‘The boy you want your son to be comes home from Camp Menominee.’
It’s the end of another great summer. And what a summer it has been! I’d like to think that everyone had a wonderful time and that many friendships and lessons have been made and learnt. The weather was kind to us – in the main – and the boys have been a pleasure. Even when the heavens opened on leaving-day morning, everyone was smiling. The torrential rain did not stop us enjoying those last few moments.
I guess the highlight of the summer was the big win over Camp Kawaga. This was the first time that we had done this for a while, so celebrating in the lake was a new experience for almost everyone. We would love to build on that success next summer, but we can only do that with your continued support. To that end I would like to thank all the parents, wherever you may be, for lending us your boy(s) for the summer. Without them we have no camp; without them to bring the place alive we have no camp; without them cheering and singing in the mess-hall we have no camp. We are all about the boys here at CM; they ARE the camp, and the more we have, the better the experience is. So as the dust settles on this summer, please know that next year is number 90 in the Northwoods for Camp Menominee, and we would love you to be a part of that milestone. This truly is a special place for so many reasons. Being part of the Green and White family means so much to so many people.
In the foreword to Michael Eisner’s book, ‘Camp’, John McPhee was asked which, of all the educational institutions he went to, had the greatest influence on the work he does today. He didn’t hesitate when answering that, ‘ it was the children’s camp I went to when I was six years old.’ That particular camp was in Vermont, and that was a bold statement indeed, but one which I can relate to. Camp will teach boys (and girls) the things that schools and universities perhaps don’t or can’t: building a fire; watching nature at its glorious best; learning to live in harmony with a cabin-full of bunk-mates; understanding what NO means and having to accept that; cruising around the lake on a couple of long, wooden boards; living without air-conditioning; making a bed and taking pride in a clean cabin; meeting people from around the world; learning new things that you thought might have been beyond you; getting up on stage and performing in front of a group; seeing what life is like without a phone in your hand every minute of the day! And so much more besides. Camp can do that for anyone who jumps on in and embraces what the camping ideal is all about. It’s a step back from the modern world; a mini world where we can have fun and relax and be the boys we want to be. And I think we’ve done that this summer.
I would like to say thank you for all the kind words that have come our way this year. I would also like to say thank you for reading The Word and staying in touch. Between you guys out there and us here, I’d like to think that we are helping to make the world a bit better, while empowering the next generation with some of the tools they will need in order to compete and survive.
The pleasure has been all mine, and the memories will live long. As I sign off the last time this summer I do so safe in the knowledge that all is well, so safely rest.