International Day! Learning about the UK


We have had a great start to our last three weeks of camp with lots of sunshine, blue skies,cool evenings and warm afternoons. We jumped into lots of activities on Opening Day which has continued with our campers participating in their 4 morning activities that we call Discoveries. Campers rate their top choices and then have two of the activities on A day and 2 on B day. Some of those Main Camp programs include mountain biking, climbing, whitewater kayaking, camping skills, nature, tie-dye o-rama, candle making, wheel throwing, pottery bowl making, weaving, mini pottery, quilted bags, Blacksmithing, Farm, Mill, Performing arts, set design, archery, basketball, Badminton/volleyball, soccer, wiffleball, Junior LIfeguard, river exploration, stand-up paddle boards, and water sports. There are so many activities to choose from that I’m sure it is difficult to rank them for our campers. Of course, these activities are offered again in the afternoon so that campers can try something new and spread their wings. When talking to the campers, they all seem to be enjoying learning new skills, taking on a new challenge, and trying something they may not have done before. Miss Mary, who founded camp in 1935 said everyone should “try something difficult everyday”. This helps campers to push out of their comfort zone, build resilience, and gain confidence, not to mention all the fun they have while participating.

Mountainside started off their session with their mini adventures which is a time when they try each of the five adventures: climbing, mountain biking, hiking, whitewater paddling, and expedition canoeing. They do these for five days before choosing which adventure they would like to go on. The  expedition paddlers get to go to Wolf Lake and the hikers hike to John Rock in Pisgah Forest. Bikers cruise on the trails we have at camp, climbers climb on the tower and in the Hemlock trees and whitewater paddlers practice on the lake. Some are experiencing getting in a kayak with a skirt for the first time.

Riverside left for their climbing adventure on Monday and are at Foster Falls hopefully having lots of fun and climbing a lot! Climb on! In talking with a staff member tonight at dinner who is in her 11th summer at Gwynn Valley, it amazed me how she described the beauty and fun her Riverside group experienced at Foster Falls. 

We celebrated international day today by celebrating and learning about the United Kingdom. Our day was filled with  lots of great food, fun skits, and a wonderful program this evening. We had a full breakfast with scrambled eggs, toast, sausage, baked bean, roasted tomatoes, and hash browns. For lunch we enjoyed Cawl Stew, fresh baked bread, rice, and salad. Dinner consisted of roast chicken, roasted potatoes, fresh bread again, brussel sprouts, and apples. Our table group really enjoyed the trivia questions tonight at dinner and we all learned quite a bit about England, Scotland, and Wales although we liked the Sticky Toffee Pudding with cream much more than the trivia! We don’t have any staff from Northern Ireland this summer but are so happy to have so many staff from the UK back at camp. The theme for the evening program was the X Factor which is a show in Great Britain where musicians and groups perform and are judged. We had many music entertainers visit camp, singing and dancing with lots of participation from the audience. The Spice Girls were there, Queen, One Direction got back together, and many others. At intermission we had a group of campers perform a quick skit with characters from Harry Potter as they performed a little magic with the audience. I wasn’t sure if I was a participant at a show or a concert but it sure was fun! The music groups rocked the house or should I say the lodge tonight. It was a wonderful day at camp with lots of fun, laughter, music, and learning!