Yesterday was the culmination of several months of celebrating Kawaga’s 100th year of camping. Over 1000 campers and several hundred staff from 7 camps were here on the Shores for what was surely the largest celebration of camping in Kawaga history. The Super Social, as we called it, was a great success, with all the boys, girls, men and women just enjoying being together in a great setting. Kawaga’s staff rocked it making the event a complete success by continuing their great work this summer.
As I look back now on the past several months of celebrations – our Alumni gathering in Chicago, Alumni Fantasy Weekend on the Shores, and the Super Social – along with the many smaller celebrations and TBTs, it has been a tremendous journey this year as we celebrate the significant feat of 100 years of camping. 100 years of anything is impressive enough, but it is made more so because it is CAMP and a place where we work with kids and better their lives. Having held all of these events, the number one thing that sticks out to me was the re-connection so many alumni made with Kawaga, and their fellow braves and friends, as a result of Kawaga100. To hear the tales, and see the friends look back on their time, no matter how long they have been away from each other and the Shores, was a camp affirming affair – we are doing something right and special here at Kawaga. And after these past few months, I firmly believe Kawaga has never been stronger.
Then yesterday… seeing all of these great and long standing camps come together for a few hours, and having the opportunity to hang out for a bit with fellow directors/owners from all of the camps was a truly special moment. Speaking with these long time owners/directors, seeing how happy all of our campers are here in the Northwoods, hearing all the great stories of the summer, it made me feel so very lucky to be part of CAMP. The camping industry is strong and making a renewed surge because parents are seeing and understanding the immense value in CAMP again (and many for the first time). Camp is so important for all of our children. It is their happy and safe place, in a world that has not felt that way recently. Camp teaches our kids so many things they cannot learn in school or behind a computer/cell phone/screen. Dewey and I are so proud to be able to be a part of the camping world and specifically Camp Kawaga, and observing the masses at the Super Social and seeeing CAMP in action yesterday afternoon was simply amazing and so very gratifying.
We move forward into Week 6 and competition. There will be plenty more stories to tell and memories to make.