The Purpose of Camp

While you may not have heard of George Handel, you most likely have heard his most popular oratorio, Messiah. It’s one of the most popular works in Western choral music and can be found in movies, on the small screen, even in elevators.

Upon the completion of its first performance, a nobleman (Handel worked for King George of England in the 1700’s so he was around a lot of ‘noblemen’) congratulated Handel on “your most noble entertainment.”

Handel replied, “My lord, I should be sorry if I only I entertained them. I wish to make them better.”

That perfectly describes my feelings toward camp. We don’t wish to only entertain, though a summer at Weequahic includes a ton of laughter, excitement, and adventure. We wish our campers, who come to us as interested, excited, and great young people, to leave Weequahic even better.

We spend ten months planning a two month party that should end with kids and families raving about how much fun they’ve had as well as how much they’ve grown. We want our campers to leave more independent, courageous, and patient. We want them to be stronger in the sense of who they are and confident in the joy they can bring to the world. They should leave having learned a few new skills, built some wonderful and lasting friendships, and more secure in who they are.

Because, to me, that is what camp is all about.

Cole Kelly, Camp Director

With thanks to Wikipedia Commons for the Handel photo.

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