along with a counselor is a part of learning what it takes to clamor up the wall or the rock.

Lighting and learning to build a good fire in the woods is another important skill for camp and OLS was providing that training today.  Sarah Wilson is our resident outdoorswoman and has lots of outdoor experience.  The farm with all its animals was also a favorite today.  What camper doesn’t want to feed a baby calf or goat and feel the satisfaction of picking the vegetable  for the evening meal in the dining room.  Our farm is a real crowd pleaser at camp and children really love all aspects of it.

This afternoon some very fun activities were offered at sign ups.  Button flowers were offered in the arts arena located in Shady Grove.  When you visit camp have your camper take you to the Grove.  It’s one of our neatest original cabins and it’s full of looms and other art production devices.  The Web of Life folks got familiar with some turtles and a ball python (a very small one) that’s yet to be named.  Horseback riders took to the camp trails today and many were first time riders.

This friends, was just an inkling of our typical day at GV.  We’d love to tell you more but we do want you to enjoy all the stories that will be shared around the dining room table when your children return home.  Part of that magic is that parents aren’t here and the campers are relying on one another and a great staff to guide them through each day. We hope your day has been as enjoyable as ours!  Stay tuned!

Grant