Resource Library

Recent events like Hurricane Sandy and the school shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary hit us hard. Across the country, we became consumed by news reports of these events and wondered how the lives of those affected would ever go on. The good news, if we can find any from these tragedies, is that people do fi nd a way to move on. However, life is more than dealing with tragedy — it is about facing challenges of all types, and learning how to deal with them builds resilience. Facing challenges successfully paves the way in our brain for new pathways as we face new challenges.

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Can you relate to this situation?

Something happens that is upsetting, difficult, and/or problematic. You talk to a friend or your parents about it, and they offer rational, useful advice. Even though what they are offering is useful, you almost automatically come up with all sorts of reasons why it won’t work. You are not even open to the possibility that the advice being offered to you might resolve your problem.

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Joe EhrmannJoe Ehrmann is an accomplished man, but not just because he was an All-American football player at Syracuse University and the tenth overall draft pick in the 1973 NFL Draft — or because of his impressive professional football career. Ehrmann has committed his life to building an extraordinary resume in the areas of youth and human development and community service.

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The age-old question of “What do you do the rest of the year?” is inevitable. Every camp director we know has heard it, often many times. Summer is an intense and busy time, and we have worked hard to make sure that we, and our campers, have the appropriate support. When August comes around, all that hands-on energy and youthful compassion go back to school. Camp directors are left to fill in on the front line for our programs that continue deep into the fall and resume soon after the New Year.

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Sunday afternoon. The weekend groups have gone home; the kitchen is clean; the heat turned down. For the moment, camp is quiet. The question for you, and many other camp leaders, is whether the camp will remain quiet all week until the next weekend group arrives or whether when Monday morning comes the camp will be busy and filled with weekday users.

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You’re the head of baseball and softball at a prestigious summer camp in New England. It’s week four of the seven-week session and one of your counselors, Jason, is still struggling to connect with the campers. That’s not to say he’s not a great employee: He’s your first staff member to show up at the baseball fields every day, he doesn’t complain about the heat, and as far as you know he has been in bed well before curfew almost every night. He even plays baseball for a Division II school, so you know his technical baseball knowledge is second to none at camp.

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Currently, the camp community is particularly concerned about the future camp market — who will be the upcoming consumer? In which direction are current realities pushing the development of a camp movement? "It is said that by mid-century non-Hispanic Caucasians will be the minority. If this is true, and we look at today's camp market, we are challenged with the reality that our camp market is fading . . . ." said Peg Smith, American Camp Association (ACA) chief executive officer (Smith 2006).

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The Case of the Melted Fingerprints
Published Date: 2015-05-01

My first time working at summer camp, in fact during my first week, I melted off every one of my fingerprints. I was only 16 at the time, and I remember feeling shocked that this could actually happen. I also remember shamelessly considering what shenanigans I could get away with as a super cool, Justin Bieber-haired, imminently clever teenage boy without fingerprints. (The answer: not much.)

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Ramblings of a Grumpy, Old Camp Cook
Published Date: 2016-07-01

With the passing of my 65th birthday, I began reflecting a lot on my life, as I imagine many have done at the passage of this age. Looking back, the many summers I spent as a cook/food service director at camp are the ones of which I am most proud.

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The Business of Camp: Starting a New Camp
Published Date: 2014-01-01

“It is critical to treat camp like a business or it will absolutely fail, and to know in your head and heart that if you treat camp only as a business it will also fail absolutely; so always make your choices about the business of camp with the greatest care.”
— Rodger Popkin, Blue Star Camps and former ACA national president

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