Last Full Day of Session E

Dear Parents & Friends,

I missed providing an update for you all last night because I had some time off.  Anne and I took just a few hours to spend with our family last night, have a nice dinner at the house and then enjoy one another’s company after dinner.   I’m sure you got a good feel for what went on yesterday from the pictures that Casey posted.  She’s our camp photographer and if you see her tomorrow please say hi and thanks for all the work she puts in on capturing the essence of camp.  Our last day of camp just ended with campfire and everyone heading off to bed.  There’s a gentle rain falling outside that held off all day long and allowed us to get through the day without our sometimes afternoon thunderboomers.  It’s been a full day here and just cool enough to keep us going.  Today was the first day I haven’t just sweated from standing around.  You will see the remainder of our cabin photos that will be mailed to you just after the New Year.

Despite the cool temps and overcast skies, the waterfront was hopping.  We also held pillowcase day this afternoon when everyone comes to the pool and swims.  Mind you not everyone comes at once.  You’ll also see some pics of our SIT’s from the three week session they attend.  We just met with them to share some last minute thoughts and good times in the Gatehouse Living Room.  What a great group they’ve been.  All have been campers before and what an incredible job they have done.  They work very hard and have been such a tight knit group in supporting one another.  Several had to leave early because of school and athletic commitments so while they may have been a bit fractured by a decrease in their numbers they’ve made up for it in enthusiasm and energy.  I expect all these young people to be staff in a few short years.  Hat’s off to our SIT’s of D&E Session – you guys are the best!

There’s one photo that is a group of people standing in front of the Mill and around an old stone wall on the Green.  It’s our sibling shot for session E.  We had lots of siblings at camp including several sets of twins and quadruplets.  Camp is place where your brother or sister can come and join you or you can meet lots of new friends on your own.  I’ve eaten at several table this session where people have made good friends just by sharing a meal together.  Food also does a good job of bringing people together and the camp setting is such an added platform for forming relationships and meeting new people that sometimes come from different parts of our globe.  Camp is all about building relationships with one another.  I believe it’s one of the most important outcomes of the experience.  You gotta love it.

Soon you will receive an evaluation via email, sent to you by the camp and we hope you will take the time to fill it out and send it back.  This provides us with feed back to help make our program better.  The eval will come through a service called Constant Contact.  They will not solicit you in any way and you get only one correspondence from them.  We use their services and design the form here at camp.  We appreciate you taking the time to help us keep Gwynn Valley an outstanding program.  On a similar note the North Carolina Youth Camp Association, of which we are a charter member, is working on an economic impact study done by NC State University.  The camping industry in NC is a big part of our economy in this part of the state and we’re trying to get a handle on how the industry affects other parts of the economy.  You may get a questionnaire that asks some questions about your days surrounding camp drop off and pick up.  We will use this information to further the educational values that camping creates as well as become a more powerful voice with our state and national legislators. Thank you for participating in this survey.

Tomorrow when you arrive you will be attending a friendship circle in your child’s cabin at 10:30 and then we’ll have an overall camp Campfire.  Mountainside and Riverside will have separate campfires at 10:30.  Then after the Main Camp gathering you’re welcome to stay and have lunch with us.  We hope you will join us.  Looking forward to seeing you but not wanting to let of go of this group of children.  They’ve been great and it’s been a terrific way to end our summer here at Gwynn Valley where the “simple joys” abound.  Stay Tuned!