High Spirits on Opening Day

A little (and sometimes a lot) of rain couldn’t dampen the spirits of all the campers and counselors on the first official day of the 2019 summer at Timanous. While there were a few more puddles to navigate around camp, everyone ended up singing songs together in the Hall at the end of the evening, just as we do every year on Opening Day.

How did we get there? After a few early arrivals for lunch, campers began arriving in bunches in the early afternoon. Old friends reconnected as if no time had passed at all since last summer, while boys new to Timanous were greeted by welcoming staff to their home for the summer. As their trunks were being shuttled to their cabins, campers walked down the bunkline for the first time to set up their areas and meet their cabin mates and counselors.

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Friends, old and new, gather near the barn

As more campers arrived throughout the day, activities were going on all throughout camp: card games in the cabin, dodgeball in the hall, and even basketball and soccer in the pouring rain! It was a good thing there was a warm fire going in the Barn when we all gathered for our first meal together.

There was a fire in the Hall as well for our evening event. Director Garth Altenburg introduced himself to the group, and invited all newcomers like himself to lean on the returning campers and counselors as they navigate their first summer at Timanous. We ended our first night together in a familiar refrain, with Dave Suitor leading the way in singing two of our favorite camp songs: T-I-M and Old Chief Timanous. While we were a bit out of tune and learning (or getting a refresher on) the words, there’s really nothing like singing songs in the Hall to bring everyone together to close out Opening Day.

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The rain let up as campers and counselors alike filed out to go to their cabins as a group, and it was a calm night as everyone settled into their bunks for the first time in 2019.

Check out our Shutterfly site for Opening Day photos!

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A Mallards camper hurries back for story time

June 21st, 2019

Posted in News

Camp Ready for Summer 2019


After 45 quiet weeks, we’re just a day away from welcoming campers to Timanous for summer 2019! Our counseling staff arrived about a week ago, and they have all been hard at work making sure this camp season will be just as fantastic as those that have come before.

It’s been unseasonably cold and rainy, so there was lots of activity around parts of the bunkline laying sand and channeling water back to the lake. Fortunately, the sun came out a few days ago and helped not only to dry things out, but also make it feel like summer had truly arrived.


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Beginner’s dock in the early morning mist


In addition to putting in the docks, arranging bunks in cabins, and all the other things needed to get things ready, the staff went through our pre-camp counselor training program so they can be at their best for the campers. Most of our counselors were former campers themselves and have learned the tricks of the trade over their years at Timanous, but we always take the time to gather as a group to make sure they have the skills they need to support the kids in their care.

Garth Altenburg has hit the ground running for his first summer as the Director. His enthusiasm, experience, and understanding of the Timanous way make things feel just like they always do at this time of year: excitement with another great summer about to start. We can’t wait for all the campers to arrive!


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New Director Garth Altenburg leads a counselor training session


See all pre-camp photos on our summer 2019 Shutterfly site.

June 19th, 2019

Posted in News

Monday, August 6

The heat continues — it was already 72 when the first bell rang and we had a high of 90 but a “feels like” of 96.  The lake was definitely a good place to be. 

The Crows (our oldest campers) cabin is making the most of their final days.   They were up at 4:20 and hiked to the top of Rattlesnake Mountain to see the sunrise!   They then had a pancake breakfast at their cookout site before starting their day.

For everyone else, it was a regular Monday morning  with Sign-ups and Swims but the swims were fun and games rather than instructional.   Activities to signup for  included archery, climbing wall, soccer, handicrafts, nature, riflery, sailing, tennis, woodshop, waterskiing.   Today is one of the very last opportunities to complete projects or work on awards. 

Monday is always laundry day but because today is the last laundry, most of the bags were stuffed to the max, many were larger than the campers!  The plan is to send everything out so we send clean clothes home!   

This afternoon, there were some extra water activities involving greased water melons and also water polo as the lake was the best place to be.  Other activities included paddle boarding, kayaking, baseball, handicrafts, riflery, sailing, woodshop, and tennis.

A bell rang at 5:30 and a crowd headed to the field for the “Fastest Man” contest.  There are three divisions – Lower Bunkline, Upper Bunkline and counselors.  Its a sprint from one end of the field to the other.  There were a lot of participants and a lot of very fast runners!

The TwiLight Leagues Championships were during Free Evening,  between Mulch Mob and Mills & Co. It was a exciting game with Mulch Mob winning and becomingk the 2018 Twilight League champs.   For those not playing, a lot watched the games but others played soccer, tennis basketball, ping-pong, gaga ball, went canoeing, played board games or just hung out.   

When the bell rang, almost everyone took a dip before getting ready for bed.   

August 6th, 2018

Posted in News

Sunday August 5

Hot and sunny from the start — high of 85 and expected to be even hotter tomorrow!

Being Sunday, it was a late sleep again today and the morning followed a regular Sunday schedule with a longer cabin cleanup  for changing sheets and writing Sunday letters.  Then off to chapel which was led by Evan Cummings who gave a very moving talk about being part of the Timanous Family and how the Triangle T on our shirts is our family crest.  I hope to post it shortly.

After lunch, during Quiet Hour, the Head Counselors  played the Seniors and Junior in softball.  

It was a normal Sunday afternoon with Free Time/Free Swim/Free Time.   Activities available during the Free Times were archery, campcraft with fire building, soccer, spikeball, handicrafts, nature, kayaking, paddle boarding, riflery, sailing, woodshop, tennis and basketball.   There was a Twi-Light League came during the second Free Time. The Championship game is Monday night.

Sunday evening we had our last Council Fire of the summer which was a great end to another fantastic, action filled week.  

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August 6th, 2018

Posted in News

Saturday, August 4

Saturdays are usually late sleeps so the first bell rang at 7:45 rather than 7:15.  The day started out overcast but it was raining by the time we went in for breakfast and continued raining much of the day.   

This morning was Free Time and then Free Swim.  Activities open were archery, the climbing wall, spike ball, handicrafts, kayaking, paddle boarding, a hike up Rattlesnake Mountain (in the rain — it was a fun hike but not much of a view at the top), riflery, sailing, basketball, and waterskiing.  It didn’t matter that it was raining during Free Swim as everyone was wet anyway.

This afternoon, there were signups, Free Swim and Free Time.  Activities to sign up for included Archery, Board Games in the Barn, Spike Ball Tournament, Handicrafts, Nature, Riflery, Woodshop,  Basketball and Slip ‘n Slide on the hill.  By late afternoon, the heavy rain gave way to showers and by dinner time, the sun was back out! 

The last Saturday of the summer is always Point Cookout — an all camp cookout with barbecued chicken, corn on the cob and buttered buns which is usually cooked and eaten on Crows Point, the farthest point of land which looks over the main part of the lake.   The preparations start early in the day and the fire is built mid- afternoon to cook all of the chicken in time for dinner.  Because it was still raining at that point, the decision was made to cook and eat dinner by the barn rather than on the point.   Of course the sun was out be the time we ate so we were still able to eat outside  — most people went back for seconds or even thirds on everything – it was all delicious!   

After dinner, everyone went to the hall where we were entertained with the Timanous Talent Show.  It was well done and a lot of fun.  There were numerous skits and a musical piece.   It was obvious there had been a lot of planning, work, talent and practice!   

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Talent Show Performers

August 4th, 2018

Posted in News

Friday August 3

Today was hot and humid from the start.  Given the prediction, we really lucked out as instead of having thunder storms most of the day, we made it all the way until 6:20PM.

This morning, in addition to all the regular activities: archery, handicrafts, riflery, sailing, woodshop and waterskiing, there were a few extras.  One being street hockey on the tennis court and two being  a really interesting session led by two women from the Cumberland County Soil & Water Conservation District who worked with the campers to find macroinvertebrates (also known as aquatic bugs) in Red River which borders camp and  leads into Panther Pond and by studying them, were able to determine that the water is clean! 

Knowing the busy afternoon schedule which included surprise guests arriving at the beginning of Free Time (our normal Friday Candy time), Friday Candy was given out for dessert at lunch! 

The first afternoon activity was Junior Granddaddy Gorilla which is a giant hide and seek game.  The campers had been told earlier in the week when it would be happening so they could find a good hiding spot.   When the bell rang at the end of Quiet Hour, the counselors went to the hall and the campers had 20 minutes to find their hiding spot before the counselors came looking.   If found, they headed to the hall and waited until the game was over.  When the bell rang to announce the end of the game, there were 13 campers that had not been found!   All of the campers went to  the hall where much to everyone’s surprise, they found out that we would now be playing Grandaddy Gorilla which  is when the counselors hide and the campers search.  So with the campers all in the hall, the counselors had 20 minutes to hide before the campers came looking.   It is a little different as the counselors stay in their hiding spot until the game is over and can be found multiple times.  Cabins work as a team and the counselors have different point values with Head counselors being worth more than Seniors who are worth more than the Juniors.  When the game ends, the point total is figured and tomorrow, the winners (one cabin from the upper bunkline and one from the lower) will be announced.

When Granddaddy Gorilla was over, everyone went back to the hall to hear about the rest of the day which included free swim, followed by free time and then the big surprise – The Timanous/Wohelo dance at Timanous.

It was a hot afternoon and after both hiding and seeking, it felt great to cool off in the lake.  Free Time activities included archery, handicrafts, riflery, sailing, nature, woodshop, tennis and basketball.   Wohelo campers and counselors started arriving and joined in at the activities.   As it got closer to dinner, the sky grew more ominous but it held off long enough for just about everyone to get through the buffet once,  but not long enough to finish eating.  It was a thunder storm so everyone took cover, most in the barn where they waited while the barn was transformed for the dance.  Then the dance started with some great DJ’ing, The dancing was non-stop and everyone seemed to have a great time.  When it ended, the Wohelo group loaded into the vans and bus while the Timanous group headed to their cabins after a really busy day!    

August 3rd, 2018

Posted in News

Thursday, August 2

The rain ended somewhere in the night and today was a hot summer day with a high of 88!  

A group of sailors left right after breakfast to attend a regatta on Moose Pond.  The winds picked up later in the day making for some  really challenging sailing.

At camp, activities this morning included a biathlon where participants swam and ran.  There was an upper and a lower bunkline division.  For everyone participating in the talent show coming up this weekend, there was a practice during the first period.  Other activities to sign up for included archery, handicrafts, nature, riflery, sailing, woodshop, and regular waterskiing.  

This afternoon was the annual Timanous Touch Football League Tournament (TTFL).  It was voluntary but about 3/4 of the camp participated. There was a lot of action and good sportsmanship and everyone seemed to be having a blast.  As it was very hot on the field, the dips after playing felt awesome.   Activities for campers not participating in TTFL included paddle boarding, tennis, woodshop, sailing, riflery, handicrafts, and archery.  TTFL continued during Free Time but many teams had been eliminated.  All of the earlier afternoon activities were available and additions included soccer, tennis, basketball, badminton, gaga ball, ping-pong, board games and dips at Main Dock. 

It was a perfect night for a Free Evening as the temperature was still in the 80s!   There was a TwiLight League game plus bocce ball, soccer, ultimate frisbee,  ping-pong, board games, tennis, basketball, badminton, etc.  and when the bell rang at 7:45, DIPS before getting ready for bed!  

August 2nd, 2018

Posted in News

Wednesday, August 1

The day started out great with temps in the mid-60s when the first bell rang and reaching the low 80s by lunch time.  At some point during the afternoon, both the humidity and the temperature dropped.  

We had a buffet breakfast which started at 8 and ended at 8:45 so anyone who wanted to sleep a little longer could.  Then it was a normal morning with instructional swim and activities.   Choices included beginner’s waterskiing, tennis, basketball, woodshop, sailing, riflery, paddle boarding, talent show practice, soccer, the climbing wall and archery. 

During the after lunch announcements, it was revealed that Capture the Flag was on the schedule and the barn erupted with excitement and cheers!!  Campers and counselors used Quiet Hour to get ready, dressing in their teams color.   As always, the games were action packed with lots of running, jumping, and yelling.  They managed to get three games in  before everyone shook hands and headed to swim. 

Activities open during free time included archery, soccer, handicrafts, riflery, sailing (racing practice), woodshop, tennis, talent show practice, basketball, gaga ball, ping-pong, and spike ball.   There were some light showers at the beginning and a more steady rain as it got closer to dinner.   

Wednesday is Jimmy Buffet which normally means  going through the buffet in the barn and then going outside to eat but because of the rain, most people ate inside although a few brave souls found some dry places to eat outside.   The rain continued so after dinner, everyone went to the hall for a movie montage.   It was still raining when everyone headed back to their cabins and is going to be a great night for sleeping!    

August 1st, 2018

Posted in News

Tuesday, July 31

We woke to another beautiful day!   Sunny, warm but not much breeze and a high of 84.

This morning was a regular morning.  Activities to sign up for included archery, instructional Ultimate Frisbee, handicrafts, riflery, sailing, woodshop and tennis.   

The Flap Jack Trip returned mid-morning  — “amazing” was the word used to describe both the trip and the pancakes!!  (a few pictures have been posted under 2nd session trips)

As we came out of lunch, everyone picked up their clean laundry bag —  1899 pounds of laundry was returned having been washed, dried and folded in less than 24 hours! 

The 6-A-Side soccer team returned to Agawam this afternoon to play in the finals.  They played hard but lost to Agawam.  However, the team, the counselors and our spectators were commended by the opposing team’s director for their excellent sportsmanship.  We are very proud of them all. 

This afternoon’s sign-up activities included archery, handicrafts (tie-dying), nature, riflery, sailing, woodshop and  T-Hoops, an annual basketball tournament with 3 person teams.   It was pretty hot this afternoon so free swims felt awesome.   T-Hoops  continued through Free Time  along with the other afternoon activities with additional activities of gaga ball, ping-pong and games. 

It was a great night for a Free Evening — in addition to the regular activities  (ultimate frisbee, soccer, tennis, basketball),  there was tennis/kickball baseball (ask you campers about that one!), water games on Beginners Beach and a canoe paddle to Red River.    When the bell rang at 7:45, many campers chose to take dips before getting ready for bed which is a great way to end a perfect summer day.   

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The T-Hoops Teams

July 31st, 2018

Posted in News

Monday, July 30

It was a little chilly when the first bell rang at 7:15 but it turned into another beautiful day – clear skies with a high of 81.

A group of soccer players left at the end of breakfast for Camp Agawam to attend a 6-A-Side soccer tournament.  Other activities this morning included archery, rugby, handicrafts (scratch drawing), paddle board, nature, riflery, sailing, woodshop, tennis and water skiing.  Everyone also had instructional swim. 

Everyone brought their dirty laundry up on their way to lunch.  The soccer players returned home for lunch before returning to play again this afternoon.  

An optional camping trip, the Flapjack Trip (there will be amazing pancakes for breakfast), left at the beginning of the first activity period by canoe for the other end of the lake where they will camp for the night. 

Afternoon activities included water skiing, tennis, woodshop, riflery, beginner kayaking, handicrafts, talent show practice, climbing wall, and archery.  Free swims were at Crows, Main and Beginners Beach.   Additional activities during Free Time included tennis, basketball, gaga ball, ping-pong and board games.

“Danny the Barber” arrived a little before dinner and setup shop on the kitchen porch.  Danny has been cutting hair at at Timanous for 40+ years!!  Campers came during dinner and free evening to get their hair cut.  

It was a great night for a free evening which included the last TwiLight League game of the regular season — the Bamboozlers vs. the Forknifers plus ultimate frisbee, tennis, basketball, soccer, ping-pong, gaga ball, talent show practice and more.  Then when the bell rang at 7:45, there were dips.  Another great day!!!

July 30th, 2018

Posted in News