As he did during First Session, Head of the Boys Camp Andrew Hano offers a reflection on the past week:
The boys at Camp Susquehannock learn a lot of skills each summer. Just today I observed campers practicing lay ups in basketball, forehands in tennis, and stick handling in street hockey; all valuable skills for an athlete. Despite its importance, there is one skill we teach that is dreaded by many campers: swimming.
We have a young camper here in his third summer. When he arrived three years ago he could not swim and was afraid of the water. The swim instructors worked tirelessly with him the past two and one half summers. First he learned to hold his breath and go under water. The he had to float on his back. Next, he was taught to glide, then a modified breast stroke. He was able to swim a few strokes with his face in the water, stand up, take a breath, and swim a few more strokes. He swam 25 yards with a kick board. He swam 25 yards without a kick board. Every step of the way his body was rigid with fear and anxiety. There were a lot of tears and there was a lot of tough love. Last week he passed the camp’s basic swimming test, the 500 yard swim.
Two days ago I watched him swim confidently across the free swim area to the floating dock which is anchored in 16 feet deep water. The smile on his face radiated pure joy. At that moment I paused to think about the significance of knowing how to swim. I feel as if I have known how to swim my entire life. I have taught countless children, including my own two, how to swim. Swimming provides hours of fun and exercise. Yet there are so many people who never learn to swim.
We say the Lake is the most fun place at camp and certainly the most dangerous. So we train many of our counselors to be lifeguards and we teach our campers to swim. Learning to swim is not a full guarantee to safety in the water just like a great jump shot is not a full guarantee to play professionally; however, the personal health and safety benefits of knowing how to swim are critical to living a well rounded life. A smooth lay up or powerful forehand may earn an athlete recognition and awards, but swimming saves lives.
Welcome to our Second Session readers! There was a lot of content posted during First Session including videos, songs and special event recaps and we’re planning to continue that – so please check back often!
The best way to keep up with all the goings on around Tripp Lake this summer is to Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter. We will also be adding comprehensive galleries to our webpage periodically, so keep an eye out for that as well.
Just like First Session, campers moved into their cabins and immediately took to the fields for games. After visiting Tripp Lake and eating dinner, both Camps gathered on the porch of the Boys’ Lodge for a welcome from Directors Win and Cannie Shafer, the Senior Staff and counseling staff.
The boys played the traditional game of Dodgeball, which is contained in the upcoming slideshow.
We’re very excited for the final three weeks, but they will go very quickly! Check back often for updates from around Tripp Lake!
Intrepid photographer and Delaware River video specialist Paul Moeller made a name for himself on this webpage for his collection of photos and videos collected during various canoe trips (last year’s posts are available here and here).
The summer of 2011 will be no exception, as here is the first installment of Paul’s photos and videos:
The Camps wrapped up a momentous First Session with Award Ceremonies, Orange and Blue Chicken Feeds, a Campfire and Candle Float.
The Blue team defeated Orange 94–69 in the S4B Orange and Blue competition.
The Blue team defeated Orange 20–16 in the S4G Orange and Blue competition.
Andrew Frederick of the Palace was presented with the Sportsmanship Award for First Session, with David Barr (The Annex) and Bryan Shultz (Palace) receiving Honorable Mentions. Jace Cubberley-Thomas (The Annex), Matt Friedman (Lodge) and Fletcher Kirby (Lodge) received Award Shirts for domination in three or more sports.
At S4G, Grace McNeely (Aspir Inn) was presented with the Spirit Award and Elizabeth Stone (Mount Inn) won the Sportsmanship Award.
The Sportsmanship Award is the highest award bestowed at Camp Susquehannock. Congratulations to all our winners!
As part of the S4B Olympic competition, all teams participate in the Jim Steen Memorial Regatta at Tripp Lake. Teams cycle through six stations, ranging from the Canoe Pass Relay to Dive Tennis Ball Catch. Given the amazing weather we’ve enjoyed at Camp this summer, an afternoon at the Lake was a welcome change!