Vespers_sunsetThis is always an odd blog to write – the last of the summer.  Since parents are coming tomorrow, it does not make sense to write one for Saturday, so this is the final one. 

The blog is a bit of a mixed blessing. It gives me a chance to share thoughts and feelings with our treasured parents.  I think of it as a small gift to you.  We know that we serve families, not just children, and the articles and photos are our effort to share with you. 

While the blog is a way to serve our parents (a good thing), there are days that writing is the last thing I want to do. As you can tell from the pictures, days at Camp Champions are PACKED.  Some days I realize I have missed more than one meal and still have a few things to complete.  When those days come, it is harder to knock out a quick article.  [Note: busy does not mean burdened – Susie Ma’am and I truly love what we do, but you still want to get your sleep.] 

But the trickiest part about the “last blog” is that is means that we are wrapping up for the season.  One of the oddest parts about being a camp professional is the fact that you work for 40 weeks to prepare for 2 weeks of counselor orientation and 10 weeks of camp.  There are few other professions with so high a preparation-to-execution ratio. 

This place is only “camp” when it is full of the hearts and laughter of our community.  Without the people, this place is simply a backyard (albeit a nice backyard). 

But it is not camp.  

For 12 weeks, Susie Ma’am and I open our home to our spectacular Leadership Team.  We meet in our living room, serve treats in our kitchen and have meetings in various rooms.  During camp, we simply have no territorial bubble – we simply expect people to walk in and out all day long.  While that might sound awful at first, imagine them being among the most positive, passionate and loving people you have ever met.  We adore the members of this team and it is just plain hard to say goodbye at the end of the summer. 

Similarly, we see these counselors pouring themselves into your children.  They play games, lead talks and challenge the campers.  They also practice being the best versions of themselves. They do not party, but instead lead. I believe that we are most human when we serve others.  If this is true, these counselors are all becoming extra human this summer. 

Finally, we will miss the campers. You know how your children inhabit your heart.  I am not saying that we know them the way you do, but they do become a huge part of our lives as well. When they leave, the camp is spookily quiet.  The quiet is relaxing, but it comes with a bit of melancholy. 

So next week, there are no blogs. Instead, we will start the process of building improvements, hiring exceptional counselors and learning how to better impact children all over again. 

Steve Sir