Happy Earth Day 2014, from Camp!
When we talk to new families about camp, we often ask what they’re most excited about. Gymnastics! Tennis! Cooking! Art! Evening Program! Horseback riding! Making new friends!
Well, here’s the truth: the best thing about camp is the people, the community. You can find a pool and a lake and stage anywhere in the world, but the friendships you form at camp, the people you meet, your counselors who become mentors; these relationships are invaluable and become the lifelong legacy of camp. It’s all about the people.
But there’s another “best thing” about camp, and it’s the thing that makes camp friendships different from friendships in the real world. At camp, it’s all about “facetime.” We emote in person, face to face, with real smiles and laughs. Sometimes we roll on the floor laughing, sometimes we laugh out loud, sometimes we don’t, but it’s all real. There’s nothing virtual about it.
At Timber Tops we don’t allow technology down the winding road. No phones, no iPads, no nooks. Nada. We ask campers (and staff) to disconnect for the summer, and there’s something liberating about that. Campers really don’t mind. They understand that sometimes the act of not texting mom can breed confidence in decision-making, they get that there’s beauty in the night sky when we’re prompted to look up instead of down.
At campfires, we like to talk about how the stars shine brighter at camp and the people do too. Earth Day is rooted in environmental protection, and we believe that camp nurtures the spirit of Earth Day, every day, all summer. We appreciate the world around us in ways we might not during the rest of the year, and this appreciation becomes action.
With technology left behind, we become more grounded. We creek stomp, we repel, we run, we bike through the forest, we build bird-houses, we celebrate trees (each bunk is named for a tree, after all!), we cook over an open fire, we stargaze. We wait for those crickets in August and we savor those cool, end-of-camp nights, singing around a campfire by the lake. These moments in Greeley, this appreciation for the Earth, become part of our makeup. They comes to define us. We think think it’s one of the many lasting gifts of camp.
So, we wish you a HAPPY EARTH DAY, campers. Get excited.
Camp is coming soon.