Resource Library

The Good Reminder
Published Date: 2018-01-01

Spring is a time of renewal and hope, and nowhere is this hopefulness more evident than in our chosen profession. As camp professionals, we catalog time by the changing of the seasons. Summer speaks for itself as we manage that magnificent chaos that can be summer camp. Fall for many of us is a season of reflection and rest, and winter is the season of planning and preparation. But spring? Spring is the season when we begin putting it all together.

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Building Pillars of Hope
Published Date: 2009-07-01

Where is our hope? Does it lie in the group of ten-year-olds turning over rocks to peer underneath, exploring caves, and running along streams where trout skim the rippling water's surface? Does it settle down around the campfire in the evening when staff and campers commune while they tell exciting stories of courage or funny episodes of the day? Or, does it wrap itself around the fifteen teens who triumphantly climbed an 18,000-foot peak? Camp continues to build hope in the most innocent of places, a child's heart.

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It was July 2, 1964, and President Lyndon Johnson had just signed the Civil Rights Act. For us, the time had come to finally implement a plan to desegregate our white suburban day camp. We had been discussing how and when for many years, and the signing of the Civil Rights Act was the final impetus we needed to make it happen. At that time we were in our thirties and were social activists who had participated in civil rights activities since undergraduate school. Also, at that time, our eight-week, coed day camp of about 244 children was ten years old.

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Whenever I tell people that my research deals with the history of summer camps, they smile. Undoubtedly some of the smiles are triggered by fond camp memories: the smell of pine, perhaps, or the taste of s’mores. But sometimes (I suspect) the smiles serve to hide a certain amount of confusion about what summer camps have to do with architectural history. If we are thinking of the most conventional definition of the field — a history of innovative works designed by architects of genius — then that confusion is warranted. This is not to say that architects have never designed summer camps.

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With the presidential debates now in the rearview mirror, another national dialogue is unfolding before the American public. It, too, is enormously consequential. Young lives hang in the balance.

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While a summer at camp is, in and of itself, a special event, sometimes it’s important to shake up the daily routine to revitalize both campers and staff, especially a few weeks into the summer. Staff who teach a par-ticular activity exclusively may become tired of the same routine; going over the parts of a boat or perfecting a camper’s forehand day in and day out can get tedious even for the most avid activity enthusiasts. Similarly, campers need a break from structured swim lessons and shooting at archery targets.

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The Dollar$ and Cents of Operating a Camp
Published Date: 2012-09-01

Most camp professionals love to talk about the impact of the camp experience on the lives of their participants. Sometimes, these professionals wrestle with the business side of camp, especially in tight economic times! Often what camp directors and administrators need are DATA that allow them to compare their operations information to camps similar to them.

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Brandon Briery on the Ability Experience at Camp CAMP

"What did you do last summer?" For most of you, this question conjures images of campfires, canoes, horses, swimming, and lots of energy, enthusiasm, and excitement from smiling and eager campers. If you asked most people, "What do you think a bunch of fraternity brothers did last summer?" they might tend to picture other images in their minds. Those images, however, would be very wrong for the Pi Kappa Phi fraternity brothers who are part of the group’s national philanthropy the Ability Experience.

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As a camper, I distinctly remember the silver cafeteria trays and the colored globs of food that were plopped into the tray’s individual sections. That was then and this is now. The cooking arena in camp kitchens today needs to not only focus on better presentation but a wholesome diet as well.

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Can My Camp Nurse Do That?
Published Date: 2017-07-01
  • "My nurse told the parent that she wouldn't give the medication unless she had the prescription in its original container. Can she do that? The Mom was just trying to help by putting the meds in one of those weekly plastic containers."
  • "My RN picked up the phone and took the doctor's order by talking to him. Is that OK?"
  • "She said it was a 'nursing diagnosis.' What's with that? Doctors do the diagnosing, not nurses."
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