When I was signing up for Camp Alleghany, I didn’t think I was ready for Term Camp. It seemed too long to be away from my family, and I didn’t know if I would like it until I got there. So I started with Mini Camp.
As I crossed the barge I knew right away I was going to have a great experience. A Junior Counselor showed me to my tent and there I was met by my tent counselor. She was welcoming to me and made sure I understood everything we were going to do.
By the end of that day I knew all the routines and felt like I had been there for a week!
That night the counselors for each activity performed a skit to show us what that activity was like. There were so many different choices and it was almost impossible to choose just four! We have two classes in the morning and two in the afternoon. I suggest choosing water activities in the afternoon to cool off!
One time, when the river was too fast to canoe in, they brought a canoe on land and made us practice paddling in the air while they sprayed us with a hose. They made each day really fun.
Before I signed up for Rifle, I was scared. I had never handled a rifle before. But once classes started, I felt safer. The counselors went over the rules and made everything sound easier. We had an instructor to help us shoot the targets and make sure we’re safe. There is a target rack with ropes attached to it so we can pull in our targets to see without stepping on the range. I learned so much at the end of the week and we even got patches for each class we took.
All the counselors at camp were welcoming and nice. Each one was understanding and could make everything seem fun. Beth Anne (BA) Clark-Thomas, the director of Mini Camp, was probably the most fun and exciting person I’ve ever met. She has a great spirit and can cheer up any camper. For the one week I was there, I never ever saw a camper unhappy.
The Dining Hall
To get to the Dining Hall, you can either take the dirt path up the hill in the shade, or climb the never ending stairs in the heat. (I’d pick the path)! The Dining Hall is where you have all your meals.
The Hoppers are the older campers who serve food in the Dining Hall. There’s a wide selection of food each meal. You’re encouraged to try everything and they make sure you don’t go to bed hungry!
Mini Camp’s colors are tie-dye. It represents all the different colors we could be when we graduate into Term Camp.
On Tuesday, we did a tie-dye project and got to brighten up a plain old white T-shirt. We were divided into (unofficial) teams, each with a different color. With our team we competed in races and competitions. It was an introduction to how things would be in Term Camp when we were either a Gray or Blue.
At the end of the week I felt like it should only be Wednesday. It all went by so fast and it was so fun.
It had been such a great experience and as I crossed the barge for home I looked back at the Alleghany sign. I remembered all the fun I had and the friends and memories I had made. I didn’t want to leave it all behind for next summer. I wanted to stay longer. As I left camp, I immediately signed up for second term the same year because I couldn’t wait 365 more days! It was like the feeling you get the day after your birthday when you think to yourself: “I can’t believe I have to wait a whole year for my next birthday!” Well I was lucky there was a spot, and I didn’t have to wait 365 days!
Mini Camp was such a great start, and it helped get me ready for Term Camp. Now I won’t hesitate to be gone for three weeks, because Alleghany is so awesome you forget to check the time.
— Nora Wood, Mini Camper turned Term Camper, Camp Alleghany for Girls
If you’re curious to learn more about the benefits of Mini Camp, please, download Assistant Director Elizabeth Dawson Shreckhise’s FREE e-book, 3 Reasons to Begin Your Child’s Sleepaway Summer Camp Journey Early.