Ka-Boom! The cannon roars and the campers head to the beach to start another day and another summer of Camp Leelanau. The first week seems to go by the fastest because of all the special activities, including some of the camper’s favorite parts of camp.
The Bar Exam (our annual swim test at Bar Lake) was a huge success on Monday afternoon. Phat Tuesday (a day designed to shake off any cobwebs and get the campers fully engaged in camp) brought Water Polo, GaGa with the youngsters, and most important of all…a Super Chicken Picnic at the Shallows. We finished the night with captain elections, which gave us CTs Ben Bradshaw and Ian McCullough for South and CTs Ben Austin and Phil Sholeen for North. The Spirit of the Manitou visited all of our new campers and assigned them teams with felt-tipped gusto.
On Wednesday the heavens opened up and we had to forgo Cabin Day in favor of donning our camos and playing a hardy game of Espionage. Espionage is played with two large teams that each defends a building that acts as the other team’s “embassy” while simultaneously attempting to get pieces of a message to their code breaker, who is inside the embassy, which the other team is guarding. The game was a big hit with all of the campers and the afternoon became warm and sunny which brightened everyone’s spirits.
Thursday brought a return to more normal camp activities, and Friday included Jr. Soccer for evening activity. On Saturday we loaded the boys on the bus for an afternoon of dune soaring at the backside of the dunes. The dunes were a huge success because the campers were able to display their jumping and climbing skills on a particularly steep section close to the water. After a refreshing dip we raced back to camp to eat dinner and play some good ‘ol Saturday Night Soccer.
Sunday morning the boys cleaned extra hard and then stood outside of their cabins for Sunday Inspection. Sunday is such an important day for clean up because it counts as double in the tally for Honor Cabin that is announced at Council Fire. Sunday afternoon was filled with an all camp game based on characters from the Amazing X-Men. Magneto (Weldon Rutledge) and the Mutant Brotherhood “kidnapped” Professor X (David Libbe), so the campers were forced to complete activities on the zip line, water slide, and soccer field to earn points and find Professor X. The game ended with all of camp launching soaking wet foam tennis balls at Magneto to banish him from this land. Everyone had fun running around in the sun avoiding the “bad guys”.
Then Sunday night we trudged up the hill for our weekly celebration of success in activities at Council Fire. HQ started the night out by talking about over coming any sins that might enter our daily existence such as laziness or disobedience. The new youngsters learned “What Gooses” they truly are when the Spirit of the Great Siam overtook Eric Olsen and Weldon, and Fred “Calves” Morrison defended his title as Indian Leg Wrestling Champion against rising star Ben Hanson. We closed by singing together the Council Fire Song and Taps, ending the night, and week, on a reverent tone as we all looked forward to joys and surprises yet to come.