Here we are in September and another summer has come to a close. We can’t believe how fast it flew by! It truly is a privilege for us to be able to host so many campers each summer. We’re sad that the Summer of 2011 is already over, but excited to begin planning for the Summer of 2012. For us, our greatest challenge is to make each summer better than the previous. That’s a hard thing to live up to when this summer was so amazing! Collectively, we really couldn’t have asked for a better group of parents, campers, or staff members. We know that all of you are what makes Camp Weequahic one of America’s finest summer camps! We can’t wait to meet those who will be joining us for the first time in 2012 and to welcome back all of our friends! To everyone, here’s to living 10 for 2…until our next 2!
Something you might not know about summer camp: It breeds passionate athletes in many different sports, even ones that are little known outside of summer camp, such as ga-ga. Although it’s not well known in America (but becoming more so everyday!), hoards of campers dream all winter about getting back into the ga-ga pit. Many camps even have ga-ga tournaments! Camp challenge weeks even have ga-ga challenges. There is no doubt that campers are going gaga for ga-ga!
So what is this ga-ga? It’s a little like dodgeball in a circular enclosed space. Many camps feature ga-ga pits , but the game can be played virtually anywhere there are four walls or barriers. As in dodgeball, when players are hit with the ball, they are out. They may, however, use the walls of the ga-ga court to clear the ball. As players are struck by the ball, they are eliminated, and leave the pit. The last boy (or girl) standing wins. Two primary ways that ga-ga differs from dodgeball is that ga-ga strikes must be at or below the knees and players bounce rather than throw the ball. Also unlike dodgeball, players may either bounce the ball at other players or against the walls of the pit. Some camps have adopted rules of play unique to their campers’ style of ga-ga play, while others prefer to stick to the official rules…What? There are official rules? Yep. In fact, there is even an International Championship Tournament held annually in Europe. More than 30 countries , including the U.S., winner of multiple championship titles, participate.
No one quite knows how ga-ga originated or where it comes from, but rumor has it that the game gets its name from the sound the ball makes during the opening play. It’s bounced twice in the air and the players say “ga” on each bounce. On the third bounce, the ball is in play (some rules call for three bounces with the ball officially in play on the fourth bounce). So warm up your ga-ga hands and start stretching. We’ll see you in the pit!
Camp is a big deal for your children and for you. Whether you’ve planned a quiet summer at home or have an awesome vacation planned, we know that your top priority is to know that your children are having an amazing summer. You can help, simply by being informative.
We’re first and foremost concerned for your child’s safety and well being. Some of you probably wonder why we ask for photos of your children prior to camp. It’s so that we can show them to your children’s counselors when we discuss your children’s activity preferences with them so that they can greet campers by name from the moment they step off the bus and have full knowledge of how to make their summer successful.
We can’t emphasize enough the importance of communicating medical issues. Whether it’s an allergy to certain foods or insects, perhaps a dietary restriction, asthma, a vitamin deficiency, or wetting the bed, your camp directors need to know so that these matters can be handled appropriately as situations relating to them may occur throughout the summer.
We also want to know what your children’s interests are. If we know your child can’t get enough soccer, for instance, we can make sure that he/she gets maximum exposure to soccer during the summer. Knowing what your children like only helps us guarantee they have the summer of a lifetime.
Personal family matters are never easy, but if there is something happening at home—a divorce, illness in the family, academic issues, etc. it helps us to know. Perhaps it’s a positive development. Your child has landed a new role in a film, has made a particularly competitive athletic team, has earned a special honor at school. Whatever IS your children’s lives at the moment they come to camp, we want to be able to channel it into an amazing summer for them. And we’re confident we can. Otherwise, we wouldn’t ask. As your child’s “summer family”, we want to know how we can help them be at their best.
If anything comes up between the time you put your child on the bus or plane to come to camp and the time we put them back on the bus or plane to come home that might affect his or her summer, please call us. We want to know what’s happening. We want to understand how we can make your child’s stay at our camp effortless and memorable. Even if it’s minor, if you have any reason for pause, please call us. We want to be proactive in making your child’s experience memorable.