Dear Parents of Catoctin 1st Session Campers,
The summer 2019 season has finally arrived to Catoctin Mountain! After much training and many a meeting, CQC counselors and staff were anxious to receive the very first batch of campers of the year, and when they arrived they certainly didn’t forget to bring their joy and excitement with them. We’re off to a great start at Catoctin! We’re only one week in, but the adventures and tall tales are already stacking. Here’s an insider peek into CQC session 1…
The big story for the summer with Unit 1 is that Units 1A and B are being combined into a single, super, mega, epic 1. “The 1 and only,” as they have self-named. But, for the time being, they’re at half capacity until the second half arrives next week. In the meantime, they embarked on a bonding trip to Pine Knob which included a very age appropriate rock climbing challenge. Being the epic campers that they are, they hiked their way back to camp for a glorious and much celebrated arrival.
The CQC Classic Canoe Trip awaited the newly minted unit 2. Fortunately for them, the Antietam Creek received the perfect amount of rain for their journey easing their navigation through rapids. Their third day challenge of White Horse and Needles along the Potomac was no match for this troop. Unit 2 was able to trumpet an accomplishment of minimal boat tippage upon their return.
Unit 3 found themselves mirroring their older companions in unit 1 during their hike on local routes. They also stayed at Pine Knob, albeit on a different day. Unit 3 campers came back expressing great pride in the reality that, as hikers, they simply cannot be underestimated. Nor should they be!
“Water Park Fun!” was the theme of the unit 4 trip, and oh, what fun they had. Every single day allowed wet and wild adventure including, but not limited to, a perfect summer day at Blue Lake as well as multiple waterfalls to enjoy and play in; something unit 4 campers shared at length during Firecircle. Staff and campers alike who couldn’t join shared in our jealousy.
The theme was Rock and Roll for Unit 5, and campers were more than happy to oblige. Campers arrived for their trip sporting zany outfits of what would become their own rock star persona. Of course – of course – there was also an opportunity to rock climb while reaching for a different kind of star entirely.
Our super special and super amazing Unit 6 one week campers got an introduction to Catoctin trips the right way by discovering just how many opportunities for fun exist right here on the mountain mere miles from our camp. Their adventures led them on a windy and twisty journey through the woods, but little did they know they were within earshot of our bell the entire time! Sometimes, you don’t have to go far to do epic things. Something our amazing sixers found out firsthand.
A good ol’ fashioned who dunnit found its way to Catoctin on Special Day with all of our campers divided into investigation groups to solve a very important case: The mystery of the missing songbooks. With a cast of colorful suspects to choose from including Major Dijon, Mr. QC, and Miss Fraggy, camp spent all day engaged in a variety of activities all designed to help get them closer to cracking the case. It all culminated in a trial of our shifty In-Camp Staff suspects in which the final evidence and clues were presented by each camper group to our resident Director-Judge/ Judgector. The result? Well. Unfortunately, the case has been classified. Though our camper PIs have been given full permission to discuss it with their families. It may be the only way for you to learn the result which ended in a twist most unexpected.
Firecircle and Spirituality
Take aside a typical camper and ask them what their favorite part of camp is. You’ll get a variety of answers for sure, but chief among them will definitely be fire circle which is only but one of many opportunities to sing to one’s heart’s content. The songs came loud and proud as campers were able to enjoy favorites from Darling Won’t You Wait to Rattlin’ Bog. But in addition to the joyful noise, we were able to enjoy the peaceful moments too with silent meditation and a reflection on the query: what is love? Once again, campers proved their ability to be holders of absolutely profound knowledge and insight into the heady topics in which we adults tend to struggle.
With one week down and five to go, we’re only getting started here at Catoctin. More to come!