Posts Tagged ‘ACA National Conference’

News Update: February 1st, 2011

Wednesday, February 2nd, 2011

A blast of winter weather has hit us during the past few days and we are experiencing sub-zero temperatures and several inches of snow.  Despite the chill, we are focused on next summer, and are happy that June 1 is now only four months away!

Mike and Julie have enjoyed seeing many of you as they travel through the Midwest with our digital slide show program.  They have appreciated their warm receptions and enthusiasm for the coming summer. We still have a show planned in Boulder, CO on February 23.

February is a busy month as we prepare for the summer of 2011.  A major project throughout the winter is to hire the summer staff—counselors and wranglers, nurses and A.C.s.  We are always so proud of the outstanding college men and women who spend their summers contributing enthusiasm, fun, and nurturing leadership for the young people who attend Big Spring, High Trails, and Sanborn Junior.  We already have a great group of returning staff lined up and are making careful selections among new applicants now.

The National Convention of the American Camp Association will be held in San Diego in mid-February, and we will be participating in full force. Ryan, Elizabeth, Jane, Mike and Ariella will be leading educational sessions at the conference. Mike, as President of the Rocky Mountain Section of the American Camp Association, will be participating in all of the leadership events held at the conference and Jane will be participating in several events as a member of the national Children and Nature Committee.  We are especially excited that our new book, “101 Nature Activities for Kids”, written by Elizabeth and Jane will be released at the conference. Julie, Carlotta, Ashley and Pick will also be attending the conference. This type of training helps us to stay on top of evolving issues and inspires us to continue to improve our program each summer.

Unfortunately, the “Reconnect with Sanborn” reunions planned for January 30 in Greenwich, CT., and New York City had to be rescheduled due to snow on the east coast.  These events will now take place in early March. Our “Reconnect with Sanborn” event in Denver is scheduled for February 27.  This event is also a benefit for the Sandy and Laura Sanborn Scholarship Fund.

We already have a few early calves at the Witcher Ranch, most of them will show up in March.  Maren, Scot Ashley, and Rosie are hard at work preparing the riding program for next summer and making sure the horses are all ready for their busy season.

Alums can look forward to a big news-filled edition of the Alum News in March, and camp families will receive our Getting Ready information early in March.

We are all excited about the community that is coming together for the summer of 2011 and can’t wait to begin the fun. We are happy to mail our brochure and DVD to anyone interested in camp and to provide references for new families.

Because of Camp…

Thursday, March 4th, 2010

Because of Camp… was the theme of the ACA National Conference held in Denver, February 15-19, 2010.

We have collected some of our favorite Because of Camp…statements from current campers and alums.

Because of Camp…

  • I am someone I like!
  • I am a more self-confident person towards everything and I love spending time in nature. I have a brotherhood that I have developed and will have for the rest of my life.
  • I’m a significantly better person.
  • I proved that chubby, geeky kids with glasses could climb mountains, ride horses, paddle a canoe, and make friends with kids from all over the world.
  • I have so many lifelong friends and an audience back home for my amazing camp stories, but I, too, am a significantly better person and connected with nature at High Trails. Viva la Sanborn.
  • I have confidence in myself that I can be successful in my winter job.
  • I can take apart just about any toilet and I have not lost to any stopped up john yet!
  • My life is richer because of the people that I have met and the close friends that I have kept.
  • I look out for the other guy.
  • I love to wash dishes and pots and pans.
  • I can change just about any tire.
  • I found myself and several of my best friends

Listen to former Olympians, actors, actresses, world leaders, and global thinkers share how camp affected their lives in the ACA’s PSA “Because of Camp…”

What are some of your Because of Camp…stories?

Liberators, Integrators, and Hope Generators with Mawi Asgedom

Friday, February 19th, 2010

Find the Invisible kids. This was Mawi’s call to action during a morning keynote address at the ACA National Conference. How do we do that as youth development and camp professionals?

We SEE all of the campers. We KNOW all of the campers. We seek to build AUTHENTIC RELATIONSHIPS with our campers. These campers may be invisible because they aren’t “seen” by the adults in their lives, they may not be “seen” by their peers, and some may not even be “seen” in the camp community as a whole because they are unable to attend camp. It our job as youth development professionals, and as a greater camp community to come together and help ALL of our youth be seen, be respected, and be known.

Youth today can create their lifestyles at a depth unknown to the adults around them. When we were young, many of us had perimeters when it came to our chosen “lifestyle”. Sure, we could relate to, talk to others about, and put on the appearances and behaviors of our “chosen” lifestyle: the sports, music, fashion that defined those styles. And then we’d head home, where we were sharing (typically) a single phone line and we were battling our family members for control over the TV remote…and we would just be ourselves.

Youth today can maintain the lifestyle they choose almost 24/7. They can IM and tweet and Facebook chat about it late into the night under their covers. They can shut their doors and Google search, watch YouTube videos, and Hulu shows that inform their opinions of their lifestyles. They can create virtual worlds where they, in fact, are both known AND invisible. They can be invisible, safe…and yet they can still FEEL known.

What lifestyles are your kids embracing? Are they known in the virtual world or in the real world? How can we help them find unique identities beyond their embraced “lifestyle”? How can we help them see that–Because of Camp

Mawi Asgedom

–they can and will be able to create a lifestyle for themselves, rather than having that lifestyle dictated to them by the outside world?

By teaching them how to make a friend, and how to keep a friend; by helping them understand the importance of values; by modeling authentic, healthy relationships; by spending time in the outdoors; and through the recognition that the world is both very big and very small we can help promote the “camp” experience for invisible and visible children all around the world.

In the end, “camp” will mean one thing to a child refugee in a remote village in Africa, something else to a kid on the Upper West Side, and something else entirely to an indigenous child living on a reservation. It is our responsibility, and our mission, as Mawi said, “To make the invisible, visible” and to make the summer camp experience as we know it, accessible to all.

Opening Session at ACA National Conference

Thursday, February 18th, 2010

100 Campers for the 100th Birthday Celebration!

Our super Sanborn Western Camps choir crew ask, "Why no Dew?"

Singing "Choo-Choo-Cha!"

The first day at the ACA National Conference in Denver, CO, 100 Colorado campers kicked off the ceremony by singing camp songs with the nearly 1000 conference attendees. Elizabeth Rundle, along with other directors and staff members from the Rocky Mountain Section, had the privilege of teaching the campers the camp songs (new for some) transporting the kids to and from the conference venue, getting them lunch, and just hanging out with them.

When the campers arrived in “Capitol Ballroom C” the energy in the air was electrified. The campers were SO excited to be there—and they loved the unique opportunity to connect with other camp-loving kids from all over the area.

They wowed the audience with a three-part round, an interactive call and response that left Those Of Us Above 30 bent over at the waist, elbows back, knees together and tongue out while singing, and a beautiful camp modified rendition of “Taps.”

Most of all, they energized the 100th anniversary celebration of an organization made up of so many fantastic individuals from all over the country and world who are committed to the importance of a camp experience for each and every child.

Because of camp….