What We Think About When We Think About Our Camp Friends

Tomorrow we will reach a much-anticipated milestone — ONLY 100 DAYS UNTIL CAMP! Winter’s chill has come and gone, the groundhog made his best prediction, and we lost an hour of sleep. The birds are back, singing their sweet songs with the morning sunrise. When the sun sets well after 7:00, we know that camp is just around the corner.

We made it!

Some of us have been fortunate enough to get together with our camp friends over the past 6 months. Others may have a regular “group chat” throughout the school year, connecting us even when we are many miles from Greeley. As we enter this 100-day countdown, we are overwhelmed by the longing for the bonds shared with our summer brothers.

It’s coming.

Camp friends are family — Brothers with whom we cohabitate, share meals, engage in friendly competition, and experience all of the wonderful camp traditions that we look forward to when snow is falling and darkness bullies light for center stage. When we think about our camp friends during the school year, we miss the shared experience of a summer at Lake Owego. Only we truly know what that means.

Unlike our school friends, camp friends must be savored over a brief period of time. We are gifted just 7 short weeks together each year, and we squeeze in as much quality time as we can. Basketball in the HBC, tetherball by the pool, swinging in hammocks by the tents, or just enjoying the outdoors, digging for worms by the lake. As long as we’re together, it doesn’t really matter what we’re doing.

And we will be together very soon.

We think about our camp friends emerging from the bus on June 22nd and running into our outstretched arms. Bunk assignments, bed choices, and counselor reveals await us. We can’t wait to see our friends from last summer, and we are excited to meet new campers with whom we can make an instant connection (“Do you play Magic?”). So many moments to look forward to.

We think about that first Friday night campfire, bungee chairs scattered around the campsite like colorful satellite dishes. Our friends by our side, laughing at another rendition of “Little Red Wagon.” That feeling of belonging, knowing there’s nowhere else in the world we’d rather be at that very moment.

We think about all of the moments we shared last summer, but we mostly think about the wonderful memories still waiting to be made. Whether our friends are from New York, Florida, California, or Spain — they hold a special place in our hearts all year long. We will gather together in 100 days for the summer of 2024. Countdown commencing.

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