With Family Camp registration opening up to the public in just a few weeks (registration is already open for CAAA members) I found myself reminiscing about that special week at Alleghany when not just girls come to camp, but the whole family can come!
I thought I’d give a taste of Family Camp for those of you who’ve never been.
When I was growing up Family Camp was a time to see family members I didn’t get see any other time of the year. My grandmother Franny invited her siblings and their families to come, too.
I guess since our family couldn’t really travel in the summer, my grandmother decided everyone should come to her! 🙂 This tradition is still going on for us today, which is pretty neat — it’s wonderful to have this multi-generational continuity with my extended family and then to pass it on to Mason and his generation.
Franny’s maiden name was Boatwright, so we continue to call it the Boatwright Family Reunion (and make tee shirts every year!), even though my grandmother and her two siblings have all passed away.
I became close with cousins from Ohio and Tennessee that I would never have known if it weren’t for the annual reunion at Family Camp. Take my cousin Lindsey, for example, (pictured above). I grew close to her at Family Camp and she’s gone on to be a bridesmaid in my wedding and is now Mason’s godmother! I love it that we’ve stayed close.
Family and friends
Family Camp is also a great time for camp reunions. We had our 10-year Junior Counselor reunion back in 2007, and although only a handful of my group could make it, it was still a blast. A lot of JC groups choose to reunite during Family Camp. Doing so brings back a flood of memories and laughter for the alums and it connects them to a place dear to their hearts. And even though it’s great to simply spend time together, it’s also a fun time at camp itself doing the activities and revisiting the surrounding natural beauty. Alums often also bring their families, sharing with them the wonder that is Alleghany.
In 2011 we celebrated our 90th summer and chose Family Camp for the huge blowout bash. We had a band, a catered meal and everything. It was a ton of fun, and I’ve been wanting to bring a band back ever since!
Many of my close camp friends continue to come to Family Camp now, with their husbands and little ones. It’s so nice to be able to count on Family Camp as a time to see each other and spend time together in one of our favorite places, with gentle days along the Greenbrier River. I continue to work during that week (the office work never stops!) but I love being able to take breaks and see some of my favorite people.
If you want to hear about Family Camp from another perspective, my cousin Vickie wrote about it last spring. She’s not on the Boatwright side, but she’s a cousin who attended camp as a camper, counselor, and Head Counselor, and she comes back yearly for Family Camp to see camp and spend time with us.
You can read all about Family Camp on our website — the amenities, activities, dates, rates, etc. And if you have any questions, feel free to contact us.
If you decide to come this year — or any year — bring the whole family. I promise you’ll love it!
–Elizabeth Dawson Shreckhise, Assistant Director, Camp Alleghany for Girls