An Animal Afternoon

Our Sunday afternoons at camp always involve a surprise special event for the whole camp, and today was a great one. You might be able to guess the general theme of the event if you remember the list of costumes for this session. One was called “petting zoo.” It clearly has something to do with animals, but in what way?

Well first of all, it’s a great theme for costumes because it can be anything related to animals. The girls could customize and get creative in all sorts of ways. Add ears! Add a tail! They could be a banana or a monkey. One camper dressed like a “pregnant chicken,” and another like a cow. The most popular animal costume was probably a cat, complete with ear headband, and whiskers. One of the funniest was a girl who described herself as a “zombie cow.” There was a shark too, and even a couple of horses.

To add to everyone’s costumes, 6 counselors set up face painting stations on the dining hall porch. Using foam brushes for large patches of color and thin bristle brushes for details, they painted incredibly detailed animals faces for the campers. Pigs, bears, and animals with whiskers soon began appearing. At times, the counselors painted abstract, animal-related, patterns and prints. Even the tiniest design added to the spirit of the event.

All over the camp there were animal related activities to enjoy. There was a wild hobby horse obstacle course relay. There was a cool spray limbo game that challenged everyone to “go low.” There was a silly ring toss game that involved girls tossing rings onto an inflatable flamingo hat. One set of counselors led several country line dances in the gym. There were familiar pop songs too, keeping the whole scene festive.

The different age groups took turns visiting the Lakeview lodge to hear a presentation on snakes. With several amazing examples brought out and displayed, the girls learned where the snakes came from and about their behavior. For example, most snakes run away from predators, but others will “play dead.” The stars of the show were the 4-ft long boa constrictor from Columbia, and the 5-ft long grey banded rat snake. The campers were able to touch these two snakes and get right up close to them to “pet them.” Some of the girls were a little frightened, but others were intrigued to discover the snakes were cool, dry, and not slimy at all.

porch string music

One final treat was the live bluegrass, old-time acoustic band that played during the event. Featuring our friend Ray Adams (who is also the camp bookkeeper!) and Madeline Dierauf (who is a member of our adventure staff this summer), the band also brought together a local banjo and upright bass player. The band played for 2 solid hours highlighting traditional mountain tunes. All of these musicians have played for large audiences, and they came together just for us this afternoon. It sounded fantastic! The girls probably didn’t realize it, but it was a real treat to have this caliber of music live at Rockbrook.

Live animals and live music. What a fun Sunday afternoon!

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