I wrote and posted this a few years ago. I post it again because I think camp is important. A well-run residential camp helps kids to gain independence, take positive risks and make new friends.
Did you ever go to summer camp?
Did you work at one?
Memories made in camps often hold a special place in our hearts. Camps have changed many lives, helped children grow and provided all kinds of inspiration.
Here is one of my favorite memories of my camp experience. Although I learned a ton about both myself and God at Grotonwood, Oceanwood and, especially, CYC. (I attended CYC the longest --in fact I still go.) and I made many, many friends, too, I am not writing about that. This was just plain fun.
I was a counselor in training at CYC which was called NEBYC at the time. Some of us staff were hanging out at the gate, as we often did after the campers were in bed a counselor remained in each cabin). After a late night snack, we decided to get "creative" with our time. We drove all our cars on to the ballfield and set them up as a used car lot, writing prices on the windows with soap. Then we, um, "borrowed" cars from the sleeping staff and added them to the lot. ( Back then, you could put a car in neutral and safely push it.) When we were done, we noticed some more cars driving in. The faculty had been out for the evening. We formed a human chain across the road to their cabins and made them drive onto the field. As soon as they stopped, we jumped on the windows and wrote prices. They laughed and laughed. The centerpiece of the lot -- and the car with the highest sales price-- was a VW Van, selling for $9.99. Everyone knew it was John Wilbur's car. He was an older, much adored guy who taught sailing. It was fun...and the next day our sleepy selves got a quite a reaction.
It's kind of a silly memory, sure. But it's a great one to tell when you are reminiscing around a campfire. I am still friends with many of the others involved in that event. Some of us are faculty together, now, and ready to laugh at the antics of the younger folks.
I would be very interested to read summer camp stories, even ones that seem silly. What was good about your camp experience? What was your favorite thing about camp? What did you do for fun? What did you learn? Are you still involved with that camp? Please comment and let me know.