It’s hard not to mention the weather, since it’s been the most absolutely beautiful mountain weather we encounter around here. The warm summer sunshine of the afternoons, with quite low humidity, has been sliding into the coolest evenings, and with just the lightest breeze throughout the day, it really couldn’t be any better. It’s also the kind of weather that draws you outside, and all around camp that’s exactly what the girls have been doing. It brightens up our regular outdoor camp activities- things like swimming, hiking, kayaking, climbing, archery, horseback riding, soccer – and can even inspire a move outdoors of our more “indoor” activities like yoga, weaving, and painting. It’s just refreshing!
Today was the last full day of regular camp activities, so there was a real incentive for everyone to finish up craft projects. The girls picked up their newly fired colorful pottery, added final decorative touches to baskets they wove, rinsed their tie-dye t-shirts, and collected paper crafts from Hodge Podge. Most of the morning was a walking art show, as a result, with every camper carrying around something they had made. Every piece has a story, so be sure to ask your daughter about what she made.
In preparation for the banquet (more about that below), the CA campers, who are our 9th graders, closed the dining hall long before dawn to begin their secret decorating. This gives Rick and his fantastic kitchen folks a chance to show off their breakfast and lunch picnic menus. For breakfast, he served several kinds of fruit, yogurt and cereal, but also baked more than 400 strawberry scones for everyone. Then for lunch, he pulled off another classic barbeque meal that started with 100 pounds of pork he hand-rubbed with sugar and spices before roasting for 6 hours. The crew pulled the pork, super-tender by now, and added the secret recipe sauce to make a tasty, North Carolina barbeque sandwich. He included homemade sweet potato fries, and a vinegar-based coleslaw to top it off. It was quite a sight to have everyone (more than 300 people!) on the hill enjoying these great meals.
The secret theme for this session’s banquet was music, and was entitled “Tune In.” The CA girls decided it would be fun to create a musical event with decorations and dances set to different genres of music. Like an iPod or a jukebox, they collected Rock, Pop, Broadway, Country, Reggae, and Hip-Hop styles. They painted posters like album artwork to cover every wall in the dining hall. They built lighted signs and displayed cardboard cutouts of famous pop singers like Elvis, and Justin Bieber. Part of the fun for the girls is the overwhelming stimulation of this event, with its music, decorations and costumed performers. We had Kanye West, Bob Marley, Katy Perry, Lady Gaga and the rock band Kiss showed up, thrilling everyone and signing autographs. The Banquet is also extraordinary because candy is spread on the tables, allowing the girls to eat probably more than they would otherwise. There’s plenty of “real food” too of course (Chicken wraps, french fries, salad, and fruit), but it’s very exciting to have this much candy available. Flash cameras flickered, spontaneous dancing erupted, laughing and singing, everyone was enjoying the party. Different from home? Certainly. Really, really fun? Absolutely! That’s camp.