Greetings, wonderful Opequon families and caregivers!
It was so great meeting you all on registration day. The summer is off to a magical start! It has been a very full first week, with adventurous camping trips, fabulous art making, rowdy song-filled mealtimes and sweet campfires and other activities at night. The weather has been dreamy for the most part, and spirits are high all around.
We enjoyed a wonderful Sunday night Fire Circle on the second night of camp. After some lovely singing, we settled into silence and reflected on the query, “What does it mean to be free?” It was beautiful and moving.
Your precious campers returned from their first set of overnight trips on Wednesday and recapped all their adventures around a beautiful and moving fire circle that evening. Unit 1 warmed up their hiking muscles on the Appalachian Trail, traveling a total of 22 miles on foot and ending their trip in Harper’s Ferry (a historical Civil-War era town known for John Brown’s raid and other abolitionist movements).
Unit 2 braved the Antietam Creek and Potomac River in canoes, paddling through several sets of rapids, ending near Harper’s Ferry as well. Unit 3 hiked the last several miles of the “Rollercoaster” (some of the most demanding terrain on the Appalachian Trail), stopping on the second day to rock climb at Crescent Rocks, where they were joined by Unit 4 who hiked in five miles from the beautiful Blackburn Trail Center. Though most trips experienced a little rain the first day, it was clear from their stories that the trips were a rousing success. So inspiring!
After a day of rest and landing at our camp home together, we started our first set of three-day workshops. Campers chose from six workshops, ranging from visual art-themed to sports-themed to food-themed and more! The Frazzly Ram workshop will be working to revive an old BYM camp game involving buckets, balls and wooden-framed goals. They’ll spend time constructing the arena itself, painting the equipment and then, of course, playing the game! The Project Trailway workshop is focusing on creating original garments out of old clothes and materials found in nature, and promises to yield truly fabulous camp couture to be debuted at a fashion show for the rest of camp. The Synchronized Swimmers are spending their workshop days choreographing and practicing a dance routine…in the Opequon Creek! The Food 4 Thought workshop will be exploring the way we grow, obtain and consume food in our society, and even make some food of their own, using ingredients from our garden. One of our parent volunteers is a local farmer and spoke with the workshop about her experience raising meat responsibly. Campers in the Opequon Orchestra workshop have begun designing instruments out of recycled materials, and will be using them to experiment with sound and create original music together. Finally, the Cabin Painters will take on the task of designing a mural for our brand new cabin! We can’t wait to see what they come up with! We look forward to seeing and hearing all about these lovely workshops during the first art walk of the season on Sunday.
On Friday night, campers showed their creativity in a round of “paper bag skits” which were entertaining and hilarious. Saturday night was spent running around in amazing costumes…The first game of Jugs was a terrific time!
Next week is shaping up to be equally stupendous, with another round of workshops and one of our favorite days of the summer: ODWAD (One Day Workshop Adventure Day), where campers participate in a full day of whimsical campy fun surrounding a fun theme. We are so excited to spend yet another week with your fantastic campers, and can’t wait to tell you more!
Signing off in Peace, Light and Fun,
The Opequon Staff