After the busy and vibrant summer that was 2013, things slowed down a bit as we all eased into Family Camp. Plenty happens at Family Camp, and we keep busy, but there’s a slightly different, little bit gentler feel than with a couple of hundred young girls running around! And for my family, it’s a chance to catch up reunion style with several of our family members while also enjoying the whole Family Camp process.
A change in the guard
One of the exciting and enduring aspects of Camp Alleghany as a whole is that different long-time members of the broader Camp Alleghany “family” of alums and staffers get to take on new leadership roles as others phase out of their time at the helm (often to come back in some other capacity at some other time!). This allows us to have the continuity of historical thought leadership mixed with the new energy of emerging leadership. And we love it!
Alum and camp mom Rebecca (“Reba”) Scarborough Bresee had run Family Camp for many years, but decided to pass the torch because her oldest daughter, counselor Claire Bresee, was headed off to college. The torch was technically passed to me, but I enlisted a couple of helpers who really deserve the credit for running the show: Natalie Litz Bissonnette and Amy O’Donnell Metzger.
Natalie and Amy hit the ground running and changed things up a bit, adding some great new family activities, a morning kids’ hour, a kids’ cooking class, some family games like capture the flag, tennis round robins, etc. in addition to all the traditional family camp favorites that we always have. We also brought back an old tradition of having a split dinner twice during the week — that is, kids and parents eating separately. The kids eat first and then while the parents eat the kids are entertained by the counseling staff. This provides a nice break for the parents and an opportunity for some independence and different social interaction for the kids.
On top of that, the Camp Alleghany Alumni Association (CAAA) sponsored a different event each day ranging from a wine tasting event from a local winery, to fireworks, to hosting a local blue grass band! All of it was very fun. The CAAA events enhanced everything, and the extra activities were so much fun for the kids and parents.
Rest and relaxation
Overall the energy was high and the families kept giving us extremely positive feedback. Here’s what one of the family camp staff members had to say:
This past week has been the most fun I have had in years. I saw wonderful things in my children, got to catch up with old friends, visit with new friends, share Ghany with neighborhood friends, got to completely de-stress to where I was aware of how happy I was walking through the mud in the rain. I am still sore from dancing to blue grass and have a little paint under my nails still. When I walked in the office today all could tell I was different and were a little jealous from the good vibes I brought back. I just hope it lasts till next August.
Well then, let the countdown begin!
–Elizabeth Dawson Shreckhise, Assistant Director, Camp Alleghany for Girls