Month: February 2012


The following blog was contributed by camper Leah C., New York:


Everyone gathered around the flagpole slowly, shoulders drooping, feet dragging in the grass, arms draped tightly around their friends’ shoulders. The traditional wooden “W” stood sturdily on main campus, waiting to be burned, waiting to wordlessly proclaim the end to our summer. Long, erie shadows, created by the glow of the moon, stretched out in front of us as we approached the flagpole. I sat down on the wet grass with my friends surrounding me and lifted my head to look at the black, clear, starry sky. Out of the corner of my eyes, I could see my friends doing the same, drinking in the sight of our last night at camp.

The flames engulfed the “W” quickly and within minutes, it was burning so brightly, it was hard to look at it. Yet it was hard to take our eyes off of it. Realization slammed into me, and suddenly it hit me that I wouldn’t see my summer family for another ten months. We would say our good byes, depart on our buses and planes the next morning, and talk to each other all year… but it wouldn’t be the same. With tears in my eyes I glanced away from the W and faced my friends. Looking at each other, and knowing from the expression on their faces, the same realization had struck them too. Tears streamed down our faces and we clung to each other, not wanting to say good bye to our best friends.

The W burned fiercely now, as if determined to end our summer. Everyone stood up and huddled in a group as we watched the “W” collapse. Sparks flew up from the pile of burning wood as it hit the ground with a heart breaking sound. Smoke billowed in the air, stationary above the ruin before drifting up into the night sky.

It was time to say good bye

Thank you, Leah!

Gratitude, Attitude and Courage: The Weequahic Way

Every family wants their camper to have an incredible time at camp. Building relationships with campers and staff members from all over the US and world, enjoying activities they only get to try at camp, and being a part of the camp spirit and traditions certainly allow for fun.   We want more for your child, though, than just a good time. We want to make a difference in their lives. And that is where our values of Gratitude, Attitude and Courage come in.

Gratitude: ‘A gracious heart is a happy heart.’ We have heard this from a number of philosophers and teachers through the years and know it to be true. Therefore, we spend a few moments each evening thinking about our day and expressing at least two moments that made us happy.  That expression of gratitude encourages us to be more thoughtful about ourselves and others and requires us to take a moment to be thankful each day.

Attitude: The only aspect of our lives over which we have complete control is how we react. Attitude, therefore, is a chosen outlook on life and we remind our campers of this fact often. Choosing the type of attitude you want to present to the world, and yourself, is one of the most important realizations our young people can come to at camp.  We develop this habit through the modeling of our counselors, gentle reminders throughout the day, and creating a community of fun for all.

Courage: We don’t talk about the courage needed to save someone from a burning building. Rather, we focus on the courage it takes to complete the small, every day actions required to be a good person. Standing up for yourself or another, trying something new, being polite when it’s hard to do so – these are the small courageous actions of good people.

Coupled with the independence gained by living away from their parents in an incredibly fun and intentional community, our campers leave Weequahic with a deeper appreciation of Gratitude, Attitude, and Courage. It is our hope this will only aid them in their paths to being people of good character, which benefits not only themselves but everyone who comes into contact with the Weequahic Way.

The Story of the Two Wolves

There is a wonderful story about developing character in a young person we recently heard and wanted to pass along to our community.  This will be an addition to our campfire time for summers to come!

The Story of the Two Wolves

One evening an old Cherokee told his grandson about a battle that goes on inside people.  He said, “My son, the battle is between two wolves inside us all. One is Evil –  It is anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.  The other is Good –  It is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion and faith.”

The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather: “Which wolf wins?”

The old Cherokee simply replied, “The one you feed.”

Simple, isn’t it? However, just because building good character is as simple as feeding the right wolf inside us, the culture around us doesn’t make it easy. Our young people need to know that they have a choice in building character and must make decisions on a daily and hourly basis about which wolf to feed.  The Weequahic Way serves to remind our campers and staff members that they do have a choice and guidelines for making ones that will help build people of Good Character.

Cole Kelly