Bugle Call – Week 1 – 2014

The phrase “Bring the Fun” echoed throughout Kohahna this week as we introduced it as our summer theme and kicked off the start of our 7 weeks of camping in true camp form- with love, joy, and enthusiasm.  It was a week of firsts for everyone (first activities, first cabin day, first church service etc.)  With over a dozen new campers and plenty of familiar faces returning, we’ve really made sure to get the routine of Kohahna camp life down and develop a comfortable sense of all that it means to be a Kohahna woman of substance!

Monday began with the old familiar swim test, which took place at beautiful Bar Lake! The trip to Bar Lake means everyone’s first opportunity to ride on the Big Blue bus which means singing camp songs galore!! Our afternoon on Monday included specific cabin bonding time so that all campers could establish both personal goals and cabin goals as well as determine a cabin contract (agreed upon guidelines for cabin conduct to promote cabin harmony!). Upon completing these things, the campers played “get to know you” games and had fun adventuring around the camp property. Monday evening brought us to a picture perfect evening up at Pyramid Point and the Sand Bowl with sunny skies, warmth, and a serene view of Lake Michigan! It was a wonderful first full day of camp!

Tuesday was the start of our regular routine of morning activities, which were announced at breakfast as always. Counselors were primed and ready to begin teaching activities after a pre-camp week of preparation, set up, and curriculum planning. So, activities went off without a hitch….except for the rain! Good thing the counselors come equipped with rain plans!  Despite the rain, this week’s Morning Activities were replete with all of our favorite land, water, and art activities. Highlights included care and riding in the horse barn; silver, ceramic, and crafty art projects galore; Riflrey and archery students hitting the targets, and again, plenty of indoor instruction in activities that may have been affected by the rain.  Our first Sand vs. Pine “team game” occurred on Tuesday evening as we played Bombardment! The Sands were victorious during the camper games, but fortunately the Sky Team was able to pull out the win during the camper vs. counselor game!  Captains were also elected for the Sand team and for the Pine team.

 Wednesday was our first Cabin Day and all but one cabin ventured into Glen Arbor! Many cabins partook in delicious Cherry Republic ice cream cones, additionally; several younger cabins played at the playground in Glen Arbor, the cabin of Birchview went to the “jumping spot” at the Sleeping Bear Sand Dunes and ran up and down the dunes and hills! Breezeway did some “minute to win it challenges” which ended in lots of laughter and some rather hilarious videos, Juniper and Evergreen dressed up in costumes and completed a scavenger hunt, and the cabin of Clifftop went adventuring in the town of Leland.

On Wednesday evening, we had our camp church service, testimony meeting, and then hymn sing. Kohahna CTs (counselors in training) have the opportunity to prepare readings throughout the summer, and we certainly enjoyed our first set of readings about spiritual beauty and identity. Our testimony meeting offered several campers and counselors the opportunity to share testimonies which were all greatly appreciated.

Thursday was another beautiful day complete with morning and afternoon activities, and delicious meals. Now, you might ask, what did we do for afternoon activities? Well, campers had the opportunity to venture to the clay pits, bike ride down Port Oneida, beautify  the barn and play with the horses, test their balance with stand-up paddle boarding, partake in fort building, create miniature fairy houses in the woods, make post cards to send home with water color painting, and  learn to draw and write graphic cartoons! Campers each get to sign up for one afternoon activity per day, which always keeps activities fun and fresh and specialized for each camper’s individual interests.  On Thursday evening, two of our cabins, Windward and Clifftop (the 7th and 8th graders) went out for an overnight trip of learning woodswoman skills and doing “Challenge” prep. The Challenge is a competitive camping trip for Wildwood campers that happen in the 4 week session, so this 7th and 8th graders trip served as a special opportunity for these campers to hone some of their skills in preparation for future Challenge trips. In addition to this camping trip, our other remaining Wildwood cabins attended a Christian Science Lecture in Glen Arbor given by Kari Mashos, CSB.  The Waukeena campers helped save the lost queen fairy of Kohahna and each received their very own fairy name!  Friday was a rainy day, made better by hot cocoa in the Great House as well as cabin skits (brown bag style). Each cabin was assigned a list of things to include in their skits, and then they each creatively put together a scene with the included items.

On Saturday morning, we had our first summer theme metaphysical meeting where we again discussed the topic of spiritual joy as the overarching concept to “Bring the Fun”. Our particular quality focus this coming week is patience, and in our metaphysical the campers learned about the virtue of patience as it relates to their personal life, healing, and in their thoughts towards others.  After the metaphysical, we had our all camp cleanup! This lengthy cleanup process allowed time for the campers to get all their personal things in order as well as cleaning the cabin. It also allowed the counselors the opportunity to meet one-on-one with each camper in their cabin. In the afternoon, we did a wrap up of Week 1 morning activities to give the campers a full five days of participation in their selected activity. At this point, it’s relevant to share that all week long the Pine team had been secretly preparing for their Pine show which took place on Saturday evening. The theme was, “The Pine Circus” where the team captain lead the Pine team circus acts (the bearded lady, animals, magicians, acrobats, tight rope walker, and various other acts all played by pine campers) to perform a show for camp Kohahna for girls! It was a very well done and creative show and the girls have a lot to be proud of!

Sunday was replete with all of our favorite Sunday activities- donuts for breakfast, Sunday school, All camp photo day, our very own cultural celebration with the World Cup activity for both Leelanau and Kohahna, a cook-out dinner on the bluff, and then of course Council Fire! We had a lot of fun up at Council Fire learning about the activities of the week, the K-qualities (specifically Leadership), singing songs, playing Pine vs. Sand games, passing out awards, and just bringing the fun in general. It was a joy to ring in the summer with so many wonderful camp Kohahna campers and staff and we are already underway with the fun of week two!