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April 16, 2024

Where Every Family Matters

100+ Reasons Why Camp is Awesome

In a land where parents and schedules rule the day ... one can't help but dream of summer camp!

Summer Camp: You Should Let Kids Go!

My sleep-away camp was only two-and-a-half hours away from Nashville, but my mom felt like it was on the other side of the planet.

I was 8 and fearless. Then all at once I was terrified. My parents’ car drove away from my cabin making dirt clouds behind it. THAT cabin. Filled with strange girls. And Mom’s eyes had been filled with tears she didn’t want me to see. I grew a huge, sore lump in my throat; I could hardly swallow. I wanted to scream, “Stop!” and run after them as hard as I could. I watched them signal right and go. I would be here for a week, so I would have to go in sooner or later. “You can do it!” Dad said. “We’re proud of you!” Mom said. As soon as I crossed the cabin’s threshold, a kid shot out, “Hey! Who are you? What’s your name?” I looked up to see this girl with a bandana wrapped wildly around her head, hair jutting out in funny ways. She had a million freckles, but her face was hectic and fun. I liked her immediately. “I’m Alex,” I tried. “Well, I’m gonna call you Bunny!” the girl crowed. “You were hopping up and down by your parents car like a rabbit … so you’re Bunny! My name’s Savannah. You can call me Savvy!” Thus began the nine summers I went to camp — sometimes at the same time as Savvy (those were the best times!) and sometimes with other girls who became my lifelong friends. My mother hesitated to let me go away at first, but my Dad insisted I’d be fine and that Mom needed to “let her go.” I went and I didn’t even write, although she’d packed me all these pre-stamped postcards. But seeing Mom at the end of the week? I couldn’t stop hugging her. Seriously, if you’re worried about sending your boy or girl to camp, my mom understands. But I’m going to give you plenty of reasons why my Mom was wrong!

 100+ Reasons Why Camp’s AWESOME!

  1. Meeting new friends.
  2. Sleeping in a cabin.
  3. Sleeping in a tent.
  4. Eating what you want.
  5. Using a flashlight at night.
  6. Falling asleep talking.
  7. Rolling another bunk.
  8. Sitting around a camp fire.
  9. Singing around a camp fire.
  10. Being in a talent show.
  11. Packing your own bags.
  12. Being without your parents.
  13. Being on your own.
  14. Wearing what you want.
  15. Not brushing your teeth.
  16. Doing things your way.
  17. Telling jokes.
  18. Swimming.
  19. Fishing.
  20. Jumping off a blob.
  21. Enjoying programming designed just for you.
  22. Not having to answer your mom right away.
  23. Spending your day doing nothing.
  24. Spending your day doing all kinds of things.
  25. Gaining more confidence.
  26. Becoming independent.
  27. Learning to speak up.
  28. Playing games on a bed.
  29. Wearing the same thing every day.
  30. Being outside.
  31. Playing in the rain.
  32. Making lifelong friends.
  33. Getting away from being on your phone all of the time.
  34. Climbing a rock wall.
  35. Speeding on a zip line.
  36. Learning tennis.
  37. Doing science experiments.
  38. Playing dress-up.
  39. Swimming every day.
  40. Singing your heart out.
  41. Acting in a play.
  42. Improvising a skit.
  43. Being yourself and no one cares.
  44. Having fun with counselors.
  45. Paddling a canoe.
  46. Going rafting.
  47. Going sailing.
  48. Trying archery.
  49. Trying new things.
  50. Never having to rush.
  51. Learning new dances.
  52. Dancing just for fun.
  53. Learning new hand routines.
  54. Most of your favorite memories will come from summer camp.
  55. Creating an inexplicable bond between yourself and your camp friends.
  56. Early wake up calls — after a while it’s awesome!
  57. Passing a swim test … eventually.
  58. Movie night.
  59. The crazy things that happen in the middle of the night.
  60. Playing cards.
  61. Flipping over rocks in creeks to find crawfish.
  62. Everybody just having a good time.
  63. Having a birthday at camp.
  64. Getting a care package from home.
  65. Getting camper mail.
  66. Swimming in a lake.
  67. Loving sunsets.
  68. Trading T-shirts with friends.
  69. Eating lots of junk food.
  70. Making friendship bracelets.
  71. Suffering through the last night of camp.
  72. Reuniting with camp friends after a long year.
  73. Dressing in crazy costumes for theme competitions.
  74. Thunderstorms while you’re in a cabin.
  75. Winning the prize for “Tidy Teepee.”
  76. Getting spooked by ghost stories.
  77. Keeping a secret stash of candy to share with your friends.
  78. Hikes with amazing views.
  79. Signing everyone’s T-shirt on the last day.
  80. Scavenger hunts.
  81. Different theme nights like “nutty buddy.”
  82. Hugging a friend like there’s no tomorrow.
  83. That a week or two or three is the best part of the year.
  84. Co-ed socials if you’re at same-sex camp.
  85. S’mores.
  86. Going to canteen.
  87. Sitting around with a bunch of kids for every single meal.
  88. Playing color war.
  89. Taking lots of pictures with a disposable camera.
  90. Nobody caring that your feet and fingernails get dirty.
  91. Playing lots of different sports all in the same day and sweating like a pig.
  92. Not doing what your mother said.
  93. Discussing anything and everything.
  94. Cheering at the top of your lungs.
  95. Living communally.
  96. Letting go of all the rules you know at home.
  97. Finally doing things that your parents always say “no” to.
  98. Missing being a camper the day you become a counselor.
  99. Loving a horse.
  100. Being as wacky as you want to be.
  101. Making new friends but keeping the old.
  102. Making a pot holder or birdhouse for your mom.
  103. Whittling a whistle for your dad.
  104. Knowing the warmth of a bonfire in the cold air.
  105. Sleeping hard.
  106. Geocaching.
  107. Making up new songs.
  108. Falling asleep to the sound of crickets.
  109. Winning awards, badges, trophies.
  110. Laying awake thinking about stuff.

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