Archive for July, 2015

Wee-Excel Day!

Thursday, July 30th, 2015

Tomorrow is Wee-Excel Day; a special event day focusing on a camper’s program of choice. There are a wide range of activities for campers to choose from including Sports, the Arts, Adventure and “Olympic Prep.”

Some of our intensive sports camps include basketball, golf and roller hockey. Those campers wanting to play golf go to a local club where they get to play 9 holes on a challenging course. Our golfers love this opportunity because they really get to push themselves and see how much they have improved over the summer. AC9U3647

We also offer day long hikes for all age groups and our campers absolutely love the experience. Hikes are broken up by division and trails usually run for about 4 miles. The views are spectacular and campers get to cool down in falls that they pass along their route. After a long hike campers are treated to Jericho’s ice cream and feel refreshed upon their return to camp!

In preparation for our performance of Shrek, campers involved in the play have the entire day to practice their lines and songs, set designers can put their finishing touches on set pieces and the stage crew can work on lighting and cues. We also have a creative option for campers interested in activities such as scrapbooking, ceramics, photography, and painting. This gives campers a chance to paint any items they have made in ceramics or woodworking or make a book full of all the wonderful memories they have made here at camp.

In anticipation of Olympics, all our campers have been trying to guess when the breakout will happen. Olympics is a very exciting multi-day event that all our campers and counselors look forward to, so we have something called “Olympic Prep” for our older campers. These campers practice for certain events such as the hatchet hunt, grape tossing and counting to a minute (with a blindfold on). This gets all our campers super pumped up for Olympics breakout and is also a prime opportunity for our older campers to utilize their leadership skills on their respective team and help younger campers in their events when the time comes.

Wee-Excel Day is a wonderful opportunity for all our campers to dive into an activity they truly enjoy. Campers get to see the amount of improvement they’ve made over the course of the summer. It is also a time for them to use all the skills they have learned from counselors and fellow campers.

The Benefits of Inter-camps

Sunday, July 26th, 2015

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One of the really great aspects of Camp Weequahic are our Inter-camp competition options. Inter-camps give our campers a chance to compete with other camps in different activities including sports, dance, gymnastics and more during the summer. These opportunities give everyone an opportunity to show off what they have learned in their respective activity.

They are also a great way to show Weequahic pride as well as team bonding. In our opinion, Inter-camps are about showing good sportsmanship and motivating campers to do their best by giving them some friendly competition. Most of all, our campers are meant to have fun and always remember to show gratitude towards their coaches and other teams, a positive attitude no matter the score and the courage to ask for assistance when they need it!

This coming Wednesday we have 3 Inter-camps that many of our campers have been practicing for a great deal. First off we have a dance competition. A number of our girls (and some of our boys) have been working daily in order to get ready for this competition. They gave a sneak peek of their step routine at last night’s Dancing with the Weequahic Stars and it was absolutely amazing. The girls were completely in sync, had huge smiles on their faces and really gave it their all.

We also have a 5th and Under Boys soccer tournament next week. They have been practicing really hard for this tournament and are all really determined to do their best. You can be sure to catch our soccer players practicing their dribbles and passes on the soccer field. They are all so excited for this tournament and cannot wait to throw on their Weequahic t-shirts and go out on the field and represent this camp.

Finally, our Senior girls have a volleyball tournament they have been getting ready for. They are always on the volleyball court practicing their spikes and making sure they are communicating with each other effectively. It is easy to see that our Senior girls volleyball team loves the sport and that they are ready to show the other teams what they’ve got!

We want to wish all of our Inter-camp teams the best of luck and to always remember to have fun!

Lights, Cameras, Weequahic in Action!

Wednesday, July 22nd, 2015

Our Theater department has done a fantastic job making both Tribal and Olympic session’s productions memorable for each and every camper.jungle book

Tribal session’s performance of Jungle Book was an absolute hit! The movie is a classic and always a crown favorite. The costumes were really well done, the singing was great and you could tell that all our campers had a lot of fun putting the show together. Click here to view a short clip of a group of campers singing and dancing to one of the Jungle Book songs during canteen.

After seeing Jungle Book everyone was anticipating what our Olympic session’s production would be! As soon as our campers learned that this session’s choice would be Shrek, everyone was ecstatic and jumped at the opportunity to participate; whether it be a role in the play or designing the set. Our theater counselors were very impressed at tryouts and are thrilled to be working with such talented actors/actresses! The cast list went up yesterday and every camper was pleased with their role.

Sonya, our Theater Program Head, said she chose Shrek because “it is one of [her] favorite shows and has a great storyline. It has a ton of roles and is always a good laugh.” What are some of our campers excited about with this play? “Dragons, knights and castles, of course! And don’t forget the fact that Shrek is a fantastic movie!” one camper said. “It’s a lot of fun being able to a different person while still being yourself at the same time. You can be as dramatic or silly as you want. That’s what I’m looking forward to with this play!” said another.

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It is wonderful to see campers using their creativity and imagination not  only in their acting skills, but also in designing set pieces or sewing  costumes. Everyone is really excited to see the production of Shrek and all  the cast members and crew are working hard to make sure it’s a great  show.

Our Home Away From Home

Friday, July 17th, 2015

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I believe it is safe to say that coming to Camp Weequahic is a once in a lifetime opportunity that not many kids get to experience. But what makes this particular camp so special to the hundreds of campers that have come here over the years? Let’s ask some of our campers!

Camp: “Lola, is this your first summer here at Camp Weequahic?”

Lola H. (Junior Division): “Yes!”

Camp: “We are so glad to have you! What has been your favorite part of camp?”

Lola: “I love gymnastics. The counselors there are so great and I have learned so much.”

Camp: “What is one thing you look forward to when you wake up every morning?”

Lola: “I had never tried Ceramics before I came to camp and now it’s the first thing I think about when I get up!”

Camp: “That is so great to hear, Lola! Last, but not least, who would you like to thank for this experience?”

Lola: “I’d like to say, ‘Thank you so much to my mom, dad and all of my counselors.’

Camp: “Thank you so much Lola! Charlie, since you’ve been to camp before what has been the reason you return every summer?”

Charlie W. (Jinter Division): “I’ve made so many friends during the years I’ve been here and I love coming back and seeing them again.”

Camp: “That’s wonderful, Charlie. What is something you look forward to when you wake up in the morning?”

Charlie: “The weather here is beautiful so I’d have to say that the weather is something I really look forward to.”

Camp: “You are absolutely right. The weather here is amazing. Lastly, what is one thing you’ve learned this summer and who would you like to thank for this experience?”

Charlie: “Here at camp I’ve learned that friendships are one of the most important things and I’d like to thank Cole, Kate and my parents for sending me here.”

Camp: “Thank you so much for your answers, Charlie! Roxy, I know this is your first summer here at Weequahic, so what has been your favorite part?”

Roxy A. (Inter Division): “I love all of the arts here. There are so many different art activities to choose from and I haven’t found a single one I haven’t enjoyed!”

Camp: “Our Arts department is pretty amazing isn’t it?! So, what do you look forward to when you wake up every morning and what is something you’ve learned this summer?”

Roxy: “I always look forward to playing tennis, and I agree with Charlie that friends are one of the most important things.”

Camp: “I think you are absolutely right Roxy. Lastly, who would you like to thank for this experience?”

Roxy: “I’d like to thank all the counselors for their hard work. They are all so great and I’m really going to miss them.”

Camp: “Thank you so much Roxy! Alright Matt, since you’ve been at camp for a few years now what is the reason you’ve kept coming back?”

Matt V. (Senior Division): “Spending the summer with all my bunkmates and friends is something I always look forward to.”

Camp: “That’s great! What is something you look forward to when you wake up every morning?”

Matt: “The best part about waking up in the morning is that every day is a new day.”

Camp: “I think that is a great point! What’s one thing you’ve learned this summer and who would you like to thank for this experience?”

Matt: “I’ve learned that it is super important to remember to respect all of the counselors and staff and I’d like to thank one of my good friends because we both started camp the same summer and have both come back every summer since then.”

Camp: “It is wonderful to hear that you both have gotten to have this experience together. Thank you so much, Matt. Last, but certainly not least, Dylan, what has brought you back to Camp Weequahic every summer?”

Dylan K. (CIT): “The friendships I’ve made here are really special to me and I know we will stay friends for a long time.”

Camp: “What is one thing you look forward to when you wake up every morning?”

Dylan: “As a CIT I look forward to being a role model for all the younger campers.”

Camp: “That is wonderful to hear, Dylan. Tell me one thing you have learned this summer and who you would like to thank for this experience.”

Dylan: “I’ve learned that anyone can be a leader and also that you don’t have to have the loudest voice in order to be a good one. As far as people I’d like to thank, there have been so many outlets of inspiration this summer I couldn’t even begin to name everyone, so thank you to everyone!”

Before we say goodbye, CW would like to leave you with one last message:

Dear Weequahic Family,

It has been an amazing three weeks full of laughter, fun, bonding and learning. After interviewing some of our campers, it was easy to see that this camp is very special. Without this group of amazing campers, counselors and staff there wouldn’t be a Camp Weequahic. All of us here on staff would like to say thank you so much for sending your children here. It has been our pleasure to make their summer one full of great memories and friendships. We hope to see everyone back next year and wish everyone all the best in the year to come.

With GAC,

Camp Weequahic

Camp Weequahic: Through the Years

Friday, July 10th, 2015

image1 (1)It is mind boggling yet incredible to think that Camp Weequahic has been around for more than 60 years. Although many aspects of camp have changed throughout the years, so much of Weequahic’s tradition has been preserved.

Our very own Camp Mom Judy (CMJ) began her journey here back in 1999 and has been with us ever since. I spoke with her to get a picture of what camp looked like 16 years ago. CW used to be an 8 week camp and today it is separated into two 3 week sessions or one Super Six session.

“Now that we have a shorter time period with most of our campers, every minute counts,” says CMJ.

Our Directors and Programming Heads really understand the importance of time and make sure that every minute of every day is jam packed with activities. Our Community Service program, for example, allows Senior campers to create environmental friendly projects such as Water Bottle Wednesday.

Since we now have a choice program, campers get to pick activities and create their own schedules. This ensures that everyone gets to participate in things they like and are comfortable doing.

The Weequahic program has evolved from a ‘bunk activity’ plan in which each camper was scheduled by camp without any choice to a structured choice format that allows kids to have a say in their activities but enjoy them with other children their same age and gender.

It is also important to get to know people outside of your bunk which is very easy to do when you have so many activities with different people every day. During evening activities, Tribals and Olympics every camper is encouraged to participate. This ensures that every camper tries an activity they may not normally think of doing.

“A variety of skills are acquired because camp is the only place you might ever get to learn how to canoe, build a bird house or start a fire,” says CMJ. With over 60 different activities and many incredible teachers, the skill learning abounds!

Special Event Days and division trips have been a part of CW for a long time, however, campers today get to go to new and exciting places such as amusement parks and baseball games. Our CIT program is also something that has been around for a long time and is unique to this community. Campers-In-Transition take trips to surrounding cities and get to see different universities and colleges, serve as apprentice counselors in specific areas, are provided training in group leadership and dynamics, and given many opportunities to lead at camp.

Even though Camp Weequahic has changed since its birth in 1953, many of its traditions and core values have stuck. Our mission to maintain happy and healthy campers and to create a unique environment where everyone is exposed to a variety of activities and experiences remains the same.

What Does the Fourth of July Mean at Camp Weequahic?

Sunday, July 5th, 2015

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As we all know, the Fourth of July is a national holiday that celebrates the birth of the United States as an independent nation. But what does the Fourth mean at Camp Weequahic? For us, this day celebrates each camper as an independent and unique person. We celebrate the freedom everyone is given to select activities they want to participate in; the opportunity to choose what kind of person they want to be when they wake up every morning. It is a time to celebrate the growth of each and every camper and staff member. Here at Weequahic we strive to always show gratitude, a positive attitude, and courage in every situation. The Fourth of July is the perfect time to celebrate the gratitude this community has shown towards each other. It is a time to acknowledge the positive attitudes we have all demonstrated. It is a time to remember the courage we have each displayed in difficult or trying situations. Here at Camp Weequahic we love the Fourth of July because it is about so much more than the birth of the United States as an independent nation. It is about the birth of the Weequahic community and the campers and staff members that have been molded into the best versions of themselves during their time here.

Showing Gratitude, Attitude and Courage the Weequahic Way

Wednesday, July 1st, 2015

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It has been such an exciting day here at Camp Weequahic. While the Inters, Seniors and CITs headed off to Dorney Park, the Juniors and Jinters each had their own special event on camp. The Juniors had Roy G Biv Day and spread color all across camp. The morning began with a giant game of Twister with over 50 colored spots! Even though this was an individual event, campers were still competing for their respective teams and were cheering on their players with so much excitement and energy! Next, the Juniors participated in a Rainbow Scavenger Hunt. However, this hunt was unlike any other scavenger hunt. Each counselor was given a different colored marker and campers were told to chase the counselors to try and collect all the colors. But wait! There’s a twist! Some counselors had wipes to clear the colors, so the Juniors had to be very careful not to get caught by any of the wipers. After lunch was the ever popular Color Run! It was very similar to the ones we’ve all seen or participated in at major cities where runners are covered in different colored powder as they make their way through the course. However, instead of simply running a race campers had to make their way through an obstacle course complete with hula hoops and pool noodles. The Juniors worked together so well during the obstacle course and helped each other along the course. The final activity to close out Roy G Biv day was a Slip n Slide which is always a crowd favorite! The Jinters also had a great time today. They participated in Renegades Day and everyone was split into six teams consisting of the zombies, ninjas, cowboys, aliens, robots, and pirates. There were eight different stations campers rotated through during the day as well as some talent competitions including a dance off, handstand/headstand competition and whistling competition. The Jinter boys absolutely loved Capture the Flag and Bombardment while the girls had a blast playing Steal the Bacon and Balloon Bonanza. The standout activity for all the Jinters, however, was the Ice Cream Trough. All the campers had the time of their lives stuffing their faces with ice cream and sprinkles. Both the Juniors and Jinters had a fantastic day and really showed good sportsmanship as well as team spirit. It was a joy watching everyone work so well together and embody gratitude, attitude and courage the Weequahic way.