Dear Parents & Friends,
It was a splendid day in the Valley. Thank you for dropping off your children and I hope that all of you made it safely to your home or other destination. We just finished dinner which was of course a child friendly meal of Macaroni and Cheese (super cheesy) vegis, grapes, and a giant cookie for each cabin. I was lucky enough to sit with Cabin Echo as they had their first full meal in the dining room. It’s always an experience to eat with the Echo boys and it’s one of my favorite things to do at camp. They will have breakfast together again tomorrow morning and then we’ll all divide up and sit at different tables for the duration of E Session. The boys at the table were excited that the cookie was served on a giant pizza pan. That’s a pretty darn big cookie remarked one young man. After several helping of the mac and cheese, I think several of them struggled to finish their cookie portion. It’s hard to not finish when it’s chocolate chip and tastes delicious.
Our afternoon was full and activities started just after lunch which was from 12 – 1. We all went to the Lodge to learn about Discovery activities, which the children signed up for today and then afternoon activities began as soon as everyone got back to their cabin to change. Everyone had a swim assessment this afternoon to determine their swim level. The Farm, Mill, Sports, Arts & Crafts, Pottery, Climbing, and Horses were among the afternoon activities that got things rolling here for the first day. Sign-ups included the following: Farm/Mill, Horses, Archery, Canoeing, Climbing (3 different kinds), Shadow Tales, Martial Arts, Weaving, Fine Arts, GV Rescue, Web of Life, Marbling, Gourds, Mountain Biking, Pottery, Outdoor Living Skills, Aqua Games and Jackson Kayaks. The campers will find out what activities they got out of their many choices. The will have a chance to take 4 of the above choices in the morning every other day (2 each day) and then we’ll have sign-ups in the afternoon which will be different every day all week long.
Tonight we held our first campfire and just finished the cabin introductory skits. Each cabin puts on a skit and introduces the cabin to the whole camp. About half of the cabins provided theirs tonight and the others are on tap for tomorrow. They were excellent tonight. All kinds of music and fun activities acted out and sung right on our own stage. Everyone is back in their cabin tonight and will soon be off to sleep. We have a tradition at Gwynn Valley, where a group of staff circulate first on Hillside then on the Brook and sing to each cabin to let them know it’s time for bed. They’re called the serenader’s. Speaking of campfires I went up to the top of Hillside tonight and joined Aching Legs and Raccoon boys for a real campfire. One of the staff read from the Tajar Stories and we just chatted about our day. It was a nice way to end the evening and I’m sure they’ve been serenaded by this time.
For those of you that have children for the 3 weeks of Mountainside and Riverside they’ve begun to prepare for their adventures and will be leaving on Tues. morning bright and early. I hope to join at least one Mountainside group for a day this week. It will either be the bikers or paddlers. I’ll keep you posted.
We hope you enjoy the photos that will be going up on the web this week. Between the photos and this daily blog we want to keep you informed on what your children are doing. We can’t guarantee that we’ll get everyone’s photo but hope to while your children are here. Thank you again for a smooth opening day and stay tuned!