Happy Pirate Day!

Greetings from Hilltop. It’s been a wonderful Junior Session so far. I wrote in my first post that the idea behind Junior Session is that we’d give these young people a first (or second) experience away from home, in the Four Winds setting and that it would be fun and successful. It’s been exactly that. These campers eagerly engage in all that camp has to offer, whether it’s making art in the craft courts, playing Capture the Chicken, or falling asleep in our cabins to the sound of their counselors reading bedtime stories and the waves lapping the shores of Westsound.

As the title indicates, today is Pirate Day. We meet up after rest hour every day to split up and head to classes. Today, swarthy pirates kidnapped Daisy (our head counselor), Danielle (our associate director), and me, scrambling all plans for the afternoon. As I write this from captivity, the campers are going through pirate training, learning sea shanties, how to walk the plank, making eye patches, and so on. Hopefully, later this afternoon, they’ll make our captors laugh with some of the pirate jokes they’ve learned, we’ll all be set free, and the campers will be rewarded with buried treasure (rice krispie treats).

It’s hard to overstate how much these campers embrace this sort of imaginative play. If previous years are any indication, campers will be asking me about my kidnapping experience in summer 2023. This type of play isn’t just fun, it can build their creativity, lower anxiety, improve behavior and social skills, and help them to learn logic reasoning skills.  All that from some counselors dressed up in silly costumes interrupting announcements with some mayhem.

Pirate Day Aside, it’s been a great week so far. You heard all about arrival day in the last post. On Tuesday, we took care of business in the morning (taking the swim test, seeing the nurse, taking cabin photos, etc), and jumped into classes in the afternoon. For Evening Activity, we played Capture the Chicken. Yesterday, we had four periods of classes, two before lunch and two after, and Sports Night for Evening Activity. Today we had classes in the morning, Pirate Day in the afternoon, and we’ll have Moonraker (silly songs and skits on Moonraker Point, one of the most beautiful spots in camp) for Evening Activity.

The week is flying by, since time flies when you’re having fun. We’ll make the most of the second half of this week, and send them home to you on Sunday, tired and happy, full of stories and song, and perhaps appearing, barely noticeably, just a little bit taller. Thank you for sharing them with us this week.