This week’s guest blog comes to us from Camp Starlight Directors David and Allison and speaks to feeling of home and belonging that many campers and staff find at summer camp.
The last week of camp seems like it was yesterday. That feeling of holding on to every moment and hoping that time would just stand still. As the Olympic scores are announced, you rushed the lake cheering, hugging and tears began flooding your eyes. You left your legacy with your bunk plaque this time just a simple phrase, so simple, but says so much. You watched the camp enter the banquet and in awe of the fantasy world you created full of the memories of the summer. The songs from the closing show and the beautiful stroll down to the lake. The serenade of the alma mater and the candle flickering in the night. The vision of fireworks reflecting on the lake . The trumpet echoing taps from the mountains. And of course, that moment when together we all looked up to the sky and David’s words that finally had found a special meaning …”may the stars of Camp Starlight keep you warm throughout the winter and lead you back to us next summer.”
As the buses rolled away that summer and you began the journey back down the camp road, you promised yourself that you would return to Starlight some day. There are so many things that draw you back: reuniting with friends, sharing your own experience with other campers, taking the role of a coach or teacher, the thrill of being a General or Sing Leader, taking on a leadership role of an ADL, Division Leader or one day a Head Counselor, a chance to get in the ring and wrestle in slushies, shaving your legs for Ms. Starlight, being in the rec hall and singing friends and the alma mater. It is not hard to imagine at all.
Oh, and then life began to get complicated. Applying to college, going to college, chosing a major, the pressure of internships and the like. And you start to wonder if that promise you made to yourself will ever come true to go back to Camp again. But before you let the door close on what has been such an important part of your life, don’t believe that the “real world” doesn’t value the experience of working at a summer camp. Camp Starlight provides a continuous opportunity to grow, educate yourself and develop a social network that will help you further your relationships both professionally and personally.
And opportunities are abound. Camp is like a mini city. The experience of working with children will be to learn about teaching and child care. Athletic learning to teach, coach, organize and scheduling are great skills to help with a career in sports management or teaching. Our health center staffed with highly skilled nurses and doctors many of whom have worked in ER, Surgery, Pediatrics, provides a great resource for someone considering to go to med school or nursing. Our active social media site provides is a great place to publish a blog, photograph or learn the ins and outs of building a social media community. A special events department is like no other to learn about event planning. A complete infrastructure with its own sewage plant, dam, generators that would engineer. Our theater has been a true starting point for aspiring actors, writers, stage managers, producers and musicians. Thinking of becoming an aeronautical engineer, well maybe we can’t help you, although you never know what we have in store for the Olympic break. The opportunities are as endless as are the mountains in Pennsylvania.
So if your heart belongs at Starlight this summer, give us a call and let us see if we can help you find your way home.
David and Allison
This blog was originally published to the Camp Starlight blog on February 14, 2013.