A Place for New Adventures

Girls at Sumemr campYesterday we welcomed new friends to Rockbrook as we opened our June Mini Session. While this was the first day of camp for all these girls, it was the 8th day for our full session campers. Throughout the morning, as our new campers were arriving with smiles and trunks in tow, the full session girls attended a flag raising ceremony and chapel. Instead of being a religious service, our Sunday chapel focuses on a pertinent theme that relates to all girls at camp, such as nature, generosity, or friendship. This week, our chapel theme was “Individuality,” an apt topic for our diverse community. The quiet, collective time at chapel gives campers a chance to reflect on their experiences and connect to the space and people around them.

science girlsWith the dining hall completely full of excited girls, it was also easily filled with laughter, singing, and camp cheer. At the end of lunch announcements, everyone learned about the special event of the afternoon: Mad Science day! All the campers, old and new, were split into five groups named after famous female scientists: Jane Goodall, Rosalind Franklin, Marie Curie, Mary Anning, and Rachel Carson. Groups rotated through different stations around camp to craft parachutes for aliens, learn about molecules and fossils, and face boat building challenges. Campers were able to channel their inner scientist through costumes, problem solving, and crafting throughout the sunny afternoon.

kayaking camp kidThe sunny weather luckily continued through today, providing perfect weather for a multitude of activities and out of camp trips. In addition to our daily activities such as needlecraft, swimming, and yoga, the Adventure Staff lead out-of-camp trips for campers of all ages and experience levels. Our talented Adventure Staff make it possible for campers to step out of their comfort zones in ways they may not have access to back at home. Canoeing, kayaking, climbing, and hiking are all common here in Brevard, but for campers from out of state or from other countries, these are new and unusual sports. By providing outdoor recreation trips, we are able to create a space for campers to try new things, foster new friendships, grow new skill sets, and challenge themselves further than they have before. Whether it is her first time ever in a canoe or her 12th time climbing Castle Rock, there is always an exciting adventure to be had in our beautiful corner of Western North Carolina.

pony girl camper

Rockbrook Girls are Out of This World!

Way down in Brevard, we are lucky enough to be located in the mountains and away from bright city lights, allowing us to have a wonderful view of the stars on clear nights. Today, however, the campers had a chance to see and be stars during the daytime on Out of this World day! This full Saturday was jam-packed with special events, crafts, food, and costumes all related to the Out of this World theme.

inflated planetarium planetarium entrance

campers inside planetariumThe first special part of our weekend was an all-day visit from the Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute’s (PARI) Portable Planetarium. A former NASA research facility, PARI now hosts a Learning Center to inspire and educate people about science and technology. Today the Portable Planetarium came to Rockbrook for 6 viewings of their All About Space show, which included learning about the Greek mythology behind the names of planets and their moons, watching a meteor shower, and looking at all the Zodiac constellations. Entering the Portable Planetarium was like falling down the rabbit hole into Wonderland–campers and staff crawled through a dark tunnel into the planetarium dome that was then filled with the beautiful Milky Way.

zodiac camp birthday partyOur space-tacular Saturday continued at dinner with Zodiac birthday night. Campers with summer birthdays always get a special celebration at camp, but we also have a birthday night in order to celebrate everyone! Tonight, campers and staff sat with their fellow Sagittarians, Leos, and Capricorns in order to revel in their special identity and eat birthday cake. Not only does birthday night allow campers to celebrate themselves, it also allows them to sit at a meal with people of different ages they might not normally share a meal with. After dinner, the fun continued with an optional constellation kaleidoscope craft, and finally an all-camp favorite–a girls dance, replete with glow sticks!

While costumes, dancing, and learning happen every day at camp, Out of this World day allowed all the elements of Rockbrook to come together in such a way that campers were able to unlock their imaginations and explore new paths they might not otherwise take if it was just a “regular” day. With a theme, normal camp activities have a unique twist, a regular dinner becomes a huge birthday celebration, and a typical free swim becomes a time to lay with your friends in a planetarium and watch the stars. We can’t wait for the next special camp theme to take us to infinity and beyond!

girl camp dance