After a full week of non-stop program (hard to believe we’ve been together for almost a week!), we had a rain day yesterday. So we slept in an extra hour and moved our activities to our many indoor locations: Fieldhouse, Playhouse, Arts Centers, Fitness and Dance Studios, Tanager, Lodge and more. After five straight days of great weather, non-stop action on the lake, on the ballfields and on the courts, it was a welcome break! This morning, we awoke to one of Camp Laurel favorite traditions: The Quest!
During Quest, we break into 16 teams split across age groups and have an amazing day of friendly competition. It’s a great way to break up our busy schedule and allows campers from different age groups to get to know each other and bond. Our Super Seniors lead the effort and do a spectacular job running this amazing all-camp event.
With the first week nearly behind us, we look forward to ramping up our summer calendar as camping trips, inter-camps, tournaments, golf trips and special events crank up. We look forward to the weekend ahead with program days and lots of time swimming, waterskiing, sailing, stand-up paddleboarding, canoeing, kayaking and even snorkeling!
And We’re Off…
It was a magical start to camp. After a flawless arrival day Saturday, our camp family was reunited and the action hasn’t stopped since. Following our traditional Opening Campfire, we leapt right into program on Sunday and haven’t stopped since. We met our Camp Sisters and Brothers, hosted open calls for High School Musical, ran through the Bec and Bago Sports Combines, and were everywhere in 72 hours: from the Lake to the Ballfields, Tennis Courts to the Hockey Arena, Equestrian Center to the Aerial Park.
While the activities and program are running full bore, the part about camp everyone loves best is being with each other. Friends have been reunited. And in short order, the “newcomers” quickly became part of the extended Laurel family.
Welcome home everyone! The best lies ahead…
Our full staff arrived June 15th and we couldn’t be more excited about what lies ahead. We’ve spent the last week getting to know one another and learning what being a Camp Laurel counselor is all about.
The Baxter staff took home the “Golden Hubcap” in our annual Campus Competes which featured Laurel classics like Flashlight Sing and Captain’s Coming. Yesterday was “Let’s go to Camp Day” and today we’re unpacking so cabins have that “summer home” feeling when campers arrive. The enthusiasm is mounting by the hour!!
Staff Orientation ends Friday and then it’s all-systems-go as we get ready to greet you Saturday.
Our full staff arrive in three short days, but our summer has been well underway with several Pre-Orientation programs. Camp Laurel’s administrative staff is made up of an almost entirely veteran crew, and this week is the time for them to re-connect with colleagues and greet new staff for the first time.
The week leading up to Staff Orientation is also a special time for everyone to focus on what’s ahead and dive deep into what makes Camp Laurel so special. We’ve already welcomed our incredible group of Campus Leaders, Department Heads and Adventure Counselors. Before the rest of our staff arrive, we’ll also welcome our Small Crafts Counselors, Health Center Team and Equestrian Staff.
These groups of incoming staff are always happy and excited to arrive at Laurel, and ready to learn about the summer ahead. Our Small Crafts staff get extra time on the water to familiarize themselves with our fleet of boats. The Adventure counselors go through specialized training focused on curriculum and safety within their specific programs — outdoor tripping, climbing or aerial park. And the Department Heads and Campus Leaders go through their own training about how to lead incoming counselors and staff.
Everyone is smiling and loves the beautiful Maine weather. We’re thrilled to welcome the full staff on Friday and even more excited for camper arrival on June 23rd!
Camp is right around the corner. Eighteen days to be exact. Our first set of staff arrived and are busy getting everything ready for arrival day!! Our pre-camp crew is made up of about 30 counselors from all over the country. They spend the morning and afternoon mowing, painting, weed-whacking, setting up docks, moving ping pong tables and generally turning camp into our summer home.
But pre-camp is so much more than that. For the 2018 staff experiencing pre-camp for the first time, it’s about getting acclimated to Laurel, exploring Maine during time off and forming some of the best friendships they’ll ever know. The confidence the pre-camp staff gain from being here early is noticeable. They’ve already made Laurel their summer home. When the balance of the staff arrive by June 15th, they’ll see this crop of pre-camp staff and assume they’ve each been at Laurel for many summers. They instantly become a pre-formed welcoming committee.
The anticipation for camper arrival continues to build with each passing day, and this pre-camp season has already proved that Summer 2018 will be one for the record books. We can’t wait to greet all of you very soon!