Happy 4th of July!


Happy 4th of July and hope you all have had the enjoyable day we’ve had.  Our day started with a bit of history as Paul Revere charged through camp warning us that the British were coming.  We actually missed our Brits this year due to Covid restrictions and will welcome them back in ‘22 as our camp allies.  After that blip on the history timeline we also traveled back to Washington Crossing the Delaware and the signing of the Declaration of Independence.  All this history and more came to life on the Gwynn Valley waterpoint.

Since it is Sunday, we also enjoyed our traditional “Special Day” activities which included many favorite games, swimming, and an easy going day.  Since fireworks don’t really start dark and it’s a late night, we had a relaxing day enjoying ourselves and our small camp community.   

All three meals were terrific today starting with pancakes, strawberries and blueberry compote.  Lunch today was Philly chicken cheese steaks and lots of trimmings.  Our evening meal was a giant picnic on the Green with BBQ, watermelon, coleslaw and GV corn on the cob both from the farm, baked beans, cornbread, and apple crisp.  As usual our kitchen outdid themselves.  

After dinner tonight there was a pie eating contest (counselor’s only). I can’t imagine having to eat pie after such a delicious dinner..  The camper’s loved it and it’s been a tradition for several years.  Post pie was an introduction to famous women in our history starting in the 1700’s right through today.  After that there was an American Parade of Celebrities just outside the Lodge.  Fireworks were offered up at dark by our Team Maintenance crew and they did a great job.  Campers and staff sit on the far side of the lake and most if not all fireworks reflect off the water from the sky.  It’s a nice time of the evening after a hot day and by that time everyone is ready to cool down and enjoy the show in the sky.  Most of our younger campers come to the fireworks in their PJ’s.

Today, families and communities across the United States have gathered together to commemorate the signing of the Declaration of Independence which happened 245 years ago. Yet while this holiday is a celebration of the ideals of freedom, it’s important to remember that our independence wasn’t gained overnight—nor did it come without struggles. Indeed, the fight to achieve true freedom for all is one that continues to this day.  This year, many of us will have a new appreciation for this fact.

Having lived through more than a year of lockdowns, physical distancing, school closings, travel restrictions, and more limits to our free lifestyles, all of us are now eager to experience a little more freedom in our daily lives. Every outdoor restaurant date, every walk with a friend, every school or gym reopening, every chance that brings the summer camp experience back to life brings with it an opening up of our horizons.

Yet, just like American independence, we all persevered and set our sights on hope and new horizons.  When we closed last summer to run only family camp it was hard.  You and your children persisted and signed up for this summer because you value Gwynn Valley and the camp experience.  You gave our year round staff inspiration to plan for camp this year and even though it’s not what you might have experienced in the past, we are here and able to live out the simple joys of GV.  Through your cooperation with things like wearing masks, living and  playing in bubbles and neighborhoods, and eating many meals together has helped us to regain our freedoms here at camp.   

Thank you for sending us your children. We appreciate our staff who have committed their summer to providing your child with a great camp experience.  The freedom we as a community are now experiencing is based on some of the same ideals and inspiration that swirled in the air around the signing of that declaration of independence.  Continue to care for those around you both young and old.  Let us remember to recognize our own flaws as individuals and to treat others as we would like to be treated.  I give thanks for having so much in our nation of plenty and the opportunity to work with your children.  I’m also reminded of those near and far who don’t have the privileges and lives that we have.    

Happy 4th of July and thank you for being a part of GV and making 2021 a great year in the history of camp.